Best Telstra mobile plans: which Offer is right for you?


Our Verdict

Telstra Mobile

With decades of experience and the best mobile network in the country, Telstra's current plans represent superb value.

Overall 90%

If you’re looking for a mobile service that gives you the best coverage, speed and reliability, there’s really only ever been one answer – giant Telstra Mobile. We’ll admit, it’s not always the cheapest option. But their extensive network had a head start when the digital mobile era began (thanks to Telstra having built the entirety of Australia’s mobile network up to that point). Plus, they’ve continued to expand and enhance their coverage in the many years since.

It’s not just about coverage. Though Telstra covers almost all populated areas of Australia, so do rivals Optus and Vodafone these days. The real key to the popularity of the Telstra network is the depth of coverage. Incredibly responsive to issues such as “blackspots” and busy areas, Telstra provides coverage that works no matter where you are. No mobile network can be immune to problems. But issues such as call drop-outs, unresponsive web sites or missed calls are incredibly rare with the Telstra network. People who value reliability and coverage above all else are happy to pay a bit extra to get it.

These days, mobile is an incredibly competitive market in Australia. And while Telstra has long had the reputation of being an expensive mobile provider, that’s far from the truth. We’re especially referring to with some of the more recent Telstra mobile deals available. Alongside the basic mobile service, there’s also an array of free perks that come with most plans. And in our opinion, they’re valuable extras.

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The plans

The days of being told “it’s expensive because it’s the best” are over when it comes to Telstra’s current offerings across both SIM-only and phone plans. While the Telstra mobile network has continued to improve over the past few years, prices have come down. Right to the point where there’s real value to be had compared to the competition.

Let’s take a look at Telstra’s SIM-only “S” plan, for example. It comes with “$500 worth” of included calls. That sounds like a lot, but also makes you wonder – could I go over that limit in a month? In most cases, you won’t. Telstra bills calls on these plans at $1 per minute, in one-minute blocks. So, if you talk for five minutes, that’s $5 off your monthly allowance. So that $500 monthly allowance gets you 500 minutes of calls. Unless you’re using your phone for hours-long chats with your friends several times a week, it’s unlikely you’ll ever come close to logging that amount of call time in a month. Plus, if like many you communicate more by text, messenger apps or Skype, you’re going to be just fine. Not to mention the fast that all higher tier Telstra plans come with unlimited calling, so you won’t have to stress over going your allowance.

So with all that in mind, what are the best Telstra mobile plans? Well, let’s start with the SIM-only category, where our vote would go to the online-only “Mx” plan. It’s on a 12-month contract and comes with unlimited calls/texts and a hefty 10GB of data. All for only $49 per month. The only requirement for this plan is that you manage your account using online self-service tools rather than getting on the phone or going into a Telstra shop for any support you might need. With Telstra’s web chat support being excellent, that’s not at all a bad thing.

If you don’t want to go on a contract, you can have the “M” plan – but without the no-support discount. It comes to $69 per month with 15GB and with no obligation to pay for anything past that first month. This could be great, by the way, for those who want to give the Telstra network a decent road test before committing to a plan.

If you’re in the market for a new phone, on the other hand, and are after Telstra mobile deals that will save you some money, there’s a huge range of plans on offer. It’s hard to give a raw dollar figure on them specifically, as what you’ll pay entirely depends on which phone you choose. The “L” plan is a winner here with some of the most desirable phone on the market. For example, an iPhone 8 on the “L” plan is priced at $89 per month. That includes the phone repayments over 24 months. You get unlimited calls, texts and MMS within Australia as well as unlimited calls and texts to ten major international destinations, along with 20GB of data per month (8GB bonus). When you take away the cost of the phone handset itself, your monthly plan cost is around the same as the SIM-only plans.

Telstra Mobile Spring 2017 Promotions

Select Telstra Mobile plans now come with a Foxtel Now subscription! From October 2017, Telstra Mobile customers are able to enjoy a completely free Foxtel Now subscription that will last them an entire year. The offer is available for the L and XL SIM-only plans, as well as for the L, XL, XXL, and Premium phone plans. Select your Starter packs and start binge-watching.

But wait, there’s more!

There’s one other advantage to having a Telstra mobile service – and this applies to Telstra SIM only plans as well as contract plans. While they rarely advertise it, you get a bunch of very valuable extras by default with your Telstra service.

For starters, there’s data-allowance-free streaming of Apple Music on all plans. That’s right, you can stream music all day and not have any of it count against your data allowance. And to sweeten that deal, every plan on a contract gets six months of Apple Music subscription included free. It’s worth noting that your Apple Music subscription gets linked to your Telstra account. Once your free time runs out, your monthly subscription is added to your phone bill rather than being charged by Apple directly. If you don’t want it after the free six months, you can cancel without penalty.

Sport fans, meanwhile, will love the totally free access to both the AFL and NRL Live apps on iOS and Android – something footy and rugby fans on other networks have to pay monthly for. You get comprehensive live streaming of every game, videos on demand, interviews, stats, and much more for the agreeable sum of zero dollars. Those on Telstra prepaid plans get access as well!

There’s also free Bigpond Movies rentals, discounts on tickets to events, free 200GB OneDrive storage, free access to Telstra Air hotspots, and other offers that appear from time to time. When it comes to the “bonuses without a catch” department, Telstra is the clear winner.

Is Telstra worth it?

With the best mobile coverage in Australia, the latest mobile data tech for fast speeds on a blazingly fast data network, and a bunch of extra perks that just sweeten the deal, there’s never been a better time to get a Telstra mobile plan. Getting a new phone on a plan with Telstra does have some advantages – including the ability to swap out to a brand new phone every year for a modest fee. But even for those who just want a SIM for the handset they have now, Telstra has really upped the stakes in terms of value.

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