Prepaid Mobile Data Plans – Best Buys

Prepaid Mobile Data Plans

Looking to compare prepaid mobile data plans? Do you have a prepaid mobile phone plan that gives you 3G access but your prepaid mobile plan does not offer enough data allowance? Prepaid mobile plans now give you as much data as contract mobile plans. If you own an iPhone or any smart phone but want to use a prepaid mobile plan with enough data to go social and use the internet as and when you need to, then you are in the right place. Over the past 12 months the range of prepaid data options has simply exploded. You now have lots of options and lots of data, so whether you use the internet on your mobile a little or a lot, you can easily find the right prepaid mobile data plan.

Best Prepaid Mobile Data Plan: As of August 2014, my feeling is Amaysim and Hello Mobile take the honours. Amaysim uses the Optus 3G network whilst Hello Mobile customers access the new Vodafone 3G and 3G+ networks.

Hello Mobile Premium 55

Prepaid Mobile Data – Quick Summary

ProviderProductExpiryData AllowanceIncrementExtrasSpeedNetworkBuy Now
prepaid mobile data - Hello Mobile UnlimitedSocial Max $39.9030 days4GBp/MB5c/MBVodafone 3GVodafone Check Coverage Buy Hello
prepaid mobile data - Virgin Prepaid MobileVirgin Prepaid Caps28 daysPrepaid Caps
$29 - $99 = 1GB
p/60KB 0.2c/KB
Tethering: Yes
Optus 3G/4GOptus Check CoverageBuy Virgin Mobile
prepaid mobile data - Dodo Prepaid MobileDodo Prepaid Magic Sim30 daysPAYG - 5c/MBp/1MB5c/MBOptus 3GOptus Check CoverageBuy Dodo
prepaid mobile data - optus prepaidMy Prepaid Daily $1186 days40MB per dayp/1KBUnlimited TXT/MMS
Tethering: Yes
Optus 3G/4GCheck CoverageBuy Optus
Vodafone Prepaid Mobile$30 Prepaid Cap28 days1GB + 250MB bonusp/KB$2/MB
Tethering: Yes
Vodafone 3G/4GCheck CoverageBuy Vodafone
Telstra Internet Data PlansTelstra Browse Pack30 daysBROWSE PLUS PACKS
$5 – 30MB, $10 – 200MB, $20 – 700MB, $39 – 1GB, $49 -3GB, $59 – 4GB (all 30 days)
Tethering: Yes
Telstra 3G/4GCheck CoverageBuy Telstra
Telstra Internet Data PlansSimplicity30 - 180 daysPAYG - 10c/MBp/1MB10c/MB
Tethering: Yes
Telstra 3G/4GBuy Telstra
Telstra Internet Data PlansFreedom $3028 daysRech: $30 = $250 credit + 800MB, $40 = $550 credit + 1.2GB,  $50 = $1000 credit + 1.6GB.p/1KB$2/MB
Tethering: Yes
Telstra 3G/4GBuy Telstra
boost mobile logoUNLTD $4030 daysRecharge $10 - 500MB. $20 - 1GB, $40 - 2.5GBp/1MB$2/MB
Tethering: Yes
Telstra 3GTelstra Next G CoverageBuy Boost
Yatango Mobile Phone PlansPrepaid - $3930 days5GBp/KB5c/MBOptus 3G/4GOptus 4G CoverageBuy Yatango
amaysim prepaid mobile - pure simAmaysim
As You Go
90 daysPAYG - 5c/MB
1GB pack - $9.90
Optus 3GOptus Check CoverageBuy Amaysim
Amaysim Unlimited $44.9030 days5GBp/1MB5c/MB
Optus 3GBuy Amaysim
Lebara Prepaid Mobile Plans | Lebara Prepaid RechargeLebara Mega Plan $39.9030 days4GBp/1MB15c/MB
Tethering: Yes
Vodafone 3GVodafone Check CoverageBuy Lebara
gotalk prepaid mobile - mobile datagotalk $30 Recharge90 days1GBp/1MB5c/MB
Vodafone 3GVodafone Check CoverageBuy gotalk Mobile
ALDI Mobile Prepaid Mobile Plans$35 Plan30 days2GBp/1MBTethering; YesTelstra 3GPart of Telstra 3G NetworkBuy Aldi
etel prepaidFlexi 50 Data Prepaid $50No expiryp/1MB2c/MBVodafone 3GVodafoneBuy e-tel
Global Gossip PrepaidShark $5030 days1.25GBp/MB2c/MBVodafone 3GVodafoneBuy Global Gossip
Lyca Mobile prepaidSuper Saver $29.9030 days4GBp/MB15c/MBTelstra 3GTelstraBuy Lycamobile

What difference do the data increments make to your ability to your data allowance?

Whether your prepaid mobile plan is using per MB or per KB data increments is important, but what is more important is how your phone performs when using the internet to surf, stream and view content. Data increments refer to the data rounding that your telecommunications provider will use to determine how much of your data allowance you have used. Having a lower data increment eg per KB guarantees is best and means you will be able to enjoy as much of your data allowance as possible. Having per MB increments is not the best but it doesn’t necessarily mean that you are getting ripped off.

Data rounding has everything to do with the opening and closing of your data session. When you begin using the internet you open a new data session (smart phones actively updating applications will have longer sessions, ie breaking less frequently), this session should stay active until it is closed or something closes it. This is more likely your phone or it can also be the network you are using, ie you enter a bad coverage spot and your  session is terminated. When your session is terminated, your telco provider will round your session based on the increments that it is using. So should you have used 500KB in that session and your increments are 1MB, then your allowance will be deducted a full 1MB.

Just for clarity, clicking the internet icon on the phone, surfing the web and then closing your phone does not necessarily mean that you have just started and ended a session. Your session should in most cases actually stay open even when you aren’t using your phone for the internet. Unfortunately being able to see how many actual session you have used in not possible.

What differentiates a prepaid mobile plan from a contract plan?

The key differences include:

  • In order to use your prepaid mobile plan you need to purchase recharge credit. Your recharge credit will include, calls, TXT and data and come with a set expiry period. This period is usually 30 days and can increase to 90 and even 365 days. If you haven’t used your credit up to this point, you will likely lose it.
  • If and when your recharge credit runs out either from being used up or being forfeited, you need to purchase additional recharge credit in order to be able to make calls, TXT and surf the web again.
  • Prepaid means no contract, so after your prepaid recharge has expired, you can switch to another prepaid or contract provider with no penalties.