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What is SIM Swap?

Started ‎30-01-2013 by
Modified ‎13-11-2017 by

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

Please note: Effective from the 11th January 2017 any unactivated SIM can be used for a SIM Swap. It does not need to be less than 6 months old.

If you would rather read about it check out the section below:

Let's do it now

Swap your SIM

More Information

Before you start, you'll need a giffgaff SIM to fit your phone which has never been activated. If you don't have an unactivated SIM, you can order a new SIM from:

If you have an old unactivated SIM card from your account and wish to check that it is suitable for a SIM Swap, simply pop the SIM into your handset.
All suitable unactivated SIMs will show a giffgaff / O2 signal in any unlocked / O2 locked device.
Next dial *100# [SEND] and it should return a non-active status message. If any other message is shown then the SIM is not suitable for a SIM Swap. Please order a new SIM using one of the methods above. On receipt of your new SIM continue the process in the next section.

If you have an active PAC code on your account then 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: Effective from the 11th January 2017 you can use any unactivated SIM card to perform a SIM Swap. The restrictions on SIMs being less than 6 months old has been lifted, older SIMs can now be used.

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 Continue.

activation page emphasized.png

  • This is where SIM Swap starts. You'll be asked to confirm that you really want to swap SIMs and you are not looking for something else. If you are sure, just press Yes, I want to swap my SIM.

Yes SIM swap _ bold.png

  • After making sure that the SIM Serial Numbers (SSN) match (it is the code you can find on your SIM) you are ready to press Yes I'm sure. Your old SIM will be deactivated and activation of the new SIM will begin. This may take anything from a few minutes to 24 hours - the 'norm' is around 30 minutes.

SIM replacement are you sure _bold.png

  • Once you have pressed Yes I'm sure click the button to take you back to My giffgaff where your dashboard will look like this. Once the SIM is fully activated your phone number, goodybag / gigabag 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, 16 or 19 digit code located by the 3Ggg1 for 3G SIM cards or 4Ggg4 for 4G SIM cards.

If you have a Nano SIM then enter 894411 first followed by the 13 digit SSN found on your SIM.

activate using SSN.png

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.

  • You can only do a SIM Swap between 4:30am and 9:30pm.
  • 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 / gigabag 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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