Mobile phones have become a staple in every family with kids, especially since staying connected has become paramount for parents to ensure their child’s safety. This growing dependence on digital connectivity has created an opportunity for mobile providers to leverage of families’ need to lead their digital lives, easily and cost effectively.
In this modern digital age, it is common to equip kids with a mobile phone for parents to stay connected to them for security reasons and to give them their first taste of independence. As mobile phones continue to be the main mode of contact between parents and kids, network providers continue to innovate their service offerings to suit these varying needs.
As the account holder, choosing a mobile plan for your kids can be tricky, but you needn’t pay a premium for it. There is an informed approach to going about this. You can either get your kids a prepaid plan that limits their data usage but allows them unlimited calls and SMS, or get in on a shared/family plan with your network provider to share your data while still retaining the benefits of unlimited call minutes and SMS. Family plans are popular because they provide the data and the tools for people to stay connected, without racking up an exorbitant amount for your mobile bill.
A prepaid plan also works well for kids who are just starting out with a personal mobile phone where they need to learn to mind their data usage and use their phones for the purpose they are intended for – to stay connected with their parents. A prepaid plan with unlimited calls and SMS will ensure kids are always able to call home, regardless of how many minutes they have spent to call other people. The prepaid approach also saves you the uncertainty of your monthly bill – once your child has used up his data allowance for the month, they’re going to have to do without it. Unless you agree to pay for a top up.
The alternative is getting a family plan where all family members’ SIMs are serviced by the same network provider and are able to use data from a single data pool. This works well for families with older, more responsible kids who are not likely to reach their monthly data cap. Mobile service providers started offering family plans in the early 2000s and have evolved to accommodate consumer trends in an ever changing market. Parents need to be able to easily reach their kids, whether it is to check on them or stay in touch, regardless of their age and increased communication comes at an increased cost. The cost of a necessity needn’t be a barrier to having it, and family plans are an economical way to manage mobile usage.
The problem family plans were brought in to solve was that of exceeding the monthly data allowance that resulted in an increased mobile bill, dealing with different service providers and their customer service terms and conditions. The key element of a family plan is a shared data allowance. The best way to understand it is to “think of data allowance as a milkshake the family can share”. Not only does it bundle your family’s plans under one account, it allows you to keep your family’s data consumption in check.
How do family plans work?
While single mobile plans are easy to understand, the main aspects of a family plan can be summarized in the following points:
You get what you pay for:
In addition to shared data, you get national voice and SMS services all included in a monthly cost. This means there is a fixed cost every month and no bill surprises.
Being on a family plan means that you’re dealing with a single entity for all bills and issues. You get a consolidated bill for all SIMs in the plan and administration of the account is easier.
Add more family members
Regardless of whose name the account is under, you can keep adding members to your family plan. However, there is a charge for every additional SIM you add to the family plan. There is a minimum charge of $30 to add a SIM with Vodafone and a minimum charge of $40 with Optus.
Unlimited SMS and Voice services:
Each SIM added to the family plan can avail of unlimited national SMS and call minutes to any network.
Top 5 Mobile plans for family plus kids
#1 Southern Phone Optus Plan and Telstra Plan
Southern Phone has earned their reputation of being a versatile, friendly, reliable and incredibly affordable mobile provider — going so far as to give customers the choice of Optus or Telstra as the mobile network. This time around, they’re offering two amazing plans that give you huge data plus unlimited calls and texts in Australia — not to mention, big savings as well!
To avail of the best mobile offer in the market today, simply choose between the Optus plan at $22/month to get 7GB of data or the Telstra plan at $60/month to get a whopping 30GB data with no lock-in contracts. Whatever your mobile needs are, Southern Phone’s got you covered.
Even better, they also offer Family Mobile plans on the Telstra 4G Network that are specially designed for families with kids. It features the Family Zone App, allowing the parents to manage their children’s internet habits even when they’re out and about with their devices. Family mobile plans start from $12 per month with data inclusions that go from 750MB up to 7GB of mobile data. The highest-end plan is offered at $55 per month. All except the $12 plan include unlimited calls and texts.
Get the Best Deals from Southern Phone
Choose between the Optus plan with 7GB data for $22/mth or the Telstra plan with a generous 15GB for only $45/mth.
#2 Telstra BYO Plan
Telstra’s BYO plans cost more than the rest but they’re packed with highly valuable inclusions. If you and members of your family are in need of massive data, Telstra’s SIM-only plans sufficiently deliver in that area. Starting from $49/month, you get 15GB of included data. Need more? Just add $10 to get a bigger 60GB (which includes a 30GB bonus) and an additional unlimited international talk and text to 15 selected countries. All plans also include Apple Music data-free streaming and access to such sports as AFL, AFLW, NRL, Netball, and the Hyundai A-League live and data-free.
Get a GigaBonus from Telstra!
Enjoy Telstra’s huge data offering + bonus of up to 100GB on top of your data inclusions — only from the nation’s largest mobile network. BYO plans start from $49/mth or get a new phone from $59/mth.
#3 Moose Mobile – Moose 8.80
Running on the Optus 4G network, Moose Mobile offers award-winning mobile plans that are suitable for the whole family. It starts off with the Moose 8.80 plan that gives you 1GB data plus unlimited texts and 200 minutes of calls. This plan is perfect for kids who have just gotten their first phone, making it easy for parents to track and control their usage. Need unlimited calls and texts? Just jump on to Moose 14, giving you 2GB data plus unlimited calls and texts. These plans come with no lock-in contracts, so feel free to change or upgrade any time!
Best-Value Plans from Moose
Get your money’s worth with Moose Mobile’s range of affordable and high-value plans. No-contract plans start at $8.80/mth, powered by the Optus 4G network.
#4 Yomojo Family Bundle
Yomojo offers family plans that allow up to 6 mobile plans, across multiple devices, in a single bundle. You can get 16GB of data, unlimited calls and texts to numbers within Australia when you go for the $34.90 plan while you can opt for something lower if you don’t need much data. As the person responsible for paying everyone’s mobile bills, you would love the proactive plan management Yomojo offers by keeping you in the loop around usage and remaining credit regularly. Besides the staple 30-day automatic plan renewal, you also get to oversee plan details of each family or group member on a dashboard. Furthermore, you are not bound by a contract which means that you can customise your plans every month to suit your changing needs. Too easy!
Special Offer: Get 50% Off for 3 Months on All Mobile Plans!
Get half off on all mobile & mobile broadband plans for the first 3 months (excluding Home Wireless & FamilyEye plans). Use the promo code ‘SCHOOLHOLS’ — offer ends 12 May 2019.
#5 OVO Mini & MiniPlus
OVO’s lower end plans are designed for families with kids. The Mini plan, for instance, offers unlimited SMS and MMS within Australia and 500 minutes of calls, as well as a capped data allowance of 2GB on the Optus 4G Plus network. Next is the MiniPlus, which is also specially designed for kids but with unlimited calls and a doubled 4GB data allowance. It’s a great way to train your kids to use their data wisely, yet at the same time, they will have no excuse not to return your calls or texts. On top of that, all of OVO’s prepaid mobile plans include free cyber safety with Family Zone. These plans are definitely a parent pleaser!
If you don’t trust your kids with using data responsibly or they consistently tend to go over their data allowance, then you can look into prepaid plans for your kids with unlimited calls and SMS and a capped data allowance.
Family members can have different usage patterns where some may only use a portion of their allowance, while others may use more than the others. Family plans allow for better management by pooling low and high users, enabling more efficient usage of your allocation.
While Family Plans allow you to track data usage for all SIMs under a single account, prepaid plans will help you create discipline around mobile usage. There are advantages to both, family plans and prepaid plans. Which approach is more suitable for your family depends on how much administration you are willing to do, your family’s mobile usage habits and your budget.