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The best cheap refurbished phones and contracts in the UK

Refurbished phones get a bad image. While it is easy to picture a dirty and damaged handset when you think of getting a second-hand phone, more often than not it will be nothing like that.

In fact, most refurbished phones these days are simply returned within the first month when an owner realises its not the handset for them. On top of that, if there is anything wrong with a phone, it will be fixed before being sent out to you.

When you look a little deeper, all a refurbished phone is is a way to score a bargain on top phones like the iPhone 11, Huawei P30 Pro or Google Pixel 4. 

And, If you're imagining a slightly warn handset dogged by the fingerprints and smell  of a former owner, that's not what refurbished mobile phones are generally about these days. You can read more about what a 21st century refurb is all about with our advice below but expect an almost brand new device with a few days of use.

So whether you're heart is set on refurbished phones to save some cash or, you're new to the idea and need some convincing, scroll down to find out more. We've collected all of the best refurbished phones below and answered the key questions.

Today's best deals on refurbished phones 

Today's best SIM-free contracts on refurbished phones

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How much can I save with a refurbished phone?

Lets cut to the chase, how much are you saving with a refurbished phone? Well, on average a good few hundred. If you go down the contract route, say with a Huawei P30 pro deal, you could end up paying around £100-£150 less by going refurb.

The case is the same with SIM-free devices, with costs drastically reduced. No matter if you want a new phone or the cheapest bargain bin option you can find, refurbished phones offer some stellar discounts.

What is a refurbished phone?

More often than not, a refurbished phone is a device that has been bought and then returned to the retailer or network. They can no longer sell it as a new phone, so have to call it refurbished. So many refurbished phones out there will never have even been out of the box.

In some cases they may have been returned due to damage, but the phone will be repaired by an expert technician before being sold. This not only saves you money but can also be a more environmentally responsible decision as it can help re-use components that may otherwise have gone to waste.

Can I trust refurbished phones?

Generally speaking a refurbished phone will be sold to you so that it looks and works like a new phone. You shouldn't be able to tell the difference.

On top of that, you should get a warranty for a year at least. If you go for a big name seller you should be safe – as opposed to online marketplaces where it can be more hit and miss with who you're buying from. Make sure you get that warranty.

Where can I buy a refurbished phone? 

There are lots of places to get yourself a refurbished phone deal right now. As mentioned, Amazon (opens in new tab) has some great Certified Refurbished Apple iPhone and Samsung Galaxy deals. O2 (opens in new tab) and Carphone Warehouse (opens in new tab) both offer refurbished deals with 12-month warranties. MusicMagpie (opens in new tab) and Envirophone (opens in new tab) specialise in refrub re-sales so they're also great, safe options. eBay (opens in new tab) also sells refurbished phones but be careful to make sure you get a warranty here as there are lots of different, unauthorised sellers.

What are certified refurbished iPhones from Apple?

If you buy from the top end, meaning a refurbished iPhone or Samsung device, then you can purchase with their backing by using a certified seller. Amazon (opens in new tab), for example, has Certified Refurbished devices from Apple that have been refurbished to work and look like new and they come with a one-year warranty for your peace of mind.

Alex Hughes
Alex Hughes

Alex is a journalist who has written extensively about all things broadband, SIMs and phone contracts, as well as scouring the internet to land you the best prices on the very latest in gadgets and tech. Whether that be with the latest iPhones and Android handsets, breaking down how broadband works or revealing the cheapest SIM plans, he's in the know, and will help you land a bargain.