Change your service provider: Here’s how

Mobile technology has improved by leaps and bounds, and you can easily port your number from one provider to another. We explain how you can do this.

There was a time when switching from one mobile provider to another meant that your number changed as well. But changing your number often meant that you must then contact all your friends and associates and inform them of the new number. Today, you can port your number from one provider to another without changing your number at all.

Making the switch…

TRAI (Telecom Regulatory Authority of India) has made it mandatory for all mobile service providers to allow customers to port from their existing provider to another, without the need to furnish sufficient cause for the same. It is the customer’s prerogative to port their number from one provider to another – in case the existing provider is able to retain the customer by offering better plans and services, the customer may defer the porting request or cancel it altogether.

If you are considering the decision to port your number, do understand that every provider has a different process for the same. While some insist on customers walking into their stores with the porting application form, others like Airtel let you initiate the process via online, phone or text media. However, before the actual porting process begins, you must follow these preliminary steps:

  • Send an SMS PORT <Your 10-digit mobile number> to 1900. The 1900 is the nodal porting number for TRAI, which registers and forwards your porting request to your existing mobile service provider.
  • You will now receive a unique porting code via SMS from TRAI. Do retain this code because it necessary for number porting request to another provider.
  • Within a few hours of receiving the porting request details from TRAI, your current service provider will call to discuss why you wish to port to another provider. At this stage, you may be offered a new plan at a lower date, more data and more benefits. You may decide to proceed with the porting request or change your current plan at this juncture.
  • If you proceed to port the number, you can discuss the modalities with your current provider. You must fill out a porting migration form to submit to the new provider.
  • Now just follow the porting steps that the new provider outlines for you.

Porting to Airtel from your existing provider

If you are migrating from Airtel prepaid to postpaid

Porting your number from your current provider to Airtel is child’s play – it just takes you 4 steps (refer to the illustration above) to get on board India’s fastest network and the best in postpaid and prepaid plans. Complete the number porting steps outlined above. Now access the Airtel website and –

1 Browse through Airtel’s postpaid plans and confirm which one you wish to buy by clicking on ‘Buy now’.

2 A representative from Airtel will now contact you and visit your residence or office address to discuss the number porting procedure with you.

3 You can hand over your Aadhaar details and UPC code (generated by TRAI and mentioned in the preliminary porting steps outlined above) to the Airtel representative. Your personal and residential address will also be taken down and confirmed at this time

4 The Airtel representative will give you the Airtel SIM card at this juncture, but it will not be activated immediately. Once Airtel completes the porting formalities from your existing provider, you will receive a message from your current provider that your connection with them will be terminated shortly. Meanwhile, Airtel activates your connection – once the earlier one is terminated, just insert the Airtel SIM card and start using it.

That’s it – Airtel has a zero-hassle number porting procedure, and you can switch from your current provider to a new one without having to change your number or go through a lot of paperwork.

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