CODE: FELIX10

cross
Young woman in yellow jumper using mobile phone

Optus follows Telstra in phone plan price hike

Optus has quietly increased the price of its SIM-only and phone-on-a-plan postpaid services for new customers, several weeks after confirming plan changes for legacy users.

All of Optus’ postpaid mobile plans have risen in price by $4 per month, although fast data inclusions have also increased. This means that cheapest Optus postpaid SIM plan is now priced at $49 per month, up from $45, with the most expensive option now setting customers back $89 monthly.

While we already knew that a percentage of current Optus customers would see their monthly plan costs increase from August 8, 2022, we weren’t given warning that the same price changes would be introduced to new customers this month. Unlike Telstra, which provided an unusual level of transparency about its July price rise, Optus’ plan update for new customers hadn’t been confirmed by the telco when Canstar Blue reached out in late June.

Optus plans: up by $4, but with more data

Optus is changing the price and data inclusions of its four main postpaid plans. These changes will apply to new customers bringing their own phone to a SIM-only postpaid plan, and to buyers pairing their service with a new smartphone on an Optus device payment plan.

All four plans will increase in price by $4 per month, but Optus is bumping up the monthly data allowance considerably. Optus’ $69 Large plan will now include more than double the data featured in the previous $65 plan, going from 100GB per month to 220GB, while the most expensive Extra Large now includes 360GB for $89, up from 240GB for $85.

Optus’ Small plan has seen a more modest data increase, now offering 30GB per month (formerly 20GB), while the Medium plan has increased from 80GB to 100GB. All four plans will continue to include additional unlimited speed-capped gigabytes to use if your fast data runs out, restricted to download speeds of 1.5Mbps.

Here’s a side-by-side of Optus’ new plans, compared to its previous pricing and inclusions.

Plan Old price & features New price & features
Small Optus Choice Plus Plan
  • $45 per month
  • 20GB fast data
  • Data-free Optus Sport + Fitness included
  • $49 per month
  • 30GB fast data
  • Optus Sport + Fitness priced at $6.99 for customers from August 1
Medium Optus Choice Plus Plan
  • $55 per month
  • 80GB fast data
  • Data-free Optus Sport + Fitness included
  • $59 per month
  • 100GB fast data
  • Optus Sport + Fitness priced at $6.99 for customers from August 1
Large Optus Choice Plus Plan
  • $65 per month
  • 100GB fast data
  • Data-free Optus Sport + Fitness included
  • $69 per month
  • 220GB fast data
  • Optus Sport + Fitness priced at $6.99 for customers from August 1
Extra Large Optus Choice Plus Plan
  • $85 per month
  • 240GB fast data
  • Data-free Optus Sport + Fitness included
  • $89 per month
  • 360GB fast data
  • Optus Sport + Fitness priced at $6.99 for customers from August 1

All four plans will continue to include unlimited standard national talk and text in Australia, with Medium, Large and Extra Large plans still featuring unlimited international calls and messages to 35 selected countries. Add-ons and extras such as international roaming are also still available, as is Optus’ SubHub subscription platform (which allows customers to save up to 10% on selected streaming and media subscriptions when bundled on an Optus account).

However, one additional change that’s sure to disappoint sports fans is the removal of free Optus Sport streaming. Formerly included in Optus’ postpaid and phone plans, Optus Sport + Fitness will now be offered to customers for $6.99 per month (or $24.99 annually for non-Optus subscribers). The football streaming service is the go-to viewing option for English Premier League in Australia, so soccer lovers who stuck with Optus for this reason will now be hit with an $83.88 cost per year for continued access.

Why is Optus raising mobile prices?

It’s not a shock to see Optus tweak its plans, as it’s typical for the major telcos to revise their pricing and plan features about every 12 months. However, with the increased cost of living still a hot topic and sore spot for Australians, a price rise isn’t likely to go down well with Optus’ extensive customer base.

The $4 monthly increase is similar to the recent plan shake-up from Telstra, which saw postpaid plans rise by either $3 or $4 per month. Telstra stated that the cost increase reflected the Consumer Price Index, and that going forward it would be reviewing its plan prices annually in line with inflation.

An Optus spokesperson told Canstar Blue that the company also made the decision to raise prices due to the higher cost of goods and services, as well as the increased demand for mobile data from Australian consumers.

“We do recognise there have been a lot of hits on customers’ hip pockets – mortgage increases, transport, petrol – and that many are struggling financially,” the Optus spokesperson said. 

“We have specially trained teams who can assist customers experiencing hardship and design a plan that will help them through hard times and get back on their feet.

“While we are raising costs, we haven’t forgotten about customers’ needs for more data, so we’re giving them just that with our new mobile plans, so they can do more of the things they love. 

“Optus will continue to strive to deliver extraordinary value, meaningful differentiation and choice for our customers.” 

How Optus plans compare to Telstra and Vodafone

Telstra’s cheapest postpaid plan is now priced at $58 per month for 40GB of fast data so even under its new plan structure, Optus remains a cheaper entry-level option at $49 for 30GB. Both telcos also offer a premium $89 plan: Telstra’s version includes 300GB of full-speed data, while Optus customers will receive a larger 360GB inclusion.

Looking at all three of the big Aussie telcos, Vodafone’s cheapest postpaid plan is priced at $40 per month for 10GB of fast data, although currently offers new customers a bonus 30GB each month if you sign up before September 5. The telco also spruiks a $65, 100GB plan (which now includes 200GB of bonus data, and a $5 monthly discount), as well as its $85 unlimited data option (currently reduced to $65 per month for new customers).

To give you an idea of how all the current postpaid plans from Telstra, Optus and Vodafone compare, browse through the below table.

The following table shows selected published Optus SIM-only postpaid plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of cost, from the lowest to highest and then by data allowance, largest to smallest. Use our comparison tool to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a selection of products with links to a referral partner.

The following table shows selected published Telstra SIM-only postpaid plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of cost, from the lowest to highest and then by data allowance, largest to smallest. Use our comparison tool to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a selection of products with links to a referral partner.

The following table shows selected published Vodafone SIM-only postpaid plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of cost, from the lowest to highest and then by data allowance, largest to smallest. Use our comparison tool to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a selection of products with links to a referral partner.

For customers wanting the most data for their dollars without speed caps, Vodafone’s $85 unlimited plan remains a standout, particularly with the $20 discount applied. But while there’s plenty of competition for big data plans, customers with much lighter needs may be overpaying by going with one of the big-name providers.

With none of the ‘big three’ offering less than 10GB per month on post-paid plans and prices starting from $40 with Vodafone, $49 with Optus, and $58 with Telstra these may not be the best option if you’re not a big data user. If you do need less than 10GB per month, and are happy to bring your own phone, you may want to consider a smaller provider if you’re looking to cut your bills.

You can find SIM-only plans with 5GB of data from around $10 per month with competing providers, and 10GB for as little as $15. If you’re not on a contract, and aren’t paying off a new phone on a Telstra, Optus or Vodafone plan, there’s still plenty of lower-cost options available if you’re trying to find a better mobile deal.

Compare SIM-only phone plans

Here is a selection of postpaid plans from Canstar Blue’s database with a minimum of 20GB of data, listed in order of standard cost, lowest to highest, then by data allowance, largest to smallest. Try using our mobile phone plan comparison tool to see a wide range of plans from other providers. This table includes products with links to referral partners.

Here is a selection of prepaid plans from Canstar Blue’s database with a minimum of 10GB of data each month, listed in order of standard cost, lowest to highest, then by data allowance, largest to smallest. If you want to compare a larger range of offers from other providers, use our phone plan comparison tool. This table includes products with links to referral partners.

Share this article