How To Borrow Airtime or Data on MTN Nigeria, Fees Involved and Payback Duration

For many Nigerians, knowing how to borrow airtime or data on MTN is a very important piece of information they need to have at the tips of their fingers. The reason is very simple; because you can easily run out of airtime or data and have no money to immediately purchase one. With this, the only available solution is to borrow and then pay back the loan later.

If you have ever tried to figure out how to borrow airtime or data on MTN Nigeria, then you’re in good company because millions of others are doing the same. MTN is the biggest telecommunication company in Nigeria and it holds the largest share of the mobile market. Reports show that MTN Nigeria accounts for more than 40% of total mobile subscribers in the country. In 2020, statistics revealed that more than 64 million Nigerians use MTN.

Step By Step Procedure For Borrowing Airtime On MTN Nigeria

There are different methods you can use to borrow airtime from MTN Nigeria; via the USSD Code and via IVR.

Borrow Airtime or Data on MTN Nigeria

1. How To Borrow Airtime Via USSD Code

This is a very easy way of borrowing airtime from MTN Nigeria. There are a few steps to take using this procedure;

  • Dial *606#: Pick up your phone and dial the USSD code *606# and then wait for a list to display on your phone. Make sure that the SIM card in your phone is an MTN SIM.
  • Select XtraTime: After dialing the USSD code, a list of options will appear on your screen. Simply select XtraTime to proceed.
  • Select Desired Amount: After selecting XtraTime, another list will appear on your screen. This time the list will contain different amounts of airtime available to you for borrowing. Just select the amount you will like to borrow to proceed.
  • Confirm Transaction: After you have selected the amount you want to borrow, you will receive a message from the system showing you the amount you are about to borrow as well as the service fee attached. The system will ask you to confirm the transaction to continue with the borrowing process. All you need to do here is just confirm the transaction.
  • Receive Airtime: After you have confirmed the transaction, your borrowed airtime will be sent to you. However, the system will deduct the service fee first before crediting your XtraTime account with the remaining airtime balance. You will also receive a successful notification message.

2. How To Borrow Airtime Via IVR

Borrow Airtime or Data on MTN Nigeria

This is another simple way to borrow airtime on MTN Nigeria. To borrow airtime on MTN Nigeria via IVR, follow the following steps;

  • Dial 606: Pick your phone and dial the number 606 on it and then wait for the voice prompt. Ensure that you have an MTN SIM card on your device.
  • Select Preferred Language: After you have dialed the number, a voice prompt will be activated asking you to select a language of your choice. Just follow the instructions to pick either English, Igbo, Hausa, or Yoruba.
  • Select XtraTime: After you have selected the language of your choice, you will be asked to select either XtraTime or XtraByte. Since you’re after borrowing airtime, just select XtraTime to proceed.
  • Select Preferred Amount: After you have selected XtraTime, the voice prompt will play out all the airtime amounts that you are allowed to borrow and then ask you to choose the amount you prefer to borrow. Simply go ahead and make your choice.
  • Confirm Transaction: After you have selected the amount of airtime you want to borrow, the voice prompt will read out an announcement containing the amount you are requesting to borrow and the service fee applicable to it before asking you to confirm. All you need to do here is go ahead and confirm the transaction.
  • Receive Airtime: After you confirm the transaction, you will be credited with your airtime. However, be aware that the system will deduct the service fee first before crediting your XtraTime account with the remaining airtime balance. You will also be sent a successful notification message.

Eligibility For Borrowing Airtime on MTN Nigeria

It is easy to borrow airtime on MTN Nigeria. However, you must realize that not everyone who uses MTN qualifies to borrow from the network. There are a number of conditions to be met before one can qualify. Below are some of those requirements.

  1. You must have registered your MTN phone number to qualify
  2. You must be a Prepaid customer of MTN Nigeria
  3. You must have been using your MTN number for more than 3 months to qualify
  4. You must have spent nothing less than N200 monthly for 3 months
  5. To qualify, you must have between N0 and N75 in your main account. Anything more than this will disqualify you.
  6. You must have finished paying up any outstanding XtraTime loan requests
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Borrow Airtime or Data on MTN Nigeria

What Are The Service Fees Applicable?

Realize that the XtraTime service that helps you borrow airtime from MTN Nigeria is not free. You have to pay a service fee when you use the service. If you are borrowing N25, you will have to pay a service fee of 20.48%. This means that you will be credited with 79.52% when you borrow N25 from MTN Nigeria.

However, for all other credit bands, you will be charged 15.36% as a service fee. This means that if you’re borrowing anything from N50 to N5,000, you will be credited with 84.64% of the airtime borrowed and the remaining 15.36% will be held as a service fee.

How Much Can One Borrow From MTN Nigeria?

The amount of airtime a person can borrow on MTN Nigeria varies depending on the profile of the customer. Certain factors are considered, including how long a person has been on the network and what the person’s spending frequency is, as well as how much the person spends on airtime regularly. The more a person spends on the network, the more airtime is made available to them to borrow on the XtraTime service.

The available credit bands on the XtraTime service range from N25 to N5,000 at the moment. This means MTN Nigeria customers can borrow from N25 to N5,000 depending on their profile.

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When Should The Loan Be Paid Back?

When you borrow airtime on MTN Nigeria, you are required to pay back the loan on your next recharge. There is no time frame for when a person MUST pay back the airtime but just have it at the back of your mind that the next time you recharge your phone, the amount of airtime you have borrowed will be deducted from the recharge.

If you happen to recharge an amount of airtime that is less than the one you borrowed, all of it will be deducted by the service and subsequent recharge you make will also be used to recover the outstanding loan until you have fully repaid your debt.

What Are The Consequences of Not Paying Back Your Loan?

There are no drastic consequences if you don’t pay back the airtime you borrowed. You will not be dragged to a court or anything of the sort. However, realize that if you don’t pay back the loan, that means you won’t be able to make calls on your MTN line especially if you have exhausted the borrowed airtime.

Paying back the borrowed airtime means you have to recharge your line first. So, if you do not recharge the line to pay back the loan, you won’t be able to make any calls, therefore rendering your line redundant. However, you will still be able to receive calls.

Step By Step Procedure For Borrowing Data On MTN Nigeria 

On MTN Nigeria, it is not just airtime that you can borrow. You can also borrow data. When you run out of data and do not have money to immediately buy a new one, you can borrow and pay back later using the XtraByte service.

There are different ways you can borrow data on MTN Nigeria. Let us take a look at some of those ways below;

1. Borrow Data Via USSD Code

You can borrow data on MTN Nigeria by using a USSD code. Below are the steps to take to borrow data using this procedure;

  • Dial *606#: Pick up your phone and dial the USSD code *606# and wait for a list to drop down on your screen for you to make a selection. Before you do this, make sure that the SIM card in your phone is an MTN SIM.
  • Select XtraByte: After you have dialed the USSD code and have seen the list, just select XtraByte to proceed with the process.
  • Select Preferred Data Bundle: After you have selected XtraByte, the system will present you with all the data bundles that you are allowed to borrow. When this happens, select your preferred data bundle to proceed.
  • Confirm Transaction: After you have selected your preferred data bundle, the XtraByte service will send you a message containing the data bundle you have chosen and the applicable service fee attached. You will also be required to confirm or decline the transaction. Just confirm to proceed.
  • Receive Your Data: After you confirm the transaction you’re trying to make, your data will be sent to your XtraByte account. Your main account will be deducted with the bundle amount + service fee and you will be sent a successful notification message.
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2. Borrow Data Via 606 IVR

You can also borrow data on MTN Nigeria via 606 IVR. All you need to do is follow the following steps;

  • Dial 606: Pick up your phone and dial the number 606 and wait for the voice prompt.
  • Select Language: After you dial the number and the voice prompt is activated, the system will ask you to select a preferred language between either English, Igbo, Hausa, or Yoruba. Go ahead and pick a preferred language
  • Select XtraByte: After you have selected your preferred language, the voice prompt will ask you to select XtraTime or XtraByte. Since you’re trying to borrow data, just select XtraByte.
  • Select Preferred Data Bundle: After you have selected XtraByte, the voice prompt will read out all the data bundles that are available for you to borrow. Select the option that best suits you.
  • Confirm Transaction: After you have selected your preferred data bundle, the voice prompt will read out a message that contains the data bundle you have selected plus the service fee attached. You will then be asked to confirm the transaction. Go ahead and confirm.
  • Receive Your Data: After you have confirmed the transaction, your data will be sent to your XtraByte account. Afterward, your main account will be deducted with the amount of the data bundle you have borrowed plus the service fee will be deducted from your main account. You will also receive a successful notification message.

Eligibility For Borrowing Data on MTN Nigeria

Not every user of the MTN network qualifies to use the XtraByte service. To qualify for the service, you must have met the following criteria;

  1. You must have paid up any outstanding XtraByte loan request
  2. You must have registered your MTN number
  3. You must be a Prepaid customer of MTN Nigeria
  4. You must have been using the MTN SIM card for more than 3 months to qualify
  5. You must have spent nothing less than N200 monthly for at least 3 months
  6. You must have between N0 and N75 in your main account
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What Are The Service Fees Applicable?

If you are borrowing data from MTN Nigeria, be aware that you will have to pay a service fee. But how much will you be charged? Well, the information gathered shows that you will be charged a service fee of 15.36% (including VAT) on any data bundle you borrow on MTN Nigeria. The said service fee will be applied to the data bundle that you have borrowed and your main account will be debited with the bundle amount plus the service fee.

How Much Data Can One Borrow From MTN Nigeria

The amount of data a person can borrow from MTN Nigeria depends on the customer’s profile. Different factors including how much data you load regularly and how long you have been on the internet. When you begin your application to borrow data, you will be shown the least and highest amount of data you can borrow.

When Should The Loan Be Paid Back?

When you borrow data on MTN Nigeria, you are expected to pay back the loan on your next recharge. This means the next time you recharge your phone with airtime, the airtime equivalent of the data you borrowed will be deducted from your account immediately.

Is It Possible to Transfer Borrowed Data?

There is a straight answer to this question and it is ‘no!’ You cannot transfer data that you borrowed on MTN Nigeria to another MTN number. You can, however, share your data with someone else if you bought that data through normal means.

Is It Better To Use Borrowed Airtime to Buy Data or to Just Borrow Data Straight Away?

The answer to this question depends on you, the customer who wants to borrow. If you are in need of both airtime and data and do not have the means to purchase them at the moment, then it is better for you to borrow airtime from the network, buy some data with it then keep the remaining airtime for use to call people you need to reach out to.

However, if it is only data that you need, then it is better to just borrow the data straight away without having to borrow airtime first.

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