T-Mobile Making Changes To Migration Fee Requirements For Value Plan Converts

Good news for those of you looking to make the switch over to T-Mobile’s Value Plans as some future changes beginning August 19th might help reduce the cost of the migration fee. As it stands now, migration fees are calculated based on the time in contract tenure and it will soon move to the timeframe since the last handset subsidy. Given that you may have signed a new contract upon switching rate plans without picking up a new device, for many of you this could drastically reduce the cost of moving to T-Mobile’s Value Plan options.

  • The calculation of the migration fee changes from being based on time in contract entire to time since the last handset subsidy.
  • Today, migration fees are charged when a customer migrates from a Classic or Legacy contract plane to Value and it has less than 18 months contract tenure.
  • Customers must still attain 18 months tenure to pay $0 migration fee, but tenure will be calculated based on the date of their last subsidized device.
  • No changes have been made to the Migration Fee tiers, as seen in the image above.

Along with the changes to the Migration Fee for Value Plans comes another helpful change for Classic and Legacy plan customers who activate service without taking a subsidy.

  • Customers activating with Classic or adding a line on a Legacy contract plan will have the option to take a subsidized device at activation OR pay full price/bring own phone.
  • If the customer chooses to pay full price or bring own phone, they will be eligible to order a discounted device any time after activation. This will be similar to the New upgrade offer and the customer will still be required to pay an upgrade fee.

So, some minor but helpful changes for customers looking to switch over to T-Mobile’s Value Plan options and it should help reduce the discount for at least some customers who were originally put off by the high migration cost.

Does this help you?

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    We are definitely planning to move from our classic plan Unlimited 2GB family plan (2-lines) over to the 1000-minute value plan, and save about $60/month in the process (from $140 to $80 + taxes per month).  Just holding off until both the Samsung SGS3 keyboard and HTC One X+ come out and then make my decision as to which phone is best for us (coming from an HTC G2).

    • whiteiphoneproblems

      SGS3 keyboard(?) Are you thinking of the Blaze Q?

      • PiCASSiMO

        Yes… thank you, that name is difficult to remember.  :)

        • eanfoso

          Might as well wait for the note 2 man it’s going to be sick!!

        • Thomas C Montano

           Tmo just barely got the Note 1, they wont get the Note 2 til the Note 3 comes out lol

        • eanfoso

          T-mobile doesn’t have to carry it genius, thankfully t-mobile is a gsm carrier, which means I can get the note unlocked from Europe and use it :)

  • Deadeye37

    That makes much more sense since the whole reason the value plan is cheaper is because there is no phone subsidy! 
    Now, if they could only just create a family plan for 49.99 like the one I’m grandfathered on (500 minutes).   I think that was the best deal that they have ever had.

    • 3560freak

      They do, Value 1000 minutes shared for 2 lines ($49.99) add $10 for family text or just $5 for single line text

  • DJWiteboy09

    There is no galaxy s3 qwerty phone coming out. Only the galaxy blaze q..Lol

  • Grimbeaver

    Seriously about time, I’ve never understood why everything was always based on plan and not last subsidy date.  Next step do away with plan contracts all together and just have subsidy contracts.

  • that’s cool, everyone wanting this rejoice…

  • David King

    Yes, it does help. I will switch to value as soon as I can. Buying last year’s handsets (or two years ago, as with my DVP) for a good price on ebay and paying substantially less every month is a smart move.

  • jbhotnessmon

    does this count for early termination fees

  • kpb

    This will be nice. I had assumed it was already this way. I’ll definitely be taking advantage of this to change to the value plan in November.

  • david

    actually yea it makes a lotta sense, ive seen cx with recent classic plans and have 45 month upgrade tenure… this is a good thing ppl….

  • 21stNow

    No it doesn’t help me, but it’s a step in the right direction from a customer service standpoint.  The way that T-Mobile did it in the past didn’t make sense and was not customer friendly at all.

  • Wow

    I originally signed up for tmobile with 2 iPhones.  I switched to a postpaid account after a year and they said I would be able to get an upgrade at anytime I chose.  When I went to do it 4 months later, they said that was only an offer good on THAT day.  I was with Tmobile for almost 4 years before I got an upgrade price.  Moral of the story.  Buy the device the same day.

    I guess the upside is I have been lucky enough to have MyTouch4G, LG G2x,HTC Sensation, HTC One S and now the Samsung Galaxy s3…

    • JBrowne1012

      You have always been able to upgrade anytime its just a matter of if you have an upgrade available, it used to be every year you would get full upgrade now its 2 years

    • Trevnerdio

      You weren’t lucky to have LG anything bro ;) sorry for your purchase man haha

  • loueradun

    So if I understand the picture correctly, the maximum migration fee is $200?  I was quoted over $1200 when previously inquiring about moving to a value plan…

    Or is that a maximum of $200 per line?

    • eanfoso

      Maximum of 200 $ per line man

  • tmo

    its per line and thats always been the pricing

  • Snapdragon S4

    I think this can really help me and others quite a bit. My friend got a MyTouch 3G back in October of 2009. He then had a chance to upgrade back in October of 2011 but said he would hold off because he wanted to see what was coming up in the spring. He changed his plan back in April to a 79.99 Classic Plan but kept his same device because he didn’t like the selection at the time. So I’m guessing this means that he’ll pay a $0 migration fee, right? 

  • Jason

    This is good news. Should have been this way from the beginning.

  • Dakota

    Upgrade customers should get same pricing as new ones.. Why not keep them happy instead of forcing them elsewhere for a better deal? It costs less to keep a customer than go out and find a new one. #churn

    • Curtis Mullins

       Phone prices are the same for new activations or upgrades

      • Jcj1

        dream on, clearly it is NOT

    • Trevnerdio

      That’s true. Like I tried to get a mobile broadband device and it said free or something really low for new customers…but I had to pay over $100 because I was due for a full upgrade? What?

  • Samsung

    Sorry TMO……. Leaving you because of coverage!!!!  When you get things in order…mayber I’ll return….until then… you have a lot of work to do!!!

    • eanfoso

      Just out of curiosity, who are you going to hand your money and bend over for? At&t?

      • Ural

        Clear wire and Vonage. Total unlimited value <60. If you use your phone on a metro area it works. And you save between 50 to 60 a month. Now if you travel then you get a Walmart deal for voice on the road.

        • eanfoso

          Lol clear wire? Vonage really? So you’re going to be carrying with you the broadband modern from metro, and for vonage mobile you have to have a house account which usually averages at 36 $, clearwire is 45 $, & vonage mobile is 10 $, yeah that kind of defeats your purpose, you can get a value plan so much cheaper than that that will work outside of the city as well and you won’t look like you’re catching aliens, jussaying, and wtf spend even more on a walmart road voice? & for those of us that don’t live in a metro area clearwire is garbage, fyi I live in a 200k people area, only verizon at&t and t-mobile offer 4G, sprint sucks like always, like clearwire, btw I live close to houston, shame not even that helps lol

        • Jcj1

          walmart is t-mobile coverage I hope you know

  • I haven’t bought a subsidized phone since 2008, but I’m under contract because of a (stupid, reactionary) plan change I made in 2010. When it’s up in November I’m going over to the prepaid side. I’m sick of worrying about every minor service change I make resetting my contract. Contracts should be for subsidized devices and THAT’S ALL.

  • Terron

    This is good for single line customers or if youre lucky enough to have done all your upgrades at the same time for the family….if you have four lines and one of them did an upgrade recently, you’ll still get charged the migration fee

    • CRT24

      And?…..once again the migration fee has always been charged in principle to make up for someone that purchased a device at a discount on classic/legacy and then wants to switch the the much less expensive value plan thus the migration fee is charged to make back some of money on the phone subsidy since the customer will get the cheaper rate and would have paid full cost for the device in the first place had they started on value….actually paying the migration fee in addition to the subsidized price is most of the time less than the full price so you would come out ahead anyway! The mistake we (T-Mobile) made was charging migration fees to customers who had a contract due to a rate plan change and not a phone discount so this is long overdue but obviously a welcome change.

      • cactus

        does tmobile still charge all of the fees/taxes on top of the PRINTED monthly rate? My understanding that the true prepaid providers wrap all the fees into their listed price

        • CRT24

          No carrier, pre paid or otherwise puts their taxes and fees on takeaway brochures and t-mobile is not solely a pre paid carrier……don’t really understand what you are getting at with this question

  • jian9007

    Definitely does seem more appropriate, as the reason for the migration is the money lost on subsidies, and not contract. I may switch to a value plan with 2 phones at 2GB each for $99.98 in the near future, so it’s a good deal for me. I’m currently grandfathered in on an individual plan with unlimited talk/text/data for $84.98. I don’t go above 2GB unless I’m out of town anyway. I usually only need more data to use my phone as wireless hotspot for my Nexus 7. I suppose if I need more than 2GB I could just drop the phone down to 200 Mb & snag the Wal-Mart 5GB plan for $30 and use my old phone as the hotspot if needed (my phones are rooted so I can hotspot/tether without T-Mobile charging extra for it).

    So I would only pay $50 migration fee on my current phone under this deal so I’m glad I waited before switching. Value plan here I come (sometime after the 19th, of course).

    • Tmo

       The Walmart 5GB does NOT include Hotspot. Only postpaid gets the hotspot free prepaid has to pay $15

      • jian9007

        Yes, I know that. That’s why I said that I root my phones. I install apps that allow me to circumvent the ways T-Mobile tries to block it.

  • These plans make my head hurt.

  • Mirad77

    T-Mobile is stepping up their CS, as I wanted to switched my family classic plan to family value plan and was told it would cost me ~$620. But the CS rep switched me over and waived the fee and now I’ve got 3 lines, 2 with data all unlimited talk+ text for about $140. A month ago I tried and the rep said there was nothing she can do.

    • FormerTmoCSR

       you may wanna look at your next bill closely because a regular rep has no way to waive migration fees and 99% of supervisors wont do it either as its against policy.

  • Phonedummy

    Not sure I understand the second part–can someone please answer this question:  if I am out of contract with my two-line classic family plan, does this mean I can sign a new contract for a value plan and get new phones at the discounted price when I do it?

    • Switch

       No, the second part refers to classic/legacy plans only. With value plans you bring the phone to the plan/SIM or you  pay for phones from T-Mobile (at their full inflated list price) through an installment plan (EIP). Because cell phones depreciate quickly, it’s often a much better value to buy the phone yourself on Ebay or locally a year or so after it comes out. You just have to be careful that the phone you buy locally or on Ebay is not blocked by T-Mobile for use on its network. This can happen because it’s marked as stolen or is blocked by T-Mobile due to a Value Plan customer breaking contract and not paying the phone installment plan final invoice. The big issue with the latter is a person selling you a phone that works when you buy it, but 30-90 days later will not work on T-Mobile due to that person exiting their contract and T-Mobile shutting off service.

      I’m seriously considering switching our family over to Value. I’ll just need to get CS to give us credit for the 1 year when we didn’t upgrade a line that was eligible for full upgrade. Mirad77’s post below tells me they will probably do it. Due to this change of policy, all of our other lines will be migration free next month. Our cell phone bill will drop 37% and we will get unlimited minutes and texting to boot. Plus, we can add 2 more unlimited call/text lines at only the activation fee.

  • Cactus

    does tmobile still charge all of the taxes and fees on top of the PRINTED monthly rate on value plans? my understanding is true prepaid companies wrap everything so theres nothing added later. You pay what their advertised rate is.

    • 21stNow

       I would imagine that there are taxes and fees on top of the Value plans.  Value plans are postpaid plans and a comparison with prepaid plans really isn’t valid.

      With T-Mobile’s monthly 4G, you pay sales taxes on the monthly fee, but that’s it.  I didn’t pay sales taxes with services like Red Pocket.  I believe that it’s because Red Pocket doesn’t have nexus in my state, while T-Mobile does.

  • FireMarshalWaterPump

    Value plan still has an ETF and contract. I can stand the contract if it was a year instead of two. BUT ETF? How can T-Mo charge an ETF when you bring your own handset? Isn’t that to compensate them for the high cost of subsidy? But they’re not subsidizing anything.

    • UrDreamn

       if you’ve ever heard of t mobiles old “even more plus” , you’ll know that signing a 2 yr contract for a 20 month EIP is a must. back on EMP you could pay a 50$ down payment on a 450$ phone and never be seen again. sure you would go into collections but the people who do sneaky shit like that dont care about their credit score anyway –  it is to ensure that custs pay the installments for the entire 20 months.

      Now i have a harder time justifying the ETF, because if you bring your own phone, you might as well get prepaid for a single line. especially since monthly4g has things like int’L calling and insurace now, but if the reason you are signing a 2 yr contract is to take advantages of things like family plan cost efficiency, detailed billing,  and or special features like family allownaces…etc then signing a 2 year for better services can be justified with a fee because one breaks that signed contract.

  • faery

    I am currently on classic plan. If my devices qualify for upgrades in 3/01/2013, does this mean that I can switch to a value plan after 9/01/2012, and not get charged migration fee?

    Can I switch back to the classic plan at anytime from a value plan, or does the same waiting period apply?


  • wish they had this when I made the switch

  • Enzowned

    I just dropped ATT for Tmo last month, now saving $90 a month! With these value plans, and the work they’re putting right now in infrastructure and refarming, I’m a Tmo fan now. I’m also subscribing to this site =P. 

  • MyCellSignal

    I have am still under contract for a 2 line Value Plan SIM card only. I wanted to switch to a 4 line Value Plan SIM card only, but every customer service rep at T-Mo says it’s not possible. Any one have any experience doing so? I’m not talking about adding a line. By adding 2 lines to my current 2 line plan, the overall monthly cost $10 more than just the signing the 4 line value plan.