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Bigpond – had a fixed plan (limited downloads) which was fine for me but when I had a friend to stay, my downloads went through the roof. I ended up with a bill of over $700 because anything over your plan limit is charged at a per unit rate. It was about 12 weeks before I got a letter saying “We’ve noticed your use has increased. You may want to rethink your plan!” The most expensive all bells and whistles plan was only $100 a month – yet they happily charged me $700 and would have let it run and run.

My sister has been with iPrimus for ages. She noticed all the ads from other services offering faster, better, cheaper plans so she rang iPrimus to say she was going to cancel and change. They immediately offered her their latest best plan. She is now getting twice the speed/download for half the price. But would they have offered that if she hadn’t contacted them? COURSE NOT! So it really pays to update your plan regularly.
Wendy Hallam, ABC

Mobile plans. I find them so confusing, why can’t the providers have a simple cost per minute plan like you have on a fixed phone line? Some of the call charges are astronomical. All in all – I’m convinced that the plans are deliberately designed to confuse the customer. Whatever happened to keep it simple?
As for coverage, some carriers are absolutely useless in rural areas, what’s the point of having a mobile phone that doesn’t work when your car breaks down on a country road? As soon as you are leave a town there are so many black spots it’s ridiculous. I have to say Telstra is the best one I’ve found so far.
Alison Martin, ACP

Definitely not – I recently found Vodaphone had been charging my pre-pay account for premium texts that were neither requested by me, sent by the third party or received by myself. When I called their customer services to suggest they had a billing problem & were charging me for services I not only didn’t order but that they didn’t even deliver, they denied that their billing system could be incorrect. I spent hours on the phone to them and even when I got written confirmation from the premium text provider in question, a property report, they still refused to accept they had a billing issue. Strangely as soon as I raised the issue with the ombudsman they paid back the $40 in question immediately – guess they didn’t want the ombudsman looking at their billing system!
Colin Smith, Hotel Club

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