Like your phone number? Port it.

21st April 2009

What if you’ve got an existing telephone number that you want to hang on to. Suppose you’re a salesman with heaps of irons in the fire. Your customers, or potential customers, know only this number to reach you. Or maybe you have it printed on your sales literature. You just cannot afford to give up that number; there’s too much riding on it.

And just suppose you are coming to the end of your contract and want to change your Service Provider or Network. You’re getting a better deal elsewhere. Then what do you do? You are on the horns of a dilemma. Do you go for a new provider and accept the number they give you? No, you can’t afford that – there’s far too much at stake. But then again, as the old saying goes; you can’t have your cake and eat it too.

You’ve got a hard decision to make … or do you? Why don’t you have your cake and eat it too? Yes indeed, you can do both. If you live in the UK, Ofcom makes it possible. That is, if you’ve completed your contractual obligation which usually is twelve months. It’s what is called ‘porting’. So you can just ‘port’ your existing number.

Ofcom follows the directive of EU 2002/22/EU which requires every fixed-line telephone network, broadband service and mobile phone service provider to offer number portability. The directive is under the respective practices of the Porting Authorisation Code rules and Migration Authorisation Code.

Sounds complex doesn’t it? Well it isn’t. Here are the few simple steps you should follow to have both your cake and eat it:

  1. Request your existing network to give you your PAC number.
  2. Select your new service, network tariff and handset and place your order.
  3. They’ll run you through the usual security and credit checks after which they’ll send you your new phone with connection instructions.
  4. As soon as you’re connected they’ll give you a temporary number.
  5. Contact your new Service Provider or Network quoting the number you wish to port with its PAC and the temporary number you are using.
  6. The number you wish to port – the old number will be transferred within 5 to 7 working days.
  7. Even after your original number has been ported and transferred, your temporary number will continue to work.

A word of caution:

  • Do not cancel your existing contract. An already disconnected number cannot be ported.
  • First check out the administrative charges your new service provider will apply to affect the transfer.

There you go, you’ve eaten your cake and have it too!

P.S. Port your existing 0845, 0844 or 0800 number to Planet Numbers and benefit from lower charges and a high level of service…