Terminate a Contract With Three UK (the easy way)

Something I see posted quite a bit on a variety of discussion forums I frequent is people asking how they can terminate their contract with three, particularly when their customer services occasionally don’t take the news that you want to leave well and will employ every (dirty) trick in the book to try and keep you. Luckily there is a way to terminate relatively painlessly without the need to talk to anyone on the phone. My other half used this method to terminate her contract with three in January 2013 and did so relatively painlessly

Whilst this advice was originally designed for customers of 3, there is no reason why the templates and procedure cannot be adapted to work for customers of O2, Orange, T-Mobile, EE, Vodafone, Tesco Mobile, Virgin Media, Virgin Mobile or indeed any other UK mobile phone network! Indeed I have terminated on O2 previously using the same letter and with far fewer attempts to call me still!

Step 1 – Check you are out of contract

Whilst it is possible to terminate in contract, this will involve the payment of an early termination fee which unfortunately may involve talking to someone

Step 2 – Ignore any information on terminating on their website

Three’s official line on terminating your contract is to simply(!) give them a call on 333. DO NOT DO THIS if you value your blood pressure. The following YouTube video should demonstrate why

Step 3 – Get your word processor out

The key to a painless termination is to do it in writing. The following is the letter that my other half sent to three which you are welcome to use as a template. The section on not needing a PAC code may need amending if you wish to keep your number but besides that you should be good to go once you insert your own details in the square brackets






Dear Sir/Madam,

I am writing to give the required 30 days notice to terminate my contract in respect of the above referenced account/mobile number.

Please note that this letter has been sent by recorded delivery and therefore notice will be deemed to have been served from the date the letter has been confirmed signed for by Royal Mail. I do not wish to retain my mobile number and do not require a PAC code.

Please confirm IN WRITING that you have actioned my termination request and the date on which my service with you will terminate. I would also ask that you dispense with any retention activity. My decision regarding this termination is final and any attempt to call me to retain me will serve as an annoyance which may reduce the likelihood that I will return to three in the future

I look forward to receiving written confirmation of the ending of my contract

Yours Sincerely


Step 4 – Place letter in an envelope

Put the letter in an envelope and send it to the following address

Three Customer Services
Hutchison 3G UK Ltd
PO Box 333
G2 9AG

Step 5 – Take letter to a post office

You need to send the letter by either 1st or 2nd class recorded delivery (at a cost of £1.55 or £1.45 respectively at the time of writing this blog post). It is imperative you send the letter recorded delivery otherwise it could get “lost in the post”. Keep your receipt to track the letter and keep an eye on the tracking so you can see when the letter was signed for. Make a note of the date the letter was signed for and work out 30 days from that date. This is the date your contract should be terminating on so remember it to compare with any correspondence you get from three.

Step 6 – Ignore your phone

Despite the letter stating that you would consider any retentions activity an annoyance and that they should communicate with you in writing, three customer services grasp of the English language isn’t too great. They will still call. Let voice mail deal with them. As a general rule of thumb if the number they are calling from contains a lot of 3’s then it is three. Also google any numbers calling you that you do not recognise and ignore calls from withheld numbers. If three leave a message asking you to call them to discuss your letter ignore them. Your letter has made it quite clear that there is nothing to discuss and as you have proof of when the letter was signed for, the clock is ticking

Step 7 – Wait

Eventually after a few days of receiving the cold shoulder, three will eventually do what it is you asked of them in your letter and will terminate the contract. You will receive a SMS confirming this though the SMS may say that your contract will terminate in 30 days. Ignore this for the time being. Soon after a letter will arrive and this should (with any luck) confirm your termination with notice being given from the date your letter was signed for. If for any reason the date is wrong then you may have to get in touch with three. I’d recommend either writing again or on facebook (search for three uk ) or twitter (@threeuksupport). After going through all this the last thing you want to do is talk to them on the phone.

Step 8 – Wait (again)

You may still receive the odd call from three. Continue to give them the voicemail treatment. Eventually your termination day will arrive and all being well your phone will terminate. If for some reason it doesn’t you may have to contact them. Again social networking is probably the way to go with contacting them as talking to them can be bad for your health

Hope people find this guide useful

Join the conversation


  1. I tried to cancel my contract with Three on receipt of their letter on 13.02.2017 with a 47% hike in month contract charges. I called them on the evening of 13.02, then the morning of 14.02 and then again the evening. Each time I’d go through a long rigmarole of aggressive sales techniques ranging from persistent “offers” and delays to cancel, only to be transferred to someone else who then said “systems were down for upgrade”. Strange how their upgrades took over 24 hours.
    I called them back in the middle of all this and asked to “Upgrade my tariff”; miraculously their system was in full working order; when I then stated I wanted to cancel my contract; strangely the system was being upgraded. One adviser point blank refused to cancel my contract because “I was a valued customer”.
    Finally in frustration I rang their head office and got hold of their corporate complaints section; lodged a complaint and got my contract cancelled – despite a 20 minute call of the adviser aggressively trying to retain me as a customer. Whatever doubt I had had about leaving Three had vanished throughout the lies.
    I haven’t received their promised confirmation text or email since, and today (15.02.2017) I have had three separate sales calls from Three trying to convince me to stay with them.
    I have written directly to David Dyson (Chief Executive) of Three to confirm in writing what was agreed and when my contract will cancel.
    I’ve seen some convoluted processes to cancel in my life, but never have I see one that is aggressive, obstructive or outright impossible as Three. I’ve discovered from colleagues today that they’d had similar issues with Three previously. Clearly it is standard business practice to beat customers into submission.

    1. .i agree with your comments here. They do not actually read letters or will claim they haven’t received any even though you have signed delivery notification. Spend hours on the phone being passed from pillar to post. Been trying to cancel since September but will now only deal with them in writing! Point is Three say you can only cancel by phone therefore all those of us who struggle to hear are at an immediate disadvantage. Sent initial letter like the one Dave has on here as far back as September 27th 2017 asking for PAC codes etc……nothing from them at all. Phones them at the end of October….oh we haven’t had a letter from you they said! Over an hour speaking with at least three individuals whom my wife and I could barely hear! Upshot is that these fools only cancelled one contract. Have escalated to the Resolver service and have issued a pack containing all correspondence and copies of signed delivery notes to Customer Complaints in Glasgow. I’m sure it will be dealt with in time!
      However, I am concerned that if Three are serious about only accepting cancellations by phone then not only are we put at a disadvantage but we are being actively discriminated against. Taking this one up with the Ombudsman tomorrow and maybe take forward to my MP because this injustice must be stopped.
      Anyway, this is a great site…..I feel better knowing that others have experienced similar problems with these charlatans.

  2. Hi Dave,

    In August I phoned 3 to cancel my monthly contract. It was a very painful experience.
    In the end I said I just want to cancel my contract with 3!
    They sent me a sorry you are leaving us text and a PAC code which I didn’t ask for.
    I check my statement in November and notice they are still taking my money. I cancel the DD and wait for THE CALL. I told the nice gentleman that I couldn’t understand that I didn’t want the PAC code and I didn’t ask for it so I’m not paying. He said I had to have the PAC code to cancel and click on the link?
    Weeks of continuous calls and a letter I phoned to pay the debt by automated call.
    I phoned and spoke to a lovely lady that said I was misinformed as I didn’t need a PAC code if I didn’t want the number..so I was lied to which resulted to me paying extra months money. I have now terminated the contract but I am out of pocket by 5 months.

  3. I sent a letter to them (recorded). They texted and left a voicemail which I ignored. Then a couple weeks later, they sent me a letter stating that don’t accept cancellations in writing, only on the phone. It’s now been 30 days since they received my letter.

    What can I do if they just refuse to cancel?

  4. Hi Dave

    Have printed off your letter and I am going to send it off tomorrow. I have written that I would require my PAC code, will they send this in writing or text, or will I have to call to get this?



    1. I Sent my Letter Which was Recieved on the 16th March 2017.
      Today I got a Letter back with a Date of Termination for next Month.
      I have not had any Text or Phone Calls from them
      Everything should be Fine.

      Hope this Helps

  5. can anyone help I took out a contract and was told the phone would be in the shop 2 days later, went back no phone, told it would be sent to local store, still a week later no phone, now I don’t want to proceed can I insist they cancel as they have not provided me with the contract phone

  6. I have written to 3 on three occasions now asking for the cancellation of a monthly contract and also a sim only contract and all I keep getting is another demand for another month’s contract and threatening legal action if I don’t pay it. I’ve been ignoring the numerous phone calls I now get from them. I am absolutely sick of writing to them and not getting the cancellation I want! Not quite sure what to do next!!

  7. They are hassling me now, i tried to cancel My contract although it ran out three years ago, The shop gave me the run around , gave me a number to rin, that to sent me round in Circles, So i just cancelled the direct debit, They ring every Day, i am thinking of reporting it as a nuisance call,

  8. Hi just wondering if this still works.
    Sent off a letter via recorded delivery exactly thirty days before the day I wanted my contract to end(minimum term had finished) and ask for a lettered reply with PAC code.
    Almost three weeks later I’ve had no reply and I contacted them via twitter only to be told they don’t accept cancellation via letter and that I had to phone!

  9. I’m out of contract and sent them a letter on October 4th to cancel and request a PAC code.

    No reply.

    Messaged them on Twitter out of interest and was told I had to cancel by phone. They ignored my response – “so presumably you just threw my letter in the bin then?”

    Sent them a more threatening letter on October 24th stating that as far as I was concerned notice was given on the 4th and I am not liable after the 30 days are up. Quoted Ofcom’s General Terms of Entitlement to them to try and get the PAC code.

    We’ll see what happens next.

  10. Hi David I’ve just taking out a new contract for a tablet on Thursday for my husband he doesn’t want it I’ve been told I can’t change it and I’ve signed to say I expect that but I also got told if I ring three they may let me cancel so I rang them and they say I need to go back to the store what are my options please

  11. I used your template letter to cancel my 3 mobile internet. I sent a copy of my agreement with it. It worked a treat – I had a letter from them telling me when the contract will end, success. I kept putting off my cancellation as I really didn’t want to ring them. When 3 wrote to me, they did ask me to give them a call to discuss – obviously I won’t be.

    I just want to say…… thank you.

Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

This site uses cookies. As does pretty much every single other website on the internet because without cookies the Internet doesn't work!. Sadly the EU have passed a stupid law which requires me to harass new visitors with a stupid pop up asking if it is ok for the site to use something which makes much of the internet work! The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible and to make this site work properly! If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this. Once you have accepted cookies you should not see this pop up again for 9999 months. Unless you use a different browser. Or a different device. See it's a stupid law isn't it! Normally I would advocate adding pop ups like this one into an ad blocker or some other kind of content blocker but please don't do that. This site is expensive to run and I need the ad revenue! Oh and if you'd like more information on the cookies this site uses check out the privacy policy link below. And for more of my thoughts on this stupid law check out the about me page!