Australia’s largest supermarket chains Coles and Woolworths now offer BYO phone mobile phone plans, but which offers the best bang for your buck?
There’s no doubt that if you need to recharge your phone plan once a month, it is probably easiest to do it while picking up the groceries. If you shop at either Coles or Woolworths, like three-quarters of the country, you might as well grab one of the supermarket branded SIM cards while you’re in there, right?
The problem with comparing Coles and Woolies is that the plans from both are significantly different. Both offer prepaid plans, for now, but these plans could not be more dissimilar. Also, Woolworths now offering Phone Plans with Samsung and OPPO phones.
So, which is better?
While all the plans above are prepaid plans, the one key difference is that Woolworths offers a lot more mobile internet data than Coles. If you plan on using your phone for web browsing everyday, some music streaming and YouTube, the $45 prepaid recharge is good value.
In terms of calls, we find the best way to compare is to figure out how many standard 2-minute calls you can make with the included credit. Here is how each is ranked from most calls to fewest.
- Coles $10 (10 days): Unlimited National calls
- Coles $20 (28 days): Unlimited National calls
- Coles $40 (28 days): Unlimited National calls & 250 minutes of international calls to selected counties
- Woolies $15 (30 days): 250 Standard National & international calls
- Woolies $30 (30 days): Unlimited National calls & 150 minutes of international to selected counties
- Woolies $45 (30 days): Unlimited National calls & international calls to selected counties
Keep an eye on the credit expiry for each recharge option, too. The Woolworths plans are a 30-day expiry, while the Coles options are 10-day and 28-day. For us, a 10-day expiry isn’t a great choice for someone who plans to use their phone everyday, even though the plan comes with unlimited calls. The 30-day or 28-day option is better if you know you will only use your phone now and then.
Other things to consider
The other major factor to keep in mind is that the Coles and Woolie’s services run on different networks. Coles uses the Optus 4G network, while Woolworths Mobile is on the Telstra 3G network. The difference between 3G and 4G might not mean too much, as we’ve explained here, but you do need to know how the Telstra and Optus networks perform at your house and school / office before you commit.
Lastly, are Rewards Programs important to you and your family? All Woolworths Rewards Members get a flat 10% off every recharge, which is great. The discount brings the $45 Recharge down to $40.50 and turns good value into great value.
Coles FlyBuys subscribers are not so well off. You can save $2.50 off any recharge, but only if you’re willing to part with 500-points from those you’ve already accumulated.
While we’re speaking about supermarket chains selling SIM cards, we should also include Aldi Mobile in the mix. Aldi has been in the game for a few years longer than Coles and Woolie’s, and now has a pretty refined set of high-value plans to choose from.
The trick with Aldi is deciding whether you use your phone a lot, and need a Value Packs starting from $15 to $45 or if you only use your phone infrequently, and need a prepaid plan with a long 365 day expiry period.