Verizon generally tops the rankings as the number one wireless provider in the US. It has not only the most extensive coverage map but is also the best performing with the fastest LTE and 5G speeds. So, it’s not surprising that more people than ever are using the network.
As of July 23, 2019, all devices purchased from Verizon are locked for 60 days from the purchase date. Learn about this policy and what you can do to unlock your Verizon phone in the guide below.
Are Verizon Phones Locked?
Verizon phones are locked for 60 days from the purchase date. This policy applies to all customers, both new and existing, along with those on prepaid and postpaid.
Note: Unlike other carriers, Verizon phones are locked even if you have paid for the device in full.
Other examples of when Verizon locks devices
- Devices purchased on payment plans that are paid off before contract end-date are locked for 60 days after completion of payment.
- Customers who port service must wait until they’ve met 60-day requirement
- After cancellation of Verizon service, the device remains locked for 60-days
- Prepaid customers – locked for 60 days
If you have any questions, you can call Verizon customer support 1-888-294-6804 or dial *611 on your cell phone.
What Does Locked Mean?
Locked means that you can only use your phone on the Verizon network. You will be unable to use cellular service either via SIM card or eSIM with any other provider until the device is unlocked.
You can, however, still use Wi-Fi, which we will discuss in more detail below.
How to Unlock My Device?
Devices on the Verizon network automatically unlock as long as your device is not reported lost or stolen/flagged for fraud. And 60 days have elapsed since the purchase date.
What About Older Phones?
If you purchased your phone prior to July 2019, it should already be unlocked. You can see if it is unlocked by inserting a SIM card from another carrier into your phone. If it’s able to connect to another wireless network, that means your phone is unlocked.
How Do I Know if My Phone is Locked?
If you insert a non-Verizon SIM into your phone and see “SIM Not Supported,” that means it’s locked. However, this message may vary by phone model and manufacturer. Likewise, not all phones support all SIM cards.
The different carriers use different wireless spectrum, and this may be a reason a SIM card might not work.
What If I Bring My Own Device to Verizon’s Network?
Verizon supports Bring Your Own Device (BYOD). In this case, the device lock policy does not apply to you.
What Should I Do If I’m Traveling Internationally?
If you’re traveling internationally and want to use another SIM card, your device must be eligible for unlocking.
If not, or if you want to keep your Verizon service, you can use one of Verizon’s international plans.
What If I Transfer My Service to Another Account?
Verizon allows you to transfer service to another account. However, your phone will remain locked until it meets requirements.
How Do I Unlock My Verizon Phone?
Verizon has one of the stricter device locking policies. There’s really no way around their device locks. Unfortunately, even highly ranked services like Dr. Sim won’t be able to help you. Verizon must unlock your phone from their end.
You can try to jailbreak your phone to unlock it though that may void your warranty or cause your phone malfunction, so do so at your own risk.
What Are My Options if Verizon Won’t Unlock My Phone?
This happens very frequently. Many people purchase a new phone from Verizon right before heading on an international trip or something like that. Unfortunately, Verizon is extremely inflexible about the 60-day policy. Even if you’ve been an excellent customer for years, you’ll still run into this problem.
If you switch to a more affordable US carrier, you can look into a Verizon MVNO (mobile virtual network operator). MVNOs use Verizon’s network but generally charge much less for monthly service.
Verizon MVNOs include:
- Affinity Cellular
- Spectrum Mobile
- Straight Talk
- Xfinity Mobile
- Page Plus Cellular
- Total Wireless
- US Mobile
Traveling internationally can be a little more complicated. Verizon does offer a range of international plans. However, this may not be as affordable as a local SIM card, or they may not be available in your particular travel destination.
In this case, your best option is either getting a pocket WiFi device. You can rent these from many international airports, and they can serve as a mobile hotspot for all your wireless devices. You can also bring another unlocked device such as a tablet or unlocked smartphone and use that as a portable hotspot as well.
Are Verizon Phones Locked?
If you bought a phone from Verizon after July 2019, then it is likely locked. However, it is only locked for 60 days from purchase, so your phone may be unlocked already. The best way to find out is to pop in a SIM card and check for yourself right now!
Learn more about wireless providers on the Buyback Boss Blog. We’ve covered everything you need to know about locked phones. If you have a Sprint phone, you can learn to unlock it here. Or, you can learn how to unlock an AT&T phone here.
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