The Best Family Mobile Phone Plan Providers in 2021
Written in March 2021. Details below are subject to change.
Keeping your family connected is essential in the modern world. Whether it’s children going to school or simply wanting to talk to their friends, when they have their first mobile, you want to keep track of what they’re spending.
Family mobile plans are a great way to keep everyone’s SIM deals in one place. Below, we look at some of the best deals available in the UK.
The Benefits of a Family Mobile Plan
There are various reasons you might want to move your home’s SIMs all into one account:
- Reduced price - most family/group deals offer discounts for each added plan.
- One bill - all expenses come out of one account, which can help manage children’s costs.
- Keep control - Most plans give the main account various powers, such as restricting use, setting caps and more.
- Rewards - Some family plans offer additional rewards, such as data sharing.
What to Look for When Purchasing a Family Mobile Plan
What you need from a family plan will differ depending on your circumstances.
- Price - First and foremost, make sure the SIM you’re adding is a good deal in itself.
- Number of SIMs - most family plans will have a maximum number of sims that can be attached. This number is usually at least five, so most families will be fine.
- Discount - most will offer a flat discount on each added plan. Note that this can sometimes be only on full-price SIMs and not on promotional deals.
- Data - Sharing your data can be handy for busy online families, so look for what your network offers here.
BT Family Mobile Plan
BT’s family mobile plan is particularly popular thanks to its straightforwardness. If you have one SIM or phone deal on a minimum 12-month contract, you can add additional SIMs at 20% off the regular price each.
Another advantage of the BT family bundle is that you can add or remove additional SIMs monthly, so if circumstances change, it’s easy to adjust your plan.
As with most family plans, all the SIMs are paid through one account, allowing you to manage the SIM’s use and other things in one place.
One of BT’s family plan’s downsides is that they all must have the same monthly allowance size despite every SIM having a separate data allowance. For example, if you want a SIM with 15GB a month, the other SIMs will also need to have a 15GB allowance.
EE Family Mobile Plan
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EE’s family plan is slightly more expensive than some of its competitors but does offer some good perks.
So long as the primary account has a 12-month or 24-month contract with EE, up to 4 additional SIMs can be added to create a family plan. As with other plans, all billing will go to one place, and the account holder can manage various things, including usage across all accounts.
EE offers discounts for every SIM added. Every SIM added to the plan gets a 10% discount, while EE also gifts an additional 1GB of data whenever an account is added or upgraded.
One of the biggest benefits of EE’s family plan is data gifting. You can move any unused data between various accounts quickly and easily - so if you have someone who’s burned all their data, you can pass over some of yours to get them through the month.
O2 Family Mobile Plan
The O2 family mobile plan is one of the best for large families. O2 allow you to add up to 20 SIMs to the same plan, and each can benefit from a 20% discount.
While O2’s family plan is simple on the surface, it can get a bit confusing when you dig a little deeper. The discount only applies to the Airtime Plan, which is your monthly allowance, meaning the actual discount can be less if you’re adding a SIM & phone deal.
You also need to make sure your O2 SIM is eligible for the family plan discounts, as it doesn’t apply to some promotional SIMs.
Smarty Family Mobile Plan
Smarty is one of many online-only network providers offering cheaper deals on an established network - in this case, Three mobile.
Smarty offers a Group plan for up to eight SIMS which is very straightforward. You can add a SIM to your Smarty account, and the added SIM will get a 10% discount.
There isn’t much to Smarty’s family plan - it doesn’t offer perks like transferring data, and the discount isn’t huge. However, one of Smarty’s USPs is low base prices, meaning the deal is being applied to prices that are already lower than many providers.
Another of Smarty’s popular features is their monthly rolling contracts, and that applies to group plans. If you’re unhappy or need to upgrade, it’s easy to change.
Sky Mobile Family Mobile Plan
Sky Mobile doesn’t offer much when it comes to discounts, but it’s arguably the best family plan when it comes to data.
Sky Mobile allows its customers to rollover any unused data for up to three years. This data goes into the Sky Piggybank and can be used to top up your account if you’re ever low or cashed-in for gifts, including phones, tablets and accessories.
The best bit is that multiple SIMs can be added to the same account and use the same Piggybank. With everyone on the same account, spare data can be shared with other SIMs, while more GB in the bank will give you access to better rewards from their store.
Vodaphone Family Mobile Plan
Vodaphone offers a simple discount for existing customers looking to add SIM or phone/tablet deals to their existing plan. Every additional plan added gets a 15% discount on its usual price.
While this isn’t a family plan in name, you can use it as one. All the SIMs are managed and billed under one account, allowing you control over the cost.
Similar to O2, you need to make sure your SIM or phone applies for this discount. Some SIMs purchased as part of a deal or promotion won’t be eligible.
Which Family Mobile Bundle is Best?
There are many different family and bundle deals available, and what works for you will depend on what matters most.
If your primary concern is keeping track of everyone’s mobile use, BT and EE are good options. If data is key, then Sky Mobile will be high on your list. If, however, your main concern is the price, you may want to consider the cheaper networks like Smarty.
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