Frequently Asked Questions

Manage your usage

What are bars?

Our bars can help you manage your usage and costs. For example, you can choose to bar age-restricted content, calls and texts while abroad, plus picture messages, premium-rate texts and calls. If you would like to add or remove a bar, simply contact us and we can add or remove them for you. Any bar you’ve added will renew automatically every month. You will need to contact us to turn them off.

How can I limit my data usage?

  • Uninstall or close any apps you don’t use or need,
  • Send texts rather than using iMessage or WhatsApp,
  • Connect to Wi-Fi unless you’re using internet banking,
  • Switch off mobile data when your allowance is low,
  • Turn off auto updates for apps,
  • Set your email to ‘Fetch’ rather than ‘Push’ in your device’s settings.

Why do I seem to be using more data than usual?

You generally use data when you’re online but also when you:

  • Stream videos or music from Facebook, YouTube or Spotify.
  • Have apps running in the background and you check them regularly.
  • Play games that include adverts on your device.
  • Use your device as a sat-nav (GPS).
  • Send messages through WhatsApp or iMessage instead of texts.
  • Tether your phone.
  • Send emails.
  • Allow apps to upload content.
  • Switch automatically to data when a Wi-Fi connection drops.

What’s the best data bundle for me?

If you don’t use UK data on your mobile device every month, no problem - we offer a wide range of contracts with minutes and texts. The contracts we offer with data give you a monthly data allowance, measured in gigabytes (GB). The more you do online, the more data you’ll use. So if you think you might do a lot of browsing, downloading and emailing, and using messaging apps such as WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger it’s worth picking a bundle with a larger allowance – you can choose from 500MB up to 40GB.

Call, text and data charges

How much does it cost to call 0800 and 0808 numbers?

Numbers starting with 0800 or 0808 are called Freephone numbers. Since 1 July 2015, they’re free to call from landlines and mobile phones. This applies to every UK landline and mobile – not just your Fone World mobile or landline service. Visit the UK Calling website to find out more.

How are calls charged?

While calls to UK mobiles and landlines are billed per second, other types of calls are billed per minute. You can find out more by reading our Out Of Bundle charge document here.

Your Allowance

What’s included in my allowance of UK minutes and texts?

Your UK allowance includes calls and texts to any:

  • UK mobile (starting 07)
  • Standard UK landline (starting 01, 02 or 03)
  • UK voicemail

The following are not included:

  • Calls or texts to overseas numbers, including the Channel Islands (Guernsey or Jersey) or the Isle of Man.
  • Using your phone abroad, depending on the allowances in your bundle.
  • Calls to premium rate numbers.
  • Picture messages.
  • Video calls.
  • Competition entries or charity donations.
  • Non-inclusive 07 numbers, for example personal numbering services starting with 070, or call forwarding services starting with 07744 and 07777.
All standard UK call charges (including voicemail) within your minutes allowance are charged by the second, with a one-minute minimum call charge.

I use accessibility services – can I get help managing my account?

If you’re concerned about managing your account, our Protected Service scheme lets you choose a trusted friend or family member to look after things on your behalf. Under this scheme, you can choose a friend or family member to look after things like paying your bill or contacting us if any issues need sorting out.
The person you choose must agree to this arrangement and understand what it involves. They’ll also need to know that their details will be given to us and that we might contact them about your account in the future. To set it up, please contact us.

Life Events

How do I report bereavement?

Please accept our condolences. You can let us know about your bereavement by getting in touch online or by calling us. Please ensure you have the death certificate details, so that we can take care of everything. Online, we have a quick and simple form to fill in. If you’d like to talk to someone, please call us on 0330 088 7447 (standard call charges apply).

How do I report bankruptcy?

If you’ve been declared bankrupt, please send an email to us at We’ll update your credit file once this information has been received.

How do I report a critical illness?

Please call our team on 0330 088 7447 (standard call charges apply). It doesn’t matter if you’re not the account holder, but if you’re calling on their behalf, you’ll need to have their personal details to hand for us to help.

Lost, stolen and damaged

Do you offer courtesy phones?

If we have a spare phone in store, we may offer it to you when your phone goes for repair. This is a goodwill service offered by Fone World and we cannot guarantee that we will be able to offer it at the time. We do make every best effort to offer this service.

What if I don’t return my courtesy phone?

If the courtesy phone isn't returned four weeks after we text and email you to remind you to send it back, we may charge your account for the full cost of the phone and £5 per missing accessory such as the USB cable or the plug.

What if I return the courtesy phone damaged or with parts missing?

We may charge you a £55 flat charge for any repair to the phone or its missing parts. The charge will appear on your next bill.

I've been charged for not returning my courtesy phone - how do I get this refunded?

Return the courtesy phone in good working order and with all the parts that were supplied with it to a Fone World store, and we will apply a credit to your account.

What does a warranty cover?

  • Your device’s warranty covers any faults or problems you experience with its hardware or software.
  • All devices on a Pay Monthly contract with us are covered by a 24 month guarantee.
If your device develops any faults which aren’t a direct result of your actions, and which occur within a set time period after the date of purchase, it’ll be repaired under warranty. In-warranty accidental damage: This is minor damage to devices that are unrelated to the reason for repair, including:
  • pixel damage
  • a single hairline crack without a point of impact
  • additional cracks
Out-of-warranty accidental damage: This is the result of unexpected and non-deliberate external actions that cause damage including, but not limited to:
  • LCD fracture
  • cracks denoting impact
  • connector port damage
  • damage to other ports
  • missing buttons
Beyond Economic Repair (BER): this term describes a device that can’t be repaired and should be replaced (for example, devices that have liquid damage, or that have been dropped from a great height) Liquid Damage: This describes the loss of device usage caused by water getting into it. Devices with liquid damage will need to be replaced and are not covered by warranty.

How do I book a device in for repair?

The usual way is to visit a Fone World store where our advisers can assess your device and send it away for repair if necessary. If you’d like to arrange for your device to be sent for repair by post, please contact us and we can arrange that for you. Once your device is scheduled for a repair, or before you bring it into a store for a repair, please make sure you’ve taken the necessary steps to back up your data and contacts. For more details, please read through this section or speak to one of our staff who will be happy to help.

If my device is damaged, will it cost me anything to repair?

The cost to repair or replace a device is determined by a number of factors, such as:

  • whether the device is under the manufacturer’s warranty,
  • the type and extent of damage to the device,
  • whether this damage is covered by the warranty,
  • whether or not you have insurance on your device.

How much will it cost me?

The price will vary according to the device tier and whether the device needs to be repaired or replaced. A device tier is the category of device based on the manufacturer’s current repair and replacement costs. We’ll confirm your device tier either by phone or in store. Examples of device tiers

  • Tier 2 . Motorola Moto G
  • Tier 6 . Sony Xperia Compact
  • Tier 9 . Samsung Galaxy S 7
  • Tier 9 . iPhone 6S
  • Tier 10 . iPhone 7
Device tier repair and BER charge table
Your repair, if applicable, will cost no more than £264. (BER cost = replacement cost)


Why is my new SIM or SIM swap not working? My new SIM doesn’t work – what should I do?

If you’re experiencing problems with a new or replacement SIM, try reinstalling it and re-starting your device. If you have recently submitted a request for a SIM swap online or in store, this process can take up to 24 hours.

If you’ve recently received a new SIM for an existing number.

We link your phone number to your SIM on our network so you can use your device. If your new device needs a different size SIM, we'll need to swap your mobile number from the old SIM to the new one. If you need a new or replacement SIM, please get in touch. If you’re experiencing problems with your replacement SIM, try reinstalling it and re-starting your device. If it still doesn't work, please give us a call so we can try to troubleshoot and send another SIM if necessary. Note: SIM swaps can take up to 12 hours, so you should only contact an adviser if your SIM swap is taking longer.

If you're a new customer

SIMs for new or additional numbers are already activated when issued. If you’re experiencing problems with your new SIM, try reinstalling it and re-starting your device. If it still doesn't work, please get in touch.

If you can’t complete the SIM swap process

If your SIM was lost, stolen or damaged and you can’t receive a text with a security code, you’ll need to use the online form to complete a SIM swap. If this has failed it may be that your details in the form don’t match our records exactly. Also, for security reasons we can only swap your number onto a SIM that’s been ordered on your account. If you’re trying to use a new SIM that you got from a friend or family member, or from a SIM you got in store without giving your account details, SIM swap won’t work with our online form. You’ll have to order a replacement SIM to keep your old number. Contact us if the SIM is linked to your account but you still can’t complete SIM swap.

Leaving Fone World

How do I cancel my Pay Monthly contract?

You can cancel your Pay Monthly contract at any time by calling us on 0330 088 7447 (standard call charges apply). If you choose to cancel before the end date specified in your contract, you’ll need to pay an early exit fee. The cost will depend on which bundle or price plan you have and how long you have left on your contract. To check your contract end date please call us or refer to the contract you signed with us. Please note: if you need to cancel the contract for a deceased family member, please contact us and we can help you.

If you want to disconnect your number

Your agreement will end 30 days after you’ve told us you want to end it. You’ll be billed as normal up to the date that we disconnect your number, so don’t cancel any direct debits or payments until then.

If you want to move to another network

If you want to take your number with you to another network, ask for a Porting Authorisation Code (PAC) when you tell us you want to leave. Your PAC is valid for 30 days and you can give it to your new network as soon as you’re ready to move. Your contract and billing with Fone World will end as soon as the port is complete. Please note: if you don’t use your PAC nothing will happen. If you change your mind and decide to disconnect instead, you’ll need to get back in touch to let us know. If you’d like to take your device to use on another network, you may need to get it unlocked. You will need to contact us to request for your phone to be unlocked. There may be a charge of £25 or more for this.

I’m leaving Fone World – what will happen with my bills?

We’re sorry you’re leaving us. If you haven’t given us your notice yet, find out how to cancel your account. We'll keep billing you as normal until your disconnection date. After you've been disconnected, your final bill could contain the following details:

  • Line rental (or a credit, if you’ve paid for rental you won’t now use)
  • Usage charges
  • Extra services
  • Early exit fees (if you're leaving before the end of your minimum commitment period, or without giving us 30 days' notice)
If you've recently been abroad, it's possible that any charges you’ve incurred there will take a couple of months to appear on our billing system – so you could receive bills from us for up to two months after disconnecting. Please don't cancel your Direct Debit. Once your mobile number is disconnected we won't continue to charge you for it, and it’s much easier to collect the final payments with the Direct Debit still active. If you've already cancelled it and need to pay, call us on 0330 088 7447 from any UK phone (standard call charges apply).

What happens at the end of my commitment period?

You’ll remain on the network as before, but it does mean you might be missing out on some great offers available when upgrading to a new phone. Why not chat to one of our advisers about what offers are available to you. Our advisers will attempt to call you towards the end of your commitment period, and when the contract is rolling to advise you of the best offers we have available on upgrade.

How do I cancel my business account?

  • If you have an account manager, speak to them.
  • If you’re not at the end of your agreement yet, you’ll need to pay an early exit fee.
  • Your agreement will end 30 days from when you tell us you want it to finish.
  • Want to take your mobile number with you? No problem – when you contact us, just ask for a porting authorisation code (PAC).

Protect my device

How can I keep my phone safe?

Your phone may well hold personal and financial details that you need to protect. Here’s how to keep these details safe: Secure your phone

  • Lock your screen - with a PIN, password or screen swipe code. We’d recommend a complex password as the most secure. Some newer phones also offer fingerprint or iris recognition to lock your phone.
  • If your phone is lost or stolen let us know straight away, so we can block it.
Additional security if you have an Apple ID You might also want to use ‘two step’ verification. This stops anyone from accessing or using your account, even if they know your password. You can find more information on the Apple website. Buy with caution Only download apps from sites certified by known software vendors. Be responsible Be careful if your phone is accessible to curious children - they might not understand the electronic payment system and could easily incur charges on your account without realising.

Using our network

My phone has no signal. What should I do?

We recommend you try the following steps first:

  1. If you’re only having signal issues in certain locations, please contact us so we can check for any planned maintenance or unexpected issues in your area.
  2. Update your network connection by switching off and restarting your phone.
If coverage is normal, there’s no maintenance or issues in your area and restarting your phone hasn’t worked:
  1. Set your phone to ‘manually roam’. If you are unsure how to do this, please contact us and we can give you instructions. Each phone will have slightly different instructions.
  2. It may be that your SIM is damaged or your phone is faulty. To check this, try your SIM in a different phone.

It’s important to check your coverage and network status as well as try your SIM in a different phone. This is because a replacement SIM and SIM swap won’t resolve network issues.

If none of the steps above have fixed or identified the problem, please contact us.

Why can't I make calls or texts?

If you can’t make any calls or texts, here are the most common issues and how to resolve them. It’s always worth turning your phone off and on again before you try anything else.

  • Your phone or device is broken - check our repairs page for what to do
  • You’re on Pay as you go and have run out of credit – you’ll need to top up
  • You might be in an area with poor network coverage – please contact us and we can give you information on the normal coverage you should expect where you are. We can also tell you about future coverage and information about planned and unexpected network maintenance.
  • You’re abroad – you’ll need to check if you have a bar on your account. Please contact us and we can help you.

Can I use 4G abroad?

If you have a 4G device and a 4G UK contract, you’ll be able to use 4G abroad, wherever it’s available. Using 4G incurs no additional cost to your standard roaming charges. If 4G isn’t available, your device will switch to 3G or 2G.

Can’t get 4G abroad?

It may be that you don’t have a 4G-ready device or bundle, or that there’s no 4G in the country you’re visiting.

How do I switch off data on my phone?

For most smartphones you can switch off the data connection on the phone itself. Android Many Android phones have Mobile Data in the settings menu, accessible when you swipe down. iPhone Choose Settings, then Mobile. For other mobile phones, please contact us or read the user guide that came with your phone. If you want to stop your phone from going on the internet you could use a bar, to do this you’ll need to get in touch. This will stop your phone from being able to access the internet at all.

Why can't I access some websites when I use the internet?

Some websites are restricted by our content control, which prevents access to various adult sites such as chat and dating services, erotica or violent games. You can remove content control if you’re over 18 – please contact us to have the content control bar removed.

How quickly will my device connect to the Internet?

When you’re in an area with a strong 4G signal, you can expect faster speeds. The number of people connected to our network at the same time also affects these speeds.

Can I get email on my device when I’m abroad?

If want to use email abroad, make sure you have data turned on or that you’re connected to Wi-Fi and have removed any overseas and international bars from your account. If you’re not on Wi-Fi, you need GPRS, 3G or 4G coverage on the network you’re using. Note: Email uses data and charges will vary depending on the country you’re in and the bundle you use. Find out more about our roaming data charges.

What will affect my signal or reception?

4G is faster than 3G. However, as 4G is a radio technology, the following local physical conditions can reduce the signal strength:

  • The distance between your device and your nearest mobile mast
  • The antenna design of your device
  • Being in a tunnel, or in mountainous or wooded areas
  • The type of building you’re in (e.g. a basement flat or a building with very thick walls)
The 4G signal is digital, so a lower signal strength doesn’t always mean slower speeds. Your network has both low and high frequency 4G spectrum for its signal, which is great for rural and indoor coverage as well as for cities where we need more capacity.

I’ve received a ‘Network busy’ error message. What does this mean?

This means there’s local congestion on the network. Either hang up and try again later, or turn your phone off and then back on to pick up the strongest site signal.

Is it Fone World calling?

How can you be sure it’s us calling? We make nearly all of our calls from 0330 088 7447. Very occasionally a member of staff may call you from their work mobile – they will advise you of their number before they call, if possible.

Can I hide my own telephone number when I make calls?

You can stop your phone number being shown to the person you’re calling by using the Calling Line Identity Restriction (CLIR) service. You can choose whether this happens by changing your phone’s settings to either Allow my CLI to be presented or Restrict my CLI from being presented. If you want to change your usual preference for an individual call, you can reconfigure your mobile phone settings or add a CLIR override code in front of the number you’re calling:

  • 141 to stop your phone number from showing
  • 1470 to allow your phone number to show
Note: these codes can’t be used together with the ‘+’ symbol.

How can I stop premium rate services being accessed from my phone?

We have a few bars that block premium rate services. These are:
Premium text message bar - incoming and outgoing
Charge to bill bar
Age-restricted content bar
(also known as a content control bar) If you want to add or remove any of these bars, contact us.

What are premium rate services?

Premium rate services let you buy an item or service from another company (not Fone World) and add the charge to your bill. Examples include:

  • Voice calls to TV shows like X Factor and Strictly Come Dancing, competitions or chat lines.
  • Premium texts to TV shows (such as 'text WIN to 84000' which costs £1.50); alerts for news, sports or traffic; or text donations to Sports Relief, Children in Need or other charities.
  • Digital content on the internet,; buying extras in Apps like Facebook credits, Candy Crush or Angry Birds; or online content for games, music, chat, dating, horoscopes, adult videos or gambling.
  • eMoney is used to buy small physical things like coffee, snacks, parking, tickets and taxis via your phone.

How do I change my phone number?

If you want to change your phone number, you'll need to contact us. There is an admin fee for changing your number. If you are receiving spam or nuisance calls, we can help you deal with these problems without needing to change your number.

What can I do about nuisance, spam or marketing calls?

Nuisance calls can be a real problem – and very upsetting. Here's some advice on how to report and stop nuisance and spam calls. Nuisance sales calls You can register your mobile phone number with the Telephone Preference Service (TPS) by texting your email address to 85095 for free. They’ll reply by text to confirm your registration. Some Android devices may say that you’ve been charged for the text. This isn’t the case. Harassing or abusive calls If you receive abusive or harassing calls, you can refer them to our specialist Nuisance Call Bureau. This team can give you advice and create case files to start criminal investigations, where appropriate. Simply follow these steps:

  1. Log the details of each call (at least three) on our nuisance call log form [PDF: 318KB]
  2. Complete the data disclosure form [PDF: 391KB] as we’ll need your permission to disclose data about your account to law enforcement agencies
  3. Send the completed forms to, or by post to Fone World Ltd, 342 Great Cheetham Street East, Salford, Manchester, M7 4UJ

What can I do about nuisance, spam or marketing texts?

Nuisance and spam texts can be a real problem – here's some advice on how to report and stop them. Spam vs. marketing messages Unlike marketing messages, spam texts are those you haven’t signed up for. They often come from unknown senders and companies.

  • Don’t text back – if you haven’t agreed to receive these messages, or you don’t recognise the sender.
  • If you’re receiving marketing messages from a known company you have signed up with, you generally have the option to reply STOP
If you’re receiving unsolicited messages and you feel they’re in breach of your data protection, you can report this to the Information Commissioner’s Office. Make sure you tell them:
  • The date and time you received the text
  • What the message said
  • The name and/or number it came from
Messages about accident claims can be reported to the Ministry of Justice Claims Regulation. Messages about debt management can be reported to the Financial Conduct Authority

Tethering and sharing Internet

Why can't I tether or set up a personal hotspot on my device?

Some devices can’t be used for tethering or as personal hotspots. To tether your device, or use it as a personal hotspot, you’ll need a good 4G or 3G data signal.

How much does it cost to share my data connection through a personal hotspot or tethering?

Sharing your device’s data connection through a personal hotspot or by tethering will use up your data allowance. Providing you don’t exceed your data allowance, there’ll be no additional cost. However, if you exceed your monthly data allowance, you’ll pay the standard rate for any extra data used.

How do I share my device’s data connection through a personal hotspot or tethering?

Personal hotspots and tethering are methods of sharing your mobile device’s data connection with another device, like a laptop or games console. So, if you’re in an area with no Wi-Fi, but you have a 4G or 3G signal, you can use that signal to go online.

A personal hotspot lets you share your device’s data wirelessly, so it’s also called ‘wireless tethering’ or a ‘Wi-Fi hotspot.’
Tethering lets you do the same thing, using a USB cable instead of a wireless connection.

Going and calling abroad

What has happened to World Traveller?

Fone World’s World Traveller is a service that allows you to use your UK allowance of data, minutes and texts anywhere in our World Traveller Zone for £4.99 + VAT a day. As of 1st November 2017, the UK Government have ruled that roaming usage outside of the EU is now eligible for VAT.

What has happened to Euro Traveller?

Fone World Euro Traveller is a discontinued service that allowed you to use your UK allowance of data, minutes and texts anywhere in our Europe Zone for £2.99 a day. Euro Traveller has been replaced by Fone World Global Roaming which lets you use your UK allowance of data, minutes and texts in any of our 50 Roam-free destinations for no extra charge. This applies across all Pay Monthly plans.

How much does it cost to use data, make calls or send texts when I’m abroad?

If you’re a Pay Monthly customer, the costs of using data, sending texts or making calls depend on the country you’re visiting and the type of plan or bundle you have. There’s no extra charge to use your UK allowance in our 50 Roam-free destinations. And if you’re travelling further afield, there’s a £4.99 + VAT daily charge for using your phone in 60 Roam-further destinations but only on the days when you choose to use your phone.