Knowledge Base

Getting started on giffgaff

Started ‎27-09-2012 by
Modified ‎07-12-2018 by

Welcome to giffgaff. You probably have a lot of questions about how things work so we prepared this guide to get you started.

More Information

If you just ordered your SIM card and are looking for more information while we are delivering it to your door, we released a series of guides to support your first steps with giffgaff.

They are an introduction to the topics covered in this article, and gives you a heads-up on what's coming next. If you are still hungry for information after reading them, the Knowledge Base contains more detailed guides on each subject

Before we get started, let's make sure that your device is unlocked and that you have coverage where you are.

Start by inserting the SIM card into your device:

  • Detach the SIM card from its holder. SIM cards are 3 SIMs in 1 (called "triple SIMs"), simply pop out the size of SIM you need
  • Insert it into your device
  • Turn your device on
  • If your phone asks for a PIN code, enter "5555", and press ok.
  • See a signal?
  • Yes - Great, you can now activate your SIM card
  • No - It could be due to your phone being locked to your previous provider - don't worry, we have a handy guide which gives you advice about how to unlock your phone in our "unlockapedia". If your phone is not locked, you may want to check the coverage in your area.

Head to 'Activate my SIM' - you will be asked to top-up or buy a goodybag, unless you have pre-paid for a plan upfront. After this step, your new giffgaff SIM will activate - simple as that (see this guide for more info).  

When you popped your SIM in your phone, the first thing you'll want to do is make sure that you have the right settings to get data/mobile Internet and Picture Messaging (MMS) up and running.

The giffgaff settings are:

Name: giffgaff
Username: giffgaff
Password: [Leave this section blank]
MMS Proxy:
MMS Port: 8080
MCC: 234
MNC: 10

If you are not sure how to use these settings, you'll find more info in the guides we wrote for iPhone, Android and BlackBerry devices. For step by step guides to setting up your device, please visit our device settings page here.

You can transfer your old number to giffgaff, it could be switched over as early as tomorrow if you get a wriggle on.

Two simple tasks:

You can also read this guide which explain all there is to know to transfer your number to giffgaff.

Subject Number Guide / Article
Voicemail  Your voicemail number is 443 (GIF) Guide to voicemail
Balance notifications

To check your balance dial *100# or

To check the remaining minutes and your goodybag expiry date dial *100*7#

The pop up notifications, you'll either love them or hate them - you can switch them on/off under My profile & settings

How do I check my balance?
Shortcodes Shortcodes are used to access quickly network functions from your phone - a bit geeky, but some are handy. Useful Network Shortcodes
SMS Support Send keywords (e.g. membername) to 43430 to receive instant information. List of keywords

We have different ways to help you manage your top-ups so you don't have to run out of credit. 

Subject Information Guide / Article
Top-up Everything you need to know about top-up Guide to top-up
Recurring goodybag

Set and forget. Set your goodybag to recur and it'll automatically pop onto your account each month.

Update your recurring goodybag settings under My Payment Details

Guide to recurring goodybag
Voucher top-up

If you're not by a PC, you can buy a giffgaff top-up voucher at an off licence/ supermarket and top-up via your phone (IVR number, dial 43430)

Just ask for a "giffgaff top-up voucher" - the phone number will be printed on the paper voucher.  You can also use an O2 top-up voucher, but don't dial the number on the voucher - use 43430 instead

Guide to top-up vouchers
Auto top-up

Set up auto top-up, so it automatically tops you up when your balance drops below £3.

Update your Auto Top-Up settings under My Payment Details

Guide to auto top-up

There are also a few options that you can manage to tweak our services to your liking.

Subject Information Guide / Article
Adult content Turn on/off the adult content bar under My profile & settings How do I lift the adult content bar?
Marketing preferences

To get recommended plans, points and usage statements etc you'll need to be opted into marketing messages, update your Contact permissions under My Details.


Add "no_reply @" to your contact list to make sure to receive our emails.

Guide to personalised usage statement
Personal details You can update your postal address, email address and password under My Details Guide to your giffgaff details
  • Free giffgaff to giffgaff calls: Did you know you get free giffgaff to giffgaff calls and texts? You can order a free SIM to be sent to your friend, or pass on your personalised order link – get them on giffgaff and you can call and text them for free. To qualify for this a top-up or goodybag purchase must be made with a voucher or credit / debit card at least once every three months. NB purchases made from airtime credit do not qualify. See here for more details.
  • Recommended plan: Each month we send our members a summary about how you use your phone via a ‘Personalised usage statement. If you have a goodybag, we send this by email 2 days before your goodybag expires. If you're on Pay As You Go (PAYG, ie you're using credit each time you call/text), we send that at the beginning of each month. We give you an update about how you’ve used your phone and what the best plan could be for you (i.e. a goodybag or just our great value Pay As You Go rates at 5p/text and 15p/min). You need to be opted into marketing to receive these emails, update your Contact permissions under My Details.
  • Usage summary: Once you've been on giffgaff for more than 3 weeks - text "plan" to 43430 and within 10 minutes it'll pop back your recent usage and recommended plan (note: if you text earlier than 3 weeks, we won't have enough info to recommend a plan, the message you get back will say wait a bit longer for your recommended plan). We are also displaying a message after each call and text to let you know how much balance you have left. Members love it or hate it - if you are among the latter group, you can switch them off from My giffgaff.

Remember, giffgaff is a little different - we don't have a call centre, instead, we have an army of members answering questions within our community, they'll typically answer your question within a couple of minutes.

We have a small Agent team who take questions which are account related only - i.e. if you have a question about your bill, problem with your account that requires you to give some personal details like credit card info etc.

Whether you have a simple question or an issue to solve, the best way to do it is to follow this simple method:

We have identified the questions which are the most often asked by the members and created articles answering all of them. It will answer most of your questions.

giffgaff is all about members helping members, if you have a question – ask the community, they'll give you an answer typically in less than 2 minutes that's 24/7.

It's important that you read our community guidelines for posting on the community. The giffgaff forum is a public, family friendly and welcoming place for all and we have the community guidelines in place to make sure that it stays that way.

Choose the appropriate category and ask the agents to verify your account.

You can find your giffgaff number via the following methods:

  • Visit your giffgaff dashboard - Your number will be displayed under your username.
  • Text NUMBER to 2020 or 43430 - You will get a text reply within a few minutes with your number.

Check out the official My giffgaff app for your phone. This handy app lets you manage your giffgaff account on the fly.

Ask our community

Don't be shy. Ask one of our lovely members for help.
Our community won't let you down.

Ask a question