Optus customers not using direct debit may forfeit data compensation

My optus app
Pictured: My Optus mobile app
Anula Wiwatowska
Nov 14, 2023
bullet1 min read
//Long standing customers may need to switch, or miss out

Published on November 14, 2023

Some customers who joined Optus before August 2021 may not be able to access the telco’s data compensation without switching to direct debit.

Following the Optus network outage last week, the provider has issued a range of "goodwill gestures" to its customers by way of compensation for the down time. Postpaid customers can access free bonus data via a 100GB data Add-On in the My Optus app, but reportedly some have been prompted to update their payment method before the $0 transaction can take place.

An Optus spokesperson told WhistleOut that all Choice Plus plans require an automatic payment method to be linked to the account at all times. Without these payment details, customers won’t be able to add their extra data.

When Optus updated its Choice plans to Choice Plus in August 2021, direct debit became mandatory for all users on these plans. Therefore it is likely this glitch is affecting customers that joined the telco prior to this change, before an automatic payment method was required.

WhistleOut was made aware of the issue when various TikTok users commented on a video about the compensation, noting it was unavailable unless customers use automatic payments. Users took to a similar video by TikTok creator itstwaj to oppose mandatory direct debit.

An Optus spokesperson told WhistleOut that customers on other plans that offer alternative payment options don’t require a direct debit to be associated with their account, but declined to comment on whether this affects their ability to access the provider’s “gesture of goodwill”.

According to the outage response terms and conditions, 41 postpaid plans from as early as 2013 are ineligible for the extra data Add-on. However, if the Add-On is available in the My Optus app, the connected service should be able to access it.

This article originally appeared on WhistleOut.

Anula Wiwatowska
Written by
Anula Wiwatowska
Anula is the Content and Social Media Editor within the Reviews.org extended universe, writing across Reviews.org/au and WhistleOut. Working in the tech space since 2020, she covers phone and internet plans, gadgets, smart devices, and the intersection of technology and lifestyle. After a year in the sector, Anula was shortlisted for Best New Journalist at the IT Journalism Awards in 2021. Apart from putting serious words on the internet, Anula strategises and creates social-first content, and researches by getting lost in TikTok for hours on end. If she isn’t in front of her computer, you’ll find Anula drawing somewhere cozy, pretending that she knows how to use power tools in the yard, or playing with her dog with a strong martini in one hand.

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