Skinny

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Skinny mobile plans

Don't want to be tied into a contract? Skinny offers affordable prepaid plans with options to suit every lifestyle.

Is Skinny right for me?

  • What does Skinny offer: Prepay plans for either one or four weeks
  • The highlights: Affordable plans, cheaper roaming than other providers; bring your number; Buddy Rewards
  • Watch out for: Reduced speed when you hit a data cap on unlimited plans; no physical stores; whether your phone works with a Skinny SIM.
Skinny was a welcome introduction to the New Zealand mobile market, as with no physical stores, it can deliver affordable plans with no expensive overheads.

Plans are stripped back and easy to understand, plus there are many add-ons to purchase if you need extra data or talk time. Skinny uses Spark’s 4G network and also provides broadband services.

Types of plans offered by Skinny

Skinny provides prepay only mobile plans, with weekly or four-weekly options.

Name Product Data Minutes Texts Price (per billing period):
Skinny 4-Weekly Plan 250MB
250MB
100
Unlimited
$9
Skinny 4-weekly plans renew every 28 days.
Skinny 4-Weekly Plan 1.25GB
1.25GB
200
Unlimited
$16
Skinny 4-weekly plans renew every 28 days.
Skinny 4-Weekly Plan 2.5GB
2.5GB
300
Unlimited
$26
Skinny 4-weekly plans renew every 28 days.
Skinny 4-Weekly Plan 4.5GB
4.5GB
Unlimited
Unlimited
$36
Skinny 4-weekly plans renew every 28 days.
Skinny 4-Weekly Plan 12GB
12GB
Unlimited
Unlimited
$46
Skinny 4-weekly plans renew every 28 days.
Skinny 4-Weekly Plan 40GB
40GB
Unlimited
Unlimited
$70
Skinny 4-weekly plans renew every 28 days.
Skinny Weekly Plan 100MB
100MB
60
750
$5
Skinny weekly plans renew every 7 days.
Skinny Weekly Plan 10GB
10GB
Unlimited
Unlimited
$20
Skinny weekly plans renew every 7 days.
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All plans include minutes and texts that can be used for New Zealand and Australia apart from Skinny’s $5 Weekly plans which is for New Zealand only.

Weekly plan

Renewing every seven days, a weekly plan gives you a set amount of minutes, texts and data to use.

The Auto Renew Bonus on the $5 Weekly plan gives you an additional 500 minutes and 500 texts to use for contacting friends and family who are also on Skinny. The bonus lasts for 7 days.

4-Weekly

4-Weekly plans last for 28 days and come with minutes, texts and a data allowance.

Apart from the cheapest plan and an Unlimited Mobile plan, all are rollover plans which means that any data or minutes you don’t use carry over to the next billing cycle.

Topping up

To top up your Skinny mobile, you can do so online using Visa Debit or credit card; Eftpos through its mobile app or by purchasing a voucher from a participating retailer. You need to make sure you have enough credit for your plan to renew.

If you have a 4-weekly plan, you can set up the auto-top up function so that your plan charge is automatically deducted from your credit or debit card.

Add-ons

When you need a little extra, you can purchase various add-ons for your Skinny mobile plan. Depending on your plan, you can purchase extra data, texts, minutes or Skinny minutes and texts. Costs range from $1 for 250 texts through to 5GB of data for $30. You can also add an International Calling add-on, and for $10 it gives you 300 minutes to call 42 countries over 30 days.

If you’re going to use a lot more data than usual over a specific time frame, and you are not on an unlimited plan, you can take advantage of Skinny’s Data Binge. The Data Binge allows you access to unlimited data, for a set amount of time, which you can use when you activate the add-on. 10 minutes of unlimited data costs 50c, 1 hour is $1, 4 hours is $2 and 12 hours is $4.

When it comes to roaming, Skinny provides affordable roaming packs that you can use while travelling to over 30 countries. You can choose between either a 3- or 7-day pack that includes data, minutes and texts, or a data-only pack for 7 days.

NZ Travel SIM

Visitors to New Zealand can pick up one of Skinny’s NZ Travel SIMs from either Paper Plus or an i-SITE centre and activate a plan to use while in the country. Plans last for either 30 or 60 days, then the SIM is still valid to use on one of Skinny’s other mobile plans. Details of the plans available with the NZ Travel SIM are in the table below:

Plan typeDataMinutes (NZ & AU)Minutes (International)Texts (NZ & AU)Cost
30-day travel plan2GB200200200$28
60-day travel plan6GB200200200$48
60-day data only20GBN/AN/AN/A$88

International minutes can be used to call 24 countries (China, Fiji, Hong Kong, India, UK, USA, Canada, Singapore, Thailand, Belgium, France, Denmark, Germany, Italy, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, South Korea, Malaysia, Bangladesh, Ireland, Netherlands or South Africa).

Extras and rewards with Skinny

  • Buddy Rewards. If you refer a friend to Skinny and they sign up on a $16 or over, 4-Weekly plan, you receive $20 credit. Your friend also benefits, with a free 4GB of data once they are all set up. Buddy Rewards codes are valid until 30 September 2021.

Product highlights

  • No contracts. By prepaying, either weekly or monthly, you have more flexibility to change or cancel your plan.
  • Keep your number. If you are transferring to Skinny from another provider, you can keep your existing number whether you were a prepay or pay monthly customer.
  • Purchase a new mobile. If you need a new mobile, Skinny has a selection of phones from Apple, Huawei, Samsung, Nokia, Oppo and Skinny’s own brand to purchase.
  • Kiwi support. Skinny has a local Customer Care Team, available Monday through to Sunday. There is also a dedicated roaming helpdesk if you are having issues while overseas.

What to be aware of

  • Skinny doesn’t have its own physical stores, so all communication is done by phone, live chat, email or Facebook. The Customer Care Centre is usually closed on public holidays.
  • If you use up the minutes and texts on your plan, you are charged overage rates. For 4-Weekly plans, these are 20c per minute and 20c per text. On other plans, you are charged 43c per minute and 8c per text. Once you reach your data limit, your access stops so you need to purchase a data add-on to get online again.
  • When choosing a Skinny Unlimited weekly plan, your speed reduces once you hit 10GB. On 4-Weekly plans, speed reduces after 4.5GB per 28 days with the $36 plan, after 12GB with the $46 and after 40GB with the $70. You cannot purchase a Data Binge and unused data does not roll over to the next billing cycle.
  • Some mobiles are locked to specific networks, so there is a chance yours won’t work with Skinny. Phones purchased from Skinny or Spark work, but for other mobiles, enter your phone’s IMEI number on the Skinny website to check before purchasing a SIM.
  • Since Skinny does not offer pay monthly contracts, you need to pay the full price of a new phone upfront rather than enjoying interest-free payments across a set period.

How to switch to Skinny

Whether you are a new mobile customer or you have an existing plan with another provider, you can join Skinny by buying a SIM online or from a retail partner or branded dairy. Retail partners include selected supermarkets, petrol stations and electronics stores.

Skinny Trio SIM accommodates three sizes – Standard, Micro and Nano. If you are purchasing online, you can expect to receive your new SIM within three working days.

Once you have your SIM, you need to dial 456 to activate it and then sign up for an online account. If you want to keep an existing number, you can submit a “Keep my number” request for Skinny to transfer the number to its network.

Our verdict

Skinny is worth considering if you are looking for a cheap mobile plan and don’t want to be locked into a contract.

We like that you can choose between 4-Weekly or Weekly plans so you have the flexibility and can change your plan at any time. There are plenty of add-ons to keep you going when you run out of data or minutes, and Skinny has one of the most (if not the most) affordable roaming packs of any New Zealand provider.

While there are no physical stores, Skinny’s local support team are reachable by phone or online. However, this could be a dealbreaker if you like to speak to someone in person when you have an issue.

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