Vodafone's Massive Overhaul: More Honest Plans, Better Phone Repayments

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Vodafone is making big, big changes to the way it operates. Two-year lock-in contracts for mobile plans are a thing of the past, and you'll no longer be locked in to ongoing handset repayments either: you can buy a new phone outright, or pay it off over 12, 24 or 36 months.

The new Vodafone plans separate voice/text/data from mobile handset repayments, making it clearer what customers are paying and what they're paying it for. If you buy a handset from Vodafone, you can get it outright on a SIM-only month-to-month plan or discounted 12 month plan, or pay it off monthly over 12, 24 or 36 months alongside one of the telco's new Red plans.

The new plans range from $30 to $100, with anything from 3GB to a massive 50GB of data. All include unlimited national calls and text messages, but there are also Global plans with international call minutes and a Qantas Frequent Flyer points bonus on sign-up. If you sign up for 12 months, you'll get double data.

If you want a phone to go with your new Vodafone plan, you'll have to buy it outright on a month-to-month or 12-month SIM-only plan. If you sign up to a Red plan for one, two or three years you'll be able to pay your phone's retail price off in monthly instalments. If you want to leave Vodafone's plans early, though, that's fine: you just pay the remainder of the phone's outright price and any remaining costs for the month you cancel in.

Vodafone's also going to sell its phone accessories — like Bluetooth speakers and headphones — over the same 12, 24 and 36 month terms.

From Vodafone: "Vodafone’s new approach flies in the face of current leasing options available elsewhere, which offer people what looks like a discount but with the sting of never getting to own the device. It’s also a step-change from the carrier model of tying handset repayments for consumer-focused plans to a two-year mobile services contract, which has been around since the last century."

Here's Vodafone's new plans:

Red Plans: 12, 24 or 36 months

SIM-only Plans: 12 months

SIM-only Plans: month-to-month



    Wait...so you still need to select a higher plan, to gain the ability to pay off a handset at full retail with no subsidy?

    This brings the "$50 Red" plan to $101 after taking an iPhone 7 128GB, which is pretty much right on parity with all other providers? Most of these options actually work out more expensive than Optus and don't appear to have the ability to swap handsets after 12 months such as with Telstra

    Last edited 16/08/17 10:51 am

      You didn’t seriously think Vodafone would reshuffle everything and not try to improve profits, eh?

      Not really any discount on the phone if that is the case.

      +$51/mth => $1224 for the phone over 2 years.

        If you look at Optus (and I assume Telstra as well) it is the same. The cost of 20gb data a month is $70 for a SIM-only plan or $100 if you buy it with a phone. Optus charge $20 extra month for the iPhone 7 128gb on the $100 plan. So the actual phone cost is $50 a month over 2 years ($70 plan + $50 for phone, but they just include $30 of it in the plan cost).

        Vodafone just makes the costs more transparent

        Last edited 16/08/17 11:56 pm

      Or you could do it over 12 monthly repayments and own the phone at the end of it. The voice component is non contract so you can simply pay off the phone (which you own) and walk away anytime.

      You dont have to sign up on a higher plan, plan starts at $30 plan + handset repayment (RRP value split it up to 12,24,36 months repayment) plus if u select 24 or 36 months repayment, you will get plan discount every month. Cheaper, easier no hidden fees!

      why would you want to swap your phone for a fee just to be stuck in another plan for 24 months with no flex? if that month you change and go to one of there high plans $100+ pm and you run into financial difficulty you cant change to a lower plan.

    I kind of understand the appeal of leasing phones if you upgrade every year - it might (maybe?) work out cheaper if you can't easily afford to buy outright or are uncertain about the resale value of the phone when you go to upgrade.

    Also these plans aren't overly enticing apart from the data limits if you need a handset too.

      It's no different than Optus or telstra
      But instead of say paying $80+$10 for the phone (s8) you pay $50 a month non contract for the plan and $40 for the phone (24m) so you pay the same for same inclusions you otherwise would of gotten except now you can change plan as you choose and even walk away by paying off the phone and leaving.


    It appears that the last two tables are switched. You have the 12 month prices under month to month and vice versa.

    The article missing the critical footnote;

    * This is a paid advertisement Exclusively by Vodafone

      Nope, it's just a news piece. Advertorials are clearly marked as such.

      It's not.

        Just a footnote.
        The plans with a handset are month to month.
        Only sim only (no device) are m2m or 12 months.

    The SIM only month-to-month plans are also pretty bad value.... Take a look at Bendigo Bank Telco (Optus reseller) plans.. redonkulous.

    This article needed a few real before and after examples. As in you could have picked say an S8 an Iphone and a cheap/mid range phone and calculated costs based on their old plans and what it'd cost under the new ones for effectively the same deal.

    Side note: I'm not really seeing what's different. I thought they were offering 12/24/36 month as well as sim only and month by month deals before this?

    Why have a distinction between “Red” plans and Sim Only 12 month plans. I understand offering a discount for committing for 12 months vs no lock in. But why should it matter how you’re procuring your handset when it comes to giving you a plan? Currently if you choose installements you get only half the data on a red $40 plan compared to a sim only $40. Their marketing copy about the era of two year contracts being over in the first paragraph is bullshit when you compare the plans on their merit.

      If you get a handset the plan component is month to month but you get same inclusions as you would of on a 12m sim only without the handset.

      $40 sim m2m 3gb
      $40 sim 12m 6gb
      $40 handset sim plan m2m 6gb + handset cost
      (Before any bonus data offers)

      The $40 handset plan has no bonus but the 12m sim only does. Otherwise the standard data allowance is the same.
      Offering bonus data on 12m sim onlys has always been a requirement to compete.

      Last edited 16/08/17 2:51 pm

    This just sounds like what I'm already doing. After VF stopped offering 12m plans, I simply went on a month to month SIM only plan with added handset repayments over 12 instalments.

    No word on network improvements? Or are they counting on getting access to Telstra and Optus' networks?

      $2 billion worth of technology investment in 2017, including a massive chunk on 700 spectrum. Plus - have you tried it recently?

        Sadly it still doesn't get reception in a lot of places where Telstra does :(

        Fine around the cities but not so good if you're regional and terrible if you're remote.

          Even in cities it's bad. Saturday night in the city 7.5mb/s on Telstra (very slow) and 1.1mb/s on Vodafone.

          Reception is a funny thing.

          At the Medieval Festival near Caboolture I couldn't get through to my wife but I was having no problems with my friend on Optus, also at the festival. I'm on the Vodafone network (TPG) and my wife is on Telstra (Aldi). As we were leaving the festival my wife's phone finally got all the messages I had sent her during the day. Maybe "everyone" uses Telstra so that caused a blackspot?

          Also, there's an entire suburb near my house that gets no Optus reception but perfect Telstra and Vodafone. I know, because when my TPG SIM was changed from Optus to Vodafone reception I could actually use my phone there. But I do agree there's other places where Vodafone is terrible.

            I wouldn't be surprised if the Telstra reseller network is hobbled. I've seen people on genuine Telstra getting reception while I was using Telstra through a reseller and not getting any. I've had problems in the last couple months since moving back to Telstra (on Woolworths mobile).

    give us decent coverage vodafone! ningi on the sunshine coast sucks as does optus; telstra is tolerable (feint praise) and if you go this way, kogan $100-200 china mobiles are going to take off! Only an idiot now pays $1k for something that easily droped, lost or stolen! Apple are about to launch the last of the buzzillion dollar phones, watch it flop!

    So am i understanding it correctly ?
    You still cannot buy a phone without a monthly plan ?
    If this is the case i dont really understand it ,
    A while ago i walked into a Vodaphone outlet looking to possibly just buy a handset only to be told " sorry we only sell with a contract " ,
    at which time i said thank you and moved on .
    It makes no sense to me ,
    if they sold the handset no strings , even if they did not get a contract they could at least make a few bucks on a device , and at the very least have people coming into the store to look at devices of which there is more chance of selling some services as well .

      Read the article.
      Outright or interest free for 12,24 or 36 months.

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