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How to Upgrade or Replace Your Virgin Mobile Phone Without Losing Your Grandfathered Rate Plan


Two weeks ago Virgin Mobile announced that upgrading to a new Android phone would trigger a price increase for users on grandfathered $25 and $40 per month Beyond Talk plans. The message was delivered in a text that linked to a confusing mobile web page. Many users who called Virgin Mobile where told that making ANY phone switch after May 27th would trigger a price increase.  It turns out that is not true. Virgin has posted a clarification on their Frequently Asked Questions page:

Learn about new Beyond Talk device upgrade rules
What are the new device upgrade rules?

Starting May 27, 2012, if you are using the $25, $40, or $60 Beyond Talk plan and you upgrade to a Beyond Talk Smartphone launched after May 1, 2012*, you will need to switch to the $35, $45, or $55 Beyond Talk plan. When you switch plans, you will need to pay for your new plan and you will lose any minutes, messages, and money in your balance. This will also change your monthly payment date. So if you are considering upgrading to a new smartphone, we recommend that you wait until right before your next monthly payment date to activate.

*The following smartphones launched before May 1, 2012 and are therefore not subject to the new device upgrade rules at this time: VentureTM, LG ® OptimusTM Slider, HTC ® Wildfire STM, Motorola TriumphTM, LG ® Optimus VTM, Blackberry ® CurveTM 8530.

So now it is clear, if you are grandfathered on a $25 or $40 plan and you need to to replace or upgrade your current smartphone and you want to keep your grandfathered plan, the replacement phone must be a PCD Venture, LG Optimus Slider, HTC Wildfire S, Motorola Triumph, LG Optimus V or a non-smartphone.

Upgrading to the Optimus Elite or HTC EVO V 4G or any another new smartphone launched in the future will cause you to lose your grandfathered rate. Of course, it might be worth it, especially for the EVO.

The old phones will be phased out, probably pretty quickly, eventually forcing grandfathered users to higher priced plans. But for now you can still upgrade or replace your phone without a monthly price increase provided you choose a PCD Venture, LG Optimus Slider, HTC Wildfire S, Motorola Triumph, or LG Optimus V.

The situation with the BlackBerry is still a little confusing, There is a $10/month surcharge for BlackBerrys on the old grandfathered plans, so a grandfathered user switching from a non-BlackBerry to a BlackBerry will trigger a price increase to $35 if they are on the $25 plan.

Related: 
Virgin Mobile Grandfathered Rate Plans Going Away
Virgin Mobile Confirms Upcoming Price Increases, Grandfathering and Data Soft Caps

21 comments:

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  1. I got excited because I thought you were going to tell us how to get the new EVO on the $25 plan.

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    1. I wish I knew how to do that myself.

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  2. i thought that also ,the only way is to swap esn so it looks like your using a htc wilfire or triumph or etc but your really using evo v or iphone 4s or etc

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  3. This is confusing can someone explain this to me? So u can't get an upgrade if u have a smartphone?

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    Replies
    1. If you are on the $25 or $40 plan you can replace your phone with a PCD Venture, LG Optimus Slider, HTC Wildfire S, Motorola Triumph, LG Optimus V, Optimus Elite or a non-smartphone and still pay the same $25 or $40 per month.

      If you replace you phone any other model (iPhone, EVO V, One V, Galaxy Reverb, Rise or Chaser your month price will increase to $35 (if you were on the $25 plan) or $45 (if you were on the $40 plan).

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  4. A $10 dollar increase from $25 to $35 a month isn't much especially considering the monthly bills of Sprint, T-mobile, AT&T, and Verizon. Still leaps and bounds better than a $100+ cell phone bill

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  5. No, a $10 increase sucks! This is just the beginning. Its just another typical price increase on consumers. The price increase has NOTHING to do with offering "top of the line smartphones at competitive prices". Currently, Virgin sells their phones for top dollar. They sell the iPhone 4S for $649...thats $100 more than what Verizons "full retail price" is. And increasing the price of their monthly plans will NOT change this. Its just a bs excuse as to why they're increasing their plan prices. $25 to $35...then in a year or two it will be bumped to $40 or $45. This is how it goes. I've been a VM customer for probably close to 7 years. I'm grandfathered in to the $25 plan and I'm PISSED at VM.

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  6. Virgin Mobile lied...lied...lied. They promised to keep loyal customers at $25/month then changed it to $35. I am utterly disgusted with them. They have screwed those of us who went with Virgin Mobile early on when no one cared or knew about them.

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    1. What do you mean? There has been no change to what Virgin said in May. If you are on a grandfathered plan you can keep it as long as you do not switch to smartphone released after May 1, 2012. That is still true. You may not like it, I don't like it either, but I don't see that Virgin is lying.

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    2. No. Virginmobile is so underhanded and slick, they claim that as of June 1, 2013, its network will not support your 2G phone that you bought from THEM and have on a grsndfathered plan.

      WORSE, is they claim I cannot keep my 18 cent grandfathered plan if I choose another PayLo phone. That I must change plans to their present plans of at least $20 month! I asked numerous times over the last number of years, and was told every time that I would NEVER have this plan taken from me, and that I would always be able to buy a phone to replace it with. Now, isn't it BS that they "don't support the older network I was on." Even if true, what does that have to do with continuing to pay every 90 days $20, and keeping that plan? NOTHING! Simply a twisting of the truth, and the greed of Virgin Mobile. This cannot be lawful, and I am contacting the FCC about it. Any one go through this?

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  7. They call it an upgrade while offering nothing beyond what we received for $25 and keeping very, very high phone prices. Yes, we have to pay for every phone...no freebies here. Goodbye loyal customers...Virgin you were not loyal and did not keep your promise. Shame on you.

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  8. if someone had a phone under insurance and had to have it replaced, what are the odds they would not have the pre May 1 models in their inventory? Could their hand be forced to keep ppl at $25/month on a better phone? It seems like the insurance is not directly in VM control, but sub contracted. Anyone use their replacement yet and know the process?

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  9. yup im done with virgin now... i refuse to be toyed with and treated like a bag of money... im calling vm now to express my disappointment and cancel my 25 dollar plan since i can only have the shitty triumph or the old optimus v?!?!?!!!! garbage and now they want more money?

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    Replies
    1. The LG Optimus Slider and the LG Optimus Elite are the best grandfathered phones.

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  10. So my birthday present is going to cost me $120 more a year when I'm already barely making enough money to get by? And for the same exact plan but a whole $10 more?!? I know, it's business and everything gets more expensive over time. But at least add some to the plan, like more minutes or something. Or they should have kept the old $25 plan and just cut the minutes. I only use an average of 10minutes a month, and I don't text a lot, or go online a lot. And to everybody who said that they talked to representatives who said they couldn't do anything, don't give up, I say we should stay on the phone until a get someone who can do something! It's BS to say there's nothing they can do!

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  11. If you complain to the reps about your $25 plan they just keep you on the line for 5 hours & then your phone disconnects you. Then you pay $50 a month for your bill I hate you virgin mobile blah blah blah.

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  12. I upgraded to a then-new Android phone a while ago and expected my bill to go up to $35/month, but today it's still $25. I don't know if the system messed up and I got lucky... but even $35 is really good if you consider the ridiculous prices other phone companies.

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  13. How did you upgrade by phone or online?

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  14. I also did. I have been with Virgin's $25 plan for years now. Three months ago I fell in the pool with my old android, so I bought a brand new Galaxy S3 and was told my bill would go up to $35. It is still $25...we totally scored and got lucky. You can bet I am not saying a word.

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  15. I'm certainly going to try and just activate the S3 via computer after buying it for $249 cyber Monday 2013. If it doesn't keep me at $25 then I'll just call them and take advantage of the offer they gave to me to stay keeping me at $25 for 3 months then up to $30 the next before finally going up to $35 the 4th month. Makes the blow a little less plus gives more time for them to finish the LTE in my area. Ask for the customer retention department when they try and feed you that there is nothing they can do BS tell them you are thinking of switching to boost mobile due to it being $40 after 18 months for unlimited everything and they will likely make you this offer too.

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    1. That sounds like a great deal.

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