Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

SIM Swap: a mini guide (incl eSim)

Not applicable

This is just a quick help guide for people who want advice on doing a SIM swap.


Do I Need To Swap my SIM?

If it's your first contract with O2 then you will be provided with a new SIM card and number with your shiny new phone. A SIM card is sent with 3 size options so you can pick the correct size to fit your device:

  1. Standard size SIM
  2. Micro SIM
  3. Nano SIM (common in most new phones)

You just need to break out what size you require. It is detailed on the card what area you need to break out for what size. A recommendation is to do it carefully as breaking out the Nano when a Mirco SIM is needed will require a whole new SIM to be sent.

You'll need to perform a SIM swap most times if you're upgrading to a new tariff. This is to have an updated network such as 4G available when it's rolled out in your area. You can set up your new SIM card to have 4G at

Note that there is no number attached to a replacement Pay Monthly SIM card, it is blank.

Note also that if you're changing phones/upgrading, sometimes there is no need to do a SIM swap if your old SIM fits the new phone.


How Do You Do The SIM Swap?


You have the following options:


By text:

Text the word SWAP to 20220 from your O2 phone. You will get step by step instructions via text message.


Note that if you're texting 'Swap' to 20220 to activate the SIM this needs to be sent from the old SIM only, the new SIM won’t be active to enable this.


Via My O2:

SIM swaps can now also be actioned via your My O2 app. You’ll find an option of ‘Swap your SIM’ under ‘Manage your account’. You’ll need to re-enter your My O2 username and password, you’ll then be sent a verification code via text to your phone. Once this has been confirmed you can enter your new SIM info and this will be swapped within 24hrs.


At an O2 store:

You can visit your local O2 shop & they will do it for you. 

Please note: You'll need to bring ID to complete the process in-store.

You will know when is done because your old SIM will not work but your new one will be up and running. If you do it in store you are more likely to be up and running with your new SIM card before you even leave the shop. The process could take up to 24 hours to complete. Keep turning your phone on and off until the new SIM card is active.


When you do the SIM swap only your tariff or credit will transfer along with your phone number. Nothing that is stored on your SIM will transfer across.


If you don’t have an active SIM to do either of the above, you’ll need to call customer services to activate it. Please be aware they can only activate SIMs that have been ordered off your account for security reasons.



If you Change your phone


If the SIM card isn't the right size then you can either do a SIM swap or pop into your local O2 store and get an adapter to put your current SIM in.


As mentioned above, if you're changing to another phone/upgrading, there might not always be a need to do a SIM swap if your old SIM fits the new phone.



If you have a faulty SIM


If your old SIM does not work and you can't access the text to start the swap then you need to contact customer service.


And what about eSim?


Can I just scan the QR code in the eSIM pack from a new phone or do I need a new QR code?

To activate the eSIM you'd scan the QR code from the eSIM pack from the existing phone number that you want to activate it against.


How do I get a new eSIM pack?

You can get an eSIM pack from an O2 store or by contacting customer services.


Do I need a physical eSIM pack or can it be done electronically?

Yes, you need a physical eSIM pack.


Do I need a new eSIM to enable 5g?

No, 5G is a separate provisioning on the account. You can request a 4G or 5G eSIM pack