Thanks. It's actually for my son. He lost his phone last night, so I've ordered him a replacement sim, but someone is selling an iPhone locked to EE,...he'll just have to take the chance I suppose. I'll let you know the outcome when his new sim arrives
A Virgin SIM will very likely work in a phone locked to EE. AIUI the lock does not discriminate.
However as this involves an iPhone I would insist that the vendor arranges to have the handset unlocked by EE. The original owner/account holder can request an unlock from EE for £8.99. If in the future your son wants to move elsewhere then he will likely find that Virgin Mobile will refuse to unlock the handset as they did not supply the phone in the first place.
Also a locked iPhone is worth less than an unlocked one and the difference will be more than £8.99. Be aware that an iPhone SIM lock/unlock status is not permanently stored on the handset itself, it is stored on an Apple database, so the request to update the lock status has to come from an authorised source. In this case EE.
Assuming the phone is properly registered as unlocked then your son will also need to perform a factory reset in order to have the updated lock status take effect, if the vendor has not already done so.
I would be very wary if the vendor cannot arrange to unlock the phone.
Thank you for the information. My son has bought the phone now. So it's just a matter of waiting to see if he can use his Virgin sim when it arrives. As he bought the phone off someone he doesn't know, the onus will be on him now to get it unlocked.... Or in the worst case scenario he'll have to change to an EE sim....which he doesn't really want to do, as the price plans are no way near as good value for money as what Virgin are :/ So, fingers crossed he can stick to the original plan