It's now as easy as sending a text message to change networks.

Gone are the days of having to phone your mobile network, navigate the menu options and then sit on hold to switch to a different mobile network and a better deal.  New rules brought in by Ofcom back in 2019 mean you can now just send a text message.

The text service is supported by all UK mobile networks and is useful for two scenarios:

  1. Requesting your PAC code to keep your existing phone number and take it to a new network provider
  2. Finding out how much it's going to cost you if you end your contract early and switch to another network

What is a PAC Code?

A PAC code is a ‘Porting Authorisation Code’ – a nine-digit code that allows you to move your mobile phone number to another mobile network. It's the code you'll need if you're changing network but don’t want to change your phone number.

Once you’ve got your PAC code from your current network you give it to the network you’re moving to (usually by filling in an online form) and they handle the entire process for you – telling your old network to move your existing number over to your new network, usually within 24 hours.

How to get a PAC code from any network via text message

Getting a PAC code from your current network to switch to a new network is really easy. Since July 2019, all you have to do is text the word PAC to 65075, from the phone that is using the mobile number that you want to keep.

Occasionally you may need to provide additional information along with the word ‘PAC’, such as your date of birth but send the first text and the network will reply with the next steps if they need more info.

Requesting your PAC code via text is free, you’ll get a reply pretty much immediately.  With your PAC, the network will usually include some additional important info, such as whether you’ll have to pay a charge to change network (e.g. if you're ending your contract early).

Whilst this is the easiest and fastest way to request a PAC code, many networks have other methods available too which are listed below.

Whatever the method of requesting the code, do it before your close your account with the current network. The code lasts 30 days, so if you don’t give it to your new network within that window you'll need to request another one.

Also make sure you’re out of contract when you switch, otherwise you may have to pay an early cancellation fee.  You may find the new deal you've found is so good that this is cancellation fee is worth paying but make sure you know how much you'll have to pay.

What to do with my PAC code

Once you have your PAC code from your old network, you need to give it to your new network.

Firstly, you need a new network - if you buy a new phone contract or SIM only plan from Chitter Chatter, you'll have the option to enter your PAC code at checkout so we can port the number over for you to your new network.

You'll be issued with a temporary number for your new network whilst your current phone number is ported over.

Alternatively, wait until you receive your new phone and SIM and then give your PAC code to your new network. You can usually do this on their website.

Other ways to request a PAC code from your network

We recommend the text message option above as it's fast and free but if you'd like to speak to someone or go through your existing network directly there are other ways to get your PAC code.

EE

To get a PAC code from EE, call 150 from your EE phone or 07953 966 250 from any other phone, or select ‘Leave EE’ on your Account Settings page.

O2

Leaving O2? You can request your PAC by calling 202 from your O2 phone or 0344 809 0202 from any other phone. Or you can get it online through your My O2 account.

Three

To get a PAC code from Three, call 333 from your Three phone or 0333 338 1001 from any other phone. Alternatively, fill in the ‘take my number with me’ form on your Three account page.

Vodafone

On Vodafone you can request a PAC code by calling 191 from your Vodafone phone or heading to Account Settings > Mobile Switching. You can also request it via web chat.

BT Mobile

On BT Mobile you can get your PAC by calling 0800 800 150 from any phone, or by logging in to My BT and going to Mobile > Thinking of leaving BT.

iD Mobile

To get a PAC code from iD Mobile, log in to the My iD app or log in to your account at my.idmobile.co.uk, then go to My Account > Thinking of Leaving > Switch or Cancel Now > Get PAC code.

Giffgaff

If you’re on Giffgaff you can request a PAC code on Giffgaff’s website.

Lyca Mobile

For Lyca Mobile, call 322 on your Lyca Mobile handset or 0207 132 0322 from any other phone.

Plusnet Mobile

To request a PAC code on Plusnet Mobile, dial 500 on your Plusnet phone or 0800 079 1133 from any phone.

Sky Mobile

To get a PAC from Sky, call Sky Mobile on 03300 412 524 from any phone. You can also go to sky.com/leavesky.

VOXI

If you’re on VOXI you can call them on 0808 0057 449 from any phone, or log in to your online account and select ‘Leave VOXI’.

Smarty Mobile

You can request a PAC code through the ‘Account Settings’ section of your account on Smarty’s website. From there select ‘Manage Plan’ and under the ‘Leave SMARTY’ section follow the instructions.

Tesco Mobile

Go to ‘My Account,’ select ‘View or Change my account details’, and then ‘Leaving Tesco Mobile?’ You can also request your PAC through web chat.

Virgin Mobile

To get your PAC code from Virgin, sign into your online account and select ‘Switching’. Alternatively you call Virgin Mobile on 789 from your Virgin Mobile phone or on 0345 6000 789 from any other phone.

Lebara Mobile

On Lebara Mobile, fill in this form.

Asda Mobile

To get your PAC code on Asda Mobile, call 2732 from your Asda Mobile phone or 0808 006 2732 from any other phone. You can also request it via your online account.

Talkmobile

If you’re on Talkmobile, you can get your PAC by calling 5888 from your Talkmobile phone, or 0333 304 8064 from any other phone.

More from Chitter Chatter

Come and say hello