Sim for incoming SMS only.

I'm looking to use some online SMS services, this is for a workshop and I just need to advise people stuff is ready for collection and it looks like my billing system can plug into a few different ones. I'd like to be able to have people reply if they want to some services allow you to have the reply go to a mobile and I'm thinking this would be cheaper (I don't need a virtual number so no additional cost) and easier to manage as the phone will make an obvious noise that can be checked without needing a PC and it can be handed easily between people - so no my personal mobile number isn't going to workout. I have a few of very old handsets hanging around, so I do not need anything but a sim that is cheap to keep active, it doesn't need to be or data capable.

….Any ideas? I'm thinking there must be plans as people get these sort of SMS only sims for security devices don't they?


  • Why not just get on one of those pay as you go plans with long expiry, like Amaysim or Aldi sim cards? This is probably your cheapest option.

    • I guess I will say I have no clue on pre piad having alway been on post paid/handset included plans. What is considered a 'long expiry' … 12 months? So I would just need to add some credit every year in that case to keep it active?

  • and it looks like my billing system can plug into a few different ones.

    So not sure what the question is then…. Get one of this list and move on.

    • OK the question is. Can I get a cheap sim for incoming SMS only. Ignore the rest.

      • If its incoming only, then how will reply to customers? ;)

        Any SIM will do 'incoming' SMS, if you have no credit on it, then it won't make calls or send SMS. I'm sure you can handle self control in this area?

        There are also 'virtual' number services, that you access via the web as well.

        If you want it work with your billing system, then you need to stick with the list they say works.

        • sims expire - they don't work forever hence you need to pay at least periodically something to keep them active.. you might even need to send an outgoing sms to so its in use and active. So I'm after the cheapest option.

        • @Elijha: yes, all things I know and hinted above.

          cheapest will depend on what you do with it. If you send lots of outbond SMS then paying more per month might be better for some of the unlimited plans, but if only receiving, then thats different.

          science-teacher listed a $0 post paid on optus. TPG does $1/m.

          Not sure how much cheaper you really want to go! No one will PAY you to have a mobile numer.

          Its not going to get any cheaper than $1/m from TPG, as optus doesn't currently have the $0/m deal.

          So head to click on PAYG, order service.

        • @JimmyF: Sorry Jimmy I think we are not communicating effectively here, or you are trying to toll me so I will stop responding.

        • @Elijha:

          Ok let me try again, its funny, I'm the one feeling trolled, but sure.

          You want a CHEAP sim for incoming SMS. Its not going to get any cheaper than $1/m from TPG.

          So head to click on PAYG, order service.

          $12 a YEAR for all the incoming SMS you can receive…. Happy now?

        • Its not going to get any cheaper than $1/m from TPG.

          Aldi prepaid is $5.00 for 1 year ($0.42 a month)

        • @WatchNerd: First year only…. ;)

        • @JimmyF: Port out with a free sim to another provider, then port back in if you want to keep the same number.
          Otherwise just buy a new Aldi Sim & start again.

      • Thx for that. I was a little confused

  • Optus runs a pay as you go post paid plan occasionally for $0/m. I use that

    • Thanks I'll keep an eye out. I guess you need to have some credit on it or use it in some way to keep it active though right?

  • Nah not for a post paid

  • TPG do a $1 / month, PAYG SIM plan.

  • Have you considered using an SMS service to send your messages and handle replies?

    You'd have the option to direct replies to an email address, so going that route you wouldn't need a SIM at all.

    • unless its FREE, I don't think the OP is interested it seems….

    • Not really considered that no. But the online service can be set up to email already replies back by a virtual number any way - looking at the cost and that its not that good a solution I figured a cheap sim in an old phone would be better and possibly cheaper. I think its not optimal to do it back to a PC in this case because these will all end up on a PC which will not be easily accessible to those out the back. Where as a cheap old phone can sit out the back be greased up and destroyed and easily replaced.

  • So you intend to use an Internet SMS service, e.g SMSglobal, and set the sender ID to that of a prepaid phone? Doable but you will have no record of the customer request other than in the phone. May not matter to you.

    • I'm convinced the OP isn't sure what they want at this point. They seem to not understand the concept of how this all works, that they need to SEND a SMS to the customer for them to reply….. SMS messages just don't appear out of thin air for free.

      • I think he understands, just not phrasing it well. You can send SMSes via the Internet. Costs per message of course. You can set the sender ID to what you want.

        • Still not convinced…. Yes I'm aware of send/receiving SMS via the internet and yeah those virtual numbers to receive from are not super cheap for what they are.

    • Thanks for the thought but I'm not concerned about keeping a copy of any replies long term. Its convenience thing, a job gets marked as closed, the system fires off a 'pick up ready' message from a template .. IF they replied it would be to adv they can't pick up or coming now etc in which case its good to see upon reply so things can be move / made accessible or put away for the day.

  • $5 starter kit from Aldi will get you 1 year. If you don't mind changing the number, get another starter kit the next year, otherwise $15 to renew for another year.

  • Amaysim postpaid, as long as you send an sms every few months it will stay active.


    $10 per year, that literal with 2 seconds searching… If you can't afford a 10er shut your business I guess lol.

  • Thanks for the tip.

    FYI I never said I was not willing to pay -I'm obviously paying for the outgoing SMS service, and I never asked for free so where that came from I'm not sure. I just wanted to know what the options are, and I don't want to pay for service like voice or data I don't intend to use. As I mentioned I have only ever gone post-paid. The prepaid deals I see here are on OZB people get excited over are for $9/m intro plans for amaysim .. I knew there must be cheaper plans or addon sims and such - and I thought there may even be services that offered SMS only plans for 'devices' like security alarms. I have now found some extremely cheap options that I will look into.

    I had though this the best place to go for answers - and there have been some - but the tone has been a little negative, people seemed to get to involved in my reason for wanting it rather then what I was asking for and offering their knowledge discussing the deal.

    Anyway, again thanks for your input and hose that provide other links and info.

    • You can't go swimming in a piranha-infested river and not expect a few nips. It's just the nature of the OzBargain beast (fish?).

    1. Aldi as previously noted a few times - just add $5 or so each year to it to keep it active
    2. Consider hooking the old mobile up to your wifi, and then enable sms to email on the handset (app on android or "Settings>Messages>Receive At" on iPhone) then when a message arrives you can also be notified via email.

    Yomojo $0 plan. Will cost you nothing and keeps going. $2 for the sim initially.

  • have you considered not using SMS, it's 2017 the situations where people have SMS but not internet is now super small, use facebook messenger or good old email, literally the only thing i use SMS for these days is 2FA, everyone else has moved on, both options are free, can be made separate to personal accounts and come with the added bonus of 'cloud' storage for all contact, and way more control over who can message and when

  • Can also consider Whatsapp. I know a lot of traders in Asia advertising the service for promotion. The good thing it is two way and free. SMS will incur charges if you are responding. If someone sends you an SMS it is good practice to acknowledge receipt. With Whatsapp you can acknowledge for free.