Thinking of taking your current device to Verizon? This step-by-step guide will explain how to do just that. To make the transition, you’ll need a paid off, compatible and unlocked phone. Read on for specifics.
To bring your own phone (BYOP) to Verizon, it will have to be compatible with the network. If you’re coming to Verizon from Sprint, you don’t have to worry. Sprint and Verizon use the same technology for their network.
Sprint and Verizon use CDMA technology, where as T-Mobile and AT&T use GSM tech to operate their network. Newer phones are compatible between each carrier, but older phones will struggle to make the switch.
It gets more complicated if you’re coming from T-Mobile or AT&T. Verizon uses a different type of technology than AT&T and T-Mobile, so your phone may not be compatible. To check and see, use Verizon’s compatibility checker. Just type in your IMEI (your phone’s identification number), then Verizon will tell you straight away if your phone is good to go.
Unlock Your Phone
You need to make sure your phone is unlocked before taking it to Verizon. If your phone is not fully paid off, your carrier will not unlock it; and even if it is balance-free, your carrier won’t necessarily automatically unlock it. A phone call to your current carrier should be all that’s required to start the unlocking process.
Port Your Number to Verizon
Once you’ve found a plan you like, you can order a free SIM card from Verizon by going online or to a local Verizon store.
Verizon will cancel your current service for you, so you don’t need to worry about having two plans at once
If you want to port (or transfer) your current number to Verizon, don’t cancel your current cell phone service. Verizon will port your number and cancel your current service for you. You need to give them your account number and they will take care of it.
Transferring your number to Verizon can take up to 24 hours, so plan accordingly. Verizon also recommends having a backup form of communication for emergencies in case the porting process takes longer than expected.
Verizon Coverage Map
Verizon’s 4G network covers 70% of the United States, making their coverage the nation’s best. If you take a look at the map below, you’ll notice there are only a few areas of the country that aren’t covered by Verizon. To check Verizon’s coverage in your specific area, punch in your address into Let’s Talk coverage checker.
Verizon Coverage by State
|State||Percentage Covered||Mile Covered (mi²)|
|New Hampshire||84.38%||8,147 mi²|
|New Jersey||97.52%||7,542 mi²|
|New Mexico||84.53%||101,463 mi²|
|New York||87.21%||42,705 mi²|
|North Carolina||92.67%||46,892 mi²|
|North Dakota||97.81%||68,393 mi²|
|Rhode Island||92.21%||1,087 mi²|
|South Carolina||98.73%||30,821 mi²|
|South Dakota||96.65%||74,320 mi²|
|West Virginia||52.24%||12,650 mi²|
Verizon Pros and Cons
Let’s Talk Pros
- Best nationwide coverage
- Plenty of plan options for everyone
- 11 MVNO carriers to choose from
- Great unlimited data plans
Let’s Talk Cons
- Verizon plans tend to be expensive
- New Verizon customers pay a one-time activation fee
Because Verizon wields the best coverage in the United States, they charge a premium for their plans. But there are still plenty of great options.
Popular Verizon Plans
If you’re in the military or a veteran, they offer multiple discounted plans. These special discount plans range from prepaid plans to family plans. With verification, veterans and military personnel also get 25% off select accessories.
There are good deals for other carriers that operate on the Verizon network as well. Also known as MNVOs, these smaller carriers offer less expensive plans on Verizon’s network. If you want to be on the Verizon network but don’t want to pay Verizon premiums, mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs) are a great option. Use Let’s Talk comparison tool to find the best BYOP plan on Verizon’s network.
If you’re not sure where to start when looking for Verizon plans, we have you covered. We curate the best Verizon plans and update them monthly.
Popular MVNO Plans
If you’re not sold on Verizon, you can bring your own phone and switch to other carriers.