T-Mobile bumps SIM Starter Kit price up to $20


It appears that T-Mobile today quietly upped the price of its SIM Starter Kits.

Heading to T-Mobile’s product pages for 3-in-1 SIM Starter Kits — both the prepaid and postpaid kinds — reveals that they’re now priced at $20. A T-Mo employee on Reddit has confirmed that the change did go into effect today, March 2. The new $20 SIM Starter Kit price is up from the old price of $15, which T-Mo instituted back in late 2014.

Five dollars may not sound like a huge increase, but when you multiply that by all of the SIM Starter Kits that T-Mo ends up selling, it can add up. The good news is that these SIM Starter Kits often go on sale. In fact, T-Mobile is running a deal right now that’ll get you a free postpaid SIM Starter Kit or a $4.99 Prepaid SIM Starter Kit with the codes SIMSALE and SIMDEAL, respectively.

Thanks, Milan!

Sources: T-Mobile (1), (2)

Tags: ,

  • Willie D

    Why not give them free, and charge an Activation Fee instead cause that’s what this is. SIM Cards are a dime each.

    • TMoRSA

      Agreed. But then they can advertise no activation fees and technically it’s true. We roll our eyes too. At work most of us just call it an activation fee *shrug*

    • Fabian Cortez

      SIM Cards are a dime each.

      Do you haggle with Starbucks when we all know the cost to the business for a cup of coffee?

      • Willie D

        Yeah I do haggle and guess what I get my cup of coffee free.

  • TMoRSA

    In the context of the other carrier’s 35 dollar activation and upgrade fees it’s still a bargain, being 15 bucks less and only charged at activation, never at the time of an upgrade. Second, word we’ve been given is that every 4th line won’t see the charge. It gets waived. So 4th, 8th, 12th lines don’t get charged an SSK. Finally, even now there are frequent promos where they’re waived on prepaid and Simple Choice No Credit activations. Definitely newsworthy, don’t get me wrong. But customers still spend less than at Big Red, Old Yeller, and the Death Star, don’t see the charge at an upgrade like they do at other carriers, and only on some lines on some plan types

    • Tmo rep

      This is not all correct if you look at your email. You only get the 4th, 8th, and 12th for free if open all lines together not if you just add 1 line and it is the 4th, 8th or the 12th. Also if you lose your sim card or need a different size you are charged $20 as well. Plz read your emails fully before posting wrong info and confusing customers.

    • guest

      Why LTE is slower than 3G/4G?

    • Adam

      It is not the total cost that matters, it is the pain of switching. You need two things to get an AT&T/Verizon customer to switch: a better value and a painless transition. Just having a better value alone is not enough. This is one reason T-Mobile is gaining market share from smaller carriers at a higher rate than from AT&T/Verizon.

  • Cris Abreu

    They give SIM cards away for free in the store.


      Not the stores in my city…The thing I hate is the small adapter always breaks. I am talking about the nano small adapter

      • Kaulana1989

        I get free sim cards never had to pay for one they still give me credits for them

        • Cris Abreu

          I’ve never payed for sims maybe the fact that I’ve been with Tmobile for 10 years helps. But anytime I went in for a Sim card whether switching phones or losing phones I never got charged.

        • patt

          I dont’ think if you are a current customer you are suppose to pay for sims. Even when I was with Verizon as long as it was sent by them on active line they didn’t care.

      • MastarPete

        it really depends on if you’re going to a corporate store vs a franchise store or authorized dealer. Corporate stores tend to be more willing to give free sims, franchise stores will try to charge you unless you’ve called 611 about a sim problem and have them add a note to your account that you get a free sim.

        Edit: If you’re buying a new device from a T-Mobile store it comes with a sim. So if you’re quick to say that you just want the device and you’ll handle activating the sim on your own then that’s one other way to technically get a free sim.

    • Bobsaget

      Everybody gets charged 15 now unless it is a service issue. You buy a phone elsewhere and it didn’t come with our sim card…. should have bought it at the store because it comes with them. Sims cost the company money.

      • Trevnerdio

        Oh no, their two cents! How will they ever function??

        • Bobsaget

          More like $8 million lost from always giving them away for free

    • matt

      i was selling my ipad air cellular. , i said sim included in my listing. whoops. i didn’t have one. i thought i had a spare, but i couldn’t find it , when it sold. so i went to the local t-mobile store. they refused to give a free one.
      a few times i went there with the wrong sim card size, and they refused to trade me also. they only traded sims with me once. this was a corporate store in san jose.
      i ended up having to buy the sim for $15. you need some kind of t-mobile account to get a replacement sim card. without a phone number, they want the money.

  • Moe

    It’s a total rip off! Shame on you tmo – you’re looking like a carrier.

    • Kaulana1989

      I never pay for the SIM cards always free and I always get credits for them

      • JaswinderSinghJammu

        I have a store hook up as well but why as t mobile would you want this kind of negative story when they are crediting the accounts especially when they knock others for ridiculous fees. It makes absolutely no sense.

  • JaswinderSinghJammu

    Greedy much T Mobile? This is almost as bad as the activation fee or renewal fee from DUMB and DUMBER. That’s just my opinion especially when it comes to people who have been part of T Mobile for more than a couple of years.

  • gmo8492

    T-Mobile has never charged me for a new sim card, the last time I got a new one was 3 years ago. Since then I just used a sim cutter to turn it to a micro sim, then eventually make it nano sim since that is going to be the standard in most phones going forward. My buddy somehow broke his last October, and he simply went in a local tmo store and got it replaced for free. This fee is most likely enforced on new activations. If not just talk to customer service and get one sent to your house for free. Get referred to their loyalty department to get it sorted out.

  • lomsha

    Glad i bought a bunch for 99 cent a piece.

    • brybry

      They expire unfortunately.

  • CRT24

    This is not the price for the sim card, it is the price for activating the sim card for a new line of service. For new prepaid service the fee is waived if you activate a $40 or higher plan or purchase a $20 or more device on activation. Sim cards are free if it is being replaced to troubleshoot network issues but if you are replacing a lost or damaged sim then the store should charge $15.00 by policy. Not saying this is a welcome change but still much less than other carriers charge for activation fees.

    • Prode

      The $15 card changed to $20 today.

      • CRT24

        The sim starter kit went to $20, the cost for replacement sim on an existing line is $15

  • Jaden Keuten

    I paid $35 dollars plus tax 3 days ago and got a three in one sim and $40 airtime. No complaints about it.

    • guest


      • Jaden Keuten


  • patt

    Do yourself a favor and if there is no 99c sim-cards on T-Mobile.com buy it on ebay for 5-7$.

    Let’s say you activate 5 phones then you save a lot of money.

    • John McMasters

      if you activate there is still the activation fee even if you have sim cards already

      • patt

        I didn’t have any fees when ported from VZW I also got 96$ bill cr few hours later because I switched few hours before the hulu promo / 50% off accessories began.

  • mingkee

    Check out Best Buy. Something they sell it for $5.

  • Mike

    If your a postpaid customer call customer service and they will note your account for a replacement sim at a tmobile corporate store

    • kmarti

      They won’t do that anymore, but they WILL credit your account for the charge

  • Steven

    seems like tmobile is going back to the old days of the activation charge fee. The sim starter kid is pretty much the activation fee but just named something else. I thought this pain point was resolved already. ( I guess not )

    • maximus1901

      no. the sim is a physical item. you can transfer to as many diff phones as you want.
      activation fees are for whenever you get a new phone. even if you’re using your sim.

  • Philip

    LOL They try to help us save $ but not for this. If you buy a new phone from them, the SIM card is always included inside the box. If you ask nicely, a store rep will give you one free.

  • GM00

    T-Mobile Recarrier 5.0. All part of the bait and switch strategy that T-Mobile is employing.

  • Nearmsp

    You can always call with an old cancelled T-mobile SIM card and have that activated. It could take a full day for that to happen. Apple is coming out a universal SIM that will be embedded in the chip. The consumer will have the ability to move from one network to the other as long as the phone is unlocked. Most people may not need to do roaming. They can buy air time in the country they may be visiting.

    • Tommy

      Ummm no you can’t. Once the SIM card has been used you can no longer use it

    • Barnassey

      Downvoting due to your stupidity in trying to troll.

    • Erik

      Negative, that only happens when the sim is cancelled within 24 hours. Otherwise burnt.

  • matt

    I’ve seen those sim kits , its a $30 t-mobile cash card with a sim card at 7-eleven stores in California now. its like 35 bucks or something. the same ones that walmart used to sell in stores.

  • JohnHatesCricket

    When did Cricket become the primary advertising sponsor of tmonews.com? They have ads disguised as tmonews stories and ads all over the page. AT&T must be getting desperate LOL

    • maximus1901

      att pays out $3bil in dividends/buybacks per quarter. that’s AFTER capex, opex, etc. If only tmo were as desperate.
      vzw and att play on a whole other level.

    • Maybe they see a golden opportunity due to the BYOP fiasco at T-Mobile. Cricket is not even remotely worth joining because they throttle data at eight megabits per second.

  • Acdc1a

    They’re $5 shipped on eBay and T-MOBILE always runs promos. Non issue

  • Critic4U

    I just goto the store and get one for free if I need one

    • jonathan3579

      Some stores are trying to implement the charge. I refuse to buy them though and they’ll normally cave..

      • Ben

        I tried 2 stores yesterday and neither would budge. Then remembered I had a $5 credit to Best Buy and bought it there for $.39 ($4.99 plus tax minus the $5 credit).

  • Dylan Wentworth

    I bought a sim card when they were on sale for 99 cents with free shipping. They shipped one simcard in a box via UPS. In other words, they took a loss.

  • AJ2

    Not very uncarrier. To me, sounds just like an activation fee. The Sim should be free or a dollar if you’re trying to get people to try your network

    How does Legere spin this to be consumer friendly. As always, its a business and as Tmobile grows, it will continue to act like big business

    • Erik

      It is an activation fee, just not labeled one

    • josephsinger

      Not only that in Europe it’s common to get a SIM starter “kit” and have it include €5 or 10 in credit. T-Mobile includes practically nothing in starter kits.

  • T-Mobile has single-handedly broken the BYOP.

    It’s no longer worth considering bringing your own phone to T-Mobile unless you want an IPhone or a Nexus 5X or 6P. Those are the only six unlocked phones that are VoLTE compliant.

  • Erik

    It’s an activation fee, labeled incorrectly, get over it. The other 3 charge $30 to $40 plus upgrade fees every year to two years. T-Mobile didn’t do that… Figure it out.

  • john david

    this not right – the charge 20$ for SIM Starter Kit

    but IM told by live chat rep on T-mobile website that there is additional activated fee of 35$