Transfering Phone Number from Prepaid Cellphone

I have a prepaid cell phone. I’ve had it for so long that I fear losing business if I change numbers. However I would like to change carriers. I asked if it was possible to keep the same number. I was told yes. But when I mentioned that the number was from a prepaid cell phone the answer was changed to no.

IIRC, cell phone companies collected fees for the “You keep your number no matter what company you use” regulation but were exempt. Then that changed to where cell phone companies had to allow you to keep your number.

So, is there any special provision in the Keep Your Number regulations that could prevent keeping a number from a prepaid cell phone?

I’m in the same boat. I’ve got a prepaid “pick your plan” deal through AT&T and I’d like a regular account. The AT&T guy told me I’d be able to keep my number, but that there’d be an additional fee to do so.

I think it depends on who your current phone service is through. If it’s through one of the major companies like AT&T or Verizon, you will probably be able to keep your number. If it’s through Virgin or Tracphone, I’d say probably not.


You should have no problems porting over any phone number to any carrier, prepaid or not. There should also never be any fees. There may be some extra steps because a prepaid phone doesn’t have an account number or your social security number tied to it. Since every number that is moved needs to have the owner verified, prepaid phones have some special challenges.

I can get exact info for you if you let me know who you are with and who you’re trying to port into.

About two years ago, I had a major problem converting my Verizon prepaid number to a two year contract. Oddly enough, it started out as a Cingular prepaid number, which they had no problem converting to a Verizon prepaid account. But when I wanted to convert it to a two year contract, no matter who I talked to, be it a Verizon rep at a store or on the phone, they all insisted i could not convert a prepaid number to a two year account, and they could not give me a reason why.

Enter Verizon CEO Ivan Seidenberg. It just so happens, my brother is a 30 year Verizon retiree, and he has an email relationship with Seidenberg. He suggested I contact him directly, and explain the problem. I emailed Seidenberg, and within 48 hours, a Verizon customer service rep contacted me, and solved the problem. Say what you will about Verizon, Seidenberg is a hands on CEO who really does care what his customers say.

Less than a year ago I had a Treo with Verizon [lack of] service. It crapped out while I was traveling and could not get Verizon or Palm to send me another one (which I was willing to pay too much for). Bought a Net 10 to get by with. Liked the number. Returned home, bought an Iphone and was able to keep the Net 10 number.

Maybe they’ve changed the rules but that was my experience.

(Thumb nose at Palm and Verizon)

I now have a Tracfone prepaid.
I’m mostly looking at MetroPC.

If you could just point me in the direction. I would like a copy of FCC regs that say they have too.

I realize the extra steps. I had one Tracfone phone stolen and it took me a month to get the number transfered to another Tracfone phone.

I went from Tracfone to Verizon with no problem. Verizon did all the work, I just had to confirm with Tracfone.