The best SIM only deals in the January sales 2017

We dig out the best SIM only deals so you don't have to

SIM only deals become very popular around this time of year as people keep hold of their existing phones after taking advantage of older Black Friday deals. And why not, when monthly costs start well under a fiver?

On this page you'll find links to the best SIM only deals currently available in the UK.

SIM only deals are usually the best option for those people who are out of contract but want to wait a while before they upgrade, or for others who have bought a phone outright and want a cheap SIM deal to use with it. If your plan is up and you don't want or need a new phone, SIM only is your best bet.

Luckily for you, SIM only deals are very competitive at the moment, so there are a lot of great options as the networks compete on price. We'll start with our price comparison chart, where you can find the outright best deals, and underneath that you'll see some of the best SIM only deals that we recommend from multiple networks.

The best SIM only deals of the month are:

These are the deals we recommend most highly. We try to pick out a deal for everyone, whether you're after the cheapest possible option or the best balance between allowance and cost over one-month and 12-month SIM only deals.

1. The absolute cheapest SIM only deal out there

ID sim only deals

iD Mobile | 1 month contract | 250MB data | 250 minutes | 5000 texts | £4 per month
This is the cheapest SIM only deal currently available in the UK. If you just need to keep a phone up and running for occasional use, this is a good option. Clearly 250MB is not much data at all so you'd be advised to either keep mobile data switched off or else be careful what apps are updating in the background. BUT WAIT, CHECK OUT THE NEXT DEAL FIRST!

View this deal: at iD Mobile

sim only deals

2: The best 1GB SIM only deal

ID sim only deals

iD | 1 month contract | 1GB data | 250 minutes | 5000 texts | £5 per month
For just £1 extra a month over the above deal, you can get 1GB of data instead of 250MB, which is much better value if we're honest. This SIM only deal allows for much more freedom to enjoy a bit of data away from Wi-Fi such as checking emails, browsing the net or even a bit of Google Maps when needed. Be careful what apps are updating in the background though (just tell your phone to do this while on Wi-Fi only).

View this deal: at iD/Carphone Warehouse

sim only deals

3: The best 4GB SIM only deal

ID sim only deals

iD | 1-month contract | 4GB data | 500 minutes | 5000 texts | £10 per month
Hey, where's the best 3GB deal? Looks like iD was discounting so hard they made this 4GB SIM only deal even cheaper than their best 3GB deal. Why does that remind me of a dog trying to eat its own tail? To be fair, you get 1000 minutes instead of 500 with the 3GB deal, but we think the higher data represents better value. And because it's a one-month contract, you can cancel at any time.

View this deal: at iD/Carphone Warehouse

sim only deals

4: The best 12GB SIM only deal

Talk Mobile | 12-month contract | 12GB data | 5000 minutes | 5000 texts | £12 per month
If you're happy to sign up for 12 months you can get an excellent deal at just £12 a month for a whopping 12GB of data. That's quite a leap up in data from Talk Mobile's 30-day deal above for 4GB of data at £10 a month. Happy with your phone? This is excellent value for a 12 month deal.

View this deal: at Talk Mobile

5: The best unlimited data SIM only deal

three deals

Three | 12 month contract | Unlimited data | Unlimited texts | 200 minutes | £24 per month
Sometimes, you've just gotta have all the data. Netflix marathons, epic Pokemon Go quests, constant Spotify tunes, this all you can eat data bundle is ideal for the serious mobile user who never needs to worry about poxy thing like data allowances or Wi-Fi. Shame about the comparatively low minutes offered, but how often do you use your phone as a phone nowadays? At least there's a £30 cashback incentive to claim.

View this deal at: buymobiles.net

sim only deals

The best SIM only deals by network are:

This is where we go through all the big networks, along with a few up-and-comers, to provide you a wide range of the best SIM only deals.

sim only deals

bt mobile deals

The best BT SIM only deals

Discounts for BT Broadband members

BT's SIM only deals have vastly improved over the original deals. Every contract below comes with an Amazon voucher, ranging from £30 to £90. BT Broadband customers get the best deals, with everyone else paying an extra fiver a month.

For existing BT Broadband customers:

12 month contract | 500MB data | 200 minutes | Unlimited texts | £20 Amazon or iTunes voucher: £5 per month at BT

12 month contract | 3GB data | 500 minutes |Unlimited texts | £40 Amazon or iTunes voucher voucher: £8 per month at BT

12 month contract | 15GB data | Unlimited calls and texts | £80 Amazon or iTunes voucher voucher: £16 per month at BT

For non-BT Broadband customers:

12 month contract | 500MB data | 200 minutes | Unlimited texts | £20 Amazon or iTunes voucher: £10 per month at BT

12 month contract | 3GB data | 500 minutes |Unlimited texts | £40 Amazon or iTunes voucher: £13 per month at BT

12 month contract | 15GB data | Unlimited calls and texts | £80 Amazon or iTunes voucher: £21 per month at BT

ee htc one m8 deals

The best SIM only deals on EE

EE's SIM only deals come with double-speed 4G
If you want a cheap SIM only deal, EE is most certainly not the network to go for. But don't discount it entirely, because if you already own a good smartphone and you want to pair it with the fastest network in the UK with a SIM only deal, you can do that. EE's SIM only deals all come with EE Extra 4G, which means they work with EE's super-fast double-speed 4G network, rather than with its single-speed 4G network. 

View all 12-month EE SIM only deals

EE | 30 day contracts | £7-£29 per month

If you want the flexibility of a 30 day rolling pay as you go contract, you may want to take a look at EE's latest promotional deals. Generally, you can get cheaper elsewhere, but EE's superfast 4G data can be a very tempting draw over the competition if you use the net away from a Wi-Fi hotspot. There are some handy tabs for people who want data focused deals, talk and text deals or everything included.

View these deals at: EE's site.

three deals

The best SIM only deals on Three

Three's SIM only deals with unlimited data
Three is still the only network that offers all-you-can-eat / unlimited data as an option. That's not as impressive as you might think because other networks offer large allowances too. But if you want the absolute security of knowing you can never be charged if you go over your data allowance, these deals are brilliant and they offer good value too - particularly if you're a heavy data user. The all-you-can-eat data plans come with in a few different guises - with the price changing according to how many minutes you require. There are some Three deals without unlimited data that you may want to consider too.

View all Three SIM only deals

Three | Unlimited data | Unlimited texts | 200 minutes
12 month contract - £24 per month | 1 month contract for £27 per month

Three | Unlimited data | Unlimited texts | 600 minutes
12 month contract - £27 per month | 1 month contract for £30 per month

Three | Unlimited data | Unlimited texts | Unlimited minutes
12 month contract - £32 per month | 1 month contract for £35 per month

sim only deals

Three | 12 month contract | Unlimited data | Unlimited texts | 200 minutes | £24 per month
Sometimes, you've just gotta have all the data. Netflix marathons, epic Pokemon Go quests, constant Spotify tunes, this all you can eat data bundle is ideal for the serious mobile user who never needs to worry about poxy thing like data allowances or Wi-Fi. Shame about the comparatively low minutes offered, but how often do you use your phone as a phone nowadays? At least there's a £30 cashback incentive to claim.

View this deal at: buymobiles.net

sim only deals

ID sim only deals

The best SIM only deals on iD

Cheap SIM only deals all on one-month contracts
iD is a good option if bargain basement prices are what you covet. This is a network run and owned by Carphone Warehouse - it piggybacks on the Three network and offers many of the benefits that entails, including European roaming etc. It's an excellent option if you want great value with perks.

View all iD SIM only deals

sim only deals

iD | 1 month contract | 250MB data | 250 minutes | 5000 texts | £4 per month
This is the cheapest SIM only deal currently available in the UK. If you just need to keep a phone up and running for occasional use, this is a good option. Clearly 250MB is not much data at all so you'd be advised to either keep mobile data switched off or else be careful what apps are updating in the background.

View this deal: at iD/Carphone Warehouse

Alternative option: You could also pay £1 more to get the same deal with 1GB data which seems like much better value to us!

sim only deals

iD | 1 month contract | 2GB data | 250 minutes | 5000 texts | £7.50 per month
The iD/Carphone Warehouse team is really cleaning up with these cheap SIM only deals and has been the go-to store for the cheapest low data deals for a while. If you're prone to viewing a few YouTube videos away from Wi-Fi, this 2GB option may suit you better than the aforementioned 1GB deal. Not bad at all for an extra £2.50 a month.

View this deal: at iD/Carphone Warehouse

deals on iD

iD | 1 month contract | 4GB data | 500 minutes | 5000 texts | £10 per month
Hey, where's the best 3GB deal? Looks like iD was discounting so hard they made this 4GB SIM only deal even cheaper than their best 3GB deal. Why does that remind me of a dog trying to eat its own tail? To be fair, you get 1000 minutes instead of 500 with the 3GB deal, but we think the higher data represents better value. And because it's a one month contract, you can cancel at any time.

View this deal: at iD/Carphone Warehouse

deals on iD

iD | 1 month contract | 6GB data | 2000 minutes | 5000 texts | £15 per month
Excellent value once again at just £15 a month on a rolling 30-day contract for 6GB of data. This frankly embarasses most 12-month SIM only deals.

View this deal: at iD/Carphone Warehouse

deals on iD

o2

The best SIM only deals on O2

A reliable network with great coverage
We've browsed all of the SIM only deals available on the O2 network, and they're not great compared to the competition for bundles including the usual 1-16 GB of data. The O2 SIM only deals this months have marginally improved as the monthly costs have been cut in half for the first six months of the 12 month deals.

They're still expensive though compared to other deals on this page.The only upside we can see to the current deals is that you'll be able to sign up to the O2 Priority program for regular freebies and discounts.

View all O2 SIM only deals

deals on iD

cheap sim only deals at talk mobile

The best SIM only deals on Talk Mobile

Has been known to double the data on some of their deals in Sales
The lack of a high street presence has allowed them to invest in some super cheap deals for SIM only customers on monthly or 12 month contracts.

View all Talk Mobile SIM only deals

sim only deals

Talk Mobile | 30 day contract | 1GB data | 500 minutes | 5000 texts | £7.50
Back down to 1GB this month after a double data deal previously. We'd opt for iD's offer above, or maybe consider the 4GB deal below for just an extra £2.50 a month over this one.

View this deal: at Talk Mobile

Talk Mobile | 30 day contract | 4GB data | 1500 minutes | 5000 texts | £10 per month
4GB of data for just £10 a month on a rolling 30 day contract is an essential purchase for middle tier data who find themselves between handset contracts.

View this deal: at Talk Mobile

deals on iD

Talk Mobile | 12-month contract | 12GB data | 5000 minutes | 5000 texts | £12 per month
If you're happy to sign up for 12 months you can get an excellent deal at just £12 a month for a whopping 12GB of data. That's quite a leap up in data from Talk Mobile's 30-day deal above for 4GB of data at £10 a month. Happy with your phone? This is excellent value for a 12 month deal.

View this deal: at Talk Mobile

talktalk sim only deals

The best SIM only deals on TalkTalk

Often has half-price deals once you click through!
TalkTalk is a telecoms company that also offers home phone, broadband and TV packages, so the best deals can be had if you sign up for more than one service. However, at the time of writing the cheapest deal is £6.50 per month for 1GB of data.

View all TalkTalk SIM only deals

deals on iD

TalkTalk | 12 month contract | 2.1GB data | 950 minutes | Unlimited texts | £15.50 £7.75 per month
A decent amount of data for under a tenner a month over a 12 month contract. 950 minutes should be plenty for most users and unlimited texts is a nice bonus.

View this deal and other offers: at TalkTalk

deals on iD

vodafone

The best SIM only deals on Vodafone

A solid network with some decent deals

As with O2 above, Vodafone doesn't offer the best SIM only deals. It would rather sell you a phone. That said, we are seeing the red network go through a sort of resurgence lately as their SIM only deals are becoming increasingly competitive. For example, you'll find that Vodafone is currently pushing a promotion across multiple sites where the first six months of a 12 month contract are HALF PRICE!

View all Vodafone SIM only deals

deals on iD

SIM only deals: the other candidates

deals on iD

mobiles co uk

Mobiles.co.uk SIM only deals

Often the place with the best bargains

It's always worth checking out Mobiles.co.uk - its aggressive price cuts are often unmatched by anyone else.

View: SIM only deals at Mobiles.co.uk

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Carphone Warehouse SIM only deals

Supports a wide range of network SIM only deals with extras

Carphone Warehouse doesn't just sell handset contracts. It also has a wide range of SIM only deals for Vodafone, O2, EE and ID. 

The current SIM only deals also include additional incentives such as half price fees for six months, free Beats by Dre headphones or Currys vouchers.

View all Carphone Warehouse SIM only deals

Plusnet SIM only deals

Plusnet might be more well known for its broadband deals, but it's also keen to push some very cheap 30-day SIM only deals. You don't have to be a Plusnet customer, although you could get double the data on some of these SIM only deals if you are. You don't have to worry about signal either as Plusnet uses EE's network that covers 99% of the UK. Plusnet's latest cheap SIM only deals start at just £5 a month, check them out via the link below.

View all Plusnet SIM only deals

giffgaff deals

giffgaff SIM only deals

One of the cheapest SIM only deals in the UK

GiffGaff is very hard to beat on price – if you want to grab a cheap SIM card deal, this could be your best option. You can't argue with £5 a month. The cheap deals don't give you much of an allowance to play with, but if you just want to keep your phone going and available to use for calls and texts with the occasional bit of internet use outside of your home WiFi, GiffGaff is a strong offering.

View all giffgaff SIM only deals

sim only deals

cheap sim only deals freedom pop

Freedom Pop SIM only deals

Putting the 'Free' in Freedom

Freedom Pop is trying something new - offering contracts for FREE. The catch being that you only pay if you do over the allowances of your bundle or opt for a larger deal. The prices for doing so vary, so be sure to take a look at the small print. It seems that they feature a different offer each week, but seeing as you can cancel at any time, they may be worth a look.

View all Freedom Pop SIM only deals

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virgin mobile sim only deals

Virgin mobile SIM only deals

An oldie but a goodie, offering one-month deals galore

Virgin Mobile has been going for a long time, and some of its SIM only deals are particularly attractive. They're all one-month rolling contracts, so you can stop paying at any time if you so wish, giving you flexibility if you want to change your plan or go for a phone-inclusive deal down the line. Prices start from as little as £5.

View all Virgin Mobile SIM only deals

sim only deals

All the SIM only deals on this page are checked every day to make sure they're still available and up to date!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Staff Writer, TechRadar Deals