Whether you’re a Pay as You Go user looking to get a little bit more for your money, or you’re due a contract upgrade but want something a little cheaper and don’t mind keeping the same mobile phone, SIM only contract are here to save the day. Virgin Media is a massive network in the UK – here’s just some of the great deals they offer.
About Virgin Media
Virgin Mobile is a subsidiary of Virgin Media and operates in the UK. The company was first launched in 1999 by Virgin Group, as the world’s first Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO). Because it is a virtual network operator Virgin Mobile does not maintain its own mobile network but rather has a contract to use the existing network of Everything Everywhere (EE), which was known as One2One when Virgin Mobile originally launched.
In April 2006 Virgin Mobile was bought by NTL:Telewest, which subsequently rebranded itself as Virgin Media in February 2007. Virgin Mobile became a part of the services offered by Virgin Media and received a new logo in line with its parent company. In 2013, Virgin Media was purchased by Liberty Global.
Virgin Mobile provides both pay as you go and pay monthly packages, as well as mobile broadband packages. They sell their services both online and in Virgin Media’s retail stores.
What’s Good About Them?
Virgin Mobile offer a range of contract and pay as you go deals as well as selling a variety of popular mobile phone handsets. They also provide mobile broadband services with speeds of up to 7.2Mbit/s and have allowances of 1 to 3GB depending on the package chosen.
Virgin Mobile runs off the EE network, which is the biggest and fastest network in the UK. Because of this, users can expect a reliable service with 99% UK coverage and excellent 3G speeds.
All of Virgin’s pay monthly contracts – both SIM only and standard deals – come with unlimited texts as standard, so whichever deal you choose you know you’ll always be able to text even if you run out of minutes or mobile data.
Virgin is also a popular choice as you’re given the option to swap your monthly tariff at any time, meaning that if you’re half way through a contract and see a new tariff that you think is better suited to your needs, you won’t need to wait until your current contract has ended in order to change your plan.
Virgin Mobile customers can also enjoy free access to 22,000 public Wi-Fi hotspots in the UK free of charge. These hotspots are located in many cafés, bars, high street stores and even on the London Underground.
If you sign up for a Freestyle contract with Virgin Mobile and decide to spread the cost of your handset over a 24 month period, you won’t be charged any interest. The upfront cost of your handset is simply split into 24 smaller payments which you’ll pay alongside the cost of your monthly tariff.
How Good is Their Network Coverage?
Because Virgin Mobile run on the Everything Everywhere (EE) network, they have network coverage for around 99% of the UK. However, one downfall of Virgin Mobile is that although they use the EE network, Virgin Mobile customers have not yet got access to EE’s superfast 4G speeds and will need to make do with 3G, with the exception of business customers.
If you’re thinking of joining Virgin Mobile and would like to check whether or not you’ll get coverage, their website has a coverage checker which allows you to enter your postcode to make sure you’ll get signal at home or work.
Do Virgin Media Offer SIM Only Deals?
If you’re happy with your current phone handset, SIM only deals can be a better value for money way of getting a good tariff. As well as providing pay monthly phone contracts and pay as you go SIM card deals, Virgin Mobile also offers a range of affordable SIM only contract deals for those who want to keep their current handset or don’t want to be tied into a lengthy contract.
Virgin Mobile’s SIM only deals are all 30 day contracts, meaning that there’s no need for you to commit – you can change or cancel your plan at any point with no need to pay a fee to get out of it. They’re also a lot cheaper than pay monthly phone contracts, and you can pay as little as £12 per month for a great SIM only deal from Virgin Mobile with unlimited minutes and 2GB data. 0800, 0845, 0870 and 0808 numbers are all included, meaning that it’s easy to avoid being overcharged for making calls.
Unlimited texts come as standard with all of Virgin Media’s SIM only deals, whether you choose the cheapest or the most expensive tariff, meaning that you’ll always be connected and never have to worry about running out of texts.
Whether you’re currently a customer of Virgin Media or have never bought a product or service from them before, you’ll pay exactly the same price for a SIM only or mobile contract deal – unfortunately there are no loyalty discounts but Virgin think that it’s a fairer option for all their customers both new and existing.
£10 or Less
The best thing about SIM only contracts is that they’re usually a lot cheaper than standard contracts as you don’t have to cover the cost of the phone. Virgin Media has some great deals for £10 or less, great for those switching over from Pay and Go who top up around £10 per month, and also excellent options for kids getting their first phone. For just £5, you can get 250 minutes, unlimited texts, and 250MB of data, or pay £8 per month for a whopping 1250 minutes, unlimited texts, and 500MB data. If you decide to take the plunge and pay the full £10 per month, you’ll get an amazing 2500 minutes, unlimited texts, and 1GB data. The great thing is that all Virgin Media SIM only contracts are 30 day contracts, so if you want to change to a cheaper or even more expensive deal after a month, it’s easy.
£10-£20 Per Month
If you were to pay in between £10 and £20 per month on Pay as You Go or get a mobile contract with a phone for this price, you’d probably have a limited or even pretty small amount of calls, data and even texts. However, with a Virgin Media SIM only contract, you can get an amazing deal of unlimited minutes and texts with 2GB data for the tiny price of £12 per month! Or, if you’d like a little bit more data, you can get the same deal with double the data for £15 per month – imagine calling and texting as much as you’d like for less than £20 per month! It sounds too good to be true, but with Virgin Media, you can!
£20 or More
For those with a bigger budget or looking to get a contract deal with the maximum amount of calls, texts and data to offer, you’re looking at paying £20 per month or more. Although this might seem a bit expensive, if you compare it to what you’d pay on Pay and Go for the same amount or what the monthly cost would be for a regular contract, it doesn’t seem at all too bad. Just £23 per month will get you unlimited minutes and texts, and a whopping 8GB of mobile data for all your browsing needs – great for those who like to browse on the go. As with all Virgin Media SIM only contracts, you only need to commit to 30 days – so if you’d like to pay a little less after your first month is up, all it takes is a quick phone call.
Will My Phone Work On Virgin?
Virgin Media offers a selection of standard, micro and nano SIM cards for all of their SIM only contract, so whether you’ve got the latest iPhone or an older model of mobile, you’ll definitely be able to find a SIM that will work in your phone. Most phones will work for international roaming on Virgin, although if you’ve got an iPhone model older than the iPhone 4 or haven’t upgraded to IOS 7 you may have problems. You may also need to check that your mobile isn’t locked to another network – ringing your current provider should help to clarify this.