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Why have I been charged for a text message?

Pay monthly bundles include an allowance of standard UK texts to other UK numbers. If you’ve been charged for texts, it may be because they were converted to picture messages, they were sent while you’re abroad, or they went to international numbers.  

Picture messages

Sometimes a text is converted to a chargeable picture message (MMS) by the phone’s operating system. This is beyond our control. It may happen when you send a long text (more than 160 characters) from an older phone; a text to several people at once; a text including an emoticon such as a smiley face, or a text to enter a competition or send a charity donation.

If you send a lot of picture messages, you can get an extra that gives you a great-value allowance of picture messages for a month.

Texts sent while you’re abroad

There’s information on costs, and how to take your UK allowances with you, on our roaming page.

Texts to international numbers

For information on the cost of texts to international numbers and our great-value options, visit our calling abroad page.

Note: the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man are classed as international numbers, so any texts to or from these locations aren’t included in your UK bundle. 

Been charged for the same text twice?

If you’re sending texts longer than 160 characters, we’ll sometimes charge for them as 2 or more separate texts, and bill for them at the same time.

Or if you’re abroad then we’ll often have to charge twice for the same text – once for the international leg of your text’s journey and once for the UK leg. These add up to the cost of a standard text sent while abroad.

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