The best Prepaid plans available (June 2022)

Looking for the cheapest and best Prepaid plans to get you out of trouble? Read on for our top picks for Prepaid phone plans.

Best value Prepaid
Lyca Mobile
Lycamobile Unlimited Plan XL
3.5 out of 5 stars
3.5
Starts at
$50
per recharge
Data
100GB p/recharge
Deal
20GB bonus data
Network
Telstra 4G
Best cheap Prepaid
Catch Connect
Catch Connect 30 Day Plan – 18GB
3 out of 5 stars
3
Starts at
$12
per recharge
Data
18GB p/recharge
Deal
$12 first recharge
Network
Optus 4G
Best perks for Prepaid
Woolsworth Mobile
Woolworths Mobile $40 Recharge
4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5
Starts at
$40
per recharge
Data
52GB p/recharge
Deal
10% off monthly Woolies shop
Network
Telstra 4G
Best Prepaid for big data
Lyca Mobile
Lycamobile Unlimited Plan XL
3.5 out of 5 stars
3.5
Starts at
$55
per recharge
Data
100GB p/recharge
Deal
20GB bonus data
Network
Telstra 4G
Best long-expiry Prepaid
Kogan Mobile
Kogan Mobile Extra Large – 365 Day Flex Plan
3.5 out of 5 stars
3.5
Starts at
$300
per 365-day recharge
Data
500GB p/recharge
Deal
12mth Kogan First subscription
Network
Vodafone 4G
June 01, 2022
10 min read

It’s great to see telcos competing in the Prepaid space because it means you can pair a handset—iPhone 13, Google Pixel 6 or whatever other available phone you fancy—with a great value plan. Buying a Prepaid plan means you’re in control of how much you spend each month, with no contract, and a bill that comes upfront so you don’t have to worry about potential bill shock at the end of the month.

The run of category shake-ups continues this month, particularly with the appearance of the competitive pricing of Catch Connect Prepaid plans in our database. We’ve got new category winners for best Prepaid value, cheap and cheapest categories.

Scroll on for the full breakdown of all our winners.

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Best value Prepaid plan

Lycamobile Unlimited Plan XL

Pro Heading
Pros
Pro Bullet Great dollars-to-data value
Pro Bullet 100GB data
Pro Bullet Unlimited calls to 53 countries
Con Heading
Cons
Con Bullet 28-day plans cost more per year
Con Bullet Light on features

The competition in this category gets tighter each month, but while Prepaid mobile plans that cost more tend to offer more data, we try to cap costs at $50 and stick to Prepaid monthly plans (28 days, 30 days or an actual month). This is the part where we usually introduce Gomo as the incumbent winner, but that’s changed this month with great value from Lycamobile.

The Lycamobile Unlimited Plan XL may operate on a 28-day recharge cycle, which means you tend to pay for at least one more recharge per year, but it’s packing plenty of dollars-to-data value for $50. It used to have 80GB of data but that’s recently been upped to 100GB, plus 20GB of bonus data for new and existing customers who recharge before 30 June 2022. This Lycamobile plan also includes unlimited calls to 53 selected countries.

For comparison, check out the daily updating list below for popular Prepaid mobile plans with at least 50GB of data.

Light Bulb
Prepaid recharge durations
When is a month not a month with no-contract Prepaid mobile plans? When it comes to a telco’s understanding of a month in Prepaid terms. TPG and Felix Mobile offer an actual month for their Prepaid plans, which means it’s the same day every recharge whether the month has 28, 30 or 31 days. Telcos like Amaysim treat a month as 28 days, while others like Aldi Mobile offer 30-day recharge periods. Things get slightly more complicated with Optus offering 42-day and 90-day recharges, but these odd-duration plans aren’t as common as the monthly versions or their long-expiry alternatives. From here, there’s a massive jump to six months, like those Prepaid mobile plans offered by Amaysim and Boost Mobile, or Woolworths Mobile’s six-ish months in its 180-day Pre-paid $60 Long Expiry Recharge. Finally, for even longer recharge periods, there’s a split between the 365-day options offered by Woolworths Mobile and Optus or the one-year offerings from providers like Amaysim. If you’re interested in reading about more Prepaid mobile plans that expire after 90, 180 or even 365 days, see our guide to the best Prepaid long-expiry plans.

Best cheap Prepaid plan

Catch Connect 30 Day Plan – 18GB

Pro Heading
Pros
Pro Bullet Great promo pricing
Pro Bullet Cheap typical pricing
Pro Bullet 15GB data
Con Heading
Cons
Con Bullet International minutes cost extra
Con Bullet 30 days could be a month

We keep this category maxed out at $20 a month, which is usually taken out by an incumbent Woolworths Mobile plan. That wasn’t the case last month with the Coles Prepaid $20 for 30 Days plan swooping in to steal the crown, but both household grocery names have been usurped by Catch Connect this month.

The Catch Connect 30 Day Plan – 18GB almost says it all in the plan name, except for the $15 recharge fee you pay every 30 days. Get in fast (as in, before 7 June 2022) to nab an initial $12 cost for the first 30 days. There aren’t really any perks outside of this, but $15 typical pricing for 18GB of data is a good Prepaid price to pay on the Optus 4G network.

Below is a daily updating list of popular Prepaid mobile plans that don’t cost more than $20 per recharge.

Best Prepaid plan for perks

Woolworths Mobile Pre-paid Mobile $40 Recharge

Pro Heading
Pros
Pro Bullet International calls and texts
Pro Bullet 52GB data
Pro Bullet 500GB data rollover
Con Heading
Cons
Con Bullet Telstra wholesale network premium
Con Bullet 30 days could be a month

The big battle for the top spot in this category has been between Gomo and Woolworths Mobile in recent times. While Optus nabbed the top spot recently, this category is back to Woolworths Mobile again this month, albeit with the better-value Pre-paid Mobile $40 Recharge.

Prepaid plans don’t tend to be as perky as their SIM Only counterparts, which is why we love seeing the many inclusions of this Woolworths Mobile winner on top of the $40-per-30-day price. For starters, that 52GB of data is served on the widespread Telstra wholesale network. This plan also comes with unlimited talk and text to 22 selected countries, 500GB of data rollover (up from 300GB), plus you can gift data to eligible Woolworths Mobile customers. Our favourite perk, though, is 10% off a Woolies grocery shop once a month.

For comparison, below is a daily updating list of popular Prepaid plans with at least 30GB of data.

Best big-data Prepaid plan

Lycamobile Unlimited Plan XL

Pro Heading
Pros
Pro Bullet Telstra wholesale network reach
Pro Bullet 100GB data
Pro Bullet Unlimited calls to 53 countries
Con Heading
Cons
Con Bullet Telstra wholesale network premium
Con Bullet 28-day plans cost more per year

Further down the page you’ll find a little box that outlines why we treat 30GB as a decent amount of monthly data for those with data-heavy Prepaid needs. While you can opt for the Gomo $35 Mobile Plan if 60GB is enough for your monthly Prepaid data needs or the Felix $35 Subscription for unlimited data (albeit capped at 20Mbps), we fancy the extra data that comes from Lycamobile’s Unlimited XL Plan.

Admittedly, it is a 28-day plan (compared to Gomo’s 30-day recharge cycle and Felix’s monthly subscription), but this Lycamobile winner operates on the Telstra wholesale network, which has greater reach than the Optus network that Gomo operates on and Felix on the Vodafone network. You also get 100GB of data every 28 days with the Lycamobile winner (up from 80GB), 20GB of bonus data (until 30 June 2022), plus unlimited calls to 53 selected countries.

For comparison, below is a daily updating list of popular Prepaid plans with at least 30GB of data.

Best long-expiry prepaid plan

Kogan Mobile Extra Large – 365 Day Flex Plan

Pro Heading
Pros
Pro Bullet Great dollar-to-data value
Pro Bullet 500GB data
Pro Bullet 12-month Kogan First subscription
Con Heading
Cons
Con Bullet Vodafone network reach
Con Bullet Price has been cheaper

There are odd times when Kogan Mobile doesn’t win this category, and the long-expiry-loving telco usually takes the top spot with its Kogan Mobile Extra Large – 365 Day Flex Plan. And while Optus temporarily dethroned Kogan not so long ago, that’s not the case this month as the Kogan Mobile Extra Large – 365 Day Flex Plan is back.

Paying $300 gets you 500GB of data with the Kogan Mobile Extra Large – 365 Day Plan, which normally costs $529.90 (admittedly, it was $180 recently). That works out to more than 41GB of data to use each month. While it used to be quite light on perks, this long-expiry plan now includes visual voicemail, Qantas Frequent Flyer Points, plus a 12-month Kogan First subscription.

For comparison, below is a daily updating list of popular long-expiry Prepaid mobile plans.

Best budget Prepaid plan

Catch Connect 30 Day Plan – 4GB

Pro Heading
Pros
Pro Bullet Low ongoing pricing
Pro Bullet 4GB data
Pro Bullet Optus 4G network
Con Heading
Cons
Con Bullet No real perks
Con Bullet International minutes cost extra
Con Bullet 30 days could be a month

It’s okay to stick with last month’s winner, the Gomo $15 Mobile Plan, if you’d like more data and better overall value. But this category is all about getting a decent amount of data for as low a cost as possible, which is why the Catch Connect 30 Day Plan – 4GB takes out the top spot this month.

Don’t expect much in the way of perks at this price point, and certainly not from the Catch Connect winner. That said, you get 4GB of Optus 4G network data every 30 days for a $10 recharge fee. This is very competitive pricing for a cheap Prepaid plan and, impressively, $5 below our $15 cap for this category.

For comparison, check out the list of popular Prepaid plans below that come with at least 1GB of data and don’t cost more than $15 per recharge.

How much Prepaid data do I need?
Info Box

While this question is akin to answering ‘how long is a piece of string?’ there is some guidance on what you might need from the ACCC. According to the ACCC’s Communications market report 2020–2021, Aussie prepaid users only go through 6.3GB of data on average per month, which is around 9GB of data these days (according to the ACCC’s 20%-increase-every-six-months logic). Contrast this with the 30GB median data allowance for prepaid plans. While we use a mix of price and data to refine our category picks, generally speaking, a 10GB plan should be enough for the average prepaid user, and we’d recommend sticking to 30GB and above for those with bigger-data monthly needs.

Best Prepaid plan for International calls

Lebara $49.90 Extra Large Plan

Pro Heading
Pros
Pro Bullet Good dollars-to-data value
Pro Bullet Unlimited talk and text to 60 countries
Pro Bullet 200GB data bank
Con Heading
Cons
Con Bullet Vodafone network reach in rural areas
Con Bullet 30 days could be a month

Prepaid mobile plans may not be as perk-packed as SIM Only alternatives, but there are still a handful of telcos that offer unlimited international calls. The cheapest is the Coles Prepaid $20 for 30 Days plan, which offers unlimited international calls to 15 countries.

The old incumbent winner of this category was the Amaysim $40 Unlimited Plan, but we fancy the Lebara $49.90 Extra Large Plan again this month, which comes with unlimited talk and text to 60 selected countries, plus 300 minutes to 16 selected dialling destinations and 50 minutes to a further 10 countries. International inclusions aside, this winning Lebara plan also comes with 80GB of data to use every 30 days.

Below is a daily updating list of some of the most popular Prepaid plans from the Prepaid telcos in our database that offer unlimited calls on plans with at least 10GB of data (Gomo, Coles Mobile, Lebara, ALDI Mobile, Exetel, Amaysim, Boost Mobile and Optus).

Most popular Telstra Prepaid plan

Boost $30 Prepaid

Last month, Prepaid users on the Telstra network had shuffled away from Boost Mobile, but the Boost $30 Prepaid plan is back to reclaim its undisputed popularity at the start of this month. That $30 recharge price happens every 28 days for 20GB of data, though you also net 20GB of bonus data on the first recharge. You can also roll over data from one recharge to the next (though not in perpetuity), plus this Boost Prepaid plan comes with great international call inclusions.

Note that the plan above may change throughout the month based on the most popular Telstra network Prepaid plan in our comparison engine.

Most popular Optus Prepaid plan

Optus Prepaid Epic Data – $30 Recharge

Optus Prepaid has recaptured the attention of purchasers for another month after Amaysim snatched the popularity crown not so long ago. At first glance, $30 per 28-day recharge for 10GB of data doesn’t seem like a flash deal. But this Optus Prepaid Epic Data – $30 Recharge plan is likely popular because of the bonus data.

For the first three recharges, you nab a bonus 30GB of data for 40GB in total to use. Unused data can also be banked up to 200GB, so those unused megabytes today can help you out in data-intensive months down the track. The remaining days can also be rolled over (up to 84), plus this plan includes standard talk and text to 15 selected countries.

Note that the plan above may change throughout the month based on the most popular Optus network Prepaid plan in our comparison engine.

Most popular Vodafone Prepaid plan

TPG 12GB Mobile Plan

Kogan temporarily dethroned TPG last month, but the latter telco is back with a big popularity lead at the start of the month. The TPG 12GB Mobile Plan is one we consider each month for our best budget category. It has an actual monthly renewal cycle (instead of 28 or 30 days) and comes with 12GB of data for $20 a month, though new customers can currently nab $10 monthly pricing for the first six months.

 

Note that the plan above and the ones below may change throughout the month based on the most popular Vodafone network Prepaid plans in our comparison engine.

What to look for in a Prepaid plan

Photograph of a woman holding a prepaid SIM card

When choosing a Prepaid plan, it’s important to note the differences between plans (recharges), subscriptions and starter packs. Prepaid plans are the best indicator of ongoing value, especially when compared to starter packs. Subscriptions, on the other hand, are a convenient auto-recharging option that can offer SIM Only-like value.

Pick a plan duration that works for you. If you need data in a pinch, you can opt for plans with fewer than 28 days. Most Prepaid plans in our comparison engine, though, hang around that monthly point: either 28 days, 30 days or an actual month. Monthly plans are the easiest way to determine ongoing costs, and you’ll want to factor in an extra recharge per year for an ongoing 28-day Prepaid plan.

Cost and data are the main indicators of value, but also keep an eye out for the network. The Telstra network is the largest, followed closely by the Telstra wholesale network and then Optus, with Vodafone not far behind. Quality coverage should result in a better Prepaid experience, from call reliability to download and upload speeds. Finally, it’s worth factoring in any perks, such as international calls, but perks like this aren’t essential if you don’t intend on using them.

How we choose the best Prepaid plans

At the start of each month, we compare all relevant Prepaid recharges and subscriptions to pick new winners or confirm the continued reign of incumbent victors. Most of our categories involve monthly plans, which offer either 28 days, 30 days or a full month. When determining first-year value in our comparisons, we count 30-day recharges 12 times and 28-day plans 13 times.

We compare ongoing recharge pricing with included data, making sure to treat short-lived bonus data as a perk rather than an indicator of long-term value. To stop costs from blowing out, we cap the spend of our best value ($50), best cheap ($20), best big-data ($50) and best cheapest ($15) picks at specific max prices to find a balance between cost and data.

For the long-expiry category, we evaluate all of the plans in our comparison engine that have durations of 180 days up to a year. With this category and others, we also consider the network that the plan is offered on in the context of its pricing. Finally, for the international-calls category, we choose the plan that offers the greatest number of countries albeit at a reasonable price.

Prepaid FAQs

Below are the answers to some of the more pressing Prepaid plan questions.

Switching Prepaid mobile plans and providers is nowhere near as stressful as switching Postpaid plans, partly because Prepaid plans have no contract. The process will be different for every provider but, typically, all that’s required to switch Prepaid mobile plans is to select a different recharge type next top-up. Other providers will ask you to switch rate plans via an automated service over the phone, and some let you do it all from their app. Switching providers is almost as simple, but there are a few more steps. If you want to switch providers and keep the same number, make sure you approach your new provider with the mobile number you would like to switch, the associated account number (if available), and your personal details for security purposes (e.g. name, date of birth, driver’s licence number). Where you might run into trouble is using one provider’s Prepaid handset with another’s Prepaid SIM. Unlike contract phone plans, Prepaid phones tend to be network locked. Unlocking your Prepaid handset will come with a small fee, which may vary depending on the make and model of your phone and the date of purchase.

Postpaid plans are usually associated with contract terms and included handsets (though there are some decent month-to-month SIM Only plans available these days) whereas Prepaid mobile plans are low-commitment plans that give you more control over your spending, and they have no contract.

With Prepaid plans, you pay for the calls, texts and data you think you will need before using them. Postpaid plans, on the other hand, calculate your usage at the end of your billing month and bill you for the calls, text and data used over that period (typically with excess fees if you go over your plan’s inclusions).

Both offer their own peace of mind. Prepaid mobile plans simply restrict your network access when you’ve burned through your data, whereas excess usage on a Postpaid plan will result in additional charges on your bill at the end of the month. But Prepaid plans come with the risk of getting cut off without notice, which can be dangerous if you forget to recharge, whereas Postpaid plans will only cut you off if you fail to pay the last month’s bill after it’s due.

You would be stretched to find a Prepaid provider and plan that doesn’t allow for tethering these days. We reviewed every Australian Prepaid provider and couldn’t find a single provider that didn’t offer tethering on its Prepaid mobile plans. The Optus website states that Prepaid tethering is available on “most plans” but we checked with the customer service team who confirmed it was available on every Prepaid plan. So, here are the Prepaid providers from our comparison engine that allow tethering:
  • Aldi Mobile
  • Amaysim
  • Boost Mobile
  • Coles
  • Dodo
  • Kogan Mobile
  • Lebara Mobile
  • Lycamobile
  • Optus
  • Telstra
  • TPG
  • Vodafone
  • Woolworths

More Prepaid plans

Take a look at the most popular Prepaid plans in Australia according to WhistleOut’s comparison engine.

Nathan Lawrence
Written by
Nathan Lawrence
Nathan Lawrence has been banging out passionate tech and gaming words for more than 11 years. These days, you can find his work on outlets like IGN, STACK, Fandom, Red Bull and AusGamers. Nathan adores PC gaming and the proof of his first-person-shooter prowess is at the top of a Battlefield V scoreboard.

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