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.

If you’re a light mobile user, Three’s Data Reward SIM card is a good alternative to their normal Pay As You Go plan. You’ll get 200MB of data for free on the SIM card each month, with no need to top-up to get your free allowance. Further usage will cost you 3p/minute, 2p/text and 1p/MB.

Unlike Three’s normal Pay As You SIM, customers with a special Data Reward SIM card will not be able to buy one of Three’s 30-day bundles. However, you’ll be able to top-up your SIM card from just £2 each time (normally £5 on the regular Pay As You Go SIM) and you’ll still be able to use your data abroad in 71 destinations as part of the Go Roam offer.

In this article, we’ll review Three’s Data Reward SIM card. We’ll start by looking at the 200MB of free data each month and how much you’ll pay once you’ve used this up. We’ll then compare the Data Reward SIM card to Three’s standard Pay As You Go SIM card before looking at the devices you can use and the coverage available on the SIM card.

Order Three Data Reward SIM (£10) →

Data Reward SIM Card

The Data Reward SIM Card is a good alternative to Three’s normal Pay As You Go plan if you’re a light mobile user. You’ll get 200MB of free data on the SIM card each month, with no need to top-up to get your free allowance.

200MB Monthly Free Data

The main selling point of Three’s Data Reward SIM Card is the 200MB of free data you’ll get each month. To qualify, you’ll need to make sure you have a designated Data Reward SIM card as it isn’t possible to get this on normal Pay As You Go SIMs.

You can order a Data Reward SIM card through this page on Three’s website. There’s a £10 upfront fee for the SIM card which gives you 1GB of preloaded data (in addition to the 200MB of free data you’ll also get every month).

Order Data Reward SIM Card →

Once you’ve ordered and activated your Data Reward SIM card, visit three.co.uk/freedata using the browser on your device. There’s a short sign up form you’ll need to complete before you get the 200MB of free data each month.

Pay As You Go Rates

Outside of the 200MB of inclusive data each month, you’ll need to pay for your usage at 3p/minute, 2p/text and 1p/MB.

One difference between the Data Reward SIM card and standard Pay As You Go SIMs is that Data Reward SIM cards have a lower minimum top-up. You’ll only need to top-up £2 each time, rather than the £5 minimum top-up that’s required on normal Pay As You Go SIMs.

Unfortunately, it isn’t possible to convert your credit into a 30-day add-on, which will offer much better value if you’re a regular mobile user.

The following table shows Three’s standard Pay As You Go rates on the Data Reward SIM:

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 Data 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 travelling abroad outside Europe 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 Add-Ons

On the Data Reward SIM card, it isn’t possible to convert your credit into one of Three’s 30-day bundles with minutes, texts and data.

As an alternative, Three offers a choice of three Data Reward add-ons. You can pay £15 to get 2GB of data, £20 to get 5GB of data or £25 to get 10GB of data. Add-on allowances will expire 30 days after purchase.

With a Data Reward add-on, you can save up to 75% on Three’s normal Pay As You Go rates. However, this is still substantially more expensive than on regular Pay As You Go if you’re a heavy data user. For instance, you’ll pay £15 for 10GB of data on Three’s regular Pay As You Go service (with unlimited minutes and unlimited texts included in the price). With the Data Reward add-on, you’ll pay £25 for 10GB of data with no minutes and no texts included in the price. For this reason, we would only recommend the Data Reward SIM card for light users not needing to buy an add-on very regularly.

Data Add-Ons 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 entire data allowance within its 30-day validity.

Go Roam

The Data Reward SIM card is compatible with Three’s Go Roam offer so you can use your device in 71 destinations at no extra charge. This includes most European countries along with the USA, Australia and more.

The 200MB free data allowance can be used abroad in any Go Roam destination. Beyond that, you’ll pay the regular 3p/minute, 2p/text and 1p/MB charge when travelling abroad in a Go Roam destination.

For more information, see our full guide to Three’s Go Roam offer.

Comparison to Three Pay As You Go

The following table shows a side-by-side comparison between Three’s Data Reward SIM card and their standard Pay As You Go service:

Data Reward Standard Pay As You Go
Free Data 200MB every month
(no top-up required)
No
Per Minute 3p/minute 10p/minute
Per Text 2p/text 10p/text
Per MB 1p/MB 5p/MB
Minimum Top-Up £2 £5 (online)
£10 (in-store & phone)
Other Features
Bundles From £15 for 2GB data
(no minutes & texts)
From £10 for 5GB data
(unlimited minutes & texts)
Go Roam Yes, 71 destinations Yes, 71 destinations

For the majority of users wanting a SIM card for their smartphone, we think Three’s standard Pay As You Go SIM card offers better value. This is because you can buy one of the following 30-day bundles giving you minutes, texts and data from £10/month:

NetworkMinutesTextsDataMonthly
Cost
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited6GB£10.00
for 30 days
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited4GB£10.00
for 30 days
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited20GB£15.00
for 30 days
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited10GB£15.00
for 30 days
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited50GB£20.00
for 30 days
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited12GB£20.00
for 30 days
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited36GB£27.50
for 30 days
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£30.00
for 30 days
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£35.00
for 30 days
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£90.00
for 90 days

The Data Reward SIM card offers a more suitable price plan for light users who don’t use their device enough to warrant getting a 30-day bundle with minutes, texts and data.

Order Data Reward SIM Card → Order Standard SIM Card →

Supported Devices

Three classifies their Data Reward SIM card as a mobile broadband plan which can be used in any device including a tablet, dongle or MiFi. You can also use the Data Reward SIM card in a mobile phone.

Most smartphone users will find the standard Pay As You Go SIM card to be better overall value if they’re a frequent smartphone user. However, the Data Reward SIM card may work out to better value for some light users due to the 200MB of free data each month.

Coverage

3G & 4G Coverage

In the UK, Three offers 99.8% population coverage. This includes 98.3% population coverage on 3G and 99.8% population coverage on 4G.

Before joining the Three network, we’d recommend double-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 doesn’t provide any 2G coverage. For this reason, it isn’t possible to use a 2G-only device with the Data Reward SIM card. For the same reason, you may also experience problems when using the Data Reward SIM card inside a dual-SIM smartphone.

For more information, see our full guide to the network coverage on Three. Alternative, see our overview on how to compare mobile network coverage.

5G Coverage

At the time of writing, 5G coverage isn’t available to customers with a Data Reward SIM card. Three has said that their 5G service will launch to consumers in early 2020. We expect it’ll be available at no extra cost to customers with a Data Reward SIM.

Three has announced 5G coverage in the following UK towns and cities:

Now Live194 towns and cities are live on Three 5G (May 2021)
Aberdeen, Abingdon-on-Thames, Adlington, Aldershot, Aldridge, Ashford, Balloch, Barnsley, Barrow-in-Furness, Basildon, Bath, Bedford, Belfast, Belfast Airport, Billericay, Billingham, Birdwell, Birkenhead, Birmingham, Bishopthorpe, Blackburn, Blackpool, Borehamwood, Bournemouth, Bradford, Brentwood, Brighton, Brimington, Bristol, Bromsgrove, Brookmans Park, Broughton Astley, Burton upon Trent, Campton, Cannock, Cardiff, Carlisle, Castlereagh, Chatham, Chelmsford, Cheltenham, Chesham, Chorley, Christleton, Clayton-le-Woods, Clifton, Coedkernew, Colchester, Copmanthorpe, Corringham, Coventry, Crawley, Crook, Cullingworth, Danderhall, Delph, Denholme, Derby, Dewsbury, Dinnington, Doncaster, Dundee, East Kilbride, East Midlands Airport, Edinburgh, Egginton, Ellesmere Port, Exmouth, Falkirk, Gateshead, Glasgow, Gorebridge, Grays, Greenock, Grimsby, Guildford, Hamilton, Hartley, Hatfield, Heanor, Heathcote, Hedge End, Hemel Hempstead, Hertford, Heswall, Heywood, Horley, Horwich, Huddersfield, Hull, Huntingdon, Inchinnan, Ingleby Barwick, Ipswich, Irlam, Isle of Grain, Iver, Kings Hill, Kings Langley, Kinmel Bay, Kirkheaton, Kirknewton, Knowl Wall, Leeds, Leicester, Leyland, Lincoln, Liverpool, London, Loughborough, Lower Stondon, Luton, Maidenhead, Maidstone, Manchester, Mansfield, Margate, Marlow Bottom, Marston Moretaine, Merthyr Tydfil, Middlesbrough, Milnrow, Milton Keynes, Motherwell, Neston, Newark-on-Trent, Newcastle, Newhall, Newport, Newquay, Newton Aycliffe, Newton-le-Willows, Newtownabbey, Normanton, Northampton, Nottingham, Nuneaton, Ottershaw, Oxford, Peterborough, Plymouth, Pontefract, Porthcawl, Portsmouth, Preston, Reading, Redcar, Redditch, Royston Yorkshire, Scunthorpe, Sheffield, Shelly Green, Shrewsbury, Slough, South Heighton, South Kirkby, South Normanton, South Ockendon, Southampton, Southend-on-Sea, Southport, St Albans, St Blazey, St Columb Road, Stafford, Stansted Airport, Stevenage, Stockton-on-Tees, Stoke-on-Trent, Stratford-upon-Avon, Sunderland, Sunninghill, Sutton-in-Ashfield, Swadlincote, Swindon, Swinton, Tamworth, Telford, Thornaby-on-Tees, Ullesthorpe, Wakefield, Wallingford, Walton-on-Thames, Warrington, Washington, Westhoughton, Weybridge, Wickford, Wigan, Winterbourne, Worcester, Worksop, Writtle, York

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

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 and personal hotspot is permitted so you can easily share your mobile broadband internet connection with other devices.

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

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I get free data on the SIM card?
Once you’ve ordered a Data Reward SIM card and placed it inside your device, you’ll need to visit three.co.uk/freedata using the web browser on the device. There’s a short form you’ll need to complete to sign up for the 200MB of free data each month.
Where do I order a Data Reward SIM card?
You can order a Data Reward SIM card through this link. There’s an upfront fee of £10 for the SIM card. This will give you 1GB of preloaded data, followed by 200MB of free data each month.
Can I use my free data allowance when abroad?
Yes. It’s possible to use your free data allowance abroad in 71 destinations through Three’s Go Roam offer.
How does Three’s Data Reward SIM card compare to regular Pay As You Go?
With the Data Reward SIM card, you’ll get 200MB of free data each month. You’ll also be able to top-up from just £2 each time. The disadvantage is you won’t be able to buy a 30-day bundle with minutes, texts and data which will normally work out to be better value if you’re a regular mobile user.
Can I use the Data Reward SIM card in a smartphone?
Yes. You can use the Data Reward SIM card in any device including a tablet, laptop, dongle, Mi-Fi or smartphone.

FreedomPop

From September 2015 to July 2018, FreedomPop offered a SIM card in the UK with 200MB of free data each month. The SIM card offered 3G & 4G coverage from Three.

It’s no longer possible to get a SIM card from FreedomPop as their service in the UK has now closed. Three’s Data Reward SIM card is the best replacement for this service as it also offers 200MB of free data each month on Three.

More Information

For more information, please see Three’s official web page or order a Data Reward SIM card.

Your Comments 83 so far

We'd love to hear your thoughts and any questions you may have. So far, we've received 83 comments from readers. You can add your own comment here.

  • Hello, If you just use this for calls and texts do you still have to register it on the website? Thanks.

    • Hi James,
      Thanks for your comment. You only need to register to get the 200MB of free data each month 🙂
      Hope this helps,
      Ken

      • Thank you so much. I’m sure my question seemed quite basic but then so is my knowledge of these things. I appreciate your assistance and the articles concerning ‘light users’ as it’s difficult to source this information in the age of smartphones.

  • Hi Ken,

    Looking to move a rarely used sim back to the three data reward package.
    Three have recently increased their PAYG rates to 10p/min, 10p/text, 5p/MB.
    Do you know if the the three data reward sim keeps the old rates of 3p/min, 2p/text, 1p/MB?

    • Hi Matt,
      Thanks for your comment. Yes, the Data Reward SIM is still on 3p/minute, 2p/text and 1p/MB, at least for the time being 🙂
      Hope this helps,
      Ken

  • Hi Ken, do you know if I port my main mobile number to this three data reward sim, that I will be able to port it back out in the future. I do not want to lose my main number but I am uncertain as the three data reward sim falls under mobile broadband sim and whether they will refuse as customer service are clueless about this sim reward sim and do not know even know you can make calls and sms from it. Thank you Tom

    • Hi Tom,
      Great question. Unfortunately, I haven’t tried it myself so I wouldn’t be able to answer definitively (though it’s possible someone else reading this might have done, so do please share your feedback if you’ve tried it).
      My hunch, however, is it shouldn’t make a difference even if it’s technically classified as a mobile broadband SIM card. This is because however Three decides to classify products internally doesn’t affect your consumer rights which are guaranteed by Ofcom.
      Ken

    • Paul Barrett replied:

      You can make calls etc from a Data Reward SIM
      Also in any Go Roam country to the UK at the new tariff rates as of Feb 20th 2021.

      £2 is minimum cash top up.
      Though it is possible to call 3 and add less cash top up.
      Though at 10p pm for voice calls it won’t last long!

      Far better to use the 200mb of free data for WhatsApp calls etc.

      You only need 6 PAYG SIMs.
      Doesn’t cost anything and you can use them in Go Roam countries 2 months at a time.
      Plus calls may be received as though in the UK.

      With DR SIMs they DON’T need to appear on the UK 3 network.
      Other PAYG SIMs need to be returned to the UK after 2 months Go Roam usage and at least one chargeable unit every 6 months.

      Then have posted back when a year as elapsed after 2 months of usage.

      It dies mean changing no every 2 months ax 3 restrict Go Roam usage to 2 months.

      However 3 are not enforcing this and a family member has been using a PAYG SIM in Go Roam destination for 4 months and just buys a £10 add-on.

    • Hi Tom,

      Definitely no issues about porting your number away from the three data reward sim in the future. I did this recently because needed to move to a contract on that particular sim

  • Hi. I have a 321 sim and with the changes in tariff am looking at this option(Data Reward) or maybe the 1p service. If I move to the Data Reward can I port my number over from the standard 321 PAYG sim to this Data Reward one..
    One comment I read suggested that someone was trying this but I thought moving mobile number from one SIM to another with the same provider was not possible. Anyone confirm that they can port number from standard 321 sim to Data Reward SIM. Also I guess you get a multi SIM card (Std, Mini and Nanosim) so I pick out which one I need.
    Many thanks for an excellent website Ken…

    • You definitely get a multi SIM card. I think you will need to port out to another network and then back to the data reward SIM.

    • Olivia Tanbury replied:

      You are correct that moving a mobile number from one SIM to another with the same provider does not have the convenience of porting numbers from one provider to another within 24 to 48 hours.

      I believe it takes 30 days to move a number from PAYG to pay monthly (or vice versus) within the same provider.

      I am assuming a number move from PAYG to PAYG (or pay monthly to pay monthly) within the same provider would also take 30 days, though I am unsure.

      Regarding the Data Reward SIM from Three, I can confirm the 3-2-1 tariff still applies (as I currently have a Data Reward SIM).

      The quickest way to number port from the obsoleted Three’s traditional 3-2-1 SIM to Three’s Data Reward is to port through an intermediary SIM (e.g. via EE PAYG).

      I recently performed that which you are querying in Dec 2020, and the entire process took 4 days.

      This is how it was performed:

      Three 3-2-1 SIM —> EE PAYG SIM —> Three’s Data Reward

      You can purchase an EE PAYG SIM for £1 at supermarkets, but if you desire to cut costs to a minimum, you can either order it from EE for free, get it for 20p via eBay, or purchase it for 50p from Iceland (frozen food stores), or 79p from Home Bargains.

      The benefit of using an EE PAYG SIM is YOU DO NOT HAVE TO TOP UP for number porting (unlike with other providers).

      When porting number to EE and from EE, I advise you to phone them for free on 150 (rather than via SMS or online, because an error will occur, as I encountered).

      The EE PAYG SIM comes with a complementary (free) 50 MB (confirm at https://myaccount.ee.co.uk/app/landing-payg ). Use this allowance to register your EE SIM by clicking the web form link given in step 4 at https://ee.co.uk/help/help-new/getting-started-and-upgrading/keep-my-number/how-do-i-transfer-my-number-to-ee

      You’ll need to register your name, DoB, and e-mail with EE (use can use any anonymised name/DoB/e-mail, but ensure you can still receive from the random e-mail address).

      One you’ve registered the EE SIM and have phoned 150 to port your 321 SIM to EE, provided you phoned EE between Monday to Thursday before 5pm, wait 48 hours before requesting a PAC from EE, which will be used to port your original 321 number from EE to your new Data Reward SIM.

      Also I wonder if you are already in possession of a Data Reward SIM ? If not, you can request one for free directly from Three at: https://www.three.co.uk/Free_SIM_MBB/Order

      Hope this helps you.

  • Hey. I’m a bit late to this, but thought I’d share my experience.

    I ordered a SIM very similar to this here and received it. I plugged it in. I tried registering, but it repeatedly failed to register for the 200MB/month. I was told various things across over 20 live chats, including that they’d award me unlimited data for a month as a goodwill gesture, then that there was no way that would have been offered and that I was lying. Eventually, they credited my account with an equivalent value.

    With the support having taken so damn long (I was left in 40 minute queues on repeat, with the agents often trying to kick me off without my permission or the chat application failing or the agents leaving me in an endless queue as they went home), I made a complaint to the ombudsman. In the process, I tried making a GDPR SAR request for evidence of the live chats. It took longer than the legally required 30 days and they refused to verify my identity despite completely adequate verification. They asked for paperwork they had not given me (they needed the address registered to the account. It wasn’t registered because it was a PAYG SIM. I told them to check the registration details from when I ordered it. They refused. I assigned the address to the account. They said they couldn’t use that either because it had just been added).

    Eventually, I did not get the 200MB per month as advertised (they blamed it on an ongoing technical issue), but they wasted my time. I did get a financi award for time from Three only after my ombudsman complaint. I now only wished I’d negotiated for a fair bit more, but the fact that they were finally offering compensation for their mess was enough.

    Oh, and although they boast about their service, I suffered much poorer connection than my other SIM (O2), with a complete dead zone in the nearby residential district.

    The website and app are also technically awful and clearly hastily put together by different consultants at different times. I often faced bugs, errors and the login system is convoluted and silly. The infrastructure differs for different SIMs and support is split into teams that could not work on the others’ SIMs (I was sent a SIM relevant to the other team at one point, told it would fix my problem. It didn’t, but it did mean that I now had two accounts to manage and no single team could see both at the same time).

    Summary: Pretty awful experience. I’m burning through the credit I have left from the goodwill then leaving Three.

    • Dave Collins replied:

      Having exactly the same issue…….fitted the 200mb/ month free internet sim to my ipad, followed the instructions and get a message saying wron type of sim…… help desk as much good as a chocolate fire guard…….. sim in bin and back to the payg O2 which at least works when I need it!

  • Hi Ken
    I sent a sms and I took a look at my remaining credt and it took 3p off I thought it was 2p? Can you please confirm this

    Thanks again

    • Hi Adam,
      Thanks for your comment. Are you by any chance using SMS delivery reports? You should normally only be charged 2p for sending a text message, but there would be an extra 1p charge if you’re using the SMS report. Alternatively, the 1p might be for mobile data usage that’s happening in the background whilst your phone is connected to the Three network.
      Ken

  • I could not register my sim, (on 21 November), I followed the advice given by Greg on 16 July.

    I was able to bring up the page requesting your name, address etc and I received the e-mail from 3 asking to verify the e-maill address and obtain the data.

    Clicked the e-mail bit in red to confim but there seems to be some error and I cannot get the free 200mb a month and don’t know how to resolve this.

    I got the sim direct from 3 about 3/4 months ago when it was free – now they seem to only offer this for 10 GBP and the 1GB offered expires in 30 days!

    What I really want is to be on the 321 tariff – does anyone know if this is the default tariff with this sim if you are unable to register? The new 3 PAYG is tariff is not suitable for me.

    • Hi Tyson,
      Thanks for your comment. Unfortunately, I can’t help with the technical issues you’re getting on the SIM card – you’ll need to talk to Three’s Customer Services in order to resolve this. However, on the topic of the 321 plan, this is now only available when you buy a Pay As You Go phone from Three. The cheapest Pay As You Go phone is £30 so it isn’t quite a “throwaway purchase” (leaving aside the environmental impact) – aside from that, the Data Reward SIM is the only way to get 321 rates.
      Ken

  • Hi Ken I have a question. Does the 3 reward data sim offer voicemail?

    And great article by the way it’s super helpful !

    Thanks.

    • Hi Adam,
      Great question! Unfortunately, I don’t know the answer to this question. I imagine it probably does, given there’s a voice service on the SIM, but will defer to other readers in case they’ve had more recent first-hand experience!
      Ken

    • Olivia Tanbury replied:

      Yes. Voicemail is available as standard on the Three Data Reward SIM, but note this is a chargeable service (i.e., not free).

  • The current Three Freedate page specifies that the sim can only be used on a tablet, dongle or MiFi. So I’ve missed out, as the conditions appear to have changed overnight.

    A couple of weeks ago I received a 200Mb per month for £1 sim from EE. Used it for a month and then discovered they’ve dumped the offer and wanted me to sign up for a larger amount of data at a joking price.

    There’s not a lot of honesty with these Telecoms companies.

    • It doesn’t actually say it can’t be used in a phone but if you read all the T and Cs it’s quite clear it has a telephone number with it and can be used for calls and messages both home and abroad with the same free roaming as their other SIMs. Effectively its the old 3-2-1 tariff with a free 200mb bonus.
      That said they’re certainly not advertising the fact and the card I got a few days ago said it wasn’t valid when I tried registering it in my mobile using their link.I tried several times without joy but I read an earier post by Greg about changing the APN to 3internet and default and once I did that it allowed me to register and then credited the 200Mb.
      Tried it for calls texts and data both send and receive for a couple of days after a £2 top up and all seems fine. Need to ring or chat with them now and see if I can port the number from my old 3-2+1 account to it. Currently I’ve got it in a dual SIM phone so I can swap but I’d rather use the second slot for extra memory.

      • I had the same issue as above where when I tried to register I would get a message that the SIM was not eligible. I followed the advice to change the APN – very simple. Once I did this (for network use 3 Internet), I refreshed the three webpage and viola, the registration page showed up.
        Many thanks for posting the steps to take. Three are most certainly keeping this very very quiet.

  • In case anyone still has trouble with the registration at Three.co.uk/freedata on their mobile (getting the message that the SIM isn’t valid instead of the form) then you can just manually change the name of the APN to “3internet” (leave the rest of the APN settings alone) and the registration will then work:

    Name 3 UK
    APN 3internet
    APN type default

    After getting through the registration pages you can put the APN back as it was if you want, but it doesn’t matter if you don’t.
    (The alternative is to register the SIM using a MifFi device if you have one)

  • Is this still using 3p call/2p text/1p MB data rates in July 2020? Three phased out it’s 3-2-1 pricing scheme for 10-10-5 earlier this year, so I’m not sure if this affects Data Reward also?

    • Just got one and it’s the same as my current 3-2:-1 but with the bonus data. Made various, calls, messages, voicemsils and data use and it all check out properly in the My3 info.

  • Melvyn Hough said:

    Hi Ken, Just found you whilst looking for help. I’ve had a 4g antenna and 4g router fitted to my Motorhome. It works from a sim. the company have put in a 3 PAYGO to give me a start but I will need to top up the sim. Would I be better ordering one of these Data cards. I will not be making calls or texting, in fact can’t, It’s sole use is to get on line with my laptop when away from home in the Motorhome. I will only be logging on for about 15 minutes per day, the odd email to read and perhaps send and that’s just about it. May be now and then look for something on line etc. Can you help me.

    • Hi Melvyn,
      Thanks for your comment. You can use either a standard Pay As You Go SIM card or one of these Data Reward SIM cards in your device. The best SIM card really depends on how much data you’re using. The Data Reward SIM will be good if you’re a fairly light user, requiring less than 1GB of data per month. This is probably fine if you’re just using it to read and send the occasional email. If you’d like more data than this, you may find it better value using a regular Pay As You Go SIM.
      Hope this helps,
      Ken

      • Melvyn Hough replied:

        Yes great help thanks Ken. I perhaps may occasionally go over 1GB but over the year I won’t so I’ll try the SIM Data reward.
        Thanks again , Mel.

  • Hi ken,iv had the data reward sim since 2017,and you can use the bundles on the sim. In fact it is the 321 sim with 200mb of free data a month. When i went to spain last year i added the 15gb bundle with unlimited mins and texts,and got my payandgo rewards as well. The only thing the data sim hasnt got is voicemail,which i never used anyway

  • Hi, does this SIM have the same 6 month Inactivity Period as Three’s PAYG SIM?
    If it does does that mean I could just use “Chargeable Activity” every 6 months to keep it and my credit activated?

    • Hi James,
      Yes, it’s the same inactivity period on the Data Reward SIM. From Three’s terms and conditions:

      Termination after inactivity – Three reserves the right to terminate and disconnect the Data Reward SIM in the event you have not activated a Pay As You Go Credit on your account or undertaken any chargeable events or activities (for example, made telephone calls, sent text or photo messages, accessed content or the internet or any other services for which a charge is made) using any credit or allowance on your account within the preceding 6 month period.

      Hope this helps,
      Ken

  • Brilliant article thanks will get new PAYG Data award card sounds just the ticket I guess you can use it outside the UK.

    Great site

  • hi! thanks for the information! just letting you know I ordered the data reward sim for free with this link: https://www.three.co.uk/Free_SIM_MBB/Order . also, I was able to activate the free data (three.co.uk/freedata) on my Nexus 5 though I received a message from 2549 “The terminal cannot be configured remotely, please contact Customer Support for further assistance.” but checking my Access Point Names in my “Mobile Network Settings” I’ve got two configurations “3” and “3 Hotspot” if that’s what they were referring to and it’s working fine so I’m not bothered about it. cheers!

  • Hi, recently received the Three Data rewards SIM with the intention of using it in a Nokia 5.1 smartphone.
    Unfortunately for me it would not allow me to register for the free 200mb of data, and after a 40 minute call to 3 different customer service people at Three they told me that it is not support using it in a phone, only in a dongle or tablet and this is the reason i cannot register for the free 200mb.

    As I dont actually own a dongle or tablet that can take a SIM so Three suggested I take my SIM card to a Three store and ask them to put in in one of their devices to register it and then move it back to my phone afterwards.

    So maybe their policy has changed on this since others have tried it.

    • Hi Mark,
      Thanks for your comment, and sorry to hear about the problems you’ve experienced activating the Data Reward SIM card. I’m personally not aware of Three restricting usage to certain types of devices, and I’m not sure they’d legally be allowed to do this due to Net Neutrality regulations. I’d definitely be really interested, however, to hear any other feedback people have had on this…
      Ken

  • Hello Ken,

    I got hold of one of these data reward sims from three and it works in either of the iPhone 6 plus and 3gs which I own.

    I activated the 200MB / month reward and it appears correctly on My3 login.
    It does indeed seem that you can make calls, text with and after an initial top up with credit purchases as low as £2, hey presto!… All good so far…

    However, I am trying to activate voicemail on the account.
    The three help desk suggested, after several calls with them, that they had indeed activated voicemail for my number, but all I get when I dial 123 is a request to “enter my number followed by hash key” and then “enter a pin followed by hash” which always fails with a message saying something like “that is the wrong pin number.” (I have been using the default pin suggested by the three call centre (1212) and have also tried (0000).

    Please now refer to http://www.three.co.uk/termspdf/MBB_Plan_price_guide_010119.pdf

    The document outlines all the call, text and data charges and the roaming in 71 countries etc. The only mention of VoiceMail (which implies there is indeed VoiceMail), is in the context of roaming abroad on page 9 of said document.

    Any suggestions?

    (Great post by the way!)

    regards
    Byron

  • Hi, if I buy one of these SIMs for 99p , I understand I need to make a first top up to activate the free monthly 200mb data but do not need to top up after that. My question is, as the top up for this sim start at £2, can I just top up with £2 initially when SIM received to be eligible for free data to be activated? Thanks

  • I have just bought my first smart phone (at 75) which is on Three network, pay as you go.
    I don’t use the phone very much at all but I learned that I could use it to connect a sat nav system, via Android Auto, to my car infotainment screen (it would be only on a few rare occasions)
    Would the Three Data Reward Reward sim with the free 200MB/month be sensible to try ?
    Any simple tips on all of the above would be appreciated, (by an old guy)

    • Hi Ian,
      Thanks for your comment. I see no reason why you couldn’t try Three’s Data Reward SIM card. It’s possible the 200MB won’t get you that far (in which case, you may need to add extra data) but this could be a good option if you’re only a fairly light user.
      Ken

  • Christopher Pugh said:

    I have previously expressed my frustration on this forum at being unable to get a Data Reward SIM to work in my Moto E LTE phone. Although I was able to register with Three using the phone, and an email confirmed the free 200MB, no data allowance was shown when I opened a “My 3” account. Three told me that this was because the SIM was only for use in dongles, tablets and MiFi devices and would not work in a phone. My SIM arrived with no credit balance. Because other people have successfully used a phone and originally, the SIMs were only available preloaded with £10 credit, I wondered whether a top-up was required to get the free data. I topped and was then able to connect to the internet. However, although the £10 credit showed on My 3 account, there was still no free data. I put the SIM into a Huawei E5330 Mobile WiFi. I registered the SIM, (again), and, as before, received email notification of the free data. My 3 account then showed £10 credit and 200MB of free data. I put the SIM back into my phone and it worked, the free data is being used and my top up credit is intact.

    I wonder if the free data would have been credited had I tried the SIM in the Mobile WiFi before topping up. Also, if I leave the SIM in the phone, will the 200MB be renewed next month?

    • Hi Christopher,
      Thanks for getting back to me, and I’m glad the problem was finally resolved for you. Based on my own understanding, it should be possible to use the SIM card in a smartphone, but you’ll need to opt-in to the 200MB offer by accessing three.co.uk/freedata when connected to 3G or 4G. I’m not aware of them removing the free data offer when you use the SIM card in a smartphone, though of course, their policies could have changed (perhaps someone else reading this article might be able to share some insights?).
      Ken

      • Christopher Pugh replied:

        Hi Ken,
        Thank you for your reply, and to Alan Jones and The Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster for their comments. My 200MB of free data was renewed at the beginning of the second month, so I was not penalised for using the SIM in a phone.
        I ordered another Data Reward SIM (without preloaded credit), and tried to register it on my smartphone again, (having failed with the previous SIM until it was subsequently put into a dongle). This time, the process was straightforward, and after registering, a page came up with a box to click on saying GET ONLINE. Tapping this enabled the internet connection after a short delay and the 200MB of free data had been credited without topping up.

        Finally, your Data Reward v Standard PAYG comparison table still says that the Standard PAYG SIM card gives 150MB of free data on topping up. This has been reduced to 10MB.

        • Hi Christopher,
          Many thanks for the comment and for the update on your situation. I’m pleased to know the 200MB of free data came through as expected. Thanks also for highlighting the outdated information (as this article was written all the way back in February 2017)! I’ve just amended this in the comparison table and the article, so hopefully it shouldn’t cause any further confusion.
          Thanks again,
          Ken

    • Alan jones replied:

      I have had the data reward sim in my galaxy s7 since feb 2017,and i can confirm,it works fine,200mb free data added every 30 days,no top up required. Its on the 321 tariff,and you can buy a all in 1 bundle as well. I did this when i went to spain, £20 for 12gb data 3000mins and 3000 texts. It works works as a normal sim when in my phone.

      • Christopher Pugh replied:

        Thank you Alan for your reply. I’m going to wait until my next 200MB of free data is due, to see if it is credited. After that I’m going to get another SIM for my MiFi but will try to register for free data on my phone first, without topping up, to see if the data is credited. If not, I’ll put it into the Mif ibefore topping up to see if that works. I’ll report back later.

  • Hi Ken last Sunday (28/01/18) I ordered the data reward sim.It has not yet arrived (Friday 2nd Feb) but I have meantime changed my mind about it’s suitability. I seem to get a different story each time I ring Three about a refund under the 14 day cooling off regulations. Initially, I was told it would be refunded but I needed to have received the sim card to be able to supply details of the allocated ‘phone number. However, when I contacted them again today, I was informed that they do NOT make refunds under the cooling off period and the best they could do is transfer the £10 paid to another type of card (presumably the standard 3 2 1 sim). Could you advise on the legal situation regarding refunds during the cooling off period on non-activated sim cards?

    • Hi Pete,
      Many thanks for your comment. Unfortunately, I’m not a lawyer so I can’t answer your question definitively. However, I believe this would simply be covered by the Consumer Contracts Regulation which gives you a right to cancel your purchase within 14 days (N.B. it’s unclear to me whether this is 14 days from the order date or 14 days from the SIM card arriving, as this would depend on whether it’s classified as a good or service).
      Ken

      • Hi Ken thank you for your earlier reply – I did in fact continue with the Data Reward sim. I ‘phoned them today asking when the free data would be added but was informed that free data would only be added after each top up. This not the impression given by the website where it states that 200mb will be added automatically each month and says nothing about any top up first being required. I argued this with their representative but instead of continuing to argue the point, he said that the ‘Customer Relations manager’ would call me back which, needless to say, did not happen. I still think that the free 200mb is due each month regardless of top ups but would appreciate your further comments.I would mention that an earlier employee added £2 to my account in lieu of the first missing 200mb, which indicates to me that there seems to be some ambiguity about whether the free monthly data is due.

        • Hi Pete,
          Based on my understanding, you should get 200MB of free data every month (no top-up required to get this). You’ll just need to make an initial top-up and will need to register at three.co.uk/freedata (access this URL when you’re on 3G or 4G). I’m a little confused that Three is telling you otherwise – do please let me know if you get to the bottom of it.
          Ken

          • Hi Ken
            Thank you for your reply and your email.. The mistake I had made was trying to register from my desktop (on another network) rather than from my ‘phone running on Three 3G. When I clicked the free data link in your email, the free data form appeared and I was able to register successfully. I have checked and the 200 mb has been added to my account. Many thanks for your help in this matter :0)

          • Hi Pete,
            Great news, and really glad to know the problem was resolved! Of course, it would have been more helpful if Three didn’t give you the misleading information on the phone – you’d have thought their staff should understand the offer a bit better 😉
            Ken

  • 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 replied:

        Thank you for your comments. Apologies for the late response, I’ve only just returned to this page by chance. I thought that I’d try another method of getting cheaper data, and have bought a Huawei E5330 mobile broadband WiFi. I’m using it with my phone, with a 1GB data SIM on the Three network. When this runs out, I’ll get a 24 GB SIM from Amazon for £44.02. This does not expire for two years and works out at 0.18p per MB.

  • 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.

      • Christopher Pugh replied:

        Thank you Adam. As discussed elsewhere in this forum, I eventually got it to work as intended. Free 200 MB data every month with calls, texts and additional data at 3-2-1 tariff rates.

  • 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

  • I’m pretty sure its been well over 6 months since I put £2 credit on this sim which I have in a spare Xperia phone and use for Here maps from time to time. The credit is as yet untouched and doesn’t seem to expire.

  • I use this in a Moto g3, has anyone else had problems with a echo of your voice when ringing landlines. It’s fine if it’s mobile to mobile.

  • I’ve been using one of these sims in a Motorola G phone for over 6 months or even more. Topped it up with £2 when I first got it and now have a balance of £1-95p.

    The 5p I’ve used was just to check that calls and text actually work just in case I need to use that method.

    All the other time the Moto G is connected to my TomTom satnav feeding it HD Traffic data, all for free.

    I keep wondering how long this can last but last month I did not turn my satnav on for a few days and Three sent a text message saying they were very concerned I was not using my free data and did I have a problem.

    No problem with freebees that for sure, can’t be bad.

  • Are you sure this is suitable for phones?
    The three web site does not list phones as suitable, or list any phone / text charges that I could see.

    • Hi Kevin,
      You can see details of the out-of-allowance charges in the full tariff T&C here (see “Further charges in the UK”). It’s also in Three’s press release for the tariff. With regards to you being able to use the SIM card in a smartphone, it’s true that they don’t specifically mention this on their website. However, the key thing is there is a voice & SMS service on the SIM, and there is no restriction against using it in a smartphone in the T&C. There’s also lots of feedback across the internet that the SIM card does work in smartphones/mobile handsets (though of course, most people will be better off on the standard PAYG tariff).
      Hope this helps,
      Ken

    • It DOES behave like a 3-2-1 PAYG SIM when you run out of the free allowance, despite Three telling me it’s not supposed to work like that.

      It also DOES work in a Smartphone. I use it all the time! Well done Three, despite not knowing your own product.

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