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Chronicle Live
Catherine Furze

Virgin Mobile customers to be moved to O2 - what it means for you

Millions of Virgin Mobile customers will be ringing the changes in the next few months as their contracts switch over to O2 following the merger of the two telecoms giants.

It is expected that Virgin Mobile customers will be switched to O2 in stages and when you receive your letter, it will explain details of your new plan and when you will move over. All transfers are expected to have taken place by the end of the year.

This is the next phase in bringing all the Virgin Media and O2 brands together after the huge £31bn merger in June 2021. The move will apply to all Virgin Mobile customers – those with handset plans (phone and Sim) and those on Sim-only deals. Customers shouldn't actually notice much difference, as O2 has been powering Virgin Mobile's services since the end of last year, when it replaced Vodafone as the underlying network.

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No-one who is moved to O2 will see the cost of their plans rise - and the mobile network as said that some will see the cost fall. But the switchover will bring some major changes to former Virgin Media customers.

Virgin Media O2 chief commercial officer Gareth Turpin said: “This is a major milestone moment for Virgin Media O2 as our Virgin Mobile customers start moving over to O2 plans, receiving added value and benefits on top. Our teams will guide customers through every step of the migration, and we’re laser-focused on making sure this all occurs in the most hassle-free way possible. With all of our mobile brands now powered by the award-winning O2 network, we are making fantastic progress in our integration plans while continuing to deliver a range of knockout mobile services that cater for all needs.”

Here's what you need to know if you are a Virgin Mobile customer:

When will the switch happen?

From next month, Virgin Mobile will start contacting customers to give them 30 days' notice that their Virgin Mobile plan will become an O2 plan. These letters will be sent throughout the year, so there's no set date as to when you'll be moved to O2 yet, although Virgin Media O2 has said that all existing and newly-joined Virgin Mobile customers will have been moved to O2 plans by the end of 2023.

Do I need to do anything?

The switch will all happen automatically unless you don't want it to - more on that below. There is no need to replace Sims, port phone numbers or change billing dates or information.

How will my payments change?

If you pay for your contract by direct debit, don't cancel it. Once you are moved to O2, your direct debit will also be moved across automatically, so there is no need to do anything. If you have a Virgin Mobile Sim-only plan, it'll appear as 'O2' on your bank statement. But if you have a Virgin Mobile handset plan, it'll appear as 'Virgin Media' on your statement.

Will I pay more?

Under the new O2 plan, all customers will receive unlimited texts and calls, and either double or unlimited mobile data. So if you get 1GB a month data with Virgin Mobile, you'll receive 2GB a month once you've moved to O2. Those who currently have a 25GB to 50GB plan will get 100GB a month, and those on a 51GB plan or higher receive unlimited data. O2 has the same price rise policy as Virgin Mobile, so prices will continue to increase each April by the Retail Prices Index rate of inflation + 3.9%.

Are there any extra benefits I will get with O2?

You'll get access to O2 Priority benefits and keep free roaming. You'll be able to access O2 Priority loyalty deals, which include free Greggs and Odeon cinema tickets. You'll also be able to roam in 48 destinations without any extra charges, something not now offered by the other big networks.

Any will I lose anything?

You won't be able to roll over data each month.

I don't want to be an O2 customer

If you're currently in a contact with Virgin Mobile but don't want to move across to O2, you will have 30 days from receipt of your migration notification to cancel without penalty.

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