PAYG SIM cards are an alternative to contracts where you pay monthly for how much calls, texts or data you use. With pay as you go you need to charge your account, known as topping-up, before you can use your phone. After using the credits on your account, you need to top-up your pay as you go SIM card again to continue calling and texting. This way it is very easy to control your mobile phone spending. While topping-up may sound as troublesome and uncomfortable, there are some ways to do it, the first two listed do not require registration and for the rest you need to have your PAYG SIM card registered with your operator:
Top-up with a voucher
You can top-up at any retail outlet that has a green top-up logo displayed (like the one on the left). You just need to ask for a voucher at the checkout, and tell the shop assistant which mobile operator you have and how much you want to top up your account with. You will get a voucher which looks like a normal receipt, then you need to follow the instructions on the voucher (which basically means to call a special number and enter a code from the voucher) to top-up your PAYG SIM card account.
Top-up at a cash machine
Thanks to various companies such as PayZone, PayPoint or E-pay there is also an option to top-up your account at a cash machine or using some special machines which can be found in all major supermarkets or petrol stations. Additionally a lot of banks in the UK also give their customers an option to top up their PAYG accounts with their cash cards at cash machines.
If you want to find the closest place where you can top up click on one of the logos below and you will be sent to a store locator where you need to enter your post code and all retail outlets that offer mobile top-ups in that area will be shown.
Top-up with a credit card or debit card
Most mobile operators offer a top-up service at their web sites. All you need to do is to find an appropriate tab on your provider’s website, enter your phone number, choose the amount you want to top up your account with and then give your credit card or debit card details. Some operators also provide similar service but instead of going online you use your mobile phone and call a special number, for example 4444 when you have O2 PAYG SIM card in your phone, and follow a similar process as when you top-up online but on the phone.
Top-up automatically using Direct Debit
Main mobile phone operators and major MVNOs let their customers set up an automatic top-up via Direct Debit. This is a convenient method when you roughly know how much you spend monthly on mobile phone. To set up an automatic top-up you need to get on your provider’s website, look for an appropriate link and give your bank details so the operator can set up a Direct Debit for the top-up.