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How to cancel Tesco mobile

By Aaron Howdle | Tuesday, March 21st 2023

It is easier than ever to switch your mobile provider thanks to Ofcom’s Text to Switch ruling. These days all it takes is a text message to your provider, which will reply with a code. You use this number when signing up with your new provider to ensure a hassle-free switch.

Leaving Tesco Mobile is an easy process. In this guide, we explain what PAC and STAC codes are, and how to use them, what to watch out for, and how to find the best new mobile deal on the market.

Checklist: Things to do before you cancel Tesco Mobile

There are a couple of things you should do before giving Tesco Mobile its marching orders.

  • Check your contract – When you get a handset from Tesco Mobile you end up with two contracts. One contract is for your usage plan and the other is for your phone. The phone contract can be 12, 18, 24, 30 or 36 months long, whereas your usage contract can be changed or cancelled according to the length of its contract. If you have several months left on your handset or usage contracts, you will need to pay a fee to leave. To find out what your early termination fee is you can text ‘INFO’ to 85075 from your Tesco Mobile
  • Find Tesco Mobile’s contact details – You can contact Tesco Mobile via live chat, or by calling 0345 3014455 from a landline or 4455 from a Tesco mobile phone
  • Find a new mobile provider – As soon as you have decided to leave, start checking out the deals on offer from other providers. The latest smartphone may have an incredible camera, but a lot of people have come to the point where they don’t need more features from their handset. If you are one of those people and are happy with your current phone, there are plenty of SIM-only deals on the market

Cancelling Tesco Mobile if you’re still in contract

If you still have months left on your contract, it is worth staying with Tesco Mobile until your contract has ended. Leaving early will incur an early termination fee, which is usually the full remaining cost of your contract minus a small, single-figure percentage.

You can find out how much your early termination fee will be by texting ‘INFO’ to 85075 from your Tesco Mobile.

When you can cancel Tesco Mobile for free

Generally if you leave your mobile phone contract early, you are legally obliged to pay off the remaining months. However in a few specific circumstances, you can get out of your contract before it has ended.

  • Within the initial cooling-off period – You can return your phone or cancel your SIM-only contract within the cooling-off period, which is the first 14 days of your contract. Note that this only applies to online purchases
  • If Tesco Mobile increases its prices – If Tesco Mobile raises its prices without giving you 30 days’ notice, you are free to leave your contract. Equally if the price rise is higher than the Retail Price Index rate of inflation, you may leave your contract early
  • If your contract runs out within the next 30 days – If you are within a month of the end of your contract, you are free to sign up to a new deal and won’t face any termination charges

Cancelling Tesco Mobile if you’re out of contract

One month before your contract ends, you should receive notice to that effect from Tesco Mobile, either in the form of a text or an email. Once you have been notified, you are free to begin hunting for a new provider.

Now that you are free to look for a new deal, you can start the search for the latest handset, or, if you want to save some money and keep your existing handset, there are plenty of SIM-only deals on the market to choose from. You can check out the latest offers from various providers on our handset and SIM deal comparison page.

Customers with a pay-as-you-go SIM can cancel anytime. If you have a recurring payment set up, this will stop as soon as you cancel.

Request a PAC code to take your Tesco Mobile number with you

Since Ofcom mandated the Text to Switch service, you can easily take your current mobile number with you to your new provider. You will need to request a PAC (Porting Authorisation Code) from Tesco Mobile. To get this, text PAC to 65075 from your Tesco Mobile phone or you can request a PAC code by logging into your Tesco Mobile account. Alternatively you can call Tesco Mobile directly on 0345 3014455 from a landline (or 4455 from a Tesco mobile phone) or use the online chat facility, available from 7am to 11pm daily.

Your PAC code is valid for 30 days, so you have plenty of time to decide on a new mobile deal. Once you have ordered your new deal, you should give your PAC code to your new provider, who will then arrange the transfer of your number from your old provider and cancellation of your old account. This usually only takes about 24 hours.

Request a STAC code to leave Tesco Mobile without taking your mobile number with you

If you are not bothered about taking your number with you or you actually want a new phone number, you should request a STAC (Standard Termination Authorisation Code) from Tesco Mobile instead. By providing a STAC code to your new provider you are letting them know that you do not want to keep your old number. The use of your STAC number when signing a new deal, will also terminate your Tesco Mobile contract.

It is important to give your STAC to your new provider, otherwise your old Tesco Mobile contract can continue rolling on and you will be charged for two services.

Cancelling without moving to another network

If you are leaving Tesco Mobile but not taking out a contract with a new provider (when moving abroad for example), you do not need a STAC or PAC number. Just get in touch with Tesco Mobile and terminate your contract. Note that you need to give 30 days’ notice to leave.

Frequently asked questions

How can I find out what charges I will have to pay to Tesco Mobile if I leave early?

You can find out how much your early termination fees would be by texting ‘INFO’ to 85075 from your Tesco Mobile. Alternatively you can phone Tesco Mobile on 0345 3014455 from a landline or 4455 from a Tesco Mobile phone, or get in touch via live chat.

How long does it take to activate my new mobile deal?

It’s usual for activation to take a day, or possibly 2 days if it’s the weekend..

Will switching to a new provider automatically cancel my Direct Debit with Tesco Mobile?

No. The PAC and STAC information passed to your new provider, causes your Tesco Mobile contract to be cancelled, but you should cancel your direct debit yourself.

Can I switch onto a different SIM-only deal with Tesco Mobile before my phone contract expires?

To change your pay monthly tariff, or to change from pay-as-you-go to pay monthly, you’ll need to speak to Customer Care by calling 4455 from your Tesco Mobile or 0345 301 4455 from a landline.

Can I get a SIM-only deal from a different network if I bought my handset from Tesco Mobile?

If you bought your phone after December 2021, it will not need unlocking. If you bought it before then, you may need to arrange for it to be unlocked, in which case Tesco Mobile can do this for you.

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