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Recharge a China Mobile pre-pay account outside of China?

new york
Level Contributor
437 posts
5 reviews
Recharge a China Mobile pre-pay account outside of China?

I have a China Mobile SIM Card that has been activated.

Unless I'm mistaken, the account deactivates after 6 months of inactivity even if there are minutes remaining.

I will not be in China until October. Is there anyway to add minutes to the account from Outside China so the account remains active.

Perhaps Online??

Xi'an, China
Level Contributor
293 posts
1. Re: Recharge a China Mobile pre-pay account outside of China?

to recharge online. or ask a help from your friend in China .

Shanghai, China
Level Contributor
2,237 posts
14 reviews
2. Re: Recharge a China Mobile pre-pay account outside of China?

China is not an online service society (yet) although everyone actually is online. Years ago you could not even recharge your phone from another province, you had to call someone in Shanghai to recharge your phone while you were in e.g. Hunan.

new york
Level Contributor
437 posts
5 reviews
3. Re: Recharge a China Mobile pre-pay account outside of China?

Thanks...problem settled!

I contacted the seller of my SIM card located in Beijing and they will reload with the minimum amount required prior to the expiration date.

Sherbrooke, Canada
Level Contributor
46,943 posts
852 reviews
4. Re: Recharge a China Mobile pre-pay account outside of China?

@laowai88 - you need to modernize yourself. It has been possible to reload phones online for quite a while. ;-p

new york
Level Contributor
437 posts
5 reviews
5. Re: Recharge a China Mobile pre-pay account outside of China?

Jean-Pierre

For future reference....how does one reload online?

Sherbrooke, Canada
Level Contributor
46,943 posts
852 reviews
6. Re: Recharge a China Mobile pre-pay account outside of China?

Unfortunately all the options that I know of required a Chinese bank card.

One way is to buy a recharge card (they actually just sell you the password, not the actual card) on taobao.com (the Chinese equivalent of eBay). You can also go on the China Mobile website but again you need a Chinese bank card and need to read Chinese.

Actually on Taobao you can buy a 100rmb card for less than100 (but not that much less)?

There are also some websites in english that will do it but for a premium. Just google it.

Edited: 10:56 am, March 09, 2012
Xi'an, China
Level Contributor
293 posts
7. Re: Recharge a China Mobile pre-pay account outside of China?

Through any of China online bank .

Such as www.boc.cn or www.icbc.com.cn

Through the China Mobile website: www.10086.cn

Through Taobao : www.tmall.com

Los Angeles...
2 posts
1 review
8. Re: Recharge a China Mobile pre-pay account outside of China?

Have you tried http://mobilerecharge.com/?

Hong Kong, China
Destination Expert
for Hong Kong, Beijing, Shanghai Region, Shenzhen, Bangkok
Level Contributor
8,052 posts
109 reviews
9. Re: Recharge a China Mobile pre-pay account outside of China?

I have not tried sch "international" recharging services. topup.com is another one.

I know some services in China take a while for processing as they need to use the operators system as well after they charged you.

I used Alipay, Unicom and China Mobile for it in China. All not very convenient from abroad without Chinese debit or credit card. There are companies that offer to help you to get money into your account at Alipay (it is a little bit like paypal) and use it for payments in China. Too complicated for a simple recharge.

Best is to find somebody you trust in China who can do it for you online. It is easy with a Chinese bank card.

Waterford Works...
Level Contributor
124 posts
10. Re: Recharge a China Mobile pre-pay account outside of China?

Neither recharging directly at China Mobile's website, nor recharging through taobao.com, is workable for foreigners with their overseas credit card or Paypal account. The easiest way is to recharge on website of recharging service companies which charge you a little premium.