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Telstra Mobile: Plans and prices

Nathan Lawrence
Sep 25, 2023
Icon Time To Read6 min read

Telstra is perhaps the most renowned telco in Australia with, inarguably, the largest collective mobile network. Comparatively, Telstra mobile plans are pricier than the competition. But that extra investment typically leads to more expansive coverage, faster potential speeds and more plan perks.

Telstra mobile quick facts

  • The Telstra mobile network reaches 99.5% of the Australian population across 5G, 4G and 3G technologies. Telstra 5G is available to 85% of Australians.
  • Telstra offers Prepaid Prepaid, SIM Only (paid in advance) and plans with the option to bundle a handset outright or pay off a mobile phone over one, two or three years.
  • Telstra SIM Only mobile plans come with limitless data, wherein speeds after a full-speed allowance are capped at 1.5Mbps, while Telstra Prepaid plans have a 200GB data bank.
  • Telstra Plus is an opt-in program that offers discounted and presale tickets, plus a rewards store.

What are the different types of Telstra plans?

Telstra mobile plans are available in a few different flavours. For controlled spending, there are Telstra Prepaid plans. For more data and inclusions, consider a Telstra SIM Only plan. If you’re in the market for a new mobile phone, have a look at a Telstra mobile bundled plan, which are the same as Telstra SIM Only plans albeit with a handset repayment.

Telstra SIM Only mobile plans and prices

These days, Telstra SIM Only mobile plans are called Telstra Upfront plans. Why? Like Telstra Prepaid plans, Telstra Upfront plans are paid in advance of a monthly billing cycle, though the inclusions are similar to SIM Only plans from competing telcos. All Telstra SIM Only plans include access to the Telstra 5G network these days, though speeds may be capped on the cheapest plan. Basically, the more you pay, the more data you get with a gigabyte leap between the cheapest Telstra SIM Only plan and the next option.

Telstra Prepaid mobile plans and prices

Telstra sells a range of Prepaid mobile plans, available as Starter Packs of ongoing Prepaid plans. Starter Packs are generally a cheaper way to get started and include a Telstra SIM card. Telstra ongoing Prepaid plans are charged in either 28-day, six-month or 12-month blocks. While Telstra Prepaid plans have access to the Telstra 5G network, speeds are capped.

Telstra Postpaid mobile plans and prices

Telstra Postpaid mobile plans are identical to Telstra Upfront/SIM Only plans in terms of data and inclusions except they let customers bundle a handset. You’ll have the choice of paying outright or paying off the mobile phone over a fixed period.

What do you get with Telstra plans?

Telstra mobile plan speeds

All Telstra mobile plans include access to the Telstra 5G network, though the speeds vary based on the type and price of the plan. For Telstra Prepaid plans, download speeds are capped at 150Mbps. For Telstra SIM Only plans, speeds are either capped at 250Mbps on the cheapest plan or uncapped on pricier options. According to Opensignal, Telstra mobile download speeds average out at around 60Mbps collectively and around 81Mbps for 5G users. Upload speeds around 9Mbps.

Telstra mobile plan data

Data allowances also vary based on how much you pay. The data inclusions for Telstra SIM Only plans are comfortably above the median mobile phone data allowance (35GB per month). More expensive Telstra SIM Only plans offer hundreds of gigabytes of monthly data. Telstra Prepaid plans may have bonus data for initial recharges but, compared to Telstra SIM Only plans, they have lower dollar-to-data value.

Telstra mobile plan international calls

As is the norm these days, unlimited standard national calls and text are a baseline part of Telstra SIM Only and Prepaid plans. International calls vary by plan type. Telstra SIM Only plans include unlimited standard text to any international number and 30 minutes of calls to any country. For Telstra Prepaid plans, it depends on which one you buy, with international call minutes ranging from 300–6,000 for Zone 1 countries.

Telstra Prepaid plans also include fewer minutes for Zone 2 (60–800 minutes) and Zone 3 (5–100 minutes) countries. Note that international text isn’t included. Here are the Telstra Zone 1 dialling destinations: Canada, China, Denmark, Germany, Guam, Hong Kong, India, Ireland, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, Norway, Puerto Rico, Romania, Singapore, South Korea, United Kingdom, United States of America and Vietnam.

These are the Telstra Zone 2 international options: Argentina, Bangladesh, Brazil, Cambodia, Chile, Colombia, Iceland, Greece, Italy, Lebanon, France, Iran, Israel, Kenya, Kuwait, Mexico, Nepal, Netherlands, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, Peru, Sri Lanka, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Taiwan, Thailand and United Arab Emirates.

And here are the Telstra Zone 3 dialling destinations: Austria, Comoros, Croatia, East Timor, Egypt, Fiji, Ghana, Mauritius, Papua New Guinea, Poland, Russia, Samoa, Serbia, Solomon Islands, Surinam, Switzerland, Tonga, Turkey, Vanuatu and Zimbabwe.

Telstra deals

If there’s a Telstra mobile deal today, whether it’s for SIM Only or Prepaid, you’ll see it listed below.

Telstra plan features

Telstra has a reputation for pricey but feature-rich mobile plans. While promotional pricing isn’t as common as competing telcos, Telstra Prepaid plans tend to come with bonus data on initial recharges and you shouldn’t expect any upfront fees outside of the cost of the plan.

Whether you go with Telstra SIM Only or Telstra Prepaid, international roaming is via paid add-on. There’s a day pass, which includes 1GB of data as well as unlimited calls and SMS for Zone 1 and Zone 2 countries. Zone 3 countries only have unlimited calls and SMS. There’s also a 1GB data top-up for eligible countries. Note that country eligibility may be determined by Telstra plan type.

Telstra is one of a growing number of telcos to support eSIM. Customers with compatible mobile phones can opt for an eSIM instead of a physical SIM card on a Telstra Prepaid or Telstra SIM Only plan via the My Telstra app. While there isn’t any data rollover for SIM Only plans, Telstra Prepaid customers can access up to 200GB of data rollover. Data sharing is available for Telstra SIM Only plans, which includes Telstra family plans. Bundle up to five eligible mobile or data plans under a single Telstra family plan.

Students and pensioners may also be eligible for discounted fees on Telstra mobile plans. Telstra customers can also tap into the opt-in perks of the Telstra Plus program. This rewards program is available to all Telstra customers and offers discounted tickets (movies and sports) as well as presale access to selected concerts, art performances and galleries. There’s also a rewards store where customers can spend points—or a mix of points and money—for a range of products and services.

Telstra mobile phones

Telstra Upfront and Telstra Prepaid customers have the option of purchasing a mobile phone. Brands like Apple iPhone, Google Pixel, Samsung Galaxy and Motorola Razr are available to buy outright or as part of an interest-free payment. Handset repayment terms are either 12 months, 24 months or 36 months. You’re free to cancel a no-contract Telstra Upfront plan at any time and just pay out the remainder of your handset repayment.

Telstra customers after a mobile phone can choose from a range of colours and storage capacities (where available), plus there’s free delivery and, in some instances, bonus trade-in credit for eligible handsets. Pair a flagship smartphone or mid-range handset with a Telstra Upfront plan to get the process started.

Additionally, Telstra also stocks a range of comparatively cheaper phones for pairing with Telstra Prepaid plans. The selection includes cheaper options like Telstra-branded mobile phones to budget models from known brands like the Samsung Galaxy A and Motorola Moto G ranges. Prepaid phones are purchased outright and prices range from around $60 to under $350.

Telstra coverage map

Telstra has the largest mobile network in Australia across 5G, 4G and 3G technologies. For Telstra (and Boost Mobile) customers, that translates to a mobile network that’s available to 99.5% of the Australian population. Reportedly, 85% of Australians can access the Telstra 5G network. The interactive map below provides a visual idea of Telstra coverage. Tick or untick the 5G, 4G and 3G boxes then move the map to a desired location to see network coverage. Note that Telstra is shutting down its 3G network on 30 June 2024.

How to switch to Telstra

Switching between telcos in Australia is a straightforward process, and Telstra is no exception. Here’s how to switch to Telstra:

  1. Pick the Telstra mobile plan that works best for your needs. Optionally, add an available mobile phone. Click the ‘Go to Site’ button (if available) or head to the Telstra website.
  2. Confirm your Telstra Upfront or Telstra Prepaid by clicking the corresponding blue-circle (SIM Only) or blue-box (Prepaid) plan on the Telstra website. Click ‘Add to cart’ to proceed.
  3. Click on the ‘Secure checkout’ button. Register for a Telstra ID if you’re a new Telstra customer or sign in with your Telstra ID if you’re a returning customer.
  4. Follow the prompts and enter the requested details to complete the sign-up process. Note you may need to provide an Australian driver licence or passport as well as income and/or employment details.

For new Telstra SIM Only services, SIM cards should automatically activate within four hours after confirmation of delivery. Insert the Telstra SIM card into a compatible device and, if four hours has passed without activation, restart the handset. We recommend pre-downloading the My Telstra app before inserting a SIM card. Activate the SIM for Telstra SIM Only or Prepaid plans inside My Telstra under ‘Get Help’, ‘My Orders’ and then ‘Activate your SIM’.

Telstra mobile frequently asked questions

Yes, Telstra offers mobile discounts for pensioners. Customers with a valid Health Care Card, Pensioner Concession Card or a Department of Veterans’ Affairs card are eligible for a discount on Telstra’s Starter Mobile Plan.
Telstra mobile plans are no longer postpaid. Like prepaid plans, all Telstra mobile plans (including SIM Only) are paid upfront. At the time of writing, the cheapest Telstra SIM Only mobile plan is the Telstra Basic plan.
It’s a close contest between Optus and Telstra. Go with Optus for more mobile plan choices and cheaper overall prices. But go with Telstra if you want better coverage.

Telstra mobile features breakdown

Telstra mobile plan features
Data rollover
Icon Yes  Dark
Prepaid (200GB)
Auto prepaid recharge
Icon Yes  Dark
Data-free streaming
Icon No  Dark
Endless data
Icon Yes  Dark
SIM Only 1.5Mbps
Data sharing
Icon Yes  Dark
SIM Only
Rewards program
Icon Yes  Dark
$0 setup-fee plans
Icon Yes  Dark
International calls
Icon Yes  Dark
Call minutes
International roaming
Icon Yes  Dark
Discounted mobile plan
Icon Yes  Dark
Phones available
Icon Yes  Dark
SIM Only and Prepaid
Entertainment bundle
Icon Yes  Dark
Exclusive content offers
Icon Yes  Dark
Icon Yes  Dark
Telstra mobile networks
Mobile network
Population covered
5G network access
Icon Yes  Dark
4G network access
Icon Yes  Dark
3G network access
Icon Yes  Dark
Until June 2024
Telstra mobile customer service
Customer forum (or blog)
Icon Yes  Dark
Crewed Twitter
Icon Yes  Dark
Facebook page
Icon Yes  Dark
Retail stores
Icon Yes  Dark
Phone support
Icon Yes  Dark
Usage-monitoring app
Icon Yes  Dark
Chat service
Icon Yes  Dark
Self-service online (FAQs)
Icon Yes  Dark
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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