Three’s Data Reward Pay As You Go SIM card gives you 200MB of free data every month. There’s no need to top-up to get your free allowance.

In the UK, Three’s Data Reward SIM card gives you 200MB of free internet every month on Pay As You Go. Also known as the “internet with legs” tariff, you’ll get free allowances every month without the need to top-up your SIM card.

Outside of the inclusive 200MB per month, you’ll pay Three’s standard rates for Pay As You Go usage (3p/minute, 2p/text and 1p/MB). You can also benefit from inclusive roaming in 42 countries as part of Three’s Feel At Home offer.

In this article, we’ll review Three’s Data Reward SIM card. We’ll start by looking at the free allowances and at the cost of additional usage. We’ll then compare the SIM card to alternatives, look at supported devices and the level of coverage you can expect.

Data Reward SIM

With Data Reward, you’ll get 200MB of free internet every month without the need to top-up.

In the UK, Data Reward is Three’s Pay As You Go mobile broadband tariff. Customers receive 200MB of free internet every month and then pay just 3p/minute, 2p/text and 1p/MB for further usage.

200MB Free Allowance

The unique selling point of Three’s Data Reward SIM Card is the fact you’ll get 200MB of free internet every month. This is available for you to use every month, and there’s no need to top-up your SIM card to get it.

To qualify for the 200MB monthly reward, you’ll need to order a Data Reward SIM card (normal Pay As You Go SIM cards are not eligible). Your SIM card must also be registered online with Three.

Order Data Reward SIM Card →

When ordering a Data Reward SIM card, you’ll need to pay an upfront fee of £10. The SIM card is preloaded with 1GB of data which is valid for up to 30 days. As the 1GB allowance is worth £10, this effectively makes the SIM card itself free.

You can have up to 5 Data Reward SIM cards registered to a household (therefore giving you up to 1GB of free data per month across your multiple devices).

Out-Of-Allowance Charges

Outside of the inclusive 200MB per month, you’ll pay 1p/MB for further usage of the mobile internet. This will come out of your Pay As You Go credit, with the minimum top-up being just £2 each time (Three’s regular Pay As You Go SIM cards have a minimum top-up of £5).

If you’re using the Data Reward SIM card in a device that supports calling and texting (e.g. in a smartphone), you’ll pay Three’s standard rates for Pay As You Go (3p/minute, 2p/text and 1p/MB).

The following table shows a list of out-of-allowance charges on the Data Reward SIM card:

Calling Rates:
Voice Calls 3p/minute (any network, any time)
Calls to Voicemail 3p/minute
Calls to Special Rate Numbers 45p/minute access charge
+ service charge from the company you’re calling
Messaging Rates:
Text Message (SMS) 2p
Picture Message (MMS) 40p
Video Message 40p
Internet Rates:
Mobile Internet 1p/MB
Free Allowance 200MB free data every month (no top-up required)

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

Once Pay As You Go credit has been added to your account, it will not expire providing your SIM card remains active. You can keep your SIM card active by using it for a chargeable activity at least once every six months.

Data Bundles

For most people, the best thing to do is to use data on a Pay As You Go basis. When you add credit to your SIM card, you’ll pay 1p/MB (this is equivalent to paying £10 per GB). Your credit will not expire so you can use it over a period of time (for instance, using your £10 of credit over a couple of months).

If you’re a heavy data user, you can save money compared to normal rates by converting your Pay As You Go credit into a 30-day bundle. However, any unused allowances at the end of the 30 days will expire with your bundle:

Data Bundle Monthly Cost Effective Cost per MB
2GB (lasts for 30 days) £15/month 0.75p/MB (25% cheaper)
5GB (lasts for 30 days) £20/month 0.40p/MB (60% cheaper)
10GB (lasts for 30 days) £25/month 0.25p/MB (75% cheaper)

The “effective cost per megabyte” assumes you’ll use the entirety of the data allowance within its 30-day validity.

Please note that it isn’t possible to buy an All-in-One bundle if you’re using the Data Reward SIM card. For this reason, customers planning to use the SIM card in a smartphone will often be better off using a standard Pay As You Go SIM (All-in-One bundles start from £10/month with inclusive minutes, texts and mobile internet).

Feel At Home

The Data Reward SIM card is compatible with Three’s Feel At Home offer. This gives you international roaming in 42 countries at no extra charge, including in most of Europe, the USA, Australia and others.

The Feel At Home offer makes the Data Reward SIM card a great value way of staying in touch with friends and family when you’re travelling abroad. You’ll be able to continue using applications like social media, instant messaging and maps.

To take advantage of the Feel At Home offer, you’ll need to have an inclusive data allowance on your SIM card. Your 200MB of monthly free data can be used when abroad, as can the allowances in a 30-day bundle.

The normal UK out-of-allowance rates (3p/minute, 2p/text and 1p/MB) cannot be used when you’re travelling abroad. Instead, you’ll need to pay the out-of-allowance rates appropriate to that country.

Comparison to Alternatives

Three’s Data Reward SIM Card is fairly unique in that it offers 200MB of free data every month. The most similar offering is FreedomPop which also gives you 200MB of free data per month (along with 200 minutes and 200 texts through the FreedomPop application).

We’d strongly recommend choosing Three’s Data Reward SIM over FreedomPop as the latter has multiple downsides including hidden costs, an aggressive credit expiry policy and internet-based calling. With Three’s Data Reward SIM card, you’ll have a bigger brand name behind the service and you’ll be able to take advantage of features such as Feel At Home and personal hotspot.

If you’re using a smartphone, you can see our in-depth guides here for a full comparison of the best value Pay As You Go deals.

Data Reward vs Standard PAYG

Three’s Data Reward SIM card is offered as an alternative to Three’s standard Pay As You Go SIM. The following table shows a side-by-side comparison of the two:

Data Reward SIM Card Standard PAYG SIM Card
Devices Supported: Any device (including smartphones, tablets, dongles, MiFis, etc) Smartphones only
Free Data: 200MB free every month (no top-up required) 150MB free every time you top-up (minimum top-up of £5)
Usage Charge: 3p/minute, 2p/text, 1p/MB 3p/minute, 2p/text, 1p/MB
30-Day Bundles: From £15/month for 2GB data From £10/month for 100 minutes, 3000 texts and 1GB data
Minimum Top-Up: £2 minimum top-up £5 minimum top-up
Tethering: Yes, tethering is permitted No, tethering is prohibited

For most people who want to use the SIM card in a smartphone, Three’s standard Pay As You Go SIM card will offer better value. This is due to the bundles available (you can also still get 150MB of free data every time you top-up your SIM card).

Order Data Reward SIM Card → Order Standard PAYG SIM Card →

Supported Devices

Three’s Data Reward SIM card is classed as a mobile broadband tariff. For this reason, you can use it in a multitude of different devices including in your tablet, USB dongle and MiFi. You can also use the Data Reward SIM card in a smartphone.

Whilst the Data Reward SIM card can also be placed in a smartphone, many users will find the standard Pay As You Go SIM card better value for long-term usage. This is because the standard Pay As You Go SIM card has better value bundles (e.g. 100 minutes, 3000 texts and 1GB of data for £10/month). On standard Pay As You Go, you’ll also receive 150MB of free data every time you top-up your phone.

Coverage

3G & 4G Coverage

Three offers 97% population coverage across the UK.

Three offers 97% population coverage on 3G and 4G across the UK.

Before joining the Three network, we strongly recommend checking the coverage in your area. You can do this by entering your postcode on Three’s online coverage map.

Check Three Coverage Map (three.co.uk) →

Unfortunately, Three does not provide any 2G coverage. For this reason, it’s not possible to use a 2G-only device with the Data Reward SIM card.

For more information about mobile phone coverage in the UK, please see our in-depth guide on how to compare mobile network coverage.

Tethering & Personal Hotspot

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

On the Data Reward SIM card, the use of tethering is permitted so you can easily share your mobile internet connection with other devices. This policy is different to on Three’s standard Pay As You Go SIM cards where the use of tethering is not allowed.

For more information, please see our guide to tethering on UK mobile networks.

More Information

For more information, please see Three’s official web page on the Data Reward SIM card.

Your Comments 15 so far

We'd love to hear your thoughts and any questions you may have. So far, we've received 15 comments from readers. You can add your own comment here.

  • Christopher Pugh said:

    I would like to add further comments to my post of 18th September 2017, concerning failure to connect to the network using a smartphone.

    A prompt appeared in the notification area on my phone “sign in to network 3” this said “Three. Hello, its time to get more data. Add as little as £2 credit to your account and get online for just 1p/MB. And this credit won’t expire because it only runs out when you use it up”.

    Previously, you had to order this SIM after paying £10 for 1GB of data. I obtained the SIM under the revised terms which allow you to get the SIM free of charge without pre-loaded data.

    Although Three says that the SIM will not work because I am using a smartphone, I am wondering whether the true reason is because a top up needs to be applied before the SIM is connected to the network and is usable. I would like to hear from anybody who has ordered the SIM without pre-loaded data and has then used it in a tablet, dongle, MiFi etc. Did the SIM work immediately, or was a top up necessary before connection was enabled. I would be prepared to risk £2 on a top up but this needs to be done by card payment. I am reluctant to register a card, I normally use a voucher, for security reasons, and the minimum for this is £10, a lot to lose if the SIM still doesn’t work.

    • Hi Christopher,
      Thanks for your comment. Hopefully, someone else reading this article will be able to share more in-depth experiences, but from my side I’d definitely recommend using a regular smartphone SIM card if you’re planning to use the SIM card regularly inside a smartphone. You get access to much better bundles (e.g. 3000 minutes, 3000 texts and 1GB of data for £10/month).
      Three’s Data Reward SIM card is classified as a mobile broadband deal, and as such, doesn’t have the same selection of all-inclusive bundles. I’m not aware of any technical reason why the SIM card can’t work inside a smartphone, as the tariff specifically allows you to call and text (if you have a quick search around on Google, you can find other instances of people doing this). Saying that, I’m not sure about all the details around the 200MB free allowance (it’s totally possible you may need to activate the SIM card with a top-up before receiving any free allowances).
      Ken

      • Christopher Pugh replied:

        Thank you, Ken, for your comments. I hear what you say about using a regular SIM in a smartphone. However, I have another phone for calls, and use the smartphone mainly for data. I was interested in this tariff because the 321 plan, which I was previously using, no longer gives 150MB of free data on topping up, and the monthly 200MB was a very welcome bonus. Hopefully, someone will be able to give me further information from experience. Thank you, again.

    • The Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster replied:

      Hi Christopher Pugh,

      Both my sister and I have Three’s Data Reward SIM is our second (backup) phones, and I occasionally use it in my Lenovo ThinkPad 8 with 4G LTE Windows 10 tablet (which incidentally ravenously devours Apple iPads).

      I purchased two Data Reward SIMs as a buy-one-get-one-free offer from eBay for 99p, whilst my sister obtained hers directly from Three’s website for free. Neither of our Data Reward SIM had any pre-loaded data or free credit.

      Upon receiving the Data Reward SIM, £10 top-up credit was purchased. The credit does not expire, though Three makes a note of highlighting a chargeable action must be made with x days to ensure SIM remains active (where x is greater than 3 months, though I don’t recall the exact time).

      However if the £10 credit is specifically purchased for the 1GB of data, it becomes valid for up to 30 days.

      Also, the option of topping up by £2 is only available via Three’s My3 online portal.

      This Data Reward SIM works without any issue in both my smartphone and tablet, where standard mobile calls and internet access are actionable.

      One of the reasons for me obtaining this Data Reward SIM was for the free 200 MB monthly data allowance, and it has on numerous occasions aided me when my primary phone was not within immediate reach.

      Hope this helps resolved your queries regarding to the Three’s Data Reward SIM.

  • Christopher Pugh said:

    After reading your article, I sent for a Data Reward SIM to use in my Moto E 4G LTE XT1524 phone. There is now the option to order the SIM without having to pay £10 in advance for data. I did that.

    What a nightmare. I followed the instructions, using the phone to go to Three.co.uk/freedata, with 4G switched on and WiFi turned off, using the Chrome Browser. An error message appeared, saying that “Your connection is, not private, attackers may be trying to steal your information”.

    I checked, again, that WiFi was turned off, which it was. I tried again, using the Opera Mini browser. This gave an error message concerning the site’s security certificate, but gave me the option to continue. I got on to the site and managed to enter the required details.

    I then needed to go to my email to complete the registration process. Another error message, turning WiFi on enabled me to complete the process. I received an email confirming my 200MB of free data.

    I opened a My3 account. No 200MB was mentioned and it also said that my plan was “Prepay Mobile Broadband and that a data add-on was needed to browse the Internet”. The literature that came with the SIM implied that data could be paid for from phone credit.

    I contacted Three on Twitter, who asked for the details of the device I was using. They replied that “Our Data Reward SIM is a MiFi only SIM and will not function in a phone. They are designed to be used in tablets, mobile WiFi dongles and routers. We are sorry for any confusion.

    At least I have not wasted any money on a top up, but I feel rather miffed. To be fair, though, Three does say that the SIM is not for phone use, I only applied after reading your article. I have sent Three a link to your article. I would be interested to know if they contact you.

  • Hi I’ve just started using this sim, it’s great. However, I can’t seem to find out if three will accept a pac code so I can bring my old number to this three data reward sim.

    Also does anyone know if there are legal downsides between using a mobile broadband sim? E.g. less consumer protection if three mess up and lose your number.

    • Hi Ra,
      Many thanks for your comment. Yes, I believe it should be possible to transfer your phone number to this SIM card, but it’s worth double-checking with Three just to make sure.
      AFAIK, there are no differences in legal entitlement as the split between mobile broadband & mobile phone tariffs are just something artificial at the mobile network level rather than at a regulatory level. Some mobile networks won’t distinguish between the two (their normal bundles will work in any device, including a tablet or USB dongle).
      Ken

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