It is an unprecedented time with the entirety of the UK in lockdown and many now having to work from home. But to help make life easier, mobile networks are changing how their plans work, now offering pandemic related benefits.
Depending on which network you're with, these benefits will come in different forms. Almost all are offering free access to the NHS website, some are giving out unlimited minutes to select groups and some, unfortunately, have remained the same.
So what exactly is your network offering right now? We've broken down all of the available networks and their new features below so you can see how your phone contracts or SIM only plans might have changed.
The benefits from the main networks:
EE has really stepped up on this front. It has the obvious benefit that the rest of the networks have of free use of the NHS website. But it also now allows PAYG customers to call EE at no extra charge and both NHS customers and disabled/vulnerable customers have been gifted unlimited data on their plans.
Anyone on O2 can get onto the NHS website without using up data and is promising to keep its network as reliable as possible during this time. O2 has now also added that it will be giving unlimited calls to all plans during this time if you don't already have it. As for PAYG customers, you will receive an additional 300 minutes, roughly three times more than the average person uses in a typical month.
Like many other plans out there, Vodafone is offering free use of the NHS website. But past that, there's not much to gain for many customers. However, NHS staff - and now care workers too - can get unlimited data for six months from Vodafone by applying online, this now also includes those on a Pay As You Go tariff buying the minmum of a £10 big value bundle.
Like many of the other networks out there, using the NHS website will not use up any data on any iD Mobile plan. And if you're over 70 and on an iD Mobile plan, you will automatically get free unlimited minutes until mid-April.
Virgin is one of the networks going all out. It is doing the data-free use of the NHS website like everyone else but it is also giving its pay monthly customers unlimited minutes to landlines and other mobile phone customers plus a 10GB data boost each month.
Tesco has done the same as almost all other networks in the fact that you can now access to the NHS website and government guidance without using up data.
Past that, Tesco has also given its customers free evening and weekend calls to all of its customers, no matter what kind of phone plan you're on.View Deal
What are the best SIM only deals to invest in:
Looking to switch networks? Luckily there are a number of great options out there right now. Use our SIM only deals guide to see them all in full or see our favourites below:
- EE: 60GB of data for £20 a month
- Smarty: 100GB of data for £15 a month
- Three: unlimited data for £18 a month