Knowledge Base

What is SIM Swap?

Started ‎30-01-2013 by
Modified ‎04-12-2018 by

SIM Swap allows you to transfer your giffgaff phone number to a brand new SIM card including existing goodybags and airtime credit.

SIM Swap is only available between 4:30 AM and 9:30 PM.

Let's do it now

Swap your SIM

More Information

Before you begin, you'll need an unactivated giffgaff SIM card. If you don't have an unactivated SIM card, you can get a new one from:

You will need your unlocked or locked O2 Phone

Note: If you have an active PAC code on your account you will need to cancel it before proceeding with a SIM Swap. 

More information about PAC codes and how to cancel them are in the PAC - How can I get mine to transfer my number? guide.

SIM Swap is the process of replacing your existing SIM with a new SIM and moving your existing number, allowances etc. to a new SIM.

Please note: You can use any unactivated SIM card to perform a SIM Swap. SIM Swap is only available between 4:30 AM and 9:30 PM.

To perform a SIM Swap:

  • Back-up any contacts, texts and other data saved on your current SIM to your phone memory or PC, as this cannot be transferred through SIM Swap.
  • Login and go to the Replace your SIM section of your account and click on Activate your SIM.

replacement image.png

  • Enter the 6 digit activation code of the new SIM card and click "Activate your SIM"

SS 1.png

  • This is where SIM Swap starts. You'll be told that you are about to carry out a SIM swap. You can make sure that the new SSN codes match the new SIM (it is the code on the back of the sim card). All good? Then, press "Yes, I want to replace my SIM"ss3.png
  • You will then be asked if you are sure you want to do a sim swap. Click "Yes I'm sure" to complete the process.SIM SWAP.png
  • Once you have pressed "Yes I'm sure", you will be taken back to My giffgaff where your dashboard will look like this. Once the SIM is fully activated your phone number, goodybag and airtime credit will show.

dashboard after activation.png

  • Put the new SIM into your device. Turn the device OFF/ON at 30-minute intervals until you get a signal and the SIM starts working.
  • You have completed SIM Swap! Enjoy.

If you have lost the plastic card on which the activation code was printed then simply enter the 13, 16 or 19 digit SIM serial number instead.

Just look for the 13 digit code located by the 4Ggg4 on most SIM cards.

Note that SSN number lengths may differ with older SIM cards, but the process remains the same. If using an old Nano SIM then put  894411 first followed by the 13 digit SSN found on your SIM.


When you lose your SIM card, you'll want to find the quickest solution to have your number back.

It's only advised to do a SIM Swap if you meet the two following conditions:

  • You don't need to bar your phone
  • You already have an unactivated giffgaff SIM card

If you don't match these two conditions, you should order a replacement SIM through the Lost & Stolen procedure.

Please note: As soon as you have ordered a replacement SIM using the Lost & Stolen procedure you will not be able to perform a SIM Swap.

If you try to perform a SIM Swap before receiving the replacement SIM it will fail, but your replacement SIM will be unaffected and you will still be able to activate the replacement SIM when it arrives.

  • Once started, SIM Swap is non-reversible and your old SIM will be deactivated and rendered useless. If you did not back up your contact details from the old SIM it will be impossible to retrieve them after SIM Swap.
  • SIM Swap does not change your mobile number. To do that see this article.
  • SIMs used in SIM Swap do not qualify for, and will not generate any bonuses or payback points even when originally linked to an affiliate account.
  • SIM Swap replaces your existing SIM with the new one. Once completed the new SIM will have your phone number and any existing airtime credit, goodybag on it. All account information will remain the same.
  • You can perform a SIM Swap even if you don't have any data allowance or airtime credit available. All giffgaff pages are free rated so you won't lose any allowances or airtime credit.

There are three types of SIM cards that have been issued from giffgaff. All are suitable for SIM Swap.

  • 3 in 1 SIM – Currently issued.
  • Standard/Micro SIM – No longer issued.
  • Nano SIM – No longer issued.

All of these SIMs are backwards compatible and can be used in any device using a 2G, 3G or 4G frequency.

Please note: You can use any 3G SIM in any 4G device but it may take longer for your device to establish a 4G connection. This is normal and can be solved by doing a SIM Swap to the latest 3 in 1 SIM.

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