I Just Want to Switch the Number

It was just a simple thing: transfer my phone number from my old phone to the new used one.  My current phone’s minutes are getting ready to expire.  I had upgraded my prepaid business cell phone to a used phone more suited to business use, and I didn’t really like the size of my personal Tracfone phone.  It’s quite tiny, and it was starting to have issues with the screen not reading what I touched.

I wanted to transfer my number and minutes using the Bring Your Own Phone plan and my old business phone.  It is bigger than my current one, and I liked the phone overall.  While it just didn’t work for me for business use, it would be fine for personal use.  The cell phone company will only transfer 1000 minutes.  I buy a year at a time, and it’s tripled; it so it ends up being well over that limit.

Let me just say, I have done this before without a problem for about 15 years. I’ve always called then used the website to upgrade after they installed that feature and transferred numbers and minutes. I have never had an issue with this company until today.

I tried doing it online using one browser, and I receive an “error” message.  Hm.  That’s not a usual thing.  Thinking it was a pop-up and I have a blocker, I switched to another browser and tried again.  This time it informs me that my phone number doesn’t exist.  Say what?  That’s impossible.  I’ve had this number since day 1 with this company. I try again.  One again my working phone number does not exist.  Um… Browser #3 says the same thing.  Huh?!

Image result for confused face

I bring up my account, and navigate to my phone.  I see one of the choices is “Activate”.  That’s not even possible.  I grabbed my business phone and called the number of my personal one.  It rang, so I answered it.  Hey, isn’t that what you’re supposed to do?  I’m sure if anyone had walked into the room, they would’ve raised an eyebrow.  Maybe both.

Obviously, my phone number does exist and my phone does work.  I do not want to deal with support, but there is nothing else to do, so I open a support chat window to explain that my working phone is listed as “deactivated” on their website, it works, and I want to port the number and minutes to another phone.  Simple, right?

I typed this out while I was talking to the person. This took about 50 minutes from beginning to end.

After explaining the problem, the “agent” disappears from the chat for about 5 minutes after saying, “One moment, please.”

She comes back with “Your phone is deactivated.”

Apparently, she did not read what I typed. I repeated my old phone is not deactivated. I even had someone (me) call it to make sure. It has over 400 minutes and 26 days left on it. All I want to do is switch the number and the minutes to the new phone.

She says, One moment.”

A few minutes later…

“You need a new sim card to get your old phone working ”

“The old one is working. I don’t have an issue with it. The problem is your end. Your website says it’s deactivated, so I can’t do anything with it. However, it’s not deactivated. It’s fine. I just need you to put it back to activated, and to switch the number and minutes to the new phone. I won’t be using the old phone after that.”

“ok. one moment, please.”  I read a chapter of a book while waiting – seriously.

“Thank you for waiting. Do you want to switch your old phone number to the new phone along with your minutes?”

*is glad the “tech” can’t hear my mental screaming, because I’ve said this three times now*  “Yes.”

“One moment.” (More like several minutes)

“Please give me the phone number and serial number of the old phone.”

I type them out.

“One moment” (Again, several minutes.  Apparently time runs differently for their support team.)

“Please type in the serial number of the new phone”

I do what she says.

“One moment.” ( … )

“You can’t transfer the number and minutes until you have a new sim card in the new phone.”

“I have a new sim card in the new phone.  It’s .. (I type out the sim card number).”

“One moment”  (Could you at least change it to one minute, because that one moment is an outright lie.)

“I need you to type out the serial number of the new phone.”

“Okay.”  New number is typed.

“One moment.”  (No, it’s minute.  Or in your case, several minutes.)

“We need to send you a new sim card. You probably tried to use the old one in the new phone.”

“No, I’ve been a customer for years. I know the sim card is tied to the phone, and they can’t be switched. The old card has not been put in the new phone. Only the new sim card has been put in the new phone.” (But thanks for the assumption.)

“One moment, please.” (For the love of…. oh, wait.  I got a “please” this time.  That’s good.  Or wait… I bet that means it will be over 5 minutes.)  Prophetic thoughts, right there.

“I need to send you a new sim card to get the old phone working, so you can transfer the minutes and number.”

“But my old phone is working.  If something was wrong with the sim card, the phone wouldn’t work, right?”

“One moment.”  (No “please”, so that means it’ll be under 5 minutes.  I think I’m getting the hang of this.)

“I’m sorry for the inconvenience.  We will need to send you a new sim card.”

“I’m confused. The old phone is already activated and working, but you need to send me a new card, because it’s deactivated and not working?”


Image result for stupefied expression


“Won’t a new sim card change the information like the number?”

“One moment.” (I’m going to read that in my sleep for the next two years.)  “No.” (You seriously had to take over a minute to answer that? But, hey, at least her response time improved.)

“How exactly does that work? Are you going to program the new card with the number? Do your sim cards expire after a certain point now, because my phone works fine, and I’ve never had this issue before.”

“The new card will work the same as the old one.” (That so doesn’t answer my question, but I’m tired and need sleep.)

“Fine. Send a new card.”

“Please verify a contact phone number.” I give her the exact number we’ve been dealing with.  You know, the one they say doesn’t exist anymore.

“Thank you.” o.0

“Your new card will be there by Thursday. Can I help you with anything else?”

“No, thank you.”  I shut down the window.  My brain hurts.

I’m hoping the new card will work, but we’ll see. I’m thinking I may just activate the “upgrade” phone and get a number for the area code we bought the land in, because I am now concerned about changing it later.   I guess, though, I’ve been fairly blessed with this company.  15 years or so and this is the first issue I’ve had.

Update:  I woke up this morning, grabbed my phone to call the car insurance company to change our payment info and see “Unregistered SIM”.  Great hairy donkey balls,.  she deactivated my phone.  I am waiting for so many people to get back to me, it’s not funny.  Now I have to call everyone and give them my business number to call.  Argh.


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