Media Release

Wake-up call: Telco loyalty could be costing you

      • 75% of Australians are with Telstra, Optus or Vodafone
      • Only one in three of these Aussies would switch to a small telco for a cheaper deal
      • Tips on how to pick the best value mobile plan

8 April 2019, Sydney, Australia - Competitive mobile phone deals aren't enough for consumers to move away from the big three telcos according to new research by Finder, Australia's most visited comparison site.

The survey of 2,026 respondents finds that the majority of Australians (75%) have a mobile phone plan with one of the three big telcos: Telstra, Optus and Vodafone.

Of these Aussies, just one in three (33%) would switch to a smaller provider if they found a cheaper offer.

But over half (57%) wouldn't budge, with most believing they're already scoring a good deal.

Alex Kidman, tech expert at Finder, says Aussies are paying the loyalty tax by not considering their options.

"The market has become extremely competitive. There's plenty of smaller telcos to choose from, all aggressively fighting for a piece of the pie. It's a big win for consumers because plans are becoming cheaper and providing better value.

"If your contract has ended but you're happy to keep the same phone, it's vital that you check the deals that are out there. Switching to a different provider could easily save you hundreds of dollars."

Despite more and more providers entering the market, brand reputation is still king with one in 10 (10%) stating they think these smaller providers are unreliable.

"What many people don't realise is all telcos are using one of the big three networks. So a provider you might not have heard of would still be running on Telstra, Optus or Vodafone."

"When it comes to coverage your service shouldn't differ no matter if you're with a small provider or one of the big three. They're running off the same network so reliability is much the same," Kidman says.

Unsurprisingly Baby Boomers are the most attached to their telco with only 20% open to parting ways with the big three.

In comparison, Gen Y is the most open to switching to a smaller provider with 40% keen to make the change.

Picture not described: Release1.png Image: Getty

NetworkMVNO (Mobile Virtual Network Operator)
Belong Mobile
Coles Mobile
Moose Mobile
VodafoneHello Mobile
Kogan Mobile
Think Mobile
Would you switch from the big three telcos for a cheaper deal?
No, I'm already on a great deal32%
No, small players aren't reliable15%
No, it's too time consuming10%
Yes, I would33%

Source: Finder, February 2019

How to pick a mobile phone plan

  • Check your data usage: You don't want to be forking out money if you're not planning on using a lot of mobile data. The more data your plan comes with the more expensive it will be. Most phones can track your data usage, either through an app or in the settings, make sure you check this feature out so you can accurately pick a plan to suit your browsing or streaming needs.
  • Consider buying outright: Buying a phone outright can be costly, but if you have the option it's something you should consider. SIM-only plans can often come in cheaper, and if you opt for month-to-month you get the added flexibility of being able to switch as soon as you come across a better deal.
  • Don't rule out a small player: The number of telcos has increased over the past few years. This has led to more competition in the market and therefore cheaper prices. If you are thinking of switching broaden your search wider than the big three. You might just find a plan with more data and extras.


For further information


The information in this release is accurate as of the date published, but rates, fees and other product features may have changed. Please see updated product information on's review pages for the current correct values.

About Finder

Every month 2.6 million unique visitors turn to Finder to save money and time, and to make important life choices. We compare virtually everything from credit cards, phone plans, health insurance, travel deals and much more.

Our free service is 100% independently-owned by three Australians: Fred Schebesta, Frank Restuccia and Jeremy Cabral. Since launching in 2006, Finder has helped Aussies find what they need from 1,800+ brands across 100+ categories.

We continue to expand and launch around the globe, and now have offices in Australia, the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Poland and the Philippines. For further information visit

12.6 million average unique monthly audience (June- September 2019), Nielsen Digital Panel

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