If you've reached the end of your iPhone's contract or purchased the iPhone outright (maybe you've got a new iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus on the way) you'll probably want to get yourself a SIM-only deal to give you minutes, texts and data, unless you're opting for pay-as-you-go. There are hundreds of SIM-only deals out there, so we've narrowed it down to our pick of the best to help you decide which one to choose.

Below is a tool that'll show you the best deals available right now in the UK, and you can adjust it using the drop down menus to suit you. If you're looking for more buying advice about SIM-only contracts, scroll down and continue reading - we've also got some hand-picked contracts to share with you there.

SIM-only contracts: What to look for

There are two main reasons you'd want to get your contract as a SIM-only deal. The first is if you've had your iPhone for the duration of your original contract, and have now come to the end of it. You now own the iPhone, so you don't need to continue paying it off. This means you'll only need to pay for the minutes, data and texts from now on, which can often mean you'll pay half the price or less per month that you were when you were paying off the cost of the phone.

It's really important to keep an eye on when your contract finishes, as your carrier might not always remind you. Customers can often be caught out by this, and some people even continue paying for both the phone and the allowance for months after their contract is up, effectively throwing away their money. See also: How to unlock an iPhone so you can use any SIM.

The second reason is if you've been into an Apple Store, perhaps, and paid the £359 (or more) that it costs to buy an iPhone SIM-free. In order to use it for calls, texts and internet access, you'll need to get a SIM-only contract or a pay-as-you-go SIM.

SIM-only contracts usually last for 12 months, rather than the 24 months you would normally be tied to your iPhone's contract for. There are some rolling monthly contracts, too, so you'll be able to change your mind on a month-by-month basis. This is likely to cost you slightly more, though.

It's worth noting that, while your carrier might say the contract is 12 months long, they'll often let you end it after 9 months if you phone them up.

So what are the best SIM-only deals out there? It really depends on your personal needs, as everyone uses their iPhone differently, but we've rounded up a selection of our favourite deals so there should be one here that suits you.

Best SIM-only contract for data

If you're looking for the freedom to text, call and browse the web as much as you like, you'll want a contract designed for heavy users.

  • 12-month contract with Three, 12GB 4G data, 200 minutes, unlimited texts - £17 per month. View deal here.
  • 30-day rolling contract with GiffGaff, 6GB 4G data, 2,000 minutes, unlimited texts - £18 per month. View deal here.

Best SIM-only contract for all-rounders

All-rounders are ideal for moderate users who want a reasonably cheap contract with a decent amount of texts, data and minutes. They average at about £10 per month. Below is our pick of the best.

30-day rolling Data Rollover contract with iD, Carphone Warehouse's mobile network. Data Rollover means that if you have any data left over on your monthly plan it can be carried over into the next month. The data only rolls over for one month before expiring, though. 1GB 4G data, 500 minutes, 5,000 texts - £7 per month. View deal here.

  • 30-day rolling ShockProof contract with iD, 2GB 4G data, 250 minutes, 5,000 texts - £7.50 per month. View deal here.
  • 30-day rolling Data Rollover contract with iD, 2GB 4G data, 500 minutes, 5,000 texts - £9 per month. View deal here.
  • 30-day rolling contract with GiffGaff, 2GB 4G data, 500 minutes, unlimited texts - £10 per month. View deal here.

Best SIM-only contract for light users

If you're looking to get the cheapest SIM-only deal you can and don't need loads of minutes, texts or data, you'll want to look for a light-use contract like those listed below.

  • 12-month BT Broadband contract (BT customers only), 500MB 4G data, 200 minutes, unlimited texts - £5 per month. View deal here.
  • 30-day rolling Virgin Media contract, 500MB 3G data, 250 minutes, unlimited texts - £5 per month. View deal here.
  • 30-day rolling ShockProof (capped) contract from iD, Carphone Warehouse's mobile network with 250MB 4G data, 250 minutes, 5,000 texts - £4 per month. View deal here.
  • 30-day rolling ShockProof contract from iD with 1GB 4G data, 250 minutes, 5,000 texts - £5 per month. View deal here.

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