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Vodafone Mobile: Plans and pricing
Of the three mobile network providers in Australia—Optus, Vodafone and Telstra—Vodafone has a reputation for competitive pricing and plenty of data. In practical terms, Vodafone is a telco that offers a range of SIM Only, Prepaid and Postpaid mobile plans with a network that’s available to most Australians in metropolitan areas. Here’s what you need to know about Vodafone mobile plans in Australia.
Vodafone mobile quick facts
- The Vodafone mobile network is compatible with 5G, 4G and 3G devices, and available to 96% of Australians in metropolitan areas.
- Vodafone mobile plans are sold as SIM Only or Prepaid. Vodafone SIM Only plans can be bundled with a mobile phone to create a Postpaid version.
- Vodafone SIM Only mobile plans come with limitless data, so if you go over the max-speed data cap, speeds are slowed to 2Mbps for the duration of the billing cycle.
- A big pro for international travellers is a daily roaming add-on that lets you use your monthly data allowance.
What are the different types of Vodafone plans?
Vodafone sells two main mobile plans: Prepaid and SIM Only. All Vodafone mobile plans include unlimited national talk and text. Vodafone Prepaid mobile plans are paid upfront and available as either Starter Packs with a SIM card or ongoing recharge plans. Vodafone SIM Only plans are paid at the end of a billing month. Alternatively, Vodafone customers can bundle a SIM Only plan with an available mobile phone and pay it off over a year or a few.
Vodafone SIM Only mobile plans and prices
Vodafone sells a few SIM Only mobile plans. The cheapest Vodafone SIM Only plan is around the $50 mark with an incremental price gap for the pricier plans. Effectively, paying more for a Vodafone SIM Only plan means significantly extra data and international call minutes. Note that all Vodafone SIM Only plans include access to the Vodafone 5G network in selected areas.
Vodafone Prepaid mobile plans and prices
Vodafone Prepaid mobile plans are divided into Starter Packs and ongoing recharges. The cheaper Vodafone Prepaid plans are 28-day offerings but there are also a couple of long-expiry options: 185 days or 365 days. All Vodafone Prepaid plans can be used on the Vodafone 5G network with a compatible device.
Vodafone Postpaid mobile plans and prices
Vodafone Postpaid mobile plans are identical to SIM Only plans with the addition of a bundled mobile phone. Plan costs vary based on the Vodafone mobile plan, bundled smartphone and the duration of the handset repayment terms.
What do you get with Vodafone plans?
Vodafone mobile plan speeds
All Vodafone mobile plans include Vodafone 5G support (for eligible 5G devices). Unlike other telcos, there aren’t any speed restrictions. While that sounds great on paper, the Vodafone 5G network is only available in Australia’s most populous cities. Practically speaking, Opensignal data has Vodafone average download speeds at just under 50Mbps overall and around 62Mbps for Vodafone 5G. Upload speeds are a smidge ahead of Optus and Telstra at just below 10Mbps. Technically, Vodafone 5G speeds can reach download speeds in the hundreds of megabits per second. Vodafone SIM Only users have plan speeds capped at 2Mbps if they go over the max-speed data allowance.
Vodafone mobile plan data
As is the telco trend, the more you pay for a Vodafone plan, the more data you can use. Vodafone’s cheapest SIM Only plan doesn’t have the best dollar-to-data value but it does offer comfortably more than the 35GB monthly median data allowance. For not a lot more, that data jumps by almost fourfold, and for the same increment, it doubles again to hundreds of gigabytes.
Vodafone’s Prepaid plans have a decent amount of base data, relative to dollar-to-data value. Similar pricing increments don’t lead to the same massive data leaps as the Vodafone SIM Only plans, but they’re still competitive.
Vodafone mobile plan international calls
Vodafone’s cheapest SIM Only plan doesn’t come with international calls. Pay extra for the pricier plans, though, and you’ll get unlimited international call minutes to Zone 1 countries, plus 300 minutes to Zone 2 countries. Note that international texts aren’t included.
These are the Vodafone Zone 1 countries: Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Germany, Guam, Hong Kong, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kuwait, Malaysia, Mexico, Mongolia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Peru, Puerto Rico, Romania, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, United Kingdom, United States of America and the Vatican (Holy See).
And here are the Vodafone Zone 2 countries: Andorra, Argentina, Austria, Bahrain, Belgium, Bermuda, Bolivia, Brunei, Cambodia, Cayman Islands, Costa Rica, Cyprus, Czechia, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Egypt, Faroe Islands, France, Gibraltar, Greece, Guadeloupe, Guatemala, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Laos, Lebanon, Luxembourg, Macau, Malta, Mozambique, Namibia, Nepal, Northern Mariana Islands, Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Reunion, Russia, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Slovakia, South Africa, Spain Canary Islands, Sri Lanka, Swaziland, Türkiye, Turkmenistan, United Arab Emirates, Uruguay, Venezuela and Vietnam.
Vodafone Prepaid users have access to a certain number of call minutes, depending on the plan. Call minutes range from 500–2,000 minutes to Zone 1 countries and 100–250 minutes to Zone 2 countries. International texts aren’t included for the 28-day Vodafone Prepaid plans but the two long-expiry plans come with 50 standard international texts.
Vodafone mobile plan features
Vodafone plans aren’t quite as feature-rich as Telstra and Optus, but they’re still contenders. For starters, Vodafone mobile plans don’t have any upfront fees. Vodafone Prepaid plans have a 200GB data bank, which is handy for rolling over unused data each month. There’s no data bank for Vodafone SIM Only customers, but they can share data across eligible plans under a single account. Pensioners can also access Vodafone mobile plan discounts.
Vodafone international roaming is still one of the best in the biz. For a low daily fee, Vodafone SIM Only users can use their monthly data overseas in eligible countries instead of tracking comparatively lower data add-ons. Vodafone Prepaid customers can purchase international roaming add-ons for one, three or seven days, which include data, call minutes and international texts in selected countries.
For those with compatible smartphones, Vodafone also offers eSIM instead of a physical SIM card for SIM Only and Prepaid mobile plans. Vodafone mobile plans also come with a 30-day network-satisfaction guarantee, plus there are presale tickets for local concerts and touring musicians.
Vodafone mobile phones
Vodafone customers can pair a SIM Only mobile plan with a modern smartphone. In terms of options, Vodafone has flagship mobile phones from big brands like Samsung, Apple, Google, Motorola and Oppo. Pick the capacity and preferred colour for eligible mobile phones, then select the handset repayment terms: 12, 24 or 36 months.
The longer the device-repayment period, the cheaper the monthly cost. Vodafone Postpaid plans are contract-free, so you’re free to shift or leave at any time, but you’ll have to pay out the remaining cost of the handset. Vodafone also has a history of offering trade-in credit if you’re upgrading from an eligible device.
Prepaid users can also access a smaller range of cheaper mobile phones from Vodafone, with Vodafone-branded handsets, Nokia and Motorola options. Vodafone Prepaid mobile phones are bought outright, with prices ranging from around $50 to under $200.
Vodafone coverage map
Overall, the Vodafone mobile network is the third largest in Australia, behind Telstra and Optus. It’s a combination of 5G, 4G and 3G mobile networks that’s collectively available to 96% of Australians in metro areas. According to Vodafone, its 5G network covers “more than 96 per cent of the Australian population across the nation’s 10 largest cities.” Tick the relevant 5G, 4G and 3G boxes below to select or deselect their view on the Vodafone network in the interactive map below. Note that Vodafone is switching off its 3G network on 15 December 2023.
How to switch to Vodafone
It’s a straightforward process to switch from another telco to Vodafone. Follow these steps to sign up for a Vodafone SIM Only or Prepaid mobile plan:
- Pick the right Vodafone plan for your mobile needs. Optionally, add a mobile phone if you want, then use the orange ‘Go to site’ button (if available) to go directly to the plan on the Vodafone website.
- On the Vodafone website, click on the red ‘Add to cart’ button beneath your chosen plan. Select between receiving a physical SIM card or eSIM, then click the red ‘Continue to cart’ button.
- Click the red ‘Checkout’ button, then select whether you’re a new Vodafone customer or an existing one seeking to add or change a plan.
- Fill in your personal details, create an account PIN and follow the prompts to complete the sign-up process. Note that you need payment details and either an Australian driver licence, Australian passport or international passport.
Vodafone mobile frequently asked questions
Vodafone mobile features breakdown
Vodafone mobile plan features
|Data rollover||Prepaid (200GB)|
|Auto prepaid recharge|
|Endless data||SIM Only 2Mbps|
|Data sharing||SIM Only|
|$0 setup-fee plans|
|International calls||Unlimited, call minutes|
|Discounted mobile plan|
|Phones available||SIM Only and Prepaid|
|Exclusive content offers||Presale concerts|
Vodafone mobile networks
|5G network access|
|4G network access|
|3G network access||Until 15 December 2023|
Vodafone mobile customer service
|Customer forum (or blog)|
|Self-service online (FAQs)|