Moving to Japan: Should I Retain My SG Line? What’s the Cheapest Way?

Hi, this is D! I’m back.

I’ve been struggling with retention of my SG line because, well, I’m not keen to let go of my number that most of my friends contact me through and informing people of a change in my mobile number is such a painful process. So although I will be getting a new line in JP, I’m actually still more keen in retaining my SG line, at least for the first 3 to 6 months in case life sucks in JP and I wanna come home.

I’ve been fretting over this because the cheapest plan will still cost around S$30+ a month and it’ll be an absolute waste because I will not use it at all. Basically, Singtel, Starhub and M1 (as well as those  newer Telcos) all offer SIM-only plans without contract, which I am currently already on. Yup, I do not have to worry about being tied down by any of these telcos.

And by the way, do you know that when you take a line without any contract, you easily shave 50% of your monthly fees with the exact same package you are currently on now? That’s just a btw, so let me get back on topic.

My worry ended because today, I found the ultimate solution.

Retain my number at NO COST**Please read update below

Yup, FREE.

I’m sharing this piece of good news with you and it is called Circles.Life $0 Flexi Plan.

What does it offer? I shall let the screengrab tell you.

I actually do not really care what it offers within the plan because all I know is, this is a free option for me to retain my number and best of all, I get to be contactable even when I am in Singapore.

More importantly, what this means is that for you people who are already in Japan, like Gaijinhan, you guys should totally sign up for this and get yourself ‘free’ contactability when you are back in SG.

Though I won’t be headed to JP until a month later, I still signed up first because, well, I’m a Singaporean — kiasu lives in me. This afternoon, the site wouldn’t even load because of overloaded site traffic.

The best part is signing up is really easy and in case you are interested, you can head to this link for the page. My registration fee was also waived as part of a promo, so it saved me $26 or something (oops I can’t recall) and I only had to pay for $6 delivery charge for the sim card to be delivered to me.

So I hope this helps you as much as it has helped me!

Till then,


**Update! PLEASE READ! – May 2018

Thanks to Evellynn, I was alerted to a point that I totally had no idea of, which is that there is a disclaimer by Circles.Life that if a plan is under-utilised e.g. no data used for 3 months, Circles.Life will suspend the account. This is very important because it could render my so-called perfect plan useless, lol.

To make things simple, I am going to paste the conversation I had with Circles.Life below. It should answer most doubts and on top of that, cover other possible scenarios that may happen.
*I pride myself for being a super process-flow person, so of course I covered all grounds lol. Okay, enough with my shamelessness. Moving on.

D: I applied for the flexi plan yesterday evening and deliver has been scheduled. Can I request for 2 sim cards? Is dual sim option available?

C.L: I looked into that and we do only send out 1 SIM per number. <– Kuakuakua~ Plan A failed lol

D: Right. because I travel often due to work and due to projects sometimes I am not in SG for 3 mths. will they suspend my line?

C.L: Let me check on what process can be done since going out of SG may cause the SIM to get turned off due to nonactivity.
Hey thanks for waiting, as I was advised, it would be better to top-up the account before you leave, that way, it will keep the account active. <– YES! Solution found! But wait…

D: What do you mean by top-up? For example?

C.L: From the app, there’s 1GB $8, 2GB $12, 30mins talk + 10 SMS $5; choose which ever to topup, that should keep your account active

D: Ohh so as long as there’s activity once in a while it’ll be alright? In a way, just need to ensure the account is not totally dead is that right?

C.L: That ‘s correct 🙂

D: Ahhh i see! AWESOME. you’ve been a great help, thanks so much. *Continue testing water* Btw if ever the account is suspended, I just have to log in and reactivate it right? will there be charges?

C.L: For the flexi plan, looks like the account will be terminated and cannot be reactivated. <– IMPORTANT

D: Ok got it. is it possible to re-sign up after that then? Just concerned that my number will be gone and i cant use it again.

C.L: Yeah, most likely it will be assigned to a new person once its back to the pool of numbers<– IMPORTANT

D: Okay sounds risky. May i know how many months of inactivity will render a termination

C.L: At an estimate, 3 months. I have an idea though, you can connect your phone on wifi then topup even if you’re away.

D:  I’ll do that! You’ve been such a great help. Really appreciate it! Big THANK YOU to you. you have a great day ahead. Shan’t disturb you further, lol. thanks!!

C.L: Hehehe disturb us when you feel like it 🙂 Have a great day! 🙂

Notice how friendly and cheeky this helpdesk dude is, lol. But I have to say, my experience with them has been pretty good so far. And I so appreciate chat helpdesk rather than calling. I mean, I can chat and look like I’m doing work in the office, if you know what I mean.

So there, you have it! It’s still the best solution as long as you remember to go into the account and top up $5 every 2 – 3 mths to ensure your account is active in Circles.Life’s eyes.

Just make sure you never miss it because once it’s terminated (there’s no suspension, please note), it’s GONE.

I’m gonna go ahead and assume they send warning letter before that, though.

So once again, hope this has been helpful. 🙂


**Update AGAIN! PLEASE READ! – July 2018

Now, I’ve since gotten a new phone line in Japan, as well as a new phone and I had intended to move Circles.Life sim card over to my new phone. However, I realised that Circles.Life app in my new phone can’t be ‘activated’; I can’t log in and identify my account, unless I receive a confirmation SMS and that is just not possible because the $0 Flexi Plan does not come with roaming facility.

Additionally, I can’t log on to my account from browser to do top-ups as well.

What this means is that ultimately, my SG line will be suspended in 3 months’ time. Yes. UNLESS! I use back the sim card in my old phone and top up using my old phone app every 3 months.

So now my dual sim function in my Japan phone is pretty much useless.

Additionally, please do note that I’m facing one more ‘side’ problem, which is that my OTPs for banks etc can’t reach me because I have no roaming! So guys, please ensure you have your tokens ready when you are in Japan.

That’s all for the final update. Seriously hope there isn’t any further hiccups!

Hop over to this post to find out more about getting a new phone line in Japan.


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