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Best Mobile Phone Plans for Seniors

Looking for a no-nonsense phone plan? We’ve narrowed down the options to help you find the best mobile plan for your needs.

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Two older women laughing about something they've captured on their mobile phone

As you'll know if you're an older Australian, it's ridiculous to assume that you don't have the same range of needs when it comes to phones and plans as anyone else. We've picked through what's on offer and found plans to suit not only infrequent users with low data needs, but also travellers, tech enthusiasts and those who hunger for data to stream their favourite shows.

Whatever you need and whatever your age, have a look through the categories below to see our top recommendations.

Best Mobile Phone Plans for Seniors April 2020

  1. Best cheap mobile plan: amaysim Prepaid Plan $10
  2. Also great: Dodo Mobile $5 Plan
  3. Also consider: Southern Phone X Small $9 Plan
  4. Best long expiry mobile plan: Boost Prepaid 12 Month Plan $150
  5. Another option: Woolworths Prepaid $60 Long Expiry Plan
  6. Best mobile plan for travel: Vodafone Combo Plus Plan $40

Curious to know how we picked this list?

Every month, our team of experts looks for the best mobile phone plans for seniors from dozens of products in the market. We break down plan details and costs to find you the best value plans. Keep in mind that our "best" picks may not always be the best for you, and you're always welcome to use our mobile phone plans comparison table to find one that works for you.

Best cheap mobile plans

If you're on a bit of a budget and mostly after calls anyway, there are very cheap plans with unlimited domestic inclusions that let you talk to whoever you want inside Australia. The trade-off is that you won't get much, if any, mobile data, so consider something else if that's important to you.

We've chosen three top picks for best cheap mobile plans this month, all serving a slightly different purpose. Dodo also does a cheap deal if you aren't after any data at all, and just want a bit of money to make calls and texts. Our other two best choices depend on whether you mind being tied to a contract. amaysim's comes with 1GB of data (enough if you need a spot of Internet while you're out) without a contract, so you can upgrade to a bigger plan if you need. If you know you'll be fine without a lot of data, Southern Phone's 12 month plan will look after you for a year.

Best long expiry mobile plan

When your mobile phone is something you only pick up now and then rather than something that's in your hand 24 hours a day, a long expiry mobile plan is perfect. These let you buy a set amount of credit which you can use when you need it, lasting up to a year.

Our current favourites are from Boost, Optus and Woolworths Mobile. Boost's plan gives you a decent amount of data with unlimited calls and texts for a full year, but if you're not too concerned with needing a huge amount of data, Optus' Daily Plus plan might be a better option for you. We've also chosen Woolworths Mobile's 180 day plan as a middle ground - you can use 2GB of data a month, and score 10% off your groceries once a month. You can find more options over on our long expiry plans page.

Best mobile plan for travel

These days, age isn't much of a barrier to travel. Whether you're heading off to visit kids and family who have gone overseas or you're just taking a holiday, these plans are designed for travelling, with roaming options that allow you to make calls and surf the Internet while abroad.

Vodafone's Combo Plus plan is a good fit as Vodafone's $5/day roaming deal makes it easy and (relatively) inexpensive to roam overseas using the provisions of your plan without paying the ludicrous flat roaming charges most providers apply.

Mobile plans with a no-fuss phone

While smartphones are everywhere, not everyone needs the ridiculous overabundance of features that such phones have. These plans come with phones that won't break the bank but are still more than capable of making calls, sending texts and browsing the Internet. We've preselected a couple of easy-to-use phones in the table below, and you can click the 'filter results' button to customise your budget and inclusions.

Mobile plans with a smartphone

It's not just tech-obsessed teenagers who want the latest and greatest when it comes to phones. These plans will let you get your hands on a good smartphone with all the capabilities that your heart desires. We've chosen the three most popular phones according to user activity on Finder, but you can choose your own phones by clicking the 'filter results' button.

What to consider when looking for the best mobile plan for you

There's a couple things to keep in mind when you're hunting for the right mobile plan for your needs:

  • Useful extras. Many phone plans come with features like free streaming and music that you might not use. Make sure that you're not paying for features that you won't take advantage of.
  • Price. If your needs are rather modest and you mostly need a phone for calls or you simply don't use it very often, you can secure a very cheap phone plan, perhaps close to $10 a month. Make sure you're not paying way more than you need to.
  • Data. When you don't need a lot of data out and about, you can usually save a heap by purchasing a low-data plan, since data is usually the most expensive inclusion. Alternatively, you might look for a higher data plan so that you can watch your favourite shows or stream with your grandkids.
  • Recharge options. Some prepaid phone plans come with multiple ways to pay. If you prefer calling up or recharging in person, make sure your mobile plan supports it.
  • Included handsets. If you're happy with your current phone, then go for a SIM-only plan. Otherwise, you can get a plan that comes with a new phone that suits what you're looking for, whether it's the latest smartphone or a much simpler, cheaper handset.

Seniors discounts on mobile phone plans

Of the three major providers, Optus and Telstra don't provide any discounts to seniors or pensioners for their mobile plans.

However, if you hold a Seniors Card, you can save 10% on monthly plan fees with Vodafone's Red Plans, SIM-only plans and Data-only plans when you sign up.

Frequently asked questions

What's the difference between a prepaid and postpaid plan?

With a prepaid plan, you purchase all your credit and usage ahead of time. When you've used it all up, or you reach the end of the expiry period, your service gets cut off. However, you won't be able to go over the limits and get charged for excess.

On a postpaid plan, you sign up for a certain amount of monthly usage and data and are charged for any excess if you break the limit. This can lead to bill shock, but your service won't be cut off.

Can I keep my old mobile phone number?

Absolutely. Just make sure you don't cancel your old phone plan until you've secured a new one. When purchasing your new phone plan, select the option at the checkout that lets you port your old number over, and wait until this process is complete before you cancel your old plan. Check out our guide on number porting to get more detailed information.

Should I get a long expiry plan or a monthly plan?

This mostly depends on how frequently or intensely you use your phone. Long expiry plans have the benefit that your credit will last ages, but they tend to give way less value per dollar than a monthly plan. These plans also mean you don't have to worry about topping up your plan every month, but if you're frequently making calls, sending texts and browsing the Internet, you'll burn through your credit quickly and the long expiry won't matter.

Monthly plans will end up being cheaper in the long run for heavy mobile use. You can always give a long expiry plan a go and see how long your credit lasts, then switch to a monthly plan with no penalty if you run out too soon.


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8 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    LuffyOctober 18, 2018

    what plan and Iphone would you recommend for my 83 yr old dad

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JohnOctober 19, 2018Staff

      Hi Luffy,

      Thank you for leaving a question.

      The plans that are offered to Seniors are of different categories. You may want to check first how to maximize the value of the plan you wish to take based on how you would be using it. Will you be using it more on data? Text and calls perhaps? Please include these factors when choosing a plan that suits your needs. As per the Iphone, Depending on your budget, you may want to check the newest flagship of Apple which is the iPhone X. But if you are not into getting the newest version, most of the older iPhones have most of the features present in the new flagship. Hope this helps!

      Cheers,
      Reggie

  2. Default Gravatar
    MaggieApril 26, 2018

    I have a 94yo friend and want to get her a very cheap (no data or internet) phone with large numbers – where can I find a comparison?

    • Default Gravatar
      JoelApril 26, 2018

      Hi Maggie,

      Thanks for leaving a question on finder.

      We have outlined everything you need to know in our article above. If your friend is careful with her money or surviving only on a simple pension, she does not have the money to splash around on high-end mobile plans. For her, a mobile phone is a calling tool first and foremost, with a strong focus on a lower overall cost of usage. She can check out Amaysim As You Go or ALDImobile PAYG

      You can also check out our homepage for mobile plans so you can personalize your needs when it comes to it.

      Cheers,
      Joel

  3. Default Gravatar
    RayJuly 5, 2017

    I am just on 64, almost retired & have a 2G mobile phone . I’ve received emails & texts saying that I have to upgrade to a 3G or 4G mobile phone by August 1st. I don’t use the phone very much. I usually get $30 Virgin credit & it lasts me for about 6 months. I would like to get a replacement (probably 4G) mobile with similar conditions. Can you advise a phone & will it still be possible to get the $30 credit so that I only get charged on the calls or texts that I make?

    Regards
    Ray

    • Default Gravatar
      JonathanJuly 6, 2017

      Hello Ray!

      Thanks for the comment. :)

      Please be advised that you have reached finder and we provide generic advice.

      As such, we recommend that you check out our list of feature phones, which are designed mostly for calls and texts.

      Whether buying it outright or checking your telco provider if they offer this on a cheap mobile plan is your choice. Getting into a plan may give you bigger calls and texts value, not to mention, you may qualify for some Senior’s Discount! :)

      Good Luck with your choice! I know you want this to keep connected to your loved ones.

      Hope this helps.

      Cheers,
      Jonathan

  4. Default Gravatar
    JuliaMarch 28, 2017

    I am about to transfer my number to another person and need a new number. Am I able to have a choice of numbers and pick a favorite?

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      MayMarch 28, 2017Staff

      Hi Julia,

      Thank you for your inquiry.

      There are providers that will let you choose a mobile number. In order to request this, please contact your chosen mobile plan provider directly.

      Cheers,
      May

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