Expert Picks: Best Value NBN Plans (January 2020)

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Whether you’re new to the NBN, or already connected, finding the best plan for your home and needs can be a struggle. And while price is important, opting for the cheapest plan available doesn’t always mean you’ll be getting the most value for your money.

Finding the best plan means working out not only your monthly budget, but also your data and speed needs. With four main NBN speed tiers available to most Aussie consumers, there are hundreds of NBN plans out there to choose from – luckily, Canstar Blue is here to help you sort through what’s on offer.

How we help you find the best plan

Using Canstar Blue’s unique Value Score, we’ve picked out the best-value options from each speed tier: NBN 12 (Basic Evening Speed), NBN 25 (Standard Evening Speed), NBN 50 (Standard Plus Evening Speed), and NBN 100 (Premium Evening Speed).

A Value Score is a rating of between 1 and 10 that takes into account not only a plan’s average monthly cost, but also features such as speed and data, as well as customer service and billing options. Value Scores are given to fixed-line NBN products found in Canstar Blue’s comparison tool, which determine the results order when sorting by Value; this is the default sort method when searching, but you’re also able to filter products by other variables such as price, data, or customer satisfaction.

The higher a plan’s score out of 10, the better value it is according to Canstar Blue’s methodology. Overall, if a plan has a lower monthly cost, but includes better features, it’s more likely to receive a higher Value Score than pricier plans with less inclusions. More details on how Canstar Blue’s Value Score works can be found below, or you can read the full methodology document here.

If you’re looking for an NBN plan that combines a great price with great inclusions, searching by Value Score can help make comparing your options a little easier. Sorting by Value Scores, we’ve picked the best NBN plans published by Canstar Blue in each price category below.

Best Value NBN Plans January 2020

Best Value NBN 12 Plan

TPG NBN12 SL Bundle

Value score: 8.3

TPG’s NBN 12 plan bundles broadband service with a home phone line, offering unlimited data for $59.99 per month. With a typical evening speed of 11.1Mbps during peak hours, this plan is ideal for entry-level to average users, particularly individuals who don’t require fast speeds for activities such as HD streaming.

Customers can choose between an 18-month contract with no setup fees, or a month-to-month plan with a $99.95 charge upfront. Both options include a Wi-Fi modem, and while this is a pay-as-you-go phone plan, unlimited call packs can be added from an extra $10 per month.

The following table shows TPG’s NBN 12 SL Bundle plan. Use our comparison tool to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a product from a referral partner.

Best Value NBN 25 Plan

Tangerine Standard Speed

Value score: 8.9

If you’re looking for a step up from basic NBN, Tangerine’s unlimited data Standard plan is priced at an affordable $54.90 per month for your first six months. After this six-month introductory period, prices will revert to a standard $64.90 per month ongoing; however, as this is a no-contract plan with no setup or exit fees, you’re free to leave at any time.

Along with unlimited data, you’ll get typical evening speeds of 21Mbps between 7pm – 11pm, and the option to bring your own modem or buy a new pre-configured modem from $89.90 upfront. Tangerine also offers its customers a 14-day risk-free trial, so you can cancel within your first two weeks for a full refund of your plan fee and modem cost.

The following table shows Tangerine’s Standard Speed plan. Use our comparison tool to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a product from a referral partner.

Best Value NBN 50 Plan

Belong Unlimited Standard Plus

Value score: 9.2

With unlimited data at $65  per month, and typical evening speeds of 40Mbps during peak periods, Belong’s Standard Plus plan offers flexibility, value, and no hidden costs. Customers can choose from a 12-month contract with an included Wi-Fi modem and no setup fees, or go month-to-month and simply pay $60 upfront for a pre-configured modem.

Belong also offers SIM-only postpaid mobile plans, and is currently including a bonus mobile SIM and $80 of credit with all broadband plans. You’ll receive your free SIM alongside your Belong modem: simply activate it via Belong’s mobile app, then use it with any unlocked smartphone.

The following table shows Belong’s $65 Unlimited Standard Plus plan. Use our comparison tool to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a product from a referral partner.

Best Value NBN 100 Plan

Tangerine XXL Speed Boost

Value score: 8.9

Tangerine’s XXL Speed Boost plan is proof that super-fast NBN doesn’t have to break the bank. The telco’s XXL Speed Boost plan offers unlimited NBN 100 data for $79.90 per month for your first six months, then $89.90 monthly ongoing. With a typical peak hour speed of 83Mbps, it’s an ideal plan for large families, serious streamers and gamers, and anyone who wants top-tier broadband around the clock.

This plan features zero setup fees and no contracts, and customers can bring their own modem or buy a pre-configured product from $89.90 outright. Tangerine also offers a two-week risk free trial, and will refund all plan and modem fees if you cancel within your first 14 days.

The following table shows Tangerine’s XXL Speed Boost plan. Use our comparison tool to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a product from a referral partner.

Which NBN speed do I need?

We’ve put together more info on each speed tier in this guide, but essentially – NBN 12 is the slowest (and cheapest) option, with NBN 100 being the fastest (and most expensive).

Not every provider will offer each speed to customers, and not every customer will be able to connect to the fastest NBN 100 plans – the speeds available to you will depend on the NBN connection type offered at your address, although most homes can connect to NBN 12, NBN 25 and NBN 50.

Here’s how each speed tier varies.

Basic Evening Speed (NBN 12)

  • Downloads of up to 12Mbps/uploads of up to 1Mbps
  • Good for small households and light users

Standard Evening Speed (NBN 25)

  • Downloads of up to 25Mbps/uploads of up to 5Mbps
  • Good for streaming and households of 2-3 people

Standard Plus Evening Speed (NBN 50)

  • Downloads of up to 50Mbps/uploads of up to 20Mbps
  • Good for HD streaming, heavier use and online gaming

Premium Evening Speed (NBN 100)

  • Downloads of up to 100Mbps/uploads of up to 40Mbps
  • Good for ultra-HD streaming and gaming, big households, and data-intensive use

Our Value Score & Methodology Explained

While pricing is always a major concern for consumers, there’s more to finding the right NBN plan than simply looking for the cheapest deal. In addition to comparing on pricing alone, Canstar Blue also gives you the opportunity to sort and search for plans based on our unique Value Score.

As mentioned above, Value Scores range from 1 to 10, with a higher score indicating a better value product. The Value Score consists of a Price Score and Feature Score: the Price Score accounts for 70% of the overall ranking, with the Feature Score contributing to 30%.

Best value NBN

Price Score

Price Scores are calculated by comparing a plan’s minimum cost per period to the cost of other plans available in the market over one, 12, and 24 months. Minimum cost equals the monthly cost, plus the cost of modem and delivery and any other setup or contract fees, minus any discounts or credits for that period. Using these values, Canstar Blue calculates and assigns a Price Score of between 0 and 100 to each plan.

Feature Score

The Feature Score compares over 100 features found on fixed line NBN plans, which are grouped into the following three categories:

  • Customer Service and Support (40% of score): Availability of support through call centres, in stores, in-home, online, self-service, and other channels.
  • Inclusions (35% of score): Typical speeds and data inclusions.
  • Billing and Payments (25% of score): Payment, statement, and billing frequency and options.

Scores of between 0 and 100 are given for each of the three categories; these are rounded to the nearest whole number when comparing plans on a Canstar Blue NBN search result. The Value Score, Pricing Score and Feature Scores of plans and products are re-calculated daily, with changes then reflected on Canstar Blue’s comparison tool.

For a better understanding of how Canstar Blue’s Value Score works, view our NBN Methodology Document here.

How we pick the best value plans

  1. Best Value NBN 12 Plan: The best-ranked NBN plan at NBN 12 speeds, as determined by Canstar Blue’s Value Score.
  2. Best Value NBN 25 Plan: The best-ranked NBN plan at NBN 25 speeds, as determined by Canstar Blue’s Value Score.
  3. Best Value NBN 50 Plan: The best-ranked NBN plan at NBN 50 speeds, as determined by Canstar Blue’s Value Score.
  4. Best Value NBN 100 Plan: The best-ranked NBN plan at NBN 100 speeds, as determined by Canstar Blue’s Value Score.

In the event that two or more plans have the same value score in any given category, the cheapest option will be featured.

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