FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions
FREE line rental = Cash Back?The terms FREE line rental and CashBack are used indifferently between most shops even though they actually mean the same:
Any shop offering you 12 months FREE line rental is actually offering you Cash Back equal to 12 times the monthly rental cost. E.g. if you choose 12 months FREE line rental on a £30 per month plan, the retailer will actually pay you back £360 (i.e. 12 times £30) over the period of your contract. This also means that you'll still be responsible to pay the monthly rental bill to the operator (O2, Orange, T-Mobile, Vodafone or 3), but the retailer will pay you back this rental.
How does CashBack work?Once you buy your phone and sign up to the mobile contract you'll have to claim your CashBack from the retailer. The process will differ slightly between each retailer, but normally involves sending back a claim form, together with your original mobile phone bills at periodic intervals (for example after month 3, 6, 9 and 12 of your contract). Please refer to the terms and conditions of each retailer for full details on how to claim.
What is automatic CashBack?With automatic or auto cashback, the cash will be automatically paid back to your account or credit card. I.e. with automatic cash back, you don't need to send back claim forms or monthly bills. However, while you'll receive the cash with no effort, the amounts offered are normally smaller than with the other cashback deals. When you'll receive the money depends from store to store, but it is often upfront or after 14 days. Again, please double-check with the shop's terms and conditions.
How can shops offer so much CashBack?These UK phone retailers are able to offer you this money or line rental back because they receive a reward from the mobile network operators when you sign up to your mobile contract. They simply use this reward to pay most or all of your line rental or cash back. These cashback deals are nevertheless still profitable for these retailers because a good percentage of the cash backs are never or only partially claimed by customers (as such, make sure they don't make any profit from you, and ensure you claim all back). They also hope that you'll just continue the contract after the contract period. However, there's nothing stopping you to visit us back in 12 or 18 months to get another great cash back or line rental deal.
Can these companies be trusted to pay the Cash Back?You may have heard of the BBC report in December 2007 about the Mobile phone cashback 'rip-off' which highlighted some of the issues with buying these cashback deals from dodgy retailers. As such, we only display deals from reputable companies, which have a long history of trading in the UK and are financially sound. Hence we show the offers from the big high street brands (Carphone Warehouse, Phones4U, The Link, ...) while the other online retailers we show are backed by financially strong companies too. E.g. Mobiles2YourDoor (backed by Phones4U), e2save (backed by Carphone Warehouse), etc. We constantly research the UK market to ensure we stay abreast of the latest mobile phones industry news.
What's the catch?None realy ... as long as you ensure you follow the CashBack claims procedures correctly you really can have FREE line rental.
Tips and ChecklistYou'd be surprised though how many customers forget to claim their Cash Back after buy the phone and are connected for a few months. Just make sure you're not one of them and follow our checklist:
While all of this may sound a bit complicated, it all comes down to a little bit of organisation by yourself. Though the reward for it means you'll be able to get massive savings on your mobile contract. In essence, you'll be reaping the benefits of all the others who fail to claim.
If you feel that you may not be organised enough, you can always look for a mobile phone deal with a free LCD TV, Nintendo Wii, PS3, iPod Touch or many other free gifts. You will receive these gifts normally within 2 to 28 days (depending on the store) and hence there's no need to keep sending claim form. You can find all available gifts and deals at www.mobilephoneswithfreegifts.co.uk.
We really hope this information helps you save some money on your total mobile phone contract cost. Please contact us with any other questions or suggestions.
Cashback Mobile Phone Deals Team
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