If you are a low income earner in Australia the costs of purchasing and maintaining a mobile phone can be expensive. Fortunately, there are a couple ways you may be able to get a free mobile and a lower monthly payment.
The Australian government does provide a Telephone Allowance to help reduce costs of maintaining a landline or mobile. Below are ways to get a free or low cost mobile phone.
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
In a consumer driven world, there are many consumers that turnover the use of their mobile phones, every generation for the latest mobile phones. This means that there are a lot of used and recycled mobile phones available on the market. The hard part may be finding someone that is willing to give them away for free. There are a number of recycling websites in Australia that should be your first resource. These websites provide consumers that are willing simply to give away their old items in order just to get rid of them. These include OzRecycle, RecycleAustralia that allows you to swap items with someone else, or Zilch a site that provides a classifieds for free stuff.
These sites do not have a lot of stock in used or free mobile phones, but checking daily will increase your chances of finding one. Even better, most of these sites also provide an ability to put up a ‘wanted’ add for whatever you are looking for. Checking other sites like online classifieds is another way to find high quality low cost used phones.
Friends, Family, Charity
Another great resource for recycling old goods can be your friends and family. If you know someone that is looking to upgrade their mobile phone to the newest model, let them know you would love to take the old one off their hands for them. As there is usually no trade-in value for phones older than 2-3 years, it is a great way to help them de-clutter. A last option may be to approach a charitable organization in your community and express your need. Generally, having a mobile phone can provide an emergency contact system that is absolutely necessary with a family. Proving that need may be enough for certain charitable organizations.
Free Phone on Contract
If you are willing to sign into a contract with a major carrier, many have free phones within their plans. However, be careful that you do not sign into a program that is beyond your monthly budget. A great way to avoid the costly nature of mobile phone plans is to avoid data plans that can easily cost $40-$60 a month. Stick to simple phone and text messaging that can be as low as $10 a month. These plans often even come with a free basic phone.
These options can often get you a mobile phone at the lowest possible cost within Australia, a free phone and a basic mobile package.
Do ask carriers if they have special plans for low income earners and also consider pre-paid phones to avoid contracts and fixed costs which may throw out your budget.
Different charities and community centre may also provide assistance with receiving a free or low cost phone. Visit our homepage and use the interactive map to see what charities or non-profit organisations in your state or territory may be able to assist you with a free mobile.