Do I have to buy a phone to get a SIM card?
November 17, 2007 5:27 PM   Subscribe

Will AT&T Wireless sell me a SIM card without a phone if I walk into their store?

I recently bought an unlocked quad band GSM phone for use while travelling, but I'd like to transfer my service from another provider and use it as my primary phone in the US with one of AT&T's monthly GoPhone plans as well. I'd rather not have to buy another phone to get the SIM card, which appears to be the only option with their website, so what are my chances of them selling one to me in person?
posted by cmonkey to Technology (10 answers total)
 
Best answer: You can buy the SIM on eBay
posted by dcjd at 5:32 PM on November 17, 2007


Response by poster: If I buy the card on eBay, will I be able to transfer my current phone number over? I'm woefully ignorant about how cell companies work these days.
posted by cmonkey at 5:38 PM on November 17, 2007


Do you have a working phone? Just call your local store and ask...
posted by wfrgms at 5:49 PM on November 17, 2007


If I buy the card on eBay, will I be able to transfer my current phone number over? I'm woefully ignorant about how cell companies work these days.

I think usually you just call AT&T and ask to port your number over after your service is established. Maybe someone else here can confirm?
posted by dcjd at 6:09 PM on November 17, 2007


Best answer: Yes, your ATT/Cingular store will sell you a SIM card without a new phone. I think it costs something like $12.

I'm not sure if the mall kiosks can do this, but I've definitely purchased just a SIM card from an official store.
posted by samthemander at 6:56 PM on November 17, 2007


Sim cards can be bought from any cellurlar store (authorized dealer or corporate store) around 12 dollars but some might try and charge you 20 :)
posted by boyinmiami at 8:10 PM on November 17, 2007


Yes it's possible. My wife and I did it when we turned my account into a family plan.
posted by nathan_teske at 8:47 PM on November 17, 2007


I think you can get one for less than free. Go get one of their free with contract phones. Take the SIM card out and sell the phone on eBay.
posted by ill3 at 12:27 AM on November 18, 2007


Yeah, what ill3 said. Why try to get a SIM only when you can get a SIM plus a free phone that will fetch at least $50 on eBay?
posted by rxrfrx at 7:25 AM on November 18, 2007


Best answer: My experience was that any prepaid SIM card is available from a cellular phone store. It turned out to be more than the 5-10 dollars that I expected, though not as much as a phone. I don't remember how much it was, but I do remember that I had to specifically ask for it -- they definitely will try to sell you a phone.

In the end, I ended up calling my provider's customer service, and they switched my existing, monthly plan SIM into a prepaid plan. So, if you can get an AT&T SIM card from a friend, it may be possible to call them up and use that. They might refuse with some excuse of course, but if it's an extra card it can't hurt to try.

BTW - while travelling, I learned quickly that it made more sense just to buy a new SIM card in each country, even if it seems like a hassle to change numbers and even if the roaming doesn't seem expensive. Foreign SIM cards are cheap, less than 10$ each, and roaming quickly exceeds that.
posted by cotterpin at 2:46 PM on November 18, 2007 [1 favorite]


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