Come 1st March the way you consume data will change.

This is due to the End User and Subscriber Services Charter Regulations which requires mobile network operators get permission from users to charge them for data should their bundle run out or expire.

You may have noticed a number of mobile network operators imploring customers to set their out of bundle limit so that they can continue using the internet when their data bundle runs out. Essentially, mobile network operators are asking for your permission to charge you more for data when using airtime rather than a bundle.

This morning we received communication from Cell C regarding exactly this matter.

“It’s up to customers to determine how their cell phone spend will work, according to their budget and in order to avoid running out of data.  However, customers will need to opt-in to get the benefits of the Spend Control function and to make sure they are never without data, SMSes or call time when they need it the most,” said Cell C chief customer experience officer, Michelle Beetar.

Here’s the thing though, don’t set an out of bundle limit.

We say this because at the time of writing Cell C’s out of bundle rates are extreme.

Pre-paid plan Out-of-Bundle Rate In Bundle
Megabonus R1.75 R0.37
Supercharge R1.11 R0.37
66c R0.16 R0.16
Ultra Bonus R1.75 R0.37


It’s also worth remembering that mobile network operators must now also notify you about how your data package is being depleted at regular intervals. As regards Cell C these notifications will come at 20 percentage, 50 percent, 80 percent and 100 percent depletion.

As such, there’s really no need to set an out of bundle limit because you’ll be notified that your bundle has been depleted and then you can dial *147# (on Cell C) to purchase a new data bundle with your airtime. This also means that your airtime will not be used to grant you access to the internet.

That having been said, if you absolutely must set an out of bundle limit you can dial *147# or visit the Cell C online portal.