1. Transfers for .com/.net/.org/.biz/.info/.eu domains

For the vast majority of domains (.com, .net, .org and so forth), there is a common transfer procedure; .uk domains are the exception to the rule and the remaining text in this section does not apply.

OUCS charges for inbound transfers as for domain renewals. Each transfer requires that the domain be renewed by one or more years; there is no additional charge from OUCS for the transfer (but the existing provider may impose its own charges). You may renew domains until up to ten years in the future; transferring a domain with renewal more than nine years away will be charged as for a one-year renewal but some registration time will be lost. OUCS's renewal charges are detailed here.

The first stage in the process should be to contact us to discuss your requirements, confirm prices and to arrange a purchase order.

Some further steps are required before the transfer can be initiated, namely:
  • Verify that the existing contact details for the domain are correct. You can do this via the "whois" program on many systems; alternatively via web interfaces such as http://who.is/. In particular, confirm that email addresses for the administrative contact (and domain owner/registrant, if a separate contact exists) are correct and being monitored. Note that some providers may hide contact details behind "privacy" addresses, or register domains under a generic ISP contact address; in such cases please confirm your requirements with them to ensure that emails related to the transfer receive the appropriate response.
  • The domain must be "unlocked" by the current provider; attempting to transfer a locked domain will result in the transfer being immediately rejected.
  • An authorisation code must be obtained from the current provider. This is a code which must be supplied as part of the transfer process; without it the process will fail. There is no need to supply this code to OUCS; it will be needed by the person approving the transfer, normally the current domain owner.

OUCS can initiate the transfer upon receipt of the purchase order and confirmation that the domain is unlocked and an authorisation code has been obtained. Once OUCS initiate the transfer, an email will be sent by OUCS's registrar (OpenSRS, also known as Tucows) to the current registrant or administrative contact for the domain, directing them to a web interface into which they will be asked to supply the transfer authorisation code and confirm the transfer. Transfers normally complete within a week of initiation; deliberate delays in the system allow for the registrant to change their mind or for the current provider to attempt to "win back" their customer. Upon completion of the transfer, OUCS will notify you and make any other necessary changes to the setup of the domain.

Note that transfers should not be attempted immediately prior to a domain's expiry, and are generally not possible for a period immediately following registration or renewal.

Please note that OUCS have encountered problems on several recent transfers of .eu domains which have resulted in the domain temporarily being unavailable. OUCS will endeavour to rectify such problems as soon as they are reported, but it is recommended that transfers are not done at times where availability is mission-critical. No such problems have been reported with transfers of other domains; we believe this to be a problem specific to interaction between the .eu registry and OpenSRS.

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