Look out for Free internet promotions , too. Customer reviews for Free Mobile France - as is the case for all providers - are mixed. Here is a quick summary of what customers say about Free:.
Free does not currently offer English-speaking customer service. Find all the ways to get in touch with Free in our guide to contacting Free. This number is free when dialled from your Free mobile phone number, but may be subject to charges when dialled from a number of a different mobile phone operator.
Just have a quick question? Try Free's online customer assistance, available here in French. While it is improving its network coverage , Free's current coverage is weaker than other telecommunications providers in France. However, Free's 3G coverage , which it is still developing, is notably behind that of other providers , according to the French telecommunications regulator ARCEP.
These are common everywhere, including airports and train stations at CDG international terminal, you can buy them at the Relay newspaper stand at the RER-B station.
To add credit, dial then find the " recharger " option and enter the digit code. If you plan on going to a boutique to buy a SIM, you can purchase these packs called recharges there too. It's recommended that you load the recharge options page on your phone beforehand so you can show them exactly what you want. Some stores have employees who are not familiar with the packs or may not even know that data is available for pre-paid so it is helpful to show them the site, particularly if your French is not very good.
To obtain your free password you need to dial They offer different recharge schemes that give data for a certain period and validity of the SIM for a longer period:.
Their promotions are not permanent and you'll pay 6 to 10 times as much when they are not on. Furthermore, French recharges can't be seen as top-ups as they are more like packs or plans that start from the moment you have recharged. They are not like value topped up on an prepaid account to be used anytime in the future. It's sold for Orange Holiday is available for purchase on location in France or online with worldwide shipping through other official resellers including Orange USA via Amazon.
If you still got an old active Mobicarte or need a refill for an existing Holiday SIM, they offer now two different recharges Orange Holiday:. This plan is for mobile phones and may or may not work on other devices. VoiP services will fail to initialize properly. As for VPN, it may or may not work. Supposedly you are to be notified by SMS as soon as it is activated but users have never received this in the 5 years they had their plan.
The safest way to confirm an option is by looking at your account online. Mobicarte SIM card credit expires, if no recharge is applied during this period.
After registering your SIM for the first time and topping it up with credits, the SIM number will stay in operation for max. You can check the expiration date online when you create an account, but you will probably also get an SMS stating the expiration date.
Expiration of recharge credits depends on the amount. Topping up further extends existing credit to match the new credit. Also, recharge codes have a time limit before they must be added up to 2 years, read the ticket.
The page must be accessed over cellular and not WiFi. It is possible to achieve tethering on Android devices by using the WiFi hotspot in conjunction with a proxy app, e. The use of a 3rd party tethering app on an Android phone, or a jailbroken iPhone may just get you around this. Even apps like FoxFi are hit or miss with being able to use other devices through a hotspot Facebook worked, but not other apps. Orange prohibits the use in a phone.
It's not clear, if this ban can be circumvented and how. When you were able to use this SIM in a phone, please add here how see next paragraph. For the meantime a mobile hotspot is recommended, if you still want to use your phone.
SIM cards are available from Orange Boutiques throughout France see locator above , but not every boutique may have it in store. They will want to know on what device you will use it and what SIM size you require. At the time of purchase in the boutique, you will need to provide a passport or driving licence which is a requirement under French law.
Starter pack costs It takes on average 24 hours to fully update the system with your details and during that time you will not be able to top-up.
However at least 2 GB will work as soon as you walk out of the shop and the rest will be added soon. To obtain a recharge you must again visit the Orange Boutique or some Bureaux de Tabac or Relay and ask for a rechargement for the pochette. There may be some faffing about whilst they work out amongst themselves exactly what you want, but show them your SIM or documentation with your Orange internet number and they will soon get there. Often they will print out a sheet of paper for you which contains a telephone number for you to ring to activate the top-up and a digit top-up number.
Topping up is also possible online once your new SIM card has been fully registered go to the ' mon espace ' section on the orange. This seems to be possible now for at least some non-French credit cards as well. It's also possible to top-up using vouchers for the standard prepaid phone service called Mobicarte.
You can then convert the account balance online to Pochette packages. The Orange site is far from user friendly, so this is not recommended unless you are well versed in French.
Top-ups are often available on eBay and may well prove to be a good option for you to save messing about in shops upon arrival. But you will pay a premium for this option in so much as you will be paying extra for the time of the seller to obtain the vouchers etc. Note, you can also buy pre-activated SIM cards on eBay. However for email, browsing and almost everything else it works just fine. On the other hand, tethering is not restricted and VoIP is allowed. It seems the data SIM card stays valid for one year, vs.
If topping up with one of the data packages above, the validity is extended by 12 month counted from the end of the validity of the package. Currently it's a Huawei E also called Airbox. This allows you to set up WiFi for multiple devices, i. Cost is Authentication: the blurb inside says you need to provide authentication, i. If you buy from an Orange boutique, they should activate it for you.
If you get it from elsewhere, then you will have to mail off copies of your ID docs. In order to top-up by phone, call from a mobile or landline. Free from Orange lines, a fee may be charged from others. You will be immediately asked by a female voice in French to enter your Orange number.
This is the telephone number assigned to your SIM and normally begins with 06 or You will then be presented with two options, the first to top-up by credit card. Ignore this, the second option is to top-up using vouchers. Press 2 on your keypad. The same voice will ask you for your digit voucher number. Enter that and depending on which service you got connected to, you may have the number read back to you with the option to confirm or try again. You will then have a confirmation in the same voice but with a triumphant timbre to it.
The process should take about 30 seconds from start to finish. The top-up should then be applied to your SIM and you will be ready to go. You will automatically have a personal account called Espace client on the orange. For your first visit click on " identifiez-vous" on the top right corner of their site. Once done, you can edit your personal information, email address etc. You can even set up an Orange France email address if you like. It's important to note that you can't top-up online using most credit cards that are not registered in France.
But you can buy top-ups in the boutique using foreign credit cards. From all allowances can be used for roaming in the EU too at domestic French rates under the Roam like at home provision. Their prepaid SIM is simply called la Carte. It took them 2 weeks to send the card, but then as a former Orange customer I'm used to so much worse. As far as I'm concerned, win win situation.
Also, I have been calling customer service a couple of times and they helped me right away, again, I'm used to so much worse from Orange. Can't wait until the rest of familys contracts are up so I can switch them, too.
Thankyou ange03 that's what I like to hear, I also cant wait, I have had bills up to euros from Orange and it is frightening, they just run away with charges,, I must say everyone I know has said they are going to change also at the end of their contracts as it seems that a lot of people have had bad experiences also. I have been a Free client for 7 years and think they have one of the best customer services around.
I'm not saying that it is perfect, but for France pretty close. But when I put it into my phone I found that it does not work in Monaco. Apparently you are roaming in Monaco and it only works in France. When I try to find info about roaming in France for the Thanks As for the wait time. If you choose another number you get your sim in days, but if you are keeping your number that is a different story see Stuart06's link.
I can move to Bouyg's Would love to know thanks!! To ChristopherL I ordered my sim around the same time as you and received confirmation this evening that they are finally posting it Fingers crossed it's as good as we all hope!
I ordered one 23rdJan on the abonnement that arrived 1 week later, I then ordered the following day 24th Jan one not on abonnement and it hasnt moved past etape 1, thinking maybe there was a problem and not being able to contact them, I ordered another 3 Feb not on abonnement and have just checked order today and that has been posted. Dont know what is going on with the one ordered 24th Jan All sims where for new number as dont currently have a mobile.
So fair I can only say it is working great. Ok so my friend ordered hers on the 25th of Jan and was told that her portability would happen on the 17th of Feb but she had not received her sim, so her line when dead at about 3 PM of Friday.
She got the sim in the mail the next day and activated her account and so far everything is working fine. So now it is my turn. Will keep you posted. Stuart06 did you get your sim yet?? I ordered my sim on the 10th feb, so far nothing has arrived and according to the site it does not look like it has even been sent out.
Seems that there is no set time limit to when they are sent. Hi, my sim card arrived at the house 2 weeks after I had signed up. On their site my status was still only "order received" or something like that the first step. When I tried to activate the sim card, it wouldn't work so I called them. They right away updated my status to the next step and told me as soon as my phone had "portability" all steps would be green and that this would happen in the next day.
A couple hours later I was able to place and receive calls. I believe their system is somewhat overwhelmed and you have to give them 2 weeks to process everything.
Look at the bright side, the first time I called to the States and talked for several hours I checked my online bill and the call was registered but cost I have a Blackberry Curve and received my carte sim de free yesterday. Calls and sms work fine, but MMS and internet don't work.
Free sent a letter with the carte sim indicating how to set up the internet connection and the MMS serveur, but the description given in this letter doesn't match what I see when I look at the settings meaning I don't know where to fill in what because fields like "MMSC" , "MCC", and "MNC" are not shown on my blackberry Can anyone help? I called them again but apparently they receive so many calls right now that I was told to call back later Try calling them in the middle of the day if you can as I have called them twice just recently and did not wait any longer than a couple of rings.
I ordered mine the day they announced the new policy and received the SIM card about a week after that, I have been using it fore more than 3 weeks and I have to say it is a bit disapointing.
Making phone calls it works pretty good, it has an annoying delay after you dial the number which I believe is because of their registration being handed over from Orange to their own servers and then the call usually goes via their own VoIP service which is OK, but not great.
International calls are a bit troublesome, I call US and Sweden a lot and ever 4th or 5th call I have to re-call due to echo or other problems, but once I get it to work, it works fine. I ordered it mainly because of their low price, international calls and data service but I am thinking about canceling it and pay a few euro more and use a service that give a better quality than them.
Maybe in a few months they will have a better service, but right now, I am really not impresses. I keep getting you are not subscribed to a cellular data network!! I used to have this problem with sfr sometimes and only had to put in a code. Take a look in the FAQ's and see if the solution to your particular query is listed there. Two weeks now and still waiting for the sim.. It says on the site it has not even been sent out yet!!
I received my sim yesterday after approx 3 weeks, seems to be working ok! Currently awaiting to see what and how SFR are going to reimburse me concerning the existing 17 days of my contract with them plus the call credit accumulated not to mention the famous benefits pertaining to their so called fidelity system. Stuart06, If you cancel it yourself don't you risk losing your number?? I received my sim this week, it works In 3 months or so I will cancel orange and stay with free..
Here's a brief summary of my experience. That was a close call!! For a few hours I could make calls from both but only receive calls on the bouyg line, then it changed I could make calls Bouyg line an call and receive in the free line. Now the 2 problems I'm having is that my phone says I'm roaming, and it won't let me sign into my google accounts.
Although not being able to sign in to my google accounts has happened before. Called Free to report the problem and he said make a few calls and see if you get charged and we have it on record that you have reported the problem so if you see charges call us back. Does anyone have any advice on how to resolve either of these problems?? Thanks PS. I am glad to be FREE!!! A note for anybody using a xxx free.
I have noticed recently an increase in incoming emails from "freemobile free-mobile. Hi there - thinking of signing up and read what I think is all the small print - there isn't hidden anywhere is there that I've not noticed that old French favorite "frais de dossier" that you get hit with if you want to later terminate the service????
Good question ThinkLucky! I think Free's thinking is, your gonna love it so you are gonna stay, and if you wanna go, that's ok cause we have tons of happy clients from the other providers.
As for my problems, turns out I missed the info on the back of sim card letter. Configured the internet access and mms but I am still going between roaming and free so I checked and I am not getting billed so I am OK. Seems to work OK in my living room and not at all in my bedroom. Makes you think my apt is huge, but it isn't!!
I am sure they will work it out soon. As long as I am not getting charged I am fine!! I have just picked up in this thread. I have asked for the unblock code for my iphone but as yet received nothing. My question is how can I get this unblocked privately?
I have no desire to enter into a protracted dialogue with SFR. It seems that free is generally accepted as a fair deal and am about to check it out. I would walk into the SFR shop and ask. They have to do this and should do it right there. I think it use to be 6 months, but now it is 3 months. I also do not know if it is phone ownership or contract length.
Otherwise, ask ChrisL , he knows a place behind NiceEtoile. Another question to Forum here - my wife has SFR several years standing and wishes to switch to free - we seem to get a very unclear picture from SFR about what the proceedure is to cancel their contract and switch the same number to free - if anyone has successfully done this I'd very much appreciate a step by step guide, and timings of their experience, particularly to avoid loss of mobile and endless marketing calls once you have decided to resiliate.
Thx in advance. First call This will give you your so-called RIO number. Don't bother writing it down, just hang up and it will be sent to you by sms. Now, when signing up for your new contract you'll be asked if you want to keep your current number. Say yes and put in the RIO you received earlier.
That's it. We had 2 lines with sfr that had a base cost of 65 euros and with additional time come to between 80 to euros every month. We have moved both to free and the quality of calls is as good as SFR. We pay 40 euros a month line rental and we will have almost zero extra charge as we can call as much as we want. The extra is the data package which means we now access facebook and email via our phones that we did not do with sfr. Does this make sense?
Have I understood this correctly? Any comments, anyone? From what I'm understanding with your orange mobile, you just order your RIO pass it on to free filling in their subscription, they will deal with the rest with orange terminating your contract and switching your number, your mobile should not go down - therefore I'd suggest move 1 in your proposed plan of action whilst in principle a good safeguard would be a waste of money and time, as simply by going to 2 for starter would get you there without loss of service, but others on this forum may wish to correct me on this.
Brianna: As thinklucky says, skip 1 and go straight to 2. Switching mobile service provider is totally painless. The only risk is that you may not receive your new SIM card before the old one is shut off this actually happened to me because La Poste was on strike , but while that was a problem in the beginning the chance of it happening now is very small. Thanks so much for your reply. But one way or another it certainly seems like the right move I can now disconnect it but I will keep it and offer it to my guests when they are here.
But it is true you can just order your box and sim at the same time. I personally would get the box set up and then order the sim. Did everyone notice that free has dropped the prices of their phones!!!