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General terms

General terms


Last updated: 7 February 2024

There are three parts to the terms and conditions that you agree to when you use our Services – we refer to the three parts as the Skinny Terms. The first part is our General Terms – they're the terms you're reading right now. They apply to everyone receiving Skinny Services and they cover things everyone should know about. The second part is our Technology Terms. There will be a set that applies to you, depending on whether your Service runs over fixed lines like copper or fibre, or whether your Service uses our Networks.  The third part is our Plan Terms. Some of our Plans have a set of Plan Terms that apply to tell you exactly what to expect in respect of the Plan you've chosen. We also call these Plan Terms Offer Summaries

When you sign up for and use our Services, each of us agree to these General Terms, along with the Technology Terms and Plan Terms that apply to the Services that you've chosen.  This agreement applies from 14 December 2021 and replaces the earlier 6 May 2020 version. 

When you see words in bold, these terms have specific meanings that are set out at the end of this document.  


When you use our Services, there are some things we will commit to doing and some things we can't take responsibility for.

1.1 Our commitment: We’ll take reasonable skill and care to provide you with Services in a reasonable timeframe and we will take all reasonable efforts to ensure our Services do everything we say they will. We’ll do this as best we can, but there are some things we can’t control, such as weather conditions, systems and technology we don’t own and the number of people trying to use our Networks or other Networks used by us to provide Services to you. This means we can’t promise or guarantee that our Services will be available everywhere, always suit your needs, work all the time, never break or that speeds will never vary.  

1.2 Problems with the Services: If you let us know about a problem with our Services, we'll do our best to fix it as soon as possible. This may mean that we need to arrange for a service technician to visit your place for some Services provided to you. If the technician finds there are no problems with our Networks or equipment, you may need to pay the cost of the technician to be sent out. We will let you know in advance what the cost will be.

1.3 Your security: We can't always control how you use our Services and we can't ensure they'll always be virus-free, private and secure. We'll work hard at our end, but you'll also need to look after your privacy and security.

1.4 Your privacy: When you use our Services, you often need to share some personal information with us. Our Privacy Policy tells you what information we collect and how we use, share and protect it, and it applies whenever you interact with us or use our products and Services. Read our Privacy Policy here.  

1.5 Monitoring: We have legal obligations to monitor what’s transmitted over our Networks. We’ll also share information when we consider it necessary to satisfy a law, regulation, code, legal process or government agency request. We may also edit, remove or block some information when we have a legal obligation to. We may also monitor usage patterns for fair use and prohibited usage – see clauses 2.6 to 2.8 below.

1.6 Our Services may allow you to make content available to others or access content from third parties. We may monitor what is transmitted over our Networks to maintain the security, integrity or performance of our Networks and / or our Services.  

1.7 Third parties and their equipment: We’re not responsible for any transactions between you and other parties, or for the services or information you receive from them. If you use equipment on our Networks that we haven’t said is ok to use, we won’t be responsible if it doesn’t work, gets damaged or is found to be illegal. We also don't have to make it possible for you to use our Services with equipment from other parties.

1.8 Content disclaimer: We aren’t responsible for the content, information or other material you access when you use our Services. This includes content inaccuracies and delays. It also includes faults, damages or losses that happen because you accessed the content. We’re also not responsible if the content you hold on your devices or send using our Networks becomes damaged or lost. The content and information you transmit, send and receive using our Services is your responsibility.

1.9 Modems: Your choice of modem may impact your broadband experience, and different modems are designed to work with different types of broadband access technology (e.g. copper, fibre or wireless broadband). If you purchase a modem from us, it may not be compatible with all types of broadband access technology, and may not work with other broadband service providers. Find out more about modems

1.10 All our Services are Prepaid, which means they are paid for in advance of you using them.

1.11 Overdue fees: If you owe us money and the payment is overdue, we may restrict your services or stop providing it to you. We may also pass your debt to a debt collection agency. We or the debt collection agency may charge you for the costs incurred in the enforcement of any rights in our Terms. For example, this may include any legal fees incurred to recover any overdue payment from you.

1.12 Leaving early: If you decide to end your Service or leave Skinny before the end of a billing month, no money paid for that month is refundable, unless we say it will be in certain situation, as we explain later in these Terms.  

Fixed Term Contracts

1.13 Some of our Services come with a Fixed Term Contract e.g. for 12 months. If you wish to leave your Plan early, you may need to pay an Early Termination Fee which will be charged directly to your credit or debit card. Early Termination Fees are set out in your Plan Terms

Credit checks

1.14 You give us permission to run credit checks on you occasionally when we consider, acting reasonably and in good faith, that it is appropriate. If you do not meet our standard credit check requirements, we may restrict your Service or stop providing it to you.

How we will contact you

1.15 Sometimes, we will need to get in touch to give you billing information or tell you important things about your Service. We will do this by phone, SMS or email using the contact details you have given us.  If you have provided us with incorrect contact details, or if you have not updated your contact details after a change, we will not be responsible for you not receiving billing information or notices. Please let us know if any of your contact details change.  


When you use our Services, there are some things you commit to doing. 

2.1 Use our Services for yourself only: Our Services are intended for your own personal and household use. So you must only use them like that, unless we agree it’s okay for you to use them differently (in which case, other terms and conditions might apply). 

2.2 Keep your information safe: When we talk with you, we’ll rely on things like your account number, password, login details, PIN, username or other kinds of identifiers to make sure it’s really you. You must take great care with this information and keep it private. If you believe someone has accessed your account without your permission, got hold of your personal information or has endangered your security in some other way, you need to tell us as soon as possible.

2.3 Respect others: When using our Services, you must not interfere with anyone else's equipment or services, and you must respect our and others’ intellectual property rights. You must also respect our staff, and not threaten, bully or harass our staff, or anyone else (when using our Services).

2.4 Respect our Networks and equipment: You must not do anything or introduce anything, like a virus, that could interfere with, damage or harm our Networks or equipment. Don’t connect anything, like a phone or modem, to our Network unless it has a telepermit or one of our labels on it (or we tell you otherwise). If you lose, steal or damage any part of our Network or equipment, you might have to pay the repair or replacement costs. This will also apply to you if someone you’re responsible for or someone using your Services causes loss or damage to our Network. It’s up to you to make sure your in-home wiring and equipment that we haven't provided doesn’t interfere with the Services we provide to you. 

2.5 Follow the law: Make sure that the things you do when using our Services are legal and above board.

2.6 Fair use by you: You must use all of our Services in a responsible and fair manner that does not impact other customers.

2.7 Our Fair Use Policy: A Fair Use Policy also applies to some of our Plans, such as some of our Wireless Broadband Plans. We set out in our Mobile and Wireless Terms or Plan Terms if a Fair Use Policy applies to your Plan. A Fair Use Policy means you agree to use the relevant Service in a way that’s not overly excessive or unreasonable. This Fair Use Policy is based on how most people use the Service and helps us make sure everyone using it gets to enjoy it. If we, acting reasonably and in good faith, believe your use is excessive and unreasonable, we might need to restrict the Service or stop providing it to you. We may also give you the choice of moving to another Plan or having your Service managed to protect the experience of other customers. If you consider that the change to the new Plan or the management of your Service under this Fair Use Policy has a negative impact on you or your use of the Service (or new Service), you can exercise your right to terminate the Service. This clause doesn't apply to Services that run over fixed lines.

2.8 Do not use our Services for prohibited usage: You must not spam, mail bomb, publish any offensive or unlawful material, harvest information about others, create a false identity, access or upload any content which breaches any third party's rights, or do any other similar activity. You also agree not to use our Services for any activity that is inconsistent with normal usage patterns or the types of uses for which we communicate that the Services are to be used for, such as auto-dialling, continuously call or text-forwarding, bulk messaging, automated texting, tele-marketing, call centres and use of cellular trunking units. If you engage in such activities, we may contact you to advise that your usage is prohibited. If such usage continues, we may restrict, suspend or stop providing our Services to you, or withdraw your access to the Services, without further notice.  

2.9 Follow our instructions: If we give you instructions for using our Services, you must follow them. 

2.10 Be responsible for others using your Services: It’s up to you to make sure everyone using or interacting with your Services knows about your responsibilities in the Terms and meets them. If someone uses your account without your permission, it’s your responsibility, unless we’re the ones who caused it to happen, or you couldn’t foresee this unauthorised access happening. 

2.11 Don’t onsell: Don’t sell the Services you have with Skinny or commercially exploit them. 

2.12 Do not suggest that Skinny has endorsed or sponsored you: Take care not to imply that Skinny has endorsed or sponsored you in any way, unless we have agreed to this in writing.

2.13 Intellectual property: You don’t have any title, interest or intellectual property rights in the Networks we use or any part of them. This also applies to the Services we provide and anything we or our partners make available to you when we provide you with Services. You have some obligations about intellectual property too – see 2.3 above.

Interest free payment terms

2.14 Interest free payment is only available to approved customers on phones purchased at on selected Skinny Mobile Service Plans. Only one phone can be put on 36 months interest free per Skinny Mobile Service Plan.

Important – Gem Visa Terms apply to your interest free payments. 

Full Gem Visa Terms: 36-month equal interest free payments with Gem Visa as an instalment plan advance. Amount payable will be shown on your monthly statement. Prevailing interest rate (currently Gem Visa 27.99% p.a. / 29.95% Gem Creditline) applies to any remaining balance on the expiry of the instalment interest free period. Normal credit and lending criteria and fees, including a Gem Visa $55 (charged at $27.50 half yearly) establishment fee and $55 annual fee (charged at $27.50 half yearly), apply. Rates and fees are subject to change. Gem Visa is provided by Latitude Financial Services Limited.

Credit and lending criteria and fees apply, including a Gem Visa $55 establishment fee and annual fees ($55 Gem Visa / $55 Gem CreditLine). Prevailing interest rate (currently Gem Visa 27.99% p.a./Gem CreditLine 29.95% p.a.) applies after any interest free term ends. Paying only the minimum monthly repayment of 3% of the outstanding monthly balance or $20 (whichever is more), will not be sufficient to repay the purchase amount(s) within the promotional period. Amount payable will be shown on your monthly statement. Credit provided by Latitude Financial Services Limited.

2.15 Skinny is not responsible for phones on interest free payment which are lost or stolen and if this happens your payment obligations to Gem Visa will continue. This does not affect your legal rights, including under the Fair Trading Act 1986 or Consumer Guarantees Act 1993. If you leave Skinny or your eligible Skinny Plan during your interest free period or we stop providing you Services (e.g. because you've stopped paying us), your payment obligations to Gem Visa will continue.


Sometimes, we may decide to change our Services, prices or our Terms. And you may sometimes decide to change your Services or Technology. This section tells you how that works.

3.1 Changes to our Services, prices or Terms that are positive or neutral: When we reasonably think changes to our Services, prices or Terms are going to be neutral or good for you, we’ll make them straight away. We won’t necessarily tell you about these changes. If this change means changing our Terms, we’ll update the Terms on our website.

3.2 Changes to our Services, prices or Terms that disadvantage you: Sometimes we will make a change to our Services, prices or Terms, and that change will disadvantage you. If that happens, and the change is within our control, we’ll give you 30 days’ notice of the change by a communication method we choose (unless the changes are outside our control, in which case we’ll tell you about it beforehand if we can, or as soon as we can afterwards). We might also update the Terms on our website if we need to. We’ll act in good faith and be fair when we’re deciding if a change will disadvantage you. If you’re on a Fixed Term Contract and you want to end it because of a change that disadvantages you under this clause, we won’t charge you an Early Termination Fee. If you think this might apply but you’re unsure, please ask us. 

3.3 Changing your Plan: If you want to change your Plan, there might be specific terms that apply. It’s a good idea to check your Plan Terms and Technology Terms to find out what’s involved. If we decide to change your Plan or move you to a new Plan, and we consider that the change will disadvantage you, we'll give you 30 days' notice of the change by a communication method we choose. Then, if you don't like the new Plan or our change to the existing Plan, and you’re on a Fixed Term Contract, we won’t charge you an Early Termination Fee

3.4 Changing Technology – your choice: You may want to change the Technology that your Service runs on. For example, you might want to swap your Fixed Line Service for a Wireless Broadband Service. To change Technologies, you might need to change Plans too. It’s a good idea to check your Plan Terms or ask us if you’re unsure. To change Technologies, you might need to change your modem too. 

3.5 Changing Technology – our choice: Sometimes we might change your Technology too. If that happens, we’ll try to make sure the change impacts you as little as possible. If you want to leave us because of this change, you’ll have to pay us an Early Termination Fee if you’re on a Fixed Term Contract, unless this change has disadvantaged you under 3.2.

3.6 When we stop providing a Service: There may be times when we decide to stop providing a Service or Plan to you or other customers. If this happens, the agreement you have with us will stay and we may move you to another Service or Plan. If this change will disadvantage you, we’ll let you know about the change 30 days’ in advance by email, text message or by publishing the change on our website. We might also update the Terms on our website if we need to. Often this change will be to your benefit (for example, we might move you to a new Plan which includes more data), in which case we won't necessarily tell you about the change. If you want to leave us because of this change, you’ll have to pay us an Early Termination Fee if you’re on a Fixed Term Contract, unless this change has disadvantaged you under 3.2.


This section talks about our liability to each other.

4.1 Nothing in this section affects any rights you have under the Consumer Guarantees Act 1993 and the Fair Trading Act 1986, except if you are using our Services in a way that the Consumer Guarantees Act 1993 refers to as business use or for business transactions, then you acknowledge the provisions of that Act won’t apply to the Services we provide to you.

Your liability to us

4.2 If you breach the Terms, you will be liable to us for the breach, except to the extent that we caused the loss. For example, if you haven't paid us for Services you’ve used, you're liable to us for the money you owe.

Our liability to you

4.3 If we breach the Terms, we’ll be liable to you for it, except to the extent that you caused the loss. This might mean we have to put it right, or sometimes, that we owe you money. We’ll also be liable to you if we breach the law, for example, where you have rights under the Consumer Guarantees Act 1993 or the Fair Trading Act 1986.

We agree to take reasonable steps to avoid or minimise any loss we could suffer from providing Services to you.

4.4 Subject to clause 4.1, we won't be liable to you:

(a) if we need to temporarily disconnect wiring or other equipment at your place to restore your Services or provide goods and services to you;

(b) for any loss that is caused by event that we don’t reasonably control, for example, because of an act of God, pandemic, earthquake, terrorism, strike, shortage of suitable labour or materials or any third party network provider; or

(c) for any indirect or consequential loss, or for any loss of profits, revenue, data, business, goodwill or savings. 

4.5 In this section, Skinny, our and we means Spark New Zealand Trading Limited. It doesn’t include any company related to Spark New Zealand Trading Limited (for example, a company we own), network operator, third party supplier, or any of our respective officers, employees, contractors and agents, or other person. This means only us and none of our connected companies, partners or suppliers will be liable to you for loss or damage in connection with the Services or our equipment.

Limits on liability 

4.6 Subject to 4.1 above, our liability to each other for breach of contract, negligence or any other circumstance arising out of or in connection with the Terms is limited to:  

(a) $5,000 for any event or series of related events; and

(b) a total of $10,000 in respect of all events in any 12-month period.

4.7 These limits are the maximum amounts payable (they’re not automatically payable if one of us does something wrong), and any claim for loss must be made within 12 months after the person making the claim becomes aware of the event. 

4.8 The limits outlined in 4.6 don’t limit your responsibility to pay any outstanding Charges you owe us under the Terms. They also don’t apply when it comes to any loss or damage caused by you or us for fraud, wilful breach or wilful damage.

4.9 We each agree to take reasonable steps to avoid or minimise any loss suffered by either of us in connection with providing Services to you.


This section tells you when and how we can each end your Service.  It also covers what will happen if we need to suspend or restrict your Service

If you end your Service

5.1 You may end your Service by contacting Skinny customer services, by transferring your Service to another service provider (to do this, you will need to ask the new service provider to request the transfer for you), or by ceasing to add credit or stopping payment. 

5.2 If you're on a Fixed Term Contract and decide to cancel your Service (including using the process referenced in 5.4 below) we may charge you an Early Termination Fee. If you're cancelling because of a change that disadvantages you (under 3.2 above), an Early Termination Fee won't apply.

5.3 If you’re cancelling because of a change under 3.2 above, you’ll need to do this within a reasonable timeframe of being notified of the change (in order to not be charged an Early Termination Fee). We’ll tell you how long you have to make this decision. After that time period, these fees will apply again.

5.4 If you want to transfer your Mobile or broadband Service to another service provider, you’ll need to ask your new provider to request the transfer on your behalf. We recommend doing this 30 days in advance to ensure continuous service. Your Service will need to be active with us for your new provider to request the transfer. 

5.5 If you’re unhappy with our Services, you may be able to cancel without being charged an Early Termination Fee. But it’s something we’ll need to discuss with you so please get in touch about it.

5.6 If you stop adding credit or renewing your Plan, your account will become deactivated and eventually expired. If your Skinny account expires, you will not be entitled to any unused credit or credit remaining on the account and you will not receive a refund for these amounts. 

If Skinny ends, restricts or suspends your Service

5.7 We may restrict, suspend, end or slow the performance of your Service for the following reasons: 

(a) if you breach these General Terms;

(b) if our Networks aren’t available, need to be reconfigured, are congested or we need to work on them;

(c) if we reasonably believe it’s necessary for operational or security reasons

(d) if we reasonably believe it’s necessary for us to protect our Networks or manage traffic over our Networks, including where the usage of our Services is excessive or where we need to prioritise certain types of traffic over other traffic at times of congestion;

(e) if we reasonably believe you or someone using your Service is doing so in a way that risks us breaching our arrangements and agreements with others, or our legal obligations;

(f) if there’s a risk someone could be harmed;

(g) in other circumstances we’ve mentioned in these General Terms;

(h) if you harass, abuse or threaten our staff, contractors, customers or members of the public in connection with, or while you are using, our services;

(i) if you become insolvent;

(j) if any Force Majeure Event occurs; or

(k) in any other circumstances where it would be reasonable to do so.

5.8 Sometimes we may need to do this straight away, especially if we need to do so to improve the experience and services for our customers. 

5.9 We can also suspend, restrict, or end your Service in other circumstances we’ve mentioned in the Terms (for example, if you don’t pay us, as we’ve covered in 1.11). 

5.10 If we do need to suspend, restrict or end your Services, you can ask us to refund you an amount at least equal to what you’re legally entitled to, including under the Consumer Guarantees Act 1993. Though as we said above, we won’t be liable where you’ve caused the issue or breached any agreement we have with you, and normal Charges will continue to apply during any restriction or suspension period. If we end your Services, we'll refund any unused credit on your account provided you contact us within six weeks of the termination date, except where the account has expired because you stopped adding credit or renewing you Plan.

5.11 If you don’t meet your responsibilities and we temporarily disconnect your Service (sometimes called a suspension), we may charge you a reconnection fee. You will have to re-sign up as a new Skinny customer if you wish to reconnect. In some cases, if you have not met a responsibility you have to us (for example, where you did not pay your bill by the due date) normal charges continue to apply during the suspension or restriction of any service. If we permanently disconnect your Service, you'll still need to pay for any usage and other Charges incurred up until the day we disconnected you. This does not affect any rights you have under the Consumer Guarantees Act 1993 and the Fair Trading Act 1986. 


This section tells you what can happen if you have a dispute with us. 

6.1 Come to us first: If you have a concern or complaint, please get in touch with us first so that we can do our best to try resolve the issue for you. Read about our complaints process here.  

6.2 Telecommunications Dispute Resolution: If you have a dispute with us and we can't agree on how to resolve it, you can go to an independent body called the Telecommunications Dispute Resolution (TDR). The TDR will work with both of us to resolve your dispute promptly and without bias. Before approaching the TDR, you must first have made a complaint to us using the complaints process at 6.1 above. Read about the TDR. 


This section has a few more important things you need to know, like when our Terms apply and which terms take priority over other terms. 

7.1 When our Terms apply: These Terms apply from the moment you submit an order with us, you’re connected to our Network or your Service is installed. 

7.2 Our Terms are governed by New Zealand law: New Zealand courts will have exclusive jurisdiction over any dispute arising under the Terms.

7.3 Transferring our part in these Terms: We may transfer some or all of our rights or responsibilities under the Terms to someone else and we may not need you to agree before we do so. Before we do this, we’ll tell you at least 30 days in advance, unless we are restricted from telling you by any confidentiality obligations. If this happens (subject to the exceptions above) and you’re on a Fixed Term Contract, if the change disadvantages you, you can end your Services without incurring an Early Termination Fee.

7.4 Transferring your part in these Terms: You can’t transfer your responsibilities under the Terms to anyone else unless we agree to it.

7.5 Severability: Each term of the Terms is separately binding. If for any reason a term isn’t legally effective, all other terms will still be binding and we can replace the ineffective term with one of similar meaning that’s lawful and effective.

7.6 Waiver: If either of us fail or are slow to enforce any rights or power we have under these Terms, it won’t mean we’re waiving those rights or power. And if either of us do decide to waive any breach of the Terms, it won’t mean we’re waiving any other or subsequent breaches.

7.7 Priority of Terms: If there are any differences between our General, Technology or Plan Terms, here’s what will happen: Our Plan Terms will take first priority, our Technology Terms will take second priority and our General Terms will take third priority. 

7.8 From time to time we may send you sales and marketing information about our products and services or our related companies' products or services. You can let us know at any time if you do not want to receive sales and marketing information by contacting us. You agree that the sales and marketing information we send electronically need not include an unsubscribe facility.


Here's what the words in bold mean.

Charges are any charges for access to and use of our Services.

Early Termination Fee is the fee we may charge if you're on a Fixed Term Contract and you cancel your Service or your Service is ended part way through your term.

Fixed Line Services means any services we provide to you or arrange for you to be provided over the copper and fibre communication facilities owned by us and other parties who we work with.

Fixed Term Contract means the contract you have when you agree to purchase Services for a minimum length of time, such as 12 or 24 months.

General Terms are the terms you're reading right now. These apply to everyone receiving Skinny Services for personal use and they cover key things everyone should know about.

Mobile or Mobile Services means Services provided for use on a mobile phone.

Networks and our Networks refers to the communications infrastructure owned by Spark and others we work with, like Chorus. This infrastructure is used to provide you with Services and includes our fixed line network and our wireless network.

Plan means a pricing plan for certain Services at a certain price, like unlimited broadband for a certain price.  

Plan Terms are the particular terms and conditions relating to Plans. Another name for these is Offer Summaries. Not every Plan has Plan Terms.  

Prepaid describes a type of Service or Plan that is paid for in advance of you using the service. All Skinny’s Services are Prepaid.

Services are any services we provide and include any goods or equipment we provide to you, including as part of the services.

Skinny Terms or Terms are all the agreements between us that apply to you. They include these General Terms, your Technology Terms and your Plan Terms (if any).

Technology means the fixed lines or wireless Network that your Service runs over.

Technology Terms are the Fixed Line Terms and the Mobile and Wireless Terms.  If your Service runs over fixed lines like copper or fibre, the Fixed Line Terms apply to you. If your Service uses our mobile telecommunications Network, the Mobile and Wireless Terms apply to you.

Wireless Broadband or Wireless Broadband Services means home internet that uses our mobile telecommunications Network, which is not ADSL, VDSL or fibre.

Skinny, our, we or us are not bolded throughout these General Terms, but when you see them they refer to a division of Spark New Zealand Trading Limited, trading under the brand Skinny, or any related company or approved agents of Spark New Zealand Trading Limited.

You or your aren't bolded throughout this document, but when you see them they refer to anyone who receives Skinny Services or has set up an account with us.




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