Thinking about getting a new mobile phone contract? Well, you've certainly got plenty of options in the UK. But if you're having problems getting a contract, you might be wondering which of the many networks is going to be easiest to deal with? If that's you, then read on!
If you're having problems getting a phone contract the cause of these is almost certainly your credit check. Mobile operators run credit checks before signing contracts with customers to ensure that the customer is a good credit risk. A solid credit score shows that you're financially responsible and able to pay your bills on time, whilst a bad score does the opposite. If you've got bad credit, or no credit at all (perhaps because you're young or because you've recently moved to the UK), then getting approved by an operator for a contract can be tough.
Which Network is Easiest?
Let's get to the bad news first. There really is no operator that's easier to deal with, or easier to get contracts with, than any of the others. This is especially true if you've already failed one credit check, since this failed check will no be a part of your credit history and any other operator will see that you've failed once already.
Does that mean that you're in a hopeless situation? No, not at all! There are many things that you can try that will end with you getting a contract (either right now or eventually)!
So How to Get a Contract?
There are tons of ways that you can end up with a phone contract, even if you've had problems with bad credit or with being refused contracts with other operators. Here are some of our best tips to get that all important contract:
- Many networks have 30 Day Rolling contracts that don't require credit checks. These contracts are slightly more expensive than normal ones, and don't usually include a mobile phone. However, if you use one of these contracts for a few months (and keep up payments), you might find that your operator is more likely to agree to a longer term contract.
- You can ask your operator if they will accept a guarantor for your contract. Many operators will do this, and all you'll need is a friend or family member with decent credit who's willing to “co sign” your contract for you. In some cases this is for the whole contract, in others it's only for a few months and then the contract can be moved to your name only.
- Paying up front can be a good idea too. Paying a down payment on a phone decreases the monthly cost of a contract and so an operator might be more likely to let you sign.
- In some cases you may be allowed to put up a “deposit” on your contract. Mobile operator Three have been known to allow this. Pay a sum up front as a guarantee, sign the contract, then after a few months of on-time payments that up front fee gets refunded to you.
- Drop the phone, or drop your expectations. Signing up for SIM only contracts (which don't include a mobile phone) is usually easier than signing up for incentive contracts (which do include a phone). Alternatively, if you really need that phone, going for an older and cheaper model is more likely to get you the contract you want.
- Secondary operators (such as Giffgaff, Lycamobile, Lebara, etc.) are more likely to offer no credit check options, or bad credit contract options, than major operators (O2, Vodafone, Three, EE), so it can be worth shopping around.
Which Network to Go For?
Different mobile operators do have different requirements when it comes to signing contracts, so there is a chance that whilst you might not be accepted by one network you'll be accepted by another. But it's really impossible to say which network will give you a chance.
By far the best advice here is to either call customer service for an operator, or visit an operator's physical store, and explain your problem. Many operators are willing to work with customers to find a solution to their problems!
Whilst we can't say that you should go to X operator and you'll easily get a contract, we can say that there are contracts out there that are designed for people who have bad credit or who otherwise can't sign a contract. All you need to do is talk to your operator and find out your options. And there are always no credit check contracts to be found!