Bharti Airtel, Vodafone-Idea have already confirmed there will be a price hike in telecom prices from December 1, where both prepaid and postpaid plans are expected to cost more. Reliance Jio has also hinted that it too will increase tariffs, though it has claimed the company will make sure this does not impact data consumption in the country. India has the lowest data prices in the world, but telecos say that in order for the business to be sustainable they need to increase prices.
Now, according to a report in TelecomTalk, Airtel will also let its prepaid customers queue up their recharge plans. We could also see this option in the Airtel app for a prepaid account. Reliance Jio is already offering this option where users can queue a recharge before the existing one expires.
Queuing prepaid plans would simply mean that a user can get recharge at the existing rates done, and this will get activated once their earlier plan expires. This would also allow users to avoid the new December 1 increased rates, because they would have a recharge waiting in line.
Airtel prepaid plan queue: How it will work?
TelecomTalk explained how this will work for Airtel customers. For example if someone has a Rs 199 prepaid plan which will expire on December 4, which is after the price hike, they can get a Rs 199 recharge done right now instead.
The new Rs 199 recharge will then be applied after the existing pack expires, which is on December 4. The app shows the new recharge as upcoming packs. This would also mean the user avoids the new tariffs and gets the existing data prices. The Rs 199 plan give 1.5GB data per day along with unlimited calls on local, STD, and 100 SMS per day. Validity is 28 days.
We tested it out on Airtel prepaid account in our office, which was on the Rs 399 Truly Unlimited plan. We did a recharge for Rs 199, which was successful. The plan now shows as upcoming pack for the account, which will get activated once the Rs 399 plan expires.
A user needs to be on an unlimited combo plan or what Airtel calls’ Truly Unlimited’ prepaid plans in order to be eligible for the queuing. These are plans like Rs 199, Rs 299, Rs 399, Rs 499, Rs 1699, etc. The last one on the list is an yearly plan and is also eligible for queuing. This would mean users can go for one year without a recharge.
Customers on Smart Recharge, which gives data and some talktime are not eligible to queue up their prepaid plans for now, according to the report. The Truly Unlimited plans combine daily data, unlimited local and STD calls along with SMS. The Smart Recharge plans do not offer unlimited calling.
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