ASDA Mobile Review: Low Cost Pay As You Go With Coverage From EE

May 5th, 2017

ASDA Mobile is a low-cost Pay As You Go network with competitive 30-day bundles and 4G coverage from EE.

ASDA LogoIn the UK, ASDA Mobile is a low-cost Pay As You Go network with competitive rates for calling, texting and browsing. For occasional mobile users, ASDA Mobile charges just 8p/minute, 4p/text and 5p/MB. Regular mobile users can even more with a 30-day bundle from £5/month. Bundles include the popular £10 option with 600 minutes, unlimited texts and 2GB of internet.

The coverage on ASDA Mobile is provided by EE, with there being 99% population coverage on EE’s 2G, 3G and 4G mobile networks. Customers can join ASDA Mobile by ordering a free SIM card on the ASDA Mobile website. This SIM card will slot inside your existing unlocked smartphone, saving you money whilst at the same time giving you coverage from EE.

In this article, we’ll take an in-depth look at the ASDA Mobile service. We’ll start by looking at the price plans on ASDA Mobile and how they compare to the plans available on other networks. We’ll then look at how you can use your handset on ASDA Mobile, at the level of coverage you can expect and at how to keep your existing phone number.

Order ASDA Mobile SIM Card (free) »

Pricing & Tariffs

ASDA Mobile Trio SIM

ASDA Mobile is a Pay As You Go mobile service in the UK.

In the UK, ASDA Mobile is a low-cost Pay As You Go mobile network. It’s offered by ASDA, the UK’s second-largest supermarket chain, in conjunction with EE who provide the underlying technology and coverage for the service. There are no contracts to sign when joining ASDA Mobile: you can simply order yourself a free SIM card and top it up to get going.

If you’re either a frequent mobile user or if you’re a smartphone owner, a 30-day bundle on ASDA Mobile will normally offer the best value usage. With a 30-day bundle, you’ll convert your Pay As You Go credit into a 30-day allowance of calls, texts and mobile internet.

For occasional mobile users, the traditional Pay As You Go service may offer better value. With this, ASDA Mobile charges just 8p/minute, 4p/text and 5p/MB (a fraction of what the major mobile networks will normally charge). Your Pay As You Go credit will also never expire providing you keep your SIM card active by using it at least once every 270 days.

30 Day Bundles

ASDA Mobile offers 30-day bundles from £5/month.

For regular mobile users and for anyone with a smartphone, the cheapest way to use ASDA Mobile is normally to buy a 30-day bundle.

With a 30-day bundle, you can essentially buy airtime in bulk from ASDA Mobile. This makes it cheaper than traditional Pay As You Go and gives you greater certainty over how much you’ll spend each month.

For instance, someone using 125 minutes, 100 texts and 200MB of data would normally pay £24/month on traditional Pay As You Go. With a 30-day bundle, you would alternatively pay just a flat-rate of £5/month for 125 minutes, 2000 texts and 200MB of data.

As of June 2017, ASDA Mobile offers a choice of six all-round bundles:

NetworkMinutesTextsInternetMonthly
Cost
ASDA Mobile1252,000200MB£5.00
ASDA Mobile300Unlimited1GB£7.00
ASDA Mobile600Unlimited2GB£10.00
ASDA Mobile800Unlimited3GB£12.00
ASDA Mobile1,000Unlimited5GB£15.00
ASDA MobileUnlimitedUnlimited8GB£20.00

Alongside the all-inclusive bundles, there is also a £5 Talk and Text bundle for people who don’t use a smartphone (the £5 Talk & Text bundle comes with 250 minutes and 2000 texts). There are also four data-only bundles (£5 for 500MB of data, £7.50 for 1GB of data, £12.50 for 4GB of data and £15 for 6GB of data).

Order ASDA Mobile SIM Card (Free) »

You can order a free SIM card through the above link to take advantage of the offer on the bundles.

Adding a 30-day bundle to your account

Once you have a SIM card from ASDA Mobile, you can buy a 30-day bundle by texting the following:

Bundle Buy One-Off Bundle Buy Recurring Bundle*
£5 Bundle Text 5 to 2732 Text AUTO 5 to 2732
£7 Bundle Text 7 to 2732 Text AUTO 7 to 2732
£10 Bundle Text 10 to 2732 Text AUTO 10 to 2732
£12 Bundle Text 12 to 2732 Text AUTO 12 to 2732
£15 Bundle Text 15 to 2732 Text AUTO 15 to 2732
£20 Bundle Text 20 to 2732 Text AUTO 20 to 2732
£5 Talk & Text Bundle Text Talk 5 to 2732 Text AUTO Talk 5 to 2732
500MB Data Text Data 5 to 2732 Text AUTO Data 5 to 2732
1GB Data Text Data 7.50 to 2732 Text AUTO Data 7.50 to 2732
4GB Data Text Data 12.50 to 2732 Text AUTO Data 12.50 to 2732
6GB Data Text Data 15 to 2732 Text AUTO Data 15 to 2732

* Recurring bundles will automatically renew at the end of 30 days providing there is enough credit remaining on your account. To disable automatic renewal, text STOP AUTO to 2732.

All bundles on ASDA Mobile will last for 30 days with any unused allowances expiring with the bundle. To check your current bundle and the remaining allowances in it, text BAL to 2732.

Pay As You Go

Top Up Logo

With classic Pay As You Go, you just top-up your phone and pay for what you use.

For occasional mobile users, it continues to be possible to use ASDA Mobile on traditional Pay As You Go. Here, you’ll only pay for what you actually use on a per-minute, per-text and per-megabyte basis. Your credit will also never expire providing your SIM card remains active (you can keep it active by using the SIM card at least once every 270 days).

ASDA Mobile charges the following rates on Pay As You Go:

Calling Rates:
Voice Calls 8p/minute (any network, any time)
Calls to Voicemail 8p/minute
Calls to Special Rate Numbers 8p/minute access charge
+ service charge from the company you’re calling
Messaging Rates:
Text Message (SMS) 4p
Picture Message (MMS) 25p
Internet Rates:
Mobile Internet 5p/MB (buy a 30-day bundle for better value)

The prices in this table are stated for UK-to-UK only. If you’re roaming or making international phone calls, higher charges will normally apply. Source for pricing information: mobile.asda.com.

Calls to ASDA Mobile customer service on 2732 are free. A full list of rates can be found on the ASDA Mobile website. This includes the rates for calling abroad and using your phone when travelling abroad in other countries through international roaming.

Order ASDA Mobile SIM Card (Free) »

In general, ASDA Mobile compares incredibly well against the major mobile networks for their Pay As You Go rates. Their 8p/minute and 4p/text tariff costs only a fraction of what other mainstream mobile networks typically charge (networks like EE, O2 and Vodafone typically charge 30p/minute, 14p/text and at least £1/day for accessing the mobile internet).

Some rival mobile networks are slightly cheaper than ASDA Mobile (e.g. Three’s 321 tariff). However, there may be other considerations such as the level of coverage. For more information, please see our Pay As You Go network comparison table.

Comparison to Alternatives

In the following section, we’ll compare the ASDA Mobile bundles against rival offerings from other mobile networks.

Less than £10 per month

5 Pound Note

ASDA Mobile has a choice of bundles from £5/month.

ASDA Mobile has a choice of three bundles for less than £10/month.

For £5/month, their all-inclusive bundle comes with 125 minutes, 2000 texts and 200MB of internet. Alternatively, their £5 Talk & Text bundle comes with 250 minutes and 2000 texts. For comparison, giffgaff has a £5 bundle with 150 minutes, 500 texts and 100MB of internet.

For £7/month, ASDA Mobile has a bundle with 300 minutes, unlimited texts and 1GB of internet. The closest comparable alternative is giffgaff’s £7.50 goodybag which comes with 250 minutes, unlimited texts and 750MB of internet.

NetworkMinutesTextsInternetMonthly
Cost
ASDA Mobile1252,000200MB£5.00
EE50250150MB£5.00
giffgaff150500100MB£5.00
Vodafone100250100MB£5.00
ASDA Mobile2502,000-£5.00
ASDA Mobile300Unlimited1GB£7.00
giffgaff250Unlimited750MB£7.50

£10 per month bundles

10 Pound Note

ASDA has the best all-round bundle at £10/month.

For £10 per month, ASDA Mobile offers 600 minutes, unlimited texts and 2GB of internet. This is presently a market-leading deal: the closest comparable alternative is giffgaff’s £10 goodybag which comes with 500 minutes, unlimited texts and 2GB of internet. giffgaff makes use of coverage from O2, whereas ASDA Mobile makes use of coverage from EE.

NetworkMinutesTextsInternetMonthly
Cost
ASDA Mobile600Unlimited2GB£10.00
giffgaff500Unlimited2GB£10.00
Three3,0003,0001GB£10.00
EE250Unlimited1GB£10.00
Vodafone200Unlimited1GB£10.00
O21001001GB£10.00
O22501,000500MB£10.00

£15 per month bundles

15 Pound Notes

At £15/month, giffgaff currently has the best value offering.

For £15/month, ASDA Mobile offers 1000 minutes, unlimited texts and 5GB of data. This is 2x as many minutes and 2.5x more data than on EE’s £15 Everything Pack (500 minutes, unlimited texts and 2GB for £15/month).

As an alternative to ASDA Mobile, giffgaff offers the £15 goodybag as a possible alternative. This comes with 1000 minutes, unlimited texts and 5GB of data (the same allowances as ASDA Mobile but with O2 coverage instead).

NetworkMinutesTextsInternetMonthly
Cost
Three3,0003,0005GB£15.00
ASDA Mobile1,000Unlimited5GB£15.00
giffgaff1,000Unlimited5GB£15.00
O22502504GB£15.00
EE1,000Unlimited2GB£15.00
O27502,0002GB£15.00

£20 per month bundles

20 Pound Note

At £20/month, giffgaff has a similar offering but with an unlimited data allowance.

For £20/month, ASDA Mobile offers unlimited minutes, unlimited texts and 8GB of internet.

For most people, we’d probably recommend giffgaff as a better value alternative to ASDA Mobile. For only £18/month, you’ll get 2000 minutes, unlimited texts and 6GB of internet on ASDA Mobile. Alternatively, there’s a £20 goodybag with unlimited minutes and Always On data (unlimited downloads but with tethering and 4G only on the first 6GB per month).

NetworkMinutesTextsInternetMonthly
Cost
giffgaff2,000Unlimited9GB£18.00
giffgaffUnlimitedUnlimitedAlways-On£20.00
Three3,0003,00012GB£20.00
ASDA MobileUnlimitedUnlimited8GB£20.00
Vodafone1,000Unlimited6GB£20.00
O22502506GB£20.00
EE1,500Unlimited4GB£20.00

For more information, please see our full comparison of Pay As You Go bundles. In addition, if you’re over 18 and willing to sign a contract, it may also be worth considering a Pay Monthly SIM card.

Handsets

You’ll need to provide your own unlocked handset to use with ASDA Mobile.

ASDA Mobile is a SIM-only mobile network. This means you’ll need to provide your own handset to be used with the ASDA Mobile service. You can use any mobile phone providing it’s unlocked or you can buy a SIM-free smartphone from retailers like Amazon.co.uk (our current recommendation is to buy a Moto G).

The free SIM card you order from ASDA Mobile’s website will slot inside your handset to give you an ASDA Mobile service.

If you’re using a handset that was originally provided by another mobile network, it might be necessary for you to first unlock it. For more information, see our guides to unlocking an iPhone and unlocking a Samsung Galaxy smartphone.

Order ASDA Mobile SIM Card (free) »

ASDA Mobile provides a three-in-one SIM card, so you can pop out the Standard SIM, Micro SIM or Nano SIM as required. If you aren’t sure which size of SIM card is required by your phone, see our list of handsets and the required SIM card size for each one.

Credit Expiry & Inactivity Policy

Phone Call

You should try and use your phone at least once every 180 days.

On ASDA Mobile, your Pay As You Go credit doesn’t expire (this is assuming you aren’t converting your Pay As You Go credit into a 30-day bundle). To keep credit active on your account, you do however need to make sure your SIM card remains active.

The easiest way to keep your SIM card fully active is to use it for a chargeable activity at least once every 180 days. Your Pay As You Go credit will only expire if your SIM card is left inactive for more than 270 days.

The following gives a timeline of what might happen to an unused ASDA Mobile SIM card:

  • Your SIM card has been used within the last 180 days. As long as you use your SIM card at least once every 180 days, your Pay As You Go credit on ASDA Mobile will never expire.
  • More than 180 days of inactivity on the SIM card. If more than 180 days have passed since your last chargeable activity, ASDA Mobile will suspend your outgoing phone calls. You’ll need to call them on 0800 079 2732 from another phone to reactivate outgoing phone calls on the SIM card. In the mean time, you’ll still be able to receive incoming phone calls and your Pay As You Go credit will still remain on your account.
  • More than 270 days of inactivity on the SIM card. If more than 270 days have passed since your last chargeable activity, your SIM card will be suspended by ASDA Mobile. You’ll no longer be able to make any phone calls and your Pay As You Go credit will also be removed. At this point, you can still call ASDA Mobile customer services on 0800 079 2732 to recover your phone number.
  • More than 360 days of inactivity on the SIM card. After 360 days of inactivity on the account, your phone number is deleted and can then no longer be recovered.

We’d typically recommend using your SIM card at least once every 180 days to avoid complications. This is a fairly standard policy across UK Pay As You Go mobile networks (in fact, ASDA’s policy is one of the most generous and lenient in the UK). For more information, please see our article on Pay As You Go inactivity.

Network & Coverage

2G, 3G & 4G Coverage from EE

ASDA Mobile has 99% population coverage across the UK using 2G, 3G and 4G coverage from EE.

ASDA Mobile uses EE as its network coverage provider, so customers using ASDA Mobile will get the exact same coverage as customers on EE.

At the time of writing, this means ASDA Mobile offers 99% population coverage, including 97% population coverage on EE’s 4G mobile network. In our opinion, this is a strong plus point of choosing ASDA Mobile as EE has the strongest 4G coverage of any mobile network in the UK.

Before ordering a SIM card from the ASDA Mobile website, we strongly recommend checking the coverage in your area. You can do this by entering your postcode on the ASDA Mobile website:

Check ASDA Mobile Coverage (mobile.asda.com) »

Prior to April 2014, ASDA Mobile made use of coverage from Vodafone. As of May 2014, the old Vodafone-based service has been switched off and all ASDA Mobile customers have since used coverage from EE. If you see other websites referring to coverage from Vodafone, the information on those websites is now out-of-date.

4G Coverage

4G coverage has been available to customers on ASDA Mobile since April 2017. ASDA’s online coverage checker will give you an estimate on the quality of 2G, 3G and 4G coverage in your area.

If you’re an existing ASDA Mobile customer, you may need to update your SIM card to a 4G-ready SIM before you can access 4G on ASDA Mobile. For more information, see the handset and SIM card requirements and check online to see if your SIM card is enabled for 4G.

Tethering

Tethering or personal hotspot refers to the process of sharing your smartphone’s internet connection with other devices (e.g. your laptop or tablet).

On ASDA Mobile, tethering is permitted on all Pay As You Go tariffs. This is a strong selling point as many other low-cost networks prohibit the use of tethering on their network. For more information, please see our in-depth guide to tethering on UK mobile networks.

Keeping Your Phone Number

ASDA Mobile Website 2016If you’re switching from another network to ASDA Mobile, it’s a straightforward process to keep your existing phone number.

You should start by ordering a free SIM card on the ASDA Mobile website. Once you’ve done that, contact your old mobile network and ask them for a PAC Code.

After receiving your new SIM card from ASDA Mobile, you’ll need to contact ASDA Mobile Customer Services to give them your PAC Code. You can do this by calling 2732 from your ASDA Mobile SIM card or by calling 0800 952 0393 from any other phone.

After you provide your PAC Code to ASDA Mobile, it will normally take about one working day for your phone number to be moved over.

For a step-by-step guide on moving your number to ASDA Mobile, please select your current mobile network from the dropdown menu below:

PAC Code Finder: Transfer Your Phone Number to ASDA Mobile

Your current network provider:

  More Options

For more information on transferring your phone number between networks, see our guide to using a PAC Code.

More Information

For more information about ASDA Mobile, please see the official ASDA Mobile website.

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About Ken

Ken Lo

My passion is helping people to get the most out of their mobile phone. I've been blogging at Ken's Tech Tips since 2005.

Aside from writing about mobile technology, my interests are in software development, digital marketing and physics. Outside of the blog, I work with numerous technology companies helping them to explain their product and helping them to market it to consumers. Please get in touch for more information.

Your Comments

We'd love to hear your thoughts and any questions you may have. So far, we've received 92 comments from readers. You can add your own comment here.

  1. John Smith said:

    Just to let all your readers know, adsa mobile may be cheap, but they are unable to fix a pretty basic issue with the HLR which prevents 25% of my contacts from texting me. FIVE WEEKS and still no resolution… Appalling for the 21st century.

  2. michael hickley said:

    I am still on a 2 year contract with i.d.,part of carphone warehouse, who piggy back off 3.The package I got was sold to me by the techy guy,who said based on my usage,i.d.came out the best.obviously the staff are told to sell the carphone warehouse i.d. package.I get 300 minutes, 500(I think) texts, and 1gb of data for £15.50 a month.
    Fast forward to looking at other bundles/packages from other suppliers…..I have chosen ASDA mobile.The £15.00 a month deal is far better than carphone warehouse offers.I was so disgusted with the way I was lied to by carphone warehouse staff,that I cut up my sim cvard, and now use ASDA mobile.When my carphone warehouse contract ends in may 2018,I will not be renewing it.

  3. encoderX said:

    Hi Ken, fantastically easy, unbiased & in-depth reviews. I went with Asda Mobile & loving it. Great monthly bundle allowances for price, easy top up, applying bundles & signal is ee so safe enough + 4G. Thanks for the pointer in right direction. No regrets.

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