How To Do Cell C SIM Swap ( USSD Code Number For Self Service)

Lost your Cell C number and wants to get it back? This tutorial discusses how to do Cell C SIM Swap Without Calling, use of the USSD Code number to dial, online, SMS method and questions asked are fully explained.

Requirements for Cell C SIM Swap?

How can I retrieve my lost Cell C number back? A reader sent me a tweet after reading how to handle MTN Sim swap and Vodacom SIM swap.

My answer was it is easy but you will need the following requirements and document to do this:

  • A new Cell C starter pack sim card
  • DO NOT RICA THE CELL C SIM CARD; you are going to use the SIM card that is not registered. For other networks ( e.g. MTN, Vodacom, Telkom), it is important you get their network registered ( RICA’d) in your name.
  • This step is very important because of future occurrence. If it is registered in your name, it is very much easy to get the number back when lost. You can read here if you want to know how to Rica Cell C SIM card.
  • You will need your ID, proof of address or affidavit ( though not necessary if you do it online, or through the USSD code. You will need it when you visit their office.

cell c sim swap dial ussd code

Cell C SIM Swap Security Questions

One of the most difficult task when trying to retrieve and get back your lost Cell C number is to pass the security questions that will be asked from you.

This issue was escalated when customers complained of this stress in 2017 and as such, we now have a clear picture of the questions and right answer to give.

So it is important you prepare yourself and get ready to answer them perfectly; the following are the security questions for your Cell C SIM swap;

1. What is your name?

The first question that will be asked from you is ‘ what is your name’ or ‘ can I know the name of the person I am talking with’. This question will be asked from the Cell C customer service staff.

The reason is because they want to know if the SIM card is in your name. By the rule of RICA, your SIM card should be registered in your name. Now, if you tell them your name, the next question that will be asked is listed below.

2. What is your Cell C number you want to SIM Swap?

You will be asked the number of the Cell C you want to SIM swap. Now, immediately, you tell them the number, the customer service staff on the phone with you will ask you to hold on for about 1-2 minutes.

What the person is doing is running background checks on you and see if the Cell C number is registered in your name.

85% of people fails at this point; the next thing you may hear is ‘ we are sorry, we cannot help you with the SIM swap. They will not tell you the reason why but this is obviously the reason why.

So, next time you want to collect mahala / free SIM card on the street, make sure you ask the agent to register you in your name, ID and/or passport number!!

But if the customer representative continues with the next two questions, know for sure that you passed these two important questions. Now, to the next SIM Swap question for Cell C.

3. Do you have a new Cell C Starter Pack SIM card?

Now, the customer service staff will ask if you have a new Cell C starter pack SIM card with you. Say yes. This starter pack should be in the pack, do not put it inside the phone.

Remember, the start pack should be the one that is not registered i.e. not RICA!!

What is needed is the serial number on the pack ( see image) below; the staff will ask for the serial number, then you call it out for the person.

After, he/she will check if it is RICA or not, if the SIM card is registered, it will be rejected, but if not ricad, you will be asked the next question.

cell c sim swap security questions

4. What is the last amount recharged?

This is an intelligent question and you should be very detailed. The answer to this is basically the last amount of airtime you loaded. Let us say you bought a R20 Cell C airtime and two vouchers of R10 was given to you from the spaza shop, Somalia shop or from anywhere.

It simply means the last airtime you recharged with is R10 and not R20!! but if the R20 was a single voucher and you loaded it once, then the last airtime recharged is R20. Please get this clear and do not be confused!!

Again, if you borrowed airtime from Cell C ( e.g. R3) before you lost your phone or it got stolen, then the last airtime/amount you recharged is the R3 you borrowed!!

Trick: If you cannot remember, just buy a R2 or R5 airtime and load it directly on your lost cell C you want to SIM swap. Note, it should be loaded directly on the number and not using voucher.

Then wait for about 10 minutes before you call Cell C to start the swap. So if you are asked the last airtime, tell them. This trick works 100%.

5. How did you recharge your last airtime?

They want to know how you recharged. Just be honest with your answer. There are four options and they are:

    • With voucher: if you buy from the shop, Somalia, Spaza etc. so far, something was printed for you and you loaded it by dialing *102*…., then this is voucher. Just say you load a voucher
    • Borrow: If you borrow extra airtime/data, just say it
    • Bank: If you bought the airtime/recharge through your bank app, just mention it

The customer service is seeing everything, so do not lie, if you cannot remember, just say you cannot remember

6. When did you recharge the last airtime?

This is difficult to answer accurately, but from experience, just try to give a time frame. But if you are sure of when you bought the last airtime/data, just say it.

Now, to the two most important questions; if you fail it and pass the above, there is no way the SIM swap will be successful.

7. The last 2 Numbers you called?

You will be asked the last 2 numbers you called. This, along the next question is the most difficult question and to be honest with you, you may not know or remember.

But there is a trick to getting the answer. On a normal day, you are most likely to call:

  • Your boyfriend
  • Your girlfriend
  • your husband
  • your wife
  • Children

If you cannot remember, just try your luck and mention any two from the above!!

8. Two numbers you call frequently or regularly?

Just like above, this can be a very difficult question. However, it is not out of point to agree with me that on a normal day, the numbers you call regularly are those of either your:

  • boyfriend
  • girlfriend
  • husband
  • wife
  • children

Before diving fully into the steps, you can check out how to port from Cell C to Vodacom, the steps you need to take to cancel any Cell C subscriptions or even Vodacom.

You can do Cell C SIM swap in six ways;

Please understand that the above methods work if you are a prepaid customer and some if you are a contract customer. Let me start explaining one by one.

To do Cell C SIM Swap, put a active Cell C SIM into a phone, because from here you will either SMS, call or send USSD code; also, keep the unregistered new Cell C SIM card somewhere, do not put this particular one in the phone

1. Cell C SIM Swap By SMS

From the phone, go to message and send a new message to Cell C. Send SWAP to 0847678287; wait for a reply and from here, you follow the instructions.

The Cell C SIM Swap number you will send SMS to is 0847678287. Please understand that you can sim swap without old sim cell c.

You are sending the SMS from another Cell C that is active to 0847678287, after, a message will come, follow the instructions and you will also send the serial number of the Cell C starter pack that is not yet registered with you.

Most people confuses SIM swap by SMS to porting; it is mainly porting that you can achieve by sending SMS. Using this model for SIM swap does not usually work.

how to sim swap cell c

2. Doing Cell C SIM Swap Online

Currently, there is no way to do swapping online. The only options available are through SMS, calling, USSD codes and going to their outlets.

3. Doing Cell C SIM Swap USSD Code

Again, there is no USSD code to SIM swap Cell C, unlike MTN. That is why MTN remains the best network in terms of customer service in South Africa.

4. Calling 0847678287

The effective and only proven way to achieve a successful swapping is by calling their office. Someone asked me ‘how to do sim swap on cell c without calling’

I said, unfortunately there is no way; you just have to call the above number and be prepared to answer the security questions. This step is one effective way to stop your cell C Airtime from disappearing

Now, when you call, those security questions will be asked from you. And if you pass successfully, you will be told.

The nest step is to wait for about 4 hours and above, then you insert the unregistered Cell C starter pack whose serial number you gave to the customer service agent on the phone, you now insert it into your phone. Dial *147*9# and you will see your number

5. Self Service

To SIM swap Cell C using self service works if you have downloaded the App on your phone. To do this, follow the guidelines below;

  • Activate the Cell C self service on your phone or from their website
  • Call 0847678287
  • Get your PINS ready for validation; follow the instructions and you will be guided.

This self service option also works if you want to rica Cell C and do data transfer on Cell C.

6. Cell C SIM Swap For Contract Customers

Some people do Cell C SIM Swap of even try to move away to another network and it all fails. The chief primary reason is because you are either owing Cell C money or you are a contract customer.

Now, for a Cell C contract customer, follow the steps below to do SIM swap;

  • You need to let Cell C of your intentions to SIM swap or port to another network ( 30 days notice)
  • Let them know of the date you want to port
  • Once your contract expires or Cell notifies you that you are free of your contract, then you can SIM swap and port your number to another network.

What is Cell C Sim Swap?

Cell C Sim swap is an easy and cost effective service that allows you to get and keep your Cell C number should in case the SIM card or mobile line get lost, stolen, damaged or probably you need to change the size of the present SIM card you are using.

Please note and understand that doing Cell C SIM swap takes anytime from 4 hours and above to get the number working. Your mobile line will not work immediately you do it.

cell c sim swap

Secondly, from experience, the best time to sim swap Cell C number is from 7:30am-6pm so that your new sim card will start working from4 hours upward.

Sometimes if you do it on weekends, it does not work till Monday, unless you call their office.

There is a difference between sim swap cell c and porting. If you are using a cell C line or number and wants to move to another network e.g. MTN, Telkom or Vodacom and still retain or use that same number; then it is called Porting to Cell C.

But if you lost your Cell C number or damaged and you still want that same Cell C number back on Cell network, it is called SIM swap. Learn how to port from MTN to Cell C, Vodacom to Cell C and Telkom to Cell C in this tutorial.

So, with this short explanation, let us get down to the practical ways you can achieve this or simply watch this video:

Why Sim Swap Cell C Lost Number

I have listed out some reasons why it is important you try to get your lost number back, especially if you are in South Africa.

  • I do not want you to be a victim of SIM swap fraud related incidence. Knowing how to do this service by yourself or where to go is very important for your own financial security.
  • Secondly, if you have been using an old Cell C line for a long time and probably you got a new phone, you will discover that the size is different and you will not be able to put the old sim into the new phone. So, in such a case, you will need a smaller size, e.g. Nano or micro. And the best way to go about this is to simply SIM swap your number from the old big SIM card to a new smaller SIM card.
  • Cell C, alongside Telkom is the cheapest and most affordable network providers for 95% of middle income earners and poor people living in the informal sector and so it is an important issue.
  • Most SASSA grants, including the R350 grants are directly linked to your mobile number, so once you lost it, you will not be able to get your grant fund. This makes it important to retrieve and get your lost Cell C number back.

Frequently Asked Questions

The following are selected frequently asked questions.

  • Cell c sim card not working?

If you fail the security questions, then it will not work. But read through the guidelines I explained and you will sure pass.

Secondly, the SIM card will not work immediately, be patient and wait for about 4 hours and above before you put it in the phone.

  • How much does Cell C Cost for a SIM swap?

It is free, I repeat it is free. You can only be charged from agents on the streets and this is unofficial, you pay because you are ignorant and you do not know how to do it. So you are paying for their own services.

11 thoughts on “How To Do Cell C SIM Swap ( USSD Code Number For Self Service)”

  1. This is crap, why do I Ricamy sim card if I have to remember recharge amounts and numbers I don’t know off of the top of my head? Disgruntled I have lost my phone number because of this craziness

  2. I really need my number back but they keep telling that my Sim card is registered by someone else. I used this Sim card since from 2013 I really don’t know what to do now


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