Telstra’s Mobile Broadband Data Passes: How They Stack Up

Telstra’s Mobile Broadband Data Passes: How They Stack Up

Mobile broadband usage is often irregular: you don’t need it when you’re at home, but if you travel for work or a holiday, your demands shoot up. Telstra’s new prepaid mobile broadband “data passes” are designed to deal with that need, but how do they measure up as a value proposition?

Image: Eva Rinaldi

Despite the fancy name, the passes are essentially updates to Telstra’s prepaid data-only plans. The passes are designed for use in a SIM in either a mobile broadband device such as a Wi-Fi hotpsot or dongle, or in a tablet with a SIM slot. The passes only offer data access — no calls or texts.

These are the options available. If you renew before the expiry date, unused data is rolled over.

Duration Inclusions Cost
3 days 1GB $10
7 days 2GB $20
30 days 3GB $30
365 days 5GB $50
730 days 16GB $140

Our initial verdict? If you just need a temporary mobile boost while on the road, then the 7 day pass isn’t terrible value, and the 16GB two-year plan could be a useful option for travellers with tablets. However, with Telstra’s recent plan upgrades, tethering your phone might still be a more tempting option.



  • The $50 option is a real stand out. That give you 365 days expiry, which suits me as i (like most people, as you say) use it irregularly. The next best 365 day prepaid option is vodaphone…and they charge $125! you’ve missed the real winner here…

  • Not to mention the fact that before this the only 365 option cost $200, albeit for 12 gigs. I worked in a Telstra shop for a long time and a*lot* of people, particularly older customers used to buy the 12 month option for their tablets and be lucky to use 2gb of it.

  • The two year option is great for businesses. I recommend that all of my clients who rely on an internet connection purchase a portable hotspot for business continuity. Living in a regional area Telstra is the only real option (Optus coverage is average at best, and they recently had a four day long incident affecting most users in the area. And don’t even bother with Vodafone).

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