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Maintaining a UK mobile number while in the US long term

Maintaining a UK mobile number while in the US long term

Old Oct 21st 2020, 6:13 pm
  #16  
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Default Re: Maintaining a UK mobile number while in the US long term

Originally Posted by Olly_ View Post
If you really want to keep it you could always port it to A&A - https://www.aa.net.uk/voice-and-mobi...obile-porting/
They may have changed their policy, but a few years ago Andrews & Arnold refused to accept me as a non-UK customer - they told me it was against their Terms & Conditions and cancelled my service.

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Old Oct 21st 2020, 9:49 pm
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Default Re: Maintaining a UK mobile number while in the US long term

If you use your phone in the US to send a text while international roaming that doesn't reset the timer (for a fee obvs)?
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Old Oct 22nd 2020, 4:33 pm
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Default Re: Maintaining a UK mobile number while in the US long term

I lost my phone number about a year ago and caused me some issues. I was here for 11 years and then suddenly I went to use my phone and the contract had been cancelled, so I never had the option of porting. I have a bit of a dance to get HSBC to reset my mobile app , it was a manual process without a UK number. Nationwide, just plainly refuses any non UK number. This make 2FA very difficult. I wish there was a voip service I could sign up for or banks would use landlines to verify transactions.
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Old Oct 22nd 2020, 5:06 pm
  #19  
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Default Re: Maintaining a UK mobile number while in the US long term

Unfortunately using the phone in any way in the US (text, voice, data) does not reset anything. Their contract states after two months they will cut off service, and I must use the phone in the UK for longer than I used it abroad before ANY roaming services will become available again.

Thanks for the porting info - I am still legally a UK resident and maintain bank accounts etc. so I will investigate the Andrews and Arnold service, as well as other providers like O2. Thanks everyone.
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Old Oct 22nd 2020, 5:13 pm
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Default Re: Maintaining a UK mobile number while in the US long term

Maybe give someone you trust in the UK a burner phone?
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Old Oct 22nd 2020, 5:18 pm
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Default Re: Maintaining a UK mobile number while in the US long term

A trusted UK person with a burner phone is definitely a backup option (thanks for the suggestion) but I was really enjoying the fact I didn't need to pay for a US phone (which are extortionate in comparison) and contract etc.
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Old Oct 22nd 2020, 5:24 pm
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Default Re: Maintaining a UK mobile number while in the US long term

I mainly deal with texts on my computer rather than my phone, much easier.
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Old Oct 22nd 2020, 5:56 pm
  #23  
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Default Re: Maintaining a UK mobile number while in the US long term

I use a US sim here, so I'm not costing them all the US based data that you maybe are. That could factor into it.
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Old Oct 22nd 2020, 6:49 pm
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Default Re: Maintaining a UK mobile number while in the US long term

Originally Posted by RussWithQuestions View Post
A trusted UK person with a burner phone is definitely a backup option (thanks for the suggestion) but I was really enjoying the fact I didn't need to pay for a US phone (which are extortionate in comparison) and contract etc.
I pay $15 a month for unlimited everything (Mint mobile). If you use ultra mobile , similar price, they provide a local UK number for people to call you with. Also they include 150 minutes or so each month of UK calls.
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Old Oct 22nd 2020, 6:51 pm
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Default Re: Maintaining a UK mobile number while in the US long term

Originally Posted by Boiler View Post
I mainly deal with texts on my computer rather than my phone, much easier.
I'm assuming you still have a physical UK mobile or is there another option. I used to get free online texts on my plan which didn't count against my usage, hence why my service was cancelled. I have been without my UK cell phone for about a year now and the sky has not fallen down, but it has issues.
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Old Oct 22nd 2020, 7:50 pm
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Default Re: Maintaining a UK mobile number while in the US long term

Originally Posted by RussWithQuestions View Post
... but I was really enjoying the fact I didn't need to pay for a US phone (which are extortionate in comparison) and contract etc.
Is the physical phone you are using locked? O2 unlocked mine for me (despite being under contract in the UK); my husband had a family plan network in the US that he added me to so I used a US sim in it but put my UK sim back in when I went back to the UK. Same phone. It was a pain keeping sims safe and swapping over repeatedly but it worked, when I upgraded my US phone, I kept the old one so I could permanently have my UK sim in it. Then it was a matter of taking both phones with me and chargers etc.
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Old Oct 23rd 2020, 2:25 am
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Default Re: Maintaining a UK mobile number while in the US long term

My wife and I are on Three pay-monthly, we lived in the US since January (no travel back to the UK ever since due to Covid) and it works great. We have have two SIMs in the iPhone (physical Three and virtual AT&T post-paid).
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Old Oct 26th 2020, 2:55 am
  #28  
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Default Re: Maintaining a UK mobile number while in the US long term

Thanks kindly all - having contacted them, they're giving me two months grace period which alleviates the urgency. They will be contacting me to ask me for proof that I am resident in the UK though, which I must provide, though they don't specify what kind of proof.

I will definitely look into Mint Mobile, thanks.
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Old Oct 30th 2020, 3:39 am
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Default Re: Maintaining a UK mobile number while in the US long term

Originally Posted by RussWithQuestions View Post
Hi, is anyone aware of a good way to keep a UK number running while living in the US? Primarily for receiving text messages for authenticating a variety of services including UK banks, government services etc. It would also be nice to keep the number as we may be back in the UK for long periods in the next few years.

I've been here in the US since Coronavirus hit, and cannot go back to the UK until early 2021 (or maybe even mid 2021 depending how long my adjustment of status takes) and my current provider (Three) is about to cut off my access as I've been out of the UK for too long. This is going to play havoc with bank access, filling in personal and business tax returns etc.
Inspired by this post, I just fired up my little-used spare iPhone, which has an O2 UK SIM in it. It's a cheapo Pay As You Go SIM. I last put 10 GBP on it back in Jan, but it's still alive (I think technically they want payment every 3 months, and I forgot to do anything with it till now ... will add another 10 GBP tomorrow). I use it when I travel to UK, which hasn't happened in a while (~1yr). I use it also to access my HSBC UK account (which only needs a wifi connection). I kept it on for several hours today but no text from O2 telling me the number is going away. I got the standard 'welcome to the USA' text from O2, explaining their rates. So it would seem that an O2 Pay-as-you-go SIM should do the job.

Originally Posted by Olly_ View Post
If you really want to keep it you could always port it to A&A - https://www.aa.net.uk/voice-and-mobi...obile-porting/

You can then receive texts via email and make/receive calls by using a SIP client.

When I moved here I just ended up abandoning my UK number - Lloyds Bank and HSBC can cope with a US number on file and I believe HMRC can too. I do keep a Vodafone PAYG SIM in my dual SIM iPhone for trips back to the UK though to save paying for Verizon TravelPass.
Not sure how A&A works, but just a word of caution. I tried to use a 'google voice' number to receive secure text messages from US government (for the Social Security website 2FA) and it failed. I don't know why but I read that some of these services that 'simulate' SMS services don't quite implement it right.
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Old Oct 30th 2020, 4:06 am
  #30  
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Default Re: Maintaining a UK mobile number while in the US long term

I can confirm that you can use the HSBC app without a UK number. It does require a phone call to customer service, but it works. Barclaycard and nationwide only support UK numbers as far as I know
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