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ATTENTION: On October 1st, 2015 "LIDL Mobile" has been renamed to "FONIC Mobile" (not to be confused with just "FONIC" which is a slightly different prepaid tariff offered by the same company). While FONIC Mobile is still available in Lidl supermarkets throughout Germany, Lidl have launched an alternative prepaid SIM card in partnership with Vodafone called "LIDL Connect". Although "LIDL Connect" is an exact copy of the former "LIDL Mobile" tariff, it does not feature a customer referal programme as described for FONIC Mobile below and - most notably - runs on the Vodafone network instead of O2's. Since several network performance tests carried out in 2015 have found the O2 network to outperform the Vodafone network, FONIC Mobile (O2) remains the better choice over the new Lidl Connect SIM (Vodafone)
formerly known as:
|FONIC mobile (formerly LIDL mobile) is a prepaid product sold at LIDL supermarkets, but legally and technically realized by FONIC, the discount brand of Telefonica o2 using the latter's network which covers whole Germany. The o2 network is based on (E)GSM900, GSM1800 (both with EDGE support) and UMTS2100 (HSPA+ with up to 42.2 MBit/s supported). Furthermore O2 runs an LTE network on LTE band 20 (800MHz), LTE band 3 (1800MHz) and LTE band 7 (2600 MHz) but LTE service is not yet accessible for prepaid customers (October 2015). |
FONIC mobile is basicly identical to FONIC (without "mobile"), but differs in tariff packages.
Besides very competitive data rates FONIC mobile offers cheap national and international calling as well as affordable roaming tariffs within the European Union, which makes it unique especially for visitors to Germany.
SIM cards in the "Classic" tariff can be bought only at LIDL supermarkets for €9.95, with an inital credit of €10 (+ €5 bonus if you make use of the referral program as described in the activation instructions below). Since June 2012 SIM cards are precut so you can break out a MicroSIM.
Since August 2012 Lidl also sells SIM cards with the "Smart" tariff (300MB + 400 domestic minutes or SMS for € 9.95/month) preactivated (indicated by red sticker on wrapping) which requires a German bank account for debiting of the monthly fee and so cannot be activated by visitors without such. Therefore explicitly ask for a SIM card in the "Classic" tariff!
LIDL has also offered FONIC mobile SIM cards bundled with a USB modem (netlocked Huawei modems) for ~ € 40.
SIM cards are always the same - no matter if bought separately or with a USB modem. Both can be used for data and voice. The only difference is the preactivated data tariff (see below).
where to buy
FONIC mobile is being distributed through LIDL supermarkets (shop search). Usually SIM cards are not on display - just ask the cashier for a "Lidl SIM-Karte".
German residency is not required for activation, however you need to provide a German address, to which Lidl will send a confirmation letter containing all registration details shortly after activation. If the letter is undeliverable and so is being returned Lidl will temporarily disable SIM cards until a valid address has been provided. Therefore make sure to provide an address where the letter from Lidl will be accepted (e.g. a hotel or a friend in whose name you would activate the SIM). SIM cards that have been blocked due to failed delivery of the confirmation letter can be unblocked by calling customer care at 01805-880488 (number only reachable within Germany) and reassuring that the provided address was correct or if not so by providing a new address. Afterwards SIM cards will be unblocked within less than 30 minutes.
The SIM card must be activated either
- by phone at 0800/4636642 (toll free, working hours: Mon - Sat 8 - 20 h)
- online activation step by step:
- go to http://www.lidl.de/de/Freischalten
- Enter the Mobile Nr. at "Mobilfunknummer" and the "Freischaltungsnummer" as noted on the SIM cardholder
- then click "Weiter"
- Anrede (Herr = Mister, Frau= Misses),
- Vorname (firstname),
- Nachnahme (surname) then
- Strasse (street),
- Hausnummer (street number),
- PLZ (postal code)
- Stadt (city)
- Enter eMail and Geburtsdatum (birthday)
- then you need to choose a password (Kennwort) for legitimation with customer care and when accessing the web portal and repeat it (Kennwort wiederholen)
- if you enter this article's author's phone number (017639737800) or any other LIDL customer's number at "Mobilfunknummer/Aktionscode" you and the other LIDL mobile customer will both get 5 EUR of bonus credit each from the customer referral program! (may take up to 3 weeks to be accredited so activate your SIM card in time!)
- then click "weiter"
- now you may (not obligatory) enter your German bank account data (Kontonummer and Bankleitzahl) and activate the checkbox at "Hiermit ermächtige ich die FONIC GmbH widerruflich, alle fälligen Beträge zu Lasten meines angegebenen Kontos durch Lastschrift einzuziehen.", if you wish to recharge your LIDL SIM by direct debit from your bank account. Optionally you can enable automatic recharges.
- then you can choose if and how much money to be topped up every month - and when (mid of month = Monatsmitte, begin of month = Monatsanfang)
- then the confirmation page is displayed where you need to check the first checkboxes and repeat the Sicherheitscode (displayed right of the input field)
- finally click on "Freischaltung fertigstellen" to finalize the process. Now it will take a few minutes up to several hours until your SIM card has been fully activated. You will notice that your SIM card has been fully activated by the initial credit of € 10 being displayed after entering *101# (free of charge even while roaming)
how to top up
- by Lidl top up vouchers (available amounts: € 15 and € 30)
Buy a top up voucher from a LIDL supermarket and submit the top up code by entering *103*(top up code)# or enter it online on the customer portal (login and click "Guthaben per Aufladebon aufladen")
- by Fonic top up vouchers (inofficial method, available amounts: € 20 and € 30)
Buy a Fonic top up voucher from a Fonic reseller or NEW: at www.aufladen.de (make sure to pay by PayPal as they only accept credit cards issued by German banks) and submit the top up code by entering *103*(top up code)# or enter it online on the customer portal (login and click "Guthaben per Aufladebon aufladen")
- by bank transfer (any amount)
- by direct debit (available amount: €10, direct debit authorization ("Einzugsermächtigung") for German bank account required, see details)
SIM cards remain active infinitely and credit never expires but Fonic preserves the right to cancel service with a notice period of 4 weeks. Usually this happens not earlier than 18 months of the SIM card being unused and not recharged.
USSD service codes
|top up credit||*103*(top up code)#|
disable automatic recharge
If you have enabled automatic recharge through a German bank account, you can disable it by going to the website and login with your phone number and password.
Go to "Monatliche Aufladung", then you click "hier deaktivieren" and on the next page to "weiter".
As the only German operator O2 (including LIDL mobile) has officially allowed VoIP-usage on their network at no additional costs, whereas T-Mobile and Vodafone block VoIP.
- All services are open, e.g. web surfing, SMTP and POP3 works just fine.
- APN to use: internet (or any other string as any APN is being accepted and will result in an Internet connection)
Latest page update: made by inquisitor
, Oct 11 2015, 5:52 AM EDT
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