Telstra Price Rises: What You Need To Know

Telstra Price Rises: What You Need To Know

From October 1, Telstra is putting up its prices on many of its phone plans, for both mobile and landline users. Will you be affected and how much more will you pay? We’ve summarised the main shifts below.

Picture by Robert Cianflone/Getty Images

These changes won’t affect everyone. In particular, most of them don’t apply to users on bundle plans (which combine home phone, mobile, internet and pay TV in a single bill). It’s hard to avoid the conclusion that Telstra wants all its consumer customers locked onto long-term bundle contracts well before the National Broadband Network (NBN) becomes widely available.

Landline changes

  • Charges for calls to 13/1300/1345 numbers will go up from 30 cents to 35 cents.
  • Access fees (often referred to as line rental) are going up on several HomeLine plans. (Annoyingly, Telstra is changing the names of most of the plans from October 1, which makes the changes less visible).
  • Charges for local calls on HomeLine Complete, Plus and Advanced plans are going up by 2 cents.
  • 0018 Easy Half Hours, which provided a fixed-rate half hour call to overseas destinations, are being retired. In truth, anyone wanting to make cheap overseas calls will have switched to Skype or another VOIP option years ago.

Mobile changes

The big shift here is that all mobile plans will shift to per-minute charging. This is already the Telstra approach for new customers, but some of its older plans used 30 second blocks. This could make calls rather more expensive if you happen to be on one of those plans.

Telstra’s own announcement points out some of these plans haven’t seen price changes in nine years. More broadly, we’d note that if you find those prices high, there are lots of other options and competitors. In the landline market, there’s no obvious compelling reason to choose Telstra over anyone else. Its Next G mobile network is highly regarded and faster than its rivals, but there are still plenty of alternatives.

What’s your reaction to the changes? Tell us in the comments.



  • Per-minute charging on mobile calls? I wonder what the rationale behind that is. They can tell me on my bill how long the call was down to the second. Why not charge me for it down to the second?

  • “Telstra’s own announcement points out some of these plans haven’t seen price changes in nine years. ”

    Yeah, while everyone else has been dropping prices!

  • Lets put up line rental charges for a service nobody really wants but has to accept if they can’t get Naked

    Soon as the NBN gets here, I’m Gone!

    • OK, I’m getting sick to death of people commenting about the NBN that don’t understand what they are talking about.

      Do you all realise that the NBN is an access network? this means that it will cover 1-5 KM of distance between you and the exchange, but then it is connected to a backbone network. The backbone network will be operated by the ISPs from which you will get a NBN connection.

      This means that whilst you will be able to technically receive a 100mbps connection from the exchange ISAM/MSE/etc you will be bundled with everyone else on the same CAN footprint backbone trunk.

      The NBN POI (point of interconnect) will be the landing place in the exchange where you all connect to, and then are shipped off through your ISP’s backbone.

      Most ISPs have a 1Gbps backbone from the NBN POI to their core network where it is aggregated to 10-20-40gbps networks if you are lucky. they all then hit up the international links (of which Telstra own/operate 90% of anyway) where you will see reduced speeds for international traffic.

      So my point is, it doesnt matter about the access side – if your ISP has a shit backbone, then you are screwed no matter what.

      The NBN connection that i am trialing with Telstra gets me ~80mbps average over a 1 hour test every day from an international server. I experience 10ms latency when testing around the country with other Telstra peers, and 95mbps average.

      My collegues with iiNet and Optus test plans have about 8mbps/13mbps average for the same international test, and while i am not allowed to know the results of the Australia testing, they have told me they are not recommending it to their friends- they are going with Telstra.

      So please, please dont see NBN as a magic bullet to solve your problems when it will not.


      • I’m pretty sure the guy was talking about the need to have line rental just to have internet. so you pay $25 for line rental to Telstra just to have ADSL connection.

      • wsDK_II what are you on about . . . . This was about the cost of landline and mobile calls.
        And in any case, the 2nd part of your post does not make any sense.

  • Being the only network that can consistently provide reliable & stable coverage in my area (south-west of WA + Perth) a price rise doesn’t really make a difference. You might save money with other providers but the savings aren’t worth the frustration & inconvenience.

    • I agree John – in our neighbourhood (Redlands in Brisbane – 20km from the CBD) all of our neighbours can be seen on their footpaths trying to make or take a mobile phone call. I shit you not.

      I can sit in the middle of my brick house and have complete service. For that I will pay a premium.

  • I really wish someone would ask Telstra how these benefit/affect the customer, just to force them to admit that its just costing customers more (or say something so woeful unbelievable). Want to see them justifying a per-minute billing

  • ” Its Next G mobile network is highly regarded and faster than its rivals, but there are still plenty of alternatives.”

    Not always. There may be other providers, but if you live anywhere inland from a coast, chances are the coverage and quality aren’t anywhere near enough to actually make them viable alternatives. I’m with Next G because I travel a lot for work, and I am west of the “sandstone curtain”. Other providers will allow me coverage in town, but only Next G allows me coverage on most highways between towns.

    To make it clear, I’m not saying that Next G coverage is absolute, just simply better (short of a Sat Phone!)

  • Agreed, for regular users of data through their mobile, there is no alternative to Telstra. I’ve done stints on Vodafone, Optus, Three and Telstra, and always have to pay the extra monthly fees to come back to Telstra for the coverage. Simple things like summer trips to the Beach, and long stretches of suburban train trips, no-one else can compete.
    If only Telstra let other companies resell their mobile plans 🙁

  • I don’t know about that chris. I have been in the position of carrying two phones for the last month.

    One on Telstra (prepaid), one on Optus (post paid) and quite frankly I cannot find a difference for the most part.

    Given I use 90% data (i make less than 30 phone calls a month) its the data speeds I care about, and there was really not much difference at all. I can tell you I was super surprised to see how little difference it made.

    Will be porting my Optus sim over to Amaysim for a while to keep track of how its going, and then make a final decision. But if its the same, I can’t see any reason to pay at least double for Telstra.

    I will still keep my sim though 🙂 Being a technowhore

    • the question is, how is your daily movement?

      me for one, travelling from Sydney central station to Rhodes
      constantly cut off using vodafail
      a mate using telstra, full bar all the way with no issue at all

  • At the end of the day, a telco is a business and it needs to make money for its shareholders and to pay its employees and to cover the costs of providing services and upgrading services and expanding networks and paying fines for breaching customer privacy etc. etc.

    • Yes, but it also needs to be competitive and at least ‘appear’ as if its treating its customers respectfully. Telstra is known for high prices, and lousy service, and has got away with it for years because it had a monopoly. That is now changing, so its needs to change too, and if that means adapting , then so be it. Just remember, please, that we, the customers, are not here to keep Telstra employees in jobs or provide shareholders with e decent return. It’s the other way round, Telstra is here for us, the customers, and needs to remember that.

  • It looks and sounds like Telstra might lose it loyal customers once they scrap the rewards scheme. As for overseas calls, we won’t be using 0011 as it would cost more to ring overseas for a call

  • unlimited calling plans for $40 on Boost, Amaysim, Red Bull.
    or try woolworths for $29 cap /45days, 5GB.

    at these prices, there’s no reason to own a landline or being paying more than $40 for mobile

  • ABC News article from February 2012: “Telstra has reported a net profit of almost $1.47 billion in the first half of the financial year, up 23 per cent on the same period a year earlier”.

    Oh, but we haven’t increased ours prices for “some” plans for nine years, says poor Telstra. Perhaps we should send them donations – wouldn’t want them to have to rough it by only having 100-year-old caviar in the corporate dining-room.

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