Mobile phone plans


There is more than one mobile phone plan operational for every Australian, with over 22 million active mobile phone plans in the country as of 2009. So, with seemingly every person owning at least one mobile phone, the competitive nature of the industry has led to some very interesting pricing games. The consumer has had both gains and losses from this pricing war, but with a little education, you can be sure to get the best out of your mobile phone bargain.

The above table details all the essential information you should consider when choosing between a contract and a pre-paid plan. You must also consider how cost effective each option is when choosing between a plan and a cap. While it may seem cheaper to go for a monthly $30 recharge, it can be frustrating, if and when, you run out of credit and have to recharge earlier.

Taking the Optus’ pre-paid plan as an example, if you make just two five-minute calls and send five text messages a day from your mobile, this would land you over your call allowance in just two weeks, meaning you would have to spend $60 a month. However, on a $49 cap you would still be under your call allowance by over $100 after 30 days.

The capped plan is often preferable, for a variety of reasons. Firstly, when signing up to a new cap, because of the competitive nature of the market, the provider will often include the cost of a brand new phone into the price of the cap.

Another important element to consider is your data allowance. Considering most phones these days will either be a smartphone or have access to either email or the internet, getting a plan with a large enough data allowance is essential to avoid excess charges, particularly since so much money can be saved by using free online communication such as Skype.

The old adage ‘don’t judge a book by its cover’ has never been truer than when discussing mobile phone caps. Therefore, if ‘Bobs Bonkers Phone Phactory’ is offering a $10 cap with $700 worth of calls included, it may be because Bob’s Phone Phactory is charging you $100 a second for calls.