Vodafone Mobile Phone Plans Review

As one of the biggest telcos in the world, Vodafone has a product range as diverse as it is comprehensive. As one of the three network providers in Australia, Vodafone competes with Optus and Telstra, plus a host of small mobile carriers nipping at its heels in the value stakes. Vodafone has certainly modernised its plan range and is now hard to beat, whether you’re looking for new a handset deal, or a SIM-only postpaid or prepaid plan.

People are hungry for more data, calls and texts, and all-round better value. So how does Vodafone compare to its mobile rivals? Here, we review Vodafone’s comprehensive plan range and cast some thoughts on where you’ll find the best deals. This is your one-stop-shop on all of what Vodafone has to offer.

Vodafone plans at a glance

Like the other two big telcos, Vodafone has a diverse range of products on offer, from prepaid SIM-only plans to plans with phones. You’ll also be able to choose from a range of phones, including the latest in-demand mobile devices from the likes of Apple, Samsung and Google.

However, unlike Telstra and Optus, Vodafone keeps its plans reasonably consistent in terms of pricing and included value. The phone-with-a-plan deals are a lot more flexible, and give you more control in tailoring the plan to suit you.

Once you’ve selected your phone, you have the option of choosing a 12-month, 24-month, or 36-month repayment period on the device. The longer the repayment period, the less your phone repayments will cost per month. Then, select the plan that suits you, and it will be combined with your phone repayment to make up your monthly bill. The plans themselves are straightforward, and it’s clear that Vodafone likes to keep things simple but with good value for money.

Brand Features Max Data**/billing period Advertised Cost^^/billing period
Vodafone Logo

$35 Red SIM Only

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • Special offer: 32GB bonus data per month (offer expires 20/12/18)

min. cost $420 over 12 month plan period

3GBMax Data**/billing period $35Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
Vodafone Logo

$45 Red SIM Only

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • Special offer: 35GB bonus data per month, plus $5 off plan fees (offer expires 20/12/18)

min. cost $540 over 12 month plan period

15GBMax Data**/billing period $45Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
Vodafone Logo

$60 SIM Only Plus

  • Unlimited Data*(Capped at 1.5Mbps after 40GB)
  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • Special offer: 40GB bonus full speed data per month (offer expires 20/12/18)
  • Up to 20,000 Qantas Points

min. cost $720 over 12 month plan period

40GBMax Data**/billing period $60Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
View all mobile plans listed on Canstar Blue

What does Vodafone offer?

Perhaps the greatest value that Vodafone offers is the freedom and flexibility to make a plan that suits you. Whether it’s a SIM-only plan or a plan with a phone, there’s a lot of room to add on extras (including extra data) – so it’s easy to customise a plan to include what you need.

SIM-only postpaid plans Combo Plus prepaid plans
Entertainment bonuses
Data-free video streaming
Data-free music streaming
International calls/texts
International roaming
Set-up fees
Data overage fees

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Vodafone network and coverage

As the third largest mobile network in Australia, Vodafone now covers over 22 million Australians. The great news is that most parts of the country will be able to get Vodafone 4G network coverage in their area. Vodafone has committed to building new towers to expand regional coverage as part of the Australian Government’s Mobile Blackspot Program, so more Aussies will soon be able to access the network. The telco is also progressively rolling out Wi-Fi calling, meaning you’ll be able to make and receive calls over Wi-Fi in areas where 4G coverage isn’t as strong.

The Vodafone network plays host to several Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs). So if you can access the Vodafone network in your area, you’ll also have access to a range of smaller mobile providers, giving you more choice.

You can check the Vodafone site to see if you have coverage in your area. 

Features and bonuses

All of Vodafone’s plans come with unlimited standard national calls and text. The postpaid plans, both SIM-only and plans with a phone, all include unlimited text to overseas. Vodafone also has generous data inclusions on all plans, with bonus data added on for new customers from time to time.

  • International calls: While Vodafone does have limits on international calls, the inclusions are still generous. If you want international calls included on your prepaid or postpaid plan, you’ll have to opt for the mid to higher-level plans with countries split into Zone 1 and Zone 2. You’ll find more minutes included for Zone 1 countries (including New Zealand, China, the UK and USA) and considerably less minutes for Zone 2 (which includes Greece, Italy and Vietnam). You can pay for a booster to get more minutes to either of the zones, or as a recurring add-on to access more countries. If international calls are important for you, other providers do offer more generous international call inclusions, and you might find Vodafone’s system confusing to navigate.
  • International roaming: Vodafone’s international roaming is definitely where the network shines as a telco. When you switch on your $5 Roaming, you’ll be able to use your phone plan (with your plan’s monthly data, call and text allowances included) in 80 countries for an extra $5 per day. This eliminates the need to hunt around for a Wi-Fi signal, or buy a SIM with a different phone number while you’re overseas.
  • Data rollover: On a prepaid SIM-only plan, unused data will roll over to the next two recharges of equal or higher value.
  • Data pooling: Vodafone has made a considered effort in becoming a family-friendly provider, with benefits if more than one family member is with Vodafone. Depending on the plans, you can pool the data from up to five phone services (and 10 mobile broadband services); so if one family member doesn’t use much of their data, you know it won’t go to waste.
  • Data add-ons: If you can’t take advantage of the data pooling option, but find yourself frequently going over your plan’s data allowance, there are data add-ons that you can purchase to top up your gigabytes on select plans, rather than being charged when you go over. It’s a great way to customise and manage your plan, especially if there are months where you will likely go over your data allowance.
  • Entertainment add-ons: Another way that Vodafone makes its plans truly customisable is through the addition of Vodafone Passes. You can add on one or more of the $5 Chat Pass, $10 Social Pass, $10 Music Pass or $15 Video Pass. It’s perfect if you like to stream Spotify, endlessly scroll through Instagram, or binge-watch the latest shows on Netflix. The great thing about these passes is that they’re separate to your data – so even if you still go over your data limit, you can keep watching, listening, scrolling or chatting.
  • Qantas Frequent Flyers: If frequent flying is your thing, when you sign up to select Vodafone plans, you’ll be able to earn a heap of Qantas Frequent Flyer points.
  • Bundles, bonuses and discounts: Vodafone is big on giving discounts and bonuses from time to time. Not only will you find many plans with data bonuses added on (sometimes including more than double the standard plan data), but you might also be able to receive loyalty discounts, or discounts when you bundle eligible plans under one account. Vodafone also offers discounts and bonuses for students, so it’s worth keeping an eye out if you’re after a student-friendly deal.

Individual products

Vodafone Prepaid Plans

Vodafone offers two different options for prepaid SIM-only plans. The Combo Plus plans run on a 28-day expiry period for the $30 Combo Plus Starter Pack, or a 35-day expiry for the $40 or $50 Combo Plus Starter Packs. If you prefer the more ‘set and forget’ type of plan, the 365 Plus plans run on a 365 day expiry, and operate as a Pay-As-You-Go (PAYG) plan with flat rates for data, standard calls and text.

The Combo Plus plans all include standard national calls and text, while the $40 and $50 plans include set international minutes to Zone 1 and Zone 2 countries. On the $30 plan you’ll get 6GB of data, the $40 plan gives you 17GB, and for $50 you’ll get 30GB. Vodafone do tend to add on bonus data every now and then, so keep your eye out to see if there are any current offers on these plans.

Combo Plus Plans

Brand Features Max Data**/billing period Advertised Cost^^/billing period
Vodafone Logo

$30 Combo Plus

  • Unlimited national calls & SMS
  • Special offer: 24GB bonus data (offer expires 31/01/19)

min. cost $30 over 28 days

6GBMax Data**/billing period $30Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
Vodafone Logo

$40 Combo Plus

  • Unlimited national calls & SMS
  • 500 mins to Zone 1 countries, 100 mins to Zone 2
  • Special offer: 23GB bonus data (offer expires 31/01/19)

min. cost $20 over 35 days

17GBMax Data**/billing period $40Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
Vodafone Logo

$50 Combo Plus

  • Unlimited national calls & SMS
  • 1000 mins to Zone 1 countries, 150 mins to Zone 2
  • Special offer: 20GB bonus data (offer expires 31/01/19)

min. cost $50 over 35 days

30GBMax Data**/billing period $50Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
View all mobile plans listed on Canstar Blue

365 Plus Plans

Brand Features Max Data**/billing period Advertised Cost^^/billing period
Vodafone Logo

Prepaid 365 Plus $30

  • PAYG
  • Data 2c per MB

min. cost $30 over 365 days

PAYGMax Data**/billing period $30Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
Vodafone Logo

Prepaid 365 Plus $40

  • PAYG
  • Data 2c per MB

min. cost $40 over 365 days

PAYGMax Data**/billing period $40Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
Vodafone Logo

Prepaid 365 Plus $50

  • PAYG
  • Data 2c per MB

min. cost $50 over 365 days

PAYGMax Data**/billing period $50Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
View all mobile plans listed on Canstar Blue

Vodafone Postpaid Plans

The great thing about Vodafone Postpaid is that whether you’re after a SIM-only deal, or you’d like a new phone with your plan, postpaid plan options are virtually the same. Vodafone definitely keeps it simple with four different price points to choose from, starting at $35 per month and going up to $80. The SIM-only plans can be selected over a 12-month contract, or on a month-to-month basis. You’ll typically get standard national calls and unlimited text in Australia, but the higher-level plans offer international minutes and more data.

These plans also allow you to add on any of the Vodafone Passes, and if your plan’s data or international call inclusion isn’t enough for you, you can always purchase a data or international talk add-on. Vodafone does love to offer bonus data on select plans from time to time, so you might find you can get double (or even more than double) the data during promotional periods. The telco is also known to add special offers, such as bonus data, to select plans when bundled with particular phones, so it’s worth keeping your eyes peeled to pick up a deal.

Brand Features Max Data**/billing period Advertised Cost^^/billing period
Vodafone Logo

$35 Red SIM Only

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • Special offer: 32GB bonus data per month (offer expires 20/12/18)

min. cost $420 over 12 month plan period

3GBMax Data**/billing period $35Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
Vodafone Logo

$45 Red SIM Only

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • Special offer: 35GB bonus data per month, plus $5 off plan fees (offer expires 20/12/18)

min. cost $540 over 12 month plan period

15GBMax Data**/billing period $45Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
Vodafone Logo

$60 SIM Only

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • Special offer: 40GB bonus data per month (offer expires 20/12/18)
  • Up to 20,000 Qantas Points

min. cost $720 over 12 month plan period

40GBMax Data**/billing period $60Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
View all mobile plans listed on Canstar Blue

Vodafone Plus Plans

If you find yourself constantly going over your data allowance, Vodafone has an interesting solution. Rather than offering straight-out ‘unlimited’ data, if you opt for the $60 Red Plus or $80 Red Plus plan, you can use as much data as you want – just at capped speeds. Once you’ve reached 40GB of high-speed data use on the $60 plan, and 80GB on the $80 plan, you can keep using your data, but speeds will slow to 1.5Mbps.

This is still fast enough to stream music and standard-definition video, so you can continue to use your phone the same way with no excess data charges. These plans are available as 12-month postpaid plans, either as a SIM-only plan, or bundled with a new phone.

As with Vodafone’s other plans, there might be a bonus data deal on these plans, depending on when you sign up. While you might be wondering why you would need bonus data on an ‘unlimited’ plan, all bonus data is at full 4G speeds – meaning you’ll get more gigabytes to use before your data is dropped to 1.5Mbps. This also eliminates the need to add on any of the Vodafone Passes.

Brand Features Max Data**/billing period Advertised Cost^^/billing period
Vodafone Logo

$60 SIM Only Plus

  • Unlimited Data*(Capped at 1.5Mbps after 40GB)
  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • Special offer: 40GB bonus full speed data per month (offer expires 20/12/18)
  • Up to 20,000 Qantas Points

min. cost $720 over 12 month plan period

40GBMax Data**/billing period $60Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
Vodafone Logo

$80 SIM Only Plus

  • Unlimited Data*(Capped at 1.5Mbps after 80GB)
  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • Special offer: 20GB bonus full speed data per month (offer expires 20/12/18)
  • Up to 40,000 Qantas Points

min. cost $960 over 12 month plan period

80GBMax Data**/billing period $80Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
View all mobile plans listed on Canstar Blue

Vodafone contact details/customer support

Need some help with your Vodafone plan or service? The telco offers several contact and support options, including:

 How does Vodafone compare?

If you’re after a plan on the Vodafone network, but want to explore your options, there are a range of smaller telcos with competitive deals on the Vodafone network. It’s worth comparing to see if there is another plan that is better suited your needs.

Is Vodafone a good deal?

Vodafone’s greatest value lies in the flexibility of choosing your plans, especially when you’re opting for a plan with a phone. As it’s the only provider that essentially separates the phone repayment from the plan, you have more control over what you spend – without making sacrifices on the phone for a cheaper plan, or spending more than you would like to get the phone you want.

Vodafone Passes are another clever way that the telco puts more power into the hands of customers. These add-ons provide an affordable way to deliver more data for activities that would generally put you over your data limit, such as video or music streaming.

If you travel overseas a lot, this is also where Vodafone’s appeal might lie for you. While paying $5 per day on top of your monthly bill might seem expensive up front, it’s certainly cheaper than some of the other international roaming deals around, and it avoids bill shock. If you’re visiting any of the eligible 80 countries, instead of being restricted to a smaller amount of international roaming data, call and text allowance, you get to keep using your phone as if you were in Australia. $5 Roaming also eliminates the need to buy a new SIM card the moment you land at your holiday destination.

Like the other two big telcos, Vodafone’s plans do generally run on the more expensive end of the spectrum, considering some of the smaller providers tend to offer more data for less money. But there are plenty of perks to choosing a deal with Vodafone. Consider whether these perks are what you’re after, and if the telco’s plans will provide you with the best value for your money.

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