Buying a Mobile Phone on eBay

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If you are thinking of buying a mobile phone on eBay please make sure you read the whole listing and make sure you fully understand it. See whether you are bidding on just a mobile phone or are you looking at the auction for a mobile phone with contract.

Some giveaway signs that the mobile you are going to bid for is actually a contract phone are:

The category heading will say, Mobile Phones with Contract
The price might be a Buy It Now at 99p
The listing might use terms like, Free Contract Mobile Phone, Discounted Line Rental.
Or even, You are bidding for a Contact Mobile Phone.

Joking apart many people bid on these auctions because they don’t read the listing. They see the cheap buy it now price and think all their Christmas’s have come at once. Only to become very disappointed at the end of the day.

If you are thinking of purchasing a contract mobile phone from eBay then here are a few tips on how it works. 

Firstly the 99p price is only to comply with eBay rules. This is to ensure eBay get their fees. Most reputable sellers will offer a refund on this charge.

All sellers of contract mobile phones on eBay must display the following message on their listing. Not to do so can have their listing removed.

As an authorized reseller of cell phone services, I will provide a full refund within 10 days to any buyer that does not qualify for our service. This may occur if the buyer is located outside the area that I am authorized to resell or if the buyer is rejected for other reasons such as not passing our credit requirements. To fully understand our coverage area and policy, please read our terms and conditions in each listing carefully.

A good barometer of how reputable the seller is can be his feedback. However please bear in mind that quite often a buyer has mistakenly bid on a contract mobile phone. Thinking they got the bargain of the year only later to find out that the auction was for a contract with one of the networks. Or they may have been rejected by that particular network providing the service. From hard feelings that he did not get the phone he wanted, rather than poor service on the seller’s part has brought negative feedback.
It is worth noting that from my own experience and watching other seller’s feedback is rarely given to contract mobile phone sellers. So a low feedback count over a period may not actually mean poor sales. Don’t ask me why the buyers don’t give feedback but that appears to be the case.

Make sure the listing highlights all the features and benefits of the phone and also all the tariff plan details. It should state the exact plan provided by name and the monthly charge after any cash back deals have expired. It may cost an average of £10 per month over the term of the contract but how much are you actually going to pay each month. Can you afford it?

Sellers who provide this information generally can be relied on.

You will need a credit card as details will be asked for credit checks and network acceptance. eBay is no different to the High Street shops. A contract is the same where ever you sign up to it.

An email will be sent to you after you have paid your 99p containing the forms you need to complete. If you don’t complete the forms you will not get a phone, just like in the High St.

Once the credit checks have been passed you can expect your phone the next or following day depending when you bought. It is that simple.

One last thing, remember to give positive feedback.



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