SMARTY is a low-cost mobile network offering SIM cards such as 30GB data for £10/month and unlimited data for £20/month.

In the UK, SMARTY is a low-cost mobile network, offering SIM-only deals with coverage from Three.

The most popular SIM card plans on SMARTY claim to give you “all the data you need for less”. You can get 30GB of data for £10/month, 50GB of data for £15/month or unlimited data for £20/month. Alternatively, a range of data discount plans are available, starting from £6/month for 1GB of data.

In this article, we’ll review the SMARTY mobile network, starting with their line-up of SIM-only plans. We’ll then compare SMARTY’s price plans to those from rival mobile networks including giffgaff and VOXI. Finally, we’ll look at the coverage you can expect on SMARTY and how you can keep your existing phone number.

SMARTY Price Plans

At present, SMARTY offers two different types of SIM-only plan:

  • All The Data You Need For Less (from £10/month): SMARTY’s latest price plans come with a massive allowance of data, especially when compared to other mobile networks at the same price point. At the moment, you can get 30GB of data for £10/month, 50GB of data for £15/month or unlimited data for £20/month.
  • Data Discount Plans (from £6/month): Data Discount is SMARTY’s line-up of SIM-only plans. Ranging from £6/month for 1GB of data to £9/month for 4GB of data, you’ll get money back for data that you don’t use on these plans. This discount is offered at a rate of £1/GB.

All The Data You Need For Less

SMARTY’s latest price plans are marketed as offering “all the data you need for less”.

There’s a choice of three SIM cards within this range, from 30GB of data for £10/month to unlimited data for £20/month. All of the plans come with unlimited minutes and unlimited texts on a one-month rolling basis, with no need to undergo a credit check:

NetworkMinutesTextsDataMonthly
Cost
SmartyUnlimitedUnlimited30GB£10.00
SmartyUnlimitedUnlimited50GB£15.00
SmartyUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£18.00

You won’t receive any money back for unused data on these new plans. If you need additional data beyond the inclusive allowance, it’ll cost you £1 per gigabyte.

Data Discount Plans

SMARTY also offers a range of Data Discount plans for customers not needing as much data each month. The Data Discount plans start from £6/month and include unlimited minutes, unlimited texts along with an allowance of data. SMARTY’s Data Discount plans tend to work out better value if you’re a light mobile user needing less than 5GB of data each month.

NetworkMinutesTextsDataMonthly
Cost
SmartyUnlimitedUnlimited1GB£6.00
SmartyUnlimitedUnlimited2GB£7.00
SmartyUnlimitedUnlimited3GB£8.00
SmartyUnlimitedUnlimited4GB£9.00

On all of the data discount plans, you’ll get a cash discount on the following month’s plan based on data that remains unused in the current month. This discount is offered at a rate of £1 per gigabyte and is applied to the following month’s plan. It means you’ll pay the same amount regardless of which plan you choose.

For instance, taking an example customer who uses 0.8GB of data per month, the actual price paid will always be £5.80/month. This is regardless of which plan you choose:

SMARTY Base Plan Actual Data Use Unused Data Unused Data Discount Your Following Month’s Plan
1GB Plan @ £6 0.8GB 0.2GB
(1GB – 0.8GB = 0.2GB)
20p
(0.2GB x £1 = 20p)
£5.80 for 1GB
(£6 less 20p discount)
2GB Plan @ £7 0.8GB 1.2GB
(2GB – 0.8GB = 1.2GB)
£1.20
(1.2GB x £1 = £1.20)
£5.80 for 2GB
(£7 less £1.20 discount)
3GB Plan @ £8 0.8GB 2.2GB
(3GB – 0.8GB = 2.2GB)
£2.20
(2.2GB x £1 = £2.20)
£5.80 for 3GB
(£8 less £2.20 discount)
4GB Plan @ £9 0.8GB 3.2GB
(4GB – 0.8GB = 3.2GB)
£3.20
(3.2GB x £1 = £3.20)
£5.80 for 4GB
(£9 less £3.20 discount)

Because of how this pricing structure works, it is most advantageous to choose the £9 plan with 4GB of data. This is especially the case if you’re not sure how much data you need to use each month. Because of the unused data discount, you’ll only ever pay for what you actually use but you’ll have more flexibility on the larger plans.

The unused data discount is calculated based on the number of megabytes you have remaining unused at the end of the month (1MB = 0.001GB). This means you’ll receive a discount for the exact amount of data you have remaining unused, rather than only in gigabyte increments.

As of September 2019, SMARTY says their customers have earned data discounts of more than £1.2million.

Like SMARTY’s new price plans, there’s also no need to undergo a credit check on SMARTY’s data discount plans. You’ll pay for your plan in advance using a registered credit card or debit card, with the top-up being converted automatically into a one-month plan.

Pay As You Go Rates

All of SMARTY’s plans include unlimited minutes, unlimited texts and an allowance of data that can be used in the UK and when travelling in Europe. The inclusive minutes can be used for calling UK landlines and mobiles (that’s most phone numbers beginning with 01, 02, 03 and 07).

For everything else that’s not included in your allowance, you’ll need to top-up your SMARTY account with a cash add-on. This can then be used to pay for your out-of-allowance usage:

Calling Rates:
Calls to UK landline & mobile Included with base plan
Calls to Voicemail Included with base plan
Calls to International Numbers 3p/minute to £2/minute
Calls to Special Rate Numbers 3p/minute access charge
+ service charge from the company you’re calling
Messaging Rates:
Text Message (SMS) Included with base plan
Picture Message (MMS) Included with base plan
Data Rates:
Mobile Data £1/GB

Prior to the 4th February 2020, SMARTY charged £1.25/GB for mobile data. On the 4th February 2020, the charge for mobile data dropped to £1/GB.

It isn’t possible to use SMARTY on a purely Pay As You Go basis. You’ll need to maintain an active plan at all times for you to be able to make and receive phone calls.

Group Plans

You can get a 10% discount on all of SMARTY’s price plans by setting up a Group plan. There needs to be at least 2 SIM cards to create a group on SMARTY. Each person continues to have their own individual data allowance but all payments will be made from one account. You’ll also be able to manage all of the SIM cards from one login.

You can have up to 8 members in your SMARTY Group, which can be friends, family members or additional SIM cards for yourself. It’s possible to start a Group as long as you’re aged 18 or over and as long as you’re happy to pay for all of the plans.

SMARTY Plan Standard Price Group Plan Price
1GB Data Discount Plan £6/month £5.40/month
2GB Data Discount Plan £7/month £6.30/month
3GB Data Discount Plan £8/month £7.20/month
4GB Data Discount Plan £9/month £8.10/month
30GB Plan £10/month £9/month
50GB Plan £15/month £13.50/month
Unlimited Plan £20/month £18/month

Each member of your group can have a different price plan. For instance, if one person has the 30GB plan and another person has the unlimited data plan, you’d pay a total of £27/month (£9 for the 30GB plan plus £18 for the unlimited plan).

If you’ve chosen a Data Discount plan, the 10% group plan discount is applied after the Unused Data Discount. For instance, in the scenario for a customer using 0.8GB of data, you’d normally pay £5.80/month. This would be discounted by 10% to £5.22 per month.

For more information, see the page about Group Plans on SMARTY’s website.

Comparison to Alternatives

£5 per month plans

In the £5 to £9 price range, SMARTY offers a choice of four data discount plans (1GB for £6, 2GB for £7, 3GB for £8 and 4GB for £9). All four plans come with unlimited minutes and texts, plus a discount for unused data at the rate of £1/GB.

The data discount plans provide reasonable value for lighter mobile users, but there are some cheaper alternatives available elsewhere. This is particularly the case if you’re willing to sign up for a longer contract (e.g. some of the 12-month contracts in this price range offer more data for a lower monthly price):

NetworkMinutesTextsDataMonthly
Cost
iD MobileUnlimitedUnlimited1GB£5.00
1 month
Three600Unlimited1GB£5.00
12 months
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimited2GB£6.00
12 months
iD MobileUnlimitedUnlimited2GB£6.00
1 month
SmartyUnlimitedUnlimited1GB£6.00
1 month
giffgaffUnlimitedUnlimited500MB£6.00
1 month
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited4GB£7.00
12 months
iD MobileUnlimitedUnlimited3GB£7.00
1 month
SmartyUnlimitedUnlimited2GB£7.00
1 month
iD MobileUnlimitedUnlimited10GB£8.00
1 month
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimited9GB£8.00
12 months
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited8GB£8.00
12 months
SmartyUnlimitedUnlimited3GB£8.00
1 month
giffgaffUnlimitedUnlimited2GB£8.00
1 month
To show you the most relevant plans, 9 similar but more expensive plans have been hidden. .

£10 per month plans

SMARTY offers a 30GB SIM-only plan at the £10 per month price point. This gives you a much larger data allowance than what is available on other mobile networks. It’s also available on a 1-month rolling basis, so gives you a lot more flexibility than on other networks:

NetworkMinutesTextsDataMonthly
Cost
SmartyUnlimitedUnlimited30GB£10.00
1 month
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited12GB£10.00
12 months
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimited10GB£10.00
12 months
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited8GB£10.00
12 months
giffgaffUnlimitedUnlimited6GB£10.00
1 month
VOXIUnlimitedUnlimited6GB£10.00
1 month
O2UnlimitedUnlimited5GB£10.00
18 months
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimited1GB£11.00
24 months
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited12GB£12.00
12 months
iD MobileUnlimitedUnlimited12GB£12.00
1 month
giffgaffUnlimitedUnlimited10GB£12.00
1 month
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited4GB£12.00
24 months
O2UnlimitedUnlimited2GB£12.00
12 months
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimited1GB£12.00
12 months
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited4GB£13.00
12 months
EEUnlimitedUnlimited250MB£13.00
12 months
To show you the most relevant plans, 8 similar but more expensive plans have been hidden. .

£15 per month plans

SMARTY has a £15 plan with 50GB of data along with unlimited minutes and unlimited texts. At the £15 price point, this offers the most data by far, beating the offerings available from giffgaff and VOXI. It also beats the SIM-only offerings from other major mobile networks, which tend to offer less data and often on a longer contract.

NetworkMinutesTextsDataMonthly
Cost
SmartyUnlimitedUnlimited50GB£15.00
1 month
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimited25GB£15.00
12 months
iD MobileUnlimitedUnlimited20GB£15.00
1 month
O2UnlimitedUnlimited20GB£15.00
18 months
giffgaffUnlimitedUnlimited15GB£15.00
1 month
VOXIUnlimitedUnlimited15GB£15.00
1 month
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimited5GB£15.00
24 months
O2UnlimitedUnlimited5GB£15.00
12 months
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited12GB£16.00
12 months
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimited5GB£16.00
12 months
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited4GB£16.00
1 month
EEUnlimitedUnlimited1GB£16.00
12 months
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimited1GB£16.00
1 month
O2UnlimitedUnlimited10GB£17.00
12 months
SmartyUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£18.00
1 month
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£18.00
12 months
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited100GB£18.00
24 months
iD MobileUnlimitedUnlimited50GB£18.00
1 month
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited30GB£18.00
24 months
To show you the most relevant plans, 11 similar but more expensive plans have been hidden. .

£20 per month plans

SMARTY has a £20 unlimited data plan giving you unlimited minutes, unlimited texts and unlimited data. They’re only one of several mobile networks to offer an unlimited data plan.

The following table shows how SMARTY’s unlimited data plan compares to rival mobile networks:

NetworkMinutesTextsDataMonthly
Cost
SmartyUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£18.00
1 month
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£18.00
12 months
iD MobileUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£20.00
1 month
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£22.00
24 months
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
2Mbps max
£22.00
24 months
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£24.00
1 month
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
2Mbps max
£24.00
12 months
giffgaffUnlimitedUnlimitedAlways-On£25.00
1 month
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£26.00
1 month
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£26.00
24 months
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£26.00
12 months
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
10Mbps max
£26.00
24 months
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
2Mbps max
£28.00
1 month
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
10Mbps max
£28.00
12 months
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
10Mbps max
£32.00
1 month
O2UnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£33.00
18 months
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£33.00
12 months
O2UnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£35.00
12 months
VOXIUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£35.00
1 month
EEUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£35.00
18 months
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£37.00
1 month
To show you the most relevant plans, 11 similar but more expensive plans have been hidden. .

For more information, see our full guide to unlimited data plans in the UK.

Handsets

SMARTY is a SIM-only mobile network, so you’ll need to provide your own unlocked handset to use with the service. You can use any compatible 3G or 4G smartphone, including your existing mobile phone or one that you’ve purchased SIM-free.

If you’re planning to use your existing smartphone, it might be necessary for you to first unlock it before using it on SMARTY. For more information, see our step-by-step guides to unlocking an iPhone and unlocking a Samsung Galaxy smartphone.

If you’re looking to buy a new unlocked smartphone, there are a number of online retailers where you can buy a SIM-free smartphone.

Network & Coverage

3G & 4G Coverage from Three

SMARTY offers 99.8% population coverage on 4G.

SMARTY is a low-cost sub-brand of Three. As Three provides all of the underlying coverage for SMARTY, customers will receive the exact same coverage as they would on Three.

At the time of writing, SMARTY offers 98.7% population coverage on 3G and 99.8% population coverage on 4G. You can check the coverage in your area by entering your postcode on SMARTY’s online coverage map:

Check SMARTY Coverage Map (smarty.co.uk) →

Like Three, and like all other mobile networks using coverage from Three, SMARTY doesn’t provide any 2G coverage. This means a SMARTY SIM card will not work in a 2G-only handset. You may also have limited functionality when using a SMARTY SIM card in some dual-SIM smartphones.

Features like Wi-Fi Calling and 4G Calling are not currently available to customers on SMARTY.

For more information, please see our in-depth guide to coverage on Three. Alternatively, find out how mobile phone coverage works in the UK.

5G Coverage

At present, 5G coverage is not available to customers on SMARTY. They’ve however announced that 5G will be launching soon, likely sometime in early 2020.

Like their 3G and 4G coverage, SMARTY will also be using Three’s network for their 5G coverage. At present, Three offers 5G coverage in the following UK towns and cities:

Now Live68 towns and cities are live on Three 5G (July 2020)
Aberdeen, Abingdon-on-Thames, Aldershot, Aldridge, Balloch, Barrow-in-Furness, Basildon, Bath, Bedford, Birkenhead, Birmingham, Blackpool, Borehamwood, Bradford, Brighton, Brookmans Park, Cannock, Cardiff, Chatham, Clayton-le-Woods, Coventry, Crawley, Cullingworth, Derby, Doncaster, Dundee, Glasgow, Gorebridge, Grays, Grimsby, Guildford, Heanor, Hedge End, Hemel Hempstead, Huddersfield, Inchinnan, Ipswich, Leeds, Leicester, Leyland, Liverpool, London, Lower Stondon, Luton, Maidstone, Manchester, Mansfield, Motherwell, Neston, Newquay, Nottingham, Nuneaton, Peterborough, Plymouth, Preston, Reading, Redcar, Royston, Sheffield, Slough, St Albans, Stevenage, Swadlincote, Swindon, Telford, Westhoughton, Wickford, Wigan

For more information, see our guide to the 5G rollout in the UK.

Tethering & Personal Hotspot

Tethering or personal hotspot refers to the process of sharing your smartphone’s internet connection with another device (e.g. with your laptop or tablet). It’s useful for getting a mobile broadband connection on the go: for instance, sending e-mails from your laptop or watching YouTube videos on your tablet.

SMARTY allows the use of both tethering and portable hotspot. This is confirmed in the SMARTY help centre:

You’re entitled to use your data however you like, no matter which of the SMARTY plans you’re on, so you can tether and use your phone as a mobile hot spot with your full allowance if you want to.

The only exception to this is the Unlimited plan and if you’re roaming outside of the UK, where you’ll be limited to 20GB.

For more information, see our in-depth guide to tethering on UK mobile networks.

International Roaming

On SMARTY, it’s possible to use your mobile phone abroad through the international roaming service.

Within Europe, you can use your SMARTY plan allowances at no extra cost. However, on price plans with more than 20GB of data, European roaming is capped at a maximum of 20GB per month.

Outside of Europe, you’ll need to top-up your account with a cash add-on. You’ll then pay SMARTY’s international roaming rates.

Between September 2017 and July 2018, international roaming was not available to customers on SMARTY. If you joined the SMARTY network before July 2018, you’ll need to make a change to your mobile phone settings to use your SIM card abroad.

Keeping Your Phone Number

If you’d like to keep your existing phone number when moving to SMARTY, it’s a straightforward process to transfer it from your old mobile network.

To do so, start off by ordering a SIM card from SMARTY. It will come with a temporary phone number, allowing you to test out SMARTY’s service before moving your phone number over.

Once you’ve ordered your SIM card, ask your old mobile network to provide you with a PAC Code. This can be obtained either online or by text message, and you should normally get the PAC Code within 60 seconds of your request.

When your SMARTY SIM card arrives in the post, pop it inside your phone and activate the service. You can then log in to your SMARTY account dashboard to provide your PAC Code and to have your phone number moved over.

For step-by-step instructions on how to move your phone number to Smarty, please select your current mobile network from the drop-down menu below:

PAC Code Finder: Transfer Your Phone Number to Smarty

Select your current mobile network:

  More Options

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

Frequently Asked Questions

What SIM-only deals are currently available from SMARTY Mobile?
SMARTY offers a choice of seven SIM-only deals. Their most popular SIM cards claim to give you “all the data you need for less”. You can get 30GB of data for £10/month, 50GB of data for £15/month or unlimited data for £20/month. Alternatively, you can get one of SMARTY’s data discount plans from £6/month.
What’s the difference between SMARTY’s new plans and their old data discount plans?
On SMARTY’s latest price plans, you’ll get a lot more data for your money (e.g. 30GB data for £10). On the older data discount plans, you’ll get a smaller allowance of data (e.g. 4GB data for £9) but you’ll get a discount for unused data at the rate of £1 per gigabyte. Typically, you’ll be better off choosing one of the newer price plans if you use more than 5GB of data per month.
Is it possible to get unlimited data on SMARTY?
Yes. SMARTY offers unlimited data for £20/month. It’s available on a one-month rolling basis and you’ll also get unlimited minutes and unlimited texts included in the price.
How does SMARTY compare to giffgaff and VOXI?
On SMARTY, you’ll get a lot more data for the same money as on giffgaff and VOXI. For instance, you can get 30GB of data for £10/month on SMARTY. This compares to 6GB of data on giffgaff and 6GB of data on VOXI. SMARTY uses coverage from Three, whereas giffgaff uses coverage from O2 and VOXI uses coverage from Vodafone.
What coverage will I get on SMARTY?
On SMARTY, you’ll get 3G & 4G coverage from Three. This covers around 99.8% of the UK population, but it’s worth checking the coverage in your area on SMARTY’s website.
Can I keep my current phone number?
Yes. It’s a straightforward process to keep your current phone number. Ask your existing mobile network to provide you with a PAC Code. You can get one free of charge through your mobile network’s app or website, or by texting PAC to 65075. This PAC Code should be provided to SMARTY once you’ve activated your SIM card.

More Information

For more information, please see the official SMARTY Mobile website.

Your Comments 123 so far

We'd love to hear your thoughts and any questions you may have. So far, we've received 123 comments from readers. You can add your own comment here.

  • Hi – interested in the unlimited data plan, which I understand also includes unlimited calls and texts.

    A couple of quick q’s:

    1) By using the ‘Hotspot’ facility on my iphone 7, will this allow the unlimited data to be shared by a number of other devices (laptops/tablets etc.) – all at the same time – in our home ?

    2) I notice other posters have indicated the unlimited plan can also be used in a router. On the assumption that (1) above is possible, why would a router even be needed ?

    (Sorry if these are dumb questions !).

    Many thanks for your help.

    • Hi Harry,
      Thanks for your comment, and two very good questions!

      1) Yes, you can use the personal hotspot feature to share your unlimited data allowance with other devices.

      2) If your phone is able to handle it all, there’s no strict requirement to use a 4G router. There are however a couple of things to bear in mind if you use your mobile phone:
      (i) If the SIM card is inside your mobile phone, the wi-fi network will follow wherever your mobile phone goes. So, for instance, if you have a smart home device connected to the Wi-Fi network, it will stop working when you take your phone somewhere else. This might be fine for something like your smart TV, but probably isn’t ideal for a smart doorbell, thermostat, Alexa device, etc.
      (ii) A mains-powered 4G router will normally give you better performance than a battery-operated smartphone. For instance, it doesn’t need to worry about power consumption so much whereas smartphones normally prioritise battery life over performance. A router can have a larger antenna, a more powerful wi-fi signal, Ethernet ports, etc. As a rule of thumb, the Wi-Fi hotspot from your smartphone might have a range of around 10m and might be limited to around 10 devices at the same time. On a 4G router, the Wi-Fi hotspot can easily reach 30m away and can connect up to 64 devices.

      Hope this helps,
      Ken

  • Can Smarty users context other Smarty users for free like Giff Gaff where Giff Gaff users can use each other for free for up to 3 months before topping?

    • Hi Victoria,
      Unfortunately, it’s only possible to use SMARTY if you have an active plan on your account (i.e. you’ll need to top-up your SIM card every month). Once you’ve topped up, your SMARTY monthly plan comes with unlimited minutes which can be used for calling people on any network. This works differently to giffgaff, where there’s no obligation to top-up every month if you don’t want to.
      Hope this helps,
      Ken

      • Does that mean that the SIM will deactivate if there is no active plan on it? If not, when will it deactivate off of inactivity?

        • Hi Bill,
          Thanks for your comment. Yes, you won’t be able to make or receive phone calls if you don’t have an active plan on your SMARTY SIM card. They do, however, keep your account open for a certain amount of time (I think it’s 6 months but I’m not 100% sure about this) in case you’d like to reactivate it with a new plan in the future.
          Ken

  • Hi Ken.

    Smarty have increased the 50GB plan to 100GB for a whole year. Looking at there T’s & C’s the offer lasts until 6th April and SIM’s have to be activated by the 6th May. Great tariff for heavy users!!

    Mike

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