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Prepaid mobile plans

Switch to a prepaid plan and stop paying for excess usage. Compare 120+ prepaid SIM plans in seconds below.

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Prepaid SIM-only plan
Prepaid SIM-only plan
  • No download limit (speeds limited to 20Mbps)
  • Unlimited standard national calls + texts
  • No lock-in contract
No download limit
per 1 Month expiry

5 things to help you find the right prepaid plan

While price may be the most important factor when it comes to choosing a plan, there are other things to think about when comparing plans to find the right one for you. Consider:

Most prepaid plans sell you a flat amount of data to use within the expiry period. Once you're out, you're out. Anything that offers you data at a rate of $1 or less per 1GB is great value, although lower value is fine if you aren't going to use much data to begin with.

Expiry period
Typical expiry periods range from 28–30 days, but always check the provider's definition of a "month" if that's the listed period. Some might have longer recharge periods, meaning fewer recharges in a year which can help you save. 90- to 365-day expiry plans can be economical by allowing you to pre-purchase all your usage for several months to a year, just be careful you don't burn through it all too quickly.

Data banking/rollover
A very useful feature offered by providers like ALDImobile,Telstra or Boost. Unused data rolls over from month to month, meaning you won't get caught short and leftover data doesn't simply vanish. Perfect for users who have variable data usage month to month.

International inclusionsNot for everyone, but great if you're planning to make frequent traditional calls overseas, which are otherwise quite pricey. If you're comfortable with voice chat apps like WhatsApp or Viber for overseas communication, purchasing slightly more data is a good alternative.

Data-free streaming
Some providers will let you stream music or video off certain platforms without consuming plan data, such as free music streaming on Apple Music with Telstra. Optus will give you bonus "streaming data" that's only spent on a few platforms, including Netflix and Stan. Either way, these are useful extras to save data if you use these platforms frequently.

  • Quick tip: We've highlighted special deals in green to make them easier to spot in our comparison table above.

If you're still unsure whether a prepaid plan is right for you, we'll explain the ins and outs of prepaid plans and break them down side by side against SIM only plans in the following guide.

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What is a prepaid mobile plan?

Prepaid phone plans allow you to purchase a certain amount of credit or data upfront, which you can then use freely until it expires. Once all your credit has been used up or expired, you'll have to recharge your plan to get more.

This is different to a postpaid SIM only plan, where excess calls and data charges are simply added to your monthly bill, but your service isn't cut off.

30-day calendar icon

Month to month

The most common form of prepaid mobile plan you're probably already familiar with. Usually comes with 28- to 30-day expiry periods and a monthly allotment of data to go with it. Great for regular phone users who want more control over their spending.
long expiry calendar icon

Long expiry

Buy a large chunk of data with a 90-, 180- or 365-day expiry period. You can use the data whenever you want during that time (unless specified), but once you've used it all up, you'll have to recharge for more. A strong economical choice for people with good discipline who don't need monthly caps to control their data.
payg calendar icon

PAYG (pay as you go)

A different payment structure. You buy credit upfront and then are charged for each minute of call, text sent or bit of data used. In comparison to other types of prepaid plans, PAYG has terrible value for data (sometimes $50/GB compared to under $1/GB for other types), so only advisable for infrequent phone users with low data needs.
Over 20% off for 12 months - pay $30 for 100GB of data per month. Plan reverts to $38 for 100GB per month after 12 months. T&Cs apply.

What is the cheapest prepaid plan?

The cheapest prepaid plan will always be the ones that come with the least amount of data. Generally, the cheapest option you can go for is around $10 for 1GB of data, or $15 for 3-8GB, depending on the provider.

This table lists the average amount of data you'll get at $10 price points so you can get an idea of prices and inclusions for prepaid plans.

Cost of prepaid planAverage data allowanceAverage dollar per data value
$10/month0.8GB$12.5 per 1GB
$20/month11.66GB$1.72 per 1GB
$30/month29.29GB$1.02 per 1GB
$40/month40.25GB$0.99 per 1GB
$50/month54.16GB$0.92 per 1GB

Last updated 5 January 2021.

As you can see from the table above, the cost per GB of data decreases the more data you buy each month. But just because the cost per GB gets cheaper, it doesn't mean you should just grab a big data prepaid plan, especially if you're not going to use up the data allowance within the month. Don't pay for more than you need.

If you're not planning to use any data, a PAYG plan with a long expiry period is probably your cheapest option, since you only pay for the calls and text you use (but data is pretty expensive so steer clear if you're a data-hungry customer). This is an excellent choice if you keep your mobile for emergencies, or want to keep your number for a long time without really using it.

To find a prepaid plan that suits your needs, use the filters on our table above, using the highest price you're willing to pay per month as your guide.

Are prepaid mobile plans worth it?

A prepaid plan suits someone who doesn't use their phone very often, has different usage habits month to month or wants control over how much they spend on mobile bills.

If you have a younger child, a prepaid plan is an excellent way to make sure they don't end up getting slammed with excess usage charges. With unlimited talk and text on most prepaid mobile plans, you'll always be able to get in touch with them. You can choose a data cap that works for both of you.

If you don't use your mobile phone very much, prepaid plans are perfect. Consider springing for a long expiry mobile plan so that your credit stretches out a long way and you don't have to worry about monthly recharges.

Check out our other prepaid plan guides:

Looking for a specific prepaid plan for your needs? We update the following guides each month with our top picks.

Still on the fence?

Whether a prepaid plan is right for you really depends on your mobile usage habits. We've down a quick breakdown of the pros and cons of prepaid plans below.


  • No bill shock or excess use charges
  • No lock-in contracts
  • Low commitment – switch carriers easily
  • Generally lots of offers & promotions to nab extra data


  • Service is cut off when you hit your limit
  • Misleading expiry periods, e.g. 28 days vs 1 month
  • Can't get a phone with a prepaid plan, unless you buy the phone outright

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

SIM only plans are what most people think of as a "regular" phone plan, since they're billed at the end of the month like a credit card or Internet bill. The main similarity between them and prepaid plans is that neither require you to buy a new mobile handset when you sign up.

Here are the two laid out side by side:

Bill is paidAt the beginning of the monthAt the end of the month
Excess usage chargesNeverYes
Available as a contractNoYes
Data/credit expiresAnywhere from 7 days to a year, frequently 28- or 30-day periodsMonthly
Bring your own phone?YesYes, or phones can be purchased as part of the plan
Bonus featuresRarelyFrequent promotional deals

Do unlimited data prepaid mobile plans exist?

Not really. In practice, unlimited data phone plans don't exist at all, though Telstra and Vodafone promise "endless data" on their SIM only options. All these plans do is throttle your download speed when you reach your limit without charging you for excess usage – something that won't happen on a prepaid plan, anyway.

The only thing that could be considered "unlimited data" is Optus's 24-hour Unlimited Data add-on. This lets you have unlimited data for 1 day on its $30 or greater prepaid Epic Data plans for an extra $5. You can purchase this add-on by logging in to your online Optus account or through the My Optus app.

Prepaid plan providers

We've outlined the prepaid mobile plans offered by the three major mobile network providers below.

Telstra logo


Telstra offers two main prepaid options:

  • Pre-Paid Complete. These are intended as high-value prepaid mobile plans with longer expiry periods on the more expensive offerings. They range from 1GB for $10 with a 7-day expiry to 150GB for $300 with a 12-month expiry. All versions offer unlimited domestic calls and texts plus up to 200GB data rollover.
  • Long Life Plus. A pay-as-you-go plan where credit is deducted for calls, texts and data use. Get $30 of credit with 6-month expiry or $150 with 12 months expiry.
    In addition to what's outlined above, all Telstra prepaid plans include data-free streaming of certain sports and Apple Music so long as you have a subscription, as well as access to the Telstra Air national Wi-Fi system.

Find out more about Telstra's prepaid plans here.

Optus logo


With Optus, you can choose from four different kinds of prepaid mobile plans:

  • Epic data. These focus on data, with bonus GBs for your first few recharges. All but the cheapest have 28-day expiry and they range from 5GB for $10 to 30GB for $50. Features data rollover between recharges up to 200GB, unlimited national talk and text and 10GB of free video streaming data on selected platforms.
  • Epic value. Cheaper plans with longer expiries as they get more expensive. Go between 500MB for $10 with a 21-day expiry and 60GB for $180 with a year-long expiry. Includes data rollover between recharges and unlimited national talk and text.
  • Daily plus. Pay $2 for each day you make a call or use any data, subtracted from a fixed amount of credit. Get between $10 and $60 of credit with expiry periods up to 186 days.
  • Long expiry. Pay-as-you-go talk, text and data, subtracted from your credit. Credit choices available span from $10 to $60 and carry 45- to 365-day expiry periods.

All of Optus' prepaid options can be customised with extra options at purchase, including Optus Sport and data roaming. Get the full details on Optus prepaid plans here.

Vodafone logo


Vodafone prepaid plans come in two types:

  • Prepaid Plus. These plans range from $30 for 15GB to $50 for 45GB of full speed data, all with 28 day expiry periods. Once you've run out of full speed data, your download speed will be capped at 1.5Mbps, but you won't be charged for excess usage. All plans involve unlimited national talk and text.
  • Pay and Go. Pay-as-you-go talk, text and data, subtracted from the credit you purchase. Buy $30 of credit with 185-day expiry, or $40 and $50 for a period of 365 days.

Some Prepaid Plus plans include international minutes, and all of them have a 200GB data bank between recharges. Find out all about Vodafone prepaid mobile plans and deals here.

If you're looking for a prepaid plan outside of the big 3 providers, take a look at these MVNOs below. While these providers may not be as common a household name as Telstra, they're more likely to offer you competitive prices if you're just after solid data inclusions and don't need any fancy extras on top of your plan.

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Frequently asked questions about prepaid plans

Can I use my existing phone number on a prepaid plan?

Yes, if you'd like to keep the number you currently have, you can transfer your existing number to a new plan. This is called porting your mobile number. Make sure you don't cancel your previous service or else you'll lose your number.

Are prepaid phone plans cheaper?

Typically, prepaid phone plans are cheaper because they provide fewer features and lower data value (though not always). By dropping all the fancy inclusions that SIM only plans from providers such as Telstra or Optus might provide, prepaid plans work out to be consistently cheaper than their SIM only equivalents.

Do prepaid plans come with a phone?

You can't explicitly get a new handset to pay off as part of a prepaid plan, but some providers like Telstra or Optus sell cheap prepaid phones to go with what they offer. These phones are network-locked, so you'll have to pay to unlock them or wait until a particular length of time passes before you can use a different provider's service with them. The phones on offer tend to be cheap or older models, so don't expect to get the latest iPhone or Samsung Galaxy. Alternatively, you can buy a new phone outright and then find a prepaid plan to use with it.

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    36 Responses

      Default Gravatar
      CherylSeptember 25, 2019

      What is the cheapest prepaid plan for 28-35days, small amount of data unlimited calls & texts?

        Default Gravatar
        NikkiSeptember 26, 2019

        Hi Cheryl,

        Thanks for getting in touch! The cheapest prepaid plan that is within the 28-35 days period with, minimum date of 4GB + unlimited call and text is the Catch Connect 4G 40GB $49.90 30 Days. To get started with your application, click the GO TO SITE button.

        Hope this helps!


      Default Gravatar
      frankJuly 5, 2019

      I am on long term prepaid 365 plan.Is my data being used even if idon’t make any

        Default Gravatar
        NikkiJuly 6, 2019

        Hi Frank,

        Thanks for getting in touch!

        Your data is not being used when you make regular outgoing calls, however, if you make other calls that uses internet such as Viber, Whatsapp or other apps that need internet to be able to work, this will use up your data.

        Hope this helps! For any further questions, feel free to reach out to us again, we’re here to help.


      Default Gravatar
      HarryApril 19, 2019

      Actually I don’t have a valid visa, I want to register my number in Lyca, is it possible??

        Avatarfinder Customer Care
        JeniApril 20, 2019Staff

        Hi Harry,

        Thank you for getting in touch with Finder.

        If you wish to activate your new number Lycamobile, please visit their official page and follow their step-by-step guide on this matter. You just need a proof of identification like your passport to register online.

        I hope this helps.

        Thank you and have a wonderful day!


      Default Gravatar
      SherylApril 5, 2019

      Husband needs a prepaid plan to call and receive the odd call and perhaps the odd text. Currently has $20 Telstra prepaid every month he has used minimal. I acknowledge this can get credited to the next month but he just doesn’t use it.
      Is there a better/cheaper option than what he currently has?

        Avatarfinder Customer Care
        JohnApril 8, 2019Staff

        Hi Sheryl,

        Thank you for reaching out to Finder.

        Yes, there are cheaper prepaid mobile plans available for you to choose from. Kindly review and compare your options on the table displaying the available providers. Once you have chosen a particular provider, you may then click on the “Go to site” button and you will be redirected to the provider’s website where you can proceed with the application or get in touch with their representatives for further inquiries you may have.

        Before applying, please ensure that you read through the relevant Product Disclosure Statements/Terms and Conditions when comparing your options before making a decision on whether it is right for you. Hope this helps!


      Default Gravatar
      DrMarch 12, 2019

      I am a prepaid Telstra mobile customer since 2012 but unfortunately last week I change to prepaid plan to Telstra prepaid Max. This plan is very good for the people who use the internet continually because it gives a lot of gigabytes which is helpful. Also it gives a free standard national voice calls in Australia. Now, because I go overseas I need cheaper international voice calls which is not provided by Telstra. So I am thinking that I need to return back to my old plan which I were happy with it from 2012 til last week.

      Could you please help me in this matter?

        Avatarfinder Customer Care
        JeniMarch 14, 2019Staff

        Hi Dr. Abdulhadi,

        Thank you for getting in touch with Finder.

        You may refer to our list of cheap international calls from Australia. If you are travelling abroad and would be staying long in the said country, I suggest that you use the country’s mobile service as using your Telstra SIM or any Australian mobile service abroad would cost you roaming charges on top of your phone calls and data usage.

        I hope this helps.

        Thank you and have a wonderful day!


      Default Gravatar
      AnnieFebruary 28, 2019

      I currently have a $30 monthly prepaid with Telstra. I’m going overseas for about 2 years and need to keep my current mobile number to receive a few texts per month. I won’t be making calls or needing data for internet. Telsta is offering me the ”long life plus” for $70/year to keep my number. Are there any other phone companies that are cheaper than $70/year?


        Avatarfinder Customer Care
        JeniMarch 2, 2019Staff

        Hi Annie,

        Thank you for getting in touch with Finder.

        Currently, most long expiry prepaid plans have included data usage which does not suit you since you wouldn’t be using the data overseas but just a few SMS. While the mobile plans we have basically had 28 days to 6 months plans – inclusive of data, calls ,and text.

        I suggest that you contact your top 3 providers to confirm if they offer a long life plan that would suit your needs.

        I hope this helps.

        Thank you and have a wonderful day!


      Default Gravatar
      WubbleupSeptember 29, 2018

      I am living in Lakewood nsw(2443) mob signal is not great! I have wifi and a landline with unlimited calls . I need a mobile phone service with unlimited calls when away from home …. I have my own phone , I don’t want to be locked into a plan and want to keep my mobile number. Can you suggest the cheapest and best carrier for my needs ?

        Avatarfinder Customer Care
        JoshuaOctober 1, 2018Staff

        Hi Wendy,

        Thanks for getting in touch with Finder. I hope all is well with you. :)

        While we don’t provide a specific product recommendation, you can use our table above to compare your options. You may also want to use the filters to narrow down your options. With the filter, you can eliminate those plans that come with a lockdown contract and display those plans with unlimited calls.

        When you switch to another carrier, you can also keep your mobile number. Learn more about porting your mobile number.

        I hope this helps. Should you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out again.

        Have a wonderful day!


      Default Gravatar
      JoSeptember 27, 2018

      Would amaysim $10 prepay suffice if phone only used for making calls to landlines and mobiles ie no data use?

        Default Gravatar
        NikkiOctober 1, 2018

        Hi Jo,

        Thanks for your message and for contacting finder.

        This will depend entirely on how often you’ll be making calls.

        You may review the other options on the page above and find one that you think would fit your usage.

        Hope this helps. Feel free to message us again should you have further questions.


      Default Gravatar
      LisaMarch 21, 2018

      I’m looking for a prepaid sim that uses Telstra 4g as that’s what works the best in our location. I also want a plan that rolls over the left over data. I came across a company called ‘Belong’ that has a good plan but they don’t seem to get any good reviews. Any recommendations about them or other companies would like at least 5gb and max $30 per mths. thanks for your help :)

        Avatarfinder Customer Care
        JoshuaMarch 27, 2018Staff

        Hi Lisa,

        Thanks for getting in touch with Finder.

        A data rollover is treated slightly different depending on your carrier, but at the time of writing, Optus, Virgin, Telstra, and Vodafone all have rollover provisions that work slightly differently depending on which network you’re actually using.

        Regarding Belong, it was founded back in 2013 with the aim of disrupting the Australian broadband market with value-priced ADSL and NBN plans. It later branched out in October 2017 by adding SIM-only mobile phone plans to its repertoire. Operating on parts of Telstra’s 4G and 3G networks, these plans are targeted squarely at heavy data users, packing plenty of GBs at the expense of only being able to receive phone calls by default. To make outgoing calls, you’ll need to purchase a separate call pack add-on.

        Belong’s mobile plans are strictly SIM-only, post-paid affairs, with minimal options for customisation. They all come with a no lock-in, month-to-month contract giving you the freedom to cancel at any time without having to pay any termination fees.

        I may not be able to give you specific recommendations, but you can use the table found on this page. Use our filters to narrow down your choices and specify which provider you want to show up.

        I hope this helps. Should you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to reach us out again.

        Have a wonderful day!


        Default Gravatar
        LisaMarch 27, 2018

        Thanks Joshua we have decided to give Belong a go but my only concerns are the claim that they only operate on Parts of Telstra 4g & 3g! if they’re not totally using the Telstra lines whos else are they using or am i understanding it wrong? We have signal issues where we live and only seem to get Telstra here.

        thanks Lisa

        Avatarfinder Customer Care
        JoshuaMarch 28, 2018Staff

        Hi Lisa,

        Thanks for your reply.

        “Parts of Telstra’s 4G or 3G” means that Belong is using some of the available technology created by Telstra. According to our page, Belong only uses Telstra’s network. So, if your area has Telstra’s network, then you can expect that your phone will receive a signal. If there’s none, then you won’t be able to use your phone’s data.

        I hope this helps. Should you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to reach us out again.

        Have a wonderful day!


      Default Gravatar
      ricardoFebruary 13, 2018

      hi im looking for a prepaid phone company (just simcard) that has unlimited international calls and text to USA

        Avatarfinder Customer Care
        JoshuaFebruary 22, 2018Staff

        Hi Ricardo,

        Thanks for getting in touch with Finder.

        Please refer to our comparison table to find the right sim-only plan for you. You can use our search filters and comparison table to help narrow down your options.

        On that page, you will find that Lebara and Lycamobile provides unlimited calls and texts to the US.

        Once you have chosen a particular plan, you may then click on the “Go to site” button and you will be redirected to the provider’s website where you can proceed with your application or get in touch with their representatives for further assistance.

        I hope this helps. Should you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out again.

        Have a wonderful day!


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