What to Choose: Prepaid or Postpaid Mobile Plans?

There are so many mobile phone plans available in the market. One has to check all of its details to know about the mobile plan. Each and every person needs their own type of plans. However, there are two main types of mobile plans. They are prepaid mobile plans and postpaid mobile plans. From this article, you will know what to choose: prepaid or postpaid.

What is a Prepaid Mobile Plan?

Prepaid mobile phone plans are no-contract mobile plans. You only pay for the minutes you use and you are not tied into a lengthy service contract. In a prepaid mobile phone plan, you have to pay a certain amount of money upfront. This upfront money is converted into mobile credit by the network service provider. You can easily use it to make calls or text messages or use high-speed mobile data.

Some of the prepaid mobile plans have limited amount of call credit and mobile data allotted to it. After the completion of limited call minutes, you can purchase extra minutes and add it to your account. You can choose the prepaid mobile plan as your requirements. The plan validity starts from one month and can extend to a few months.

choose prepaid or postpaid

Pros of Having Prepaid Mobile Plan

  • Prepaid plans offer you ultimate flexibility. This is the main advantage of keeping a prepaid mobile plan. There is no contract. So, you are saved from the risk of shock bills and extra charges at the end of the month.
  • Most of the prepaid mobile plans come with unlimited voice minutes and unlimited text messages. Only the amount of data varies. Therefore, you have the freedom to make unlimited calls to your near and dear ones.
  • Few prepaid mobile plans offer limited call minutes. Once they are over, you can purchase extra minutes and add it to your account.
  • You only pay for the minutes you use, so a prepaid plan can save you a lot of money.
  • Since you are not bound by contract, therefore, you can easily switch from one service provider to another.
  • You can find prepaid plans from all of the nationwide cellular carriers. You can find additional prepaid service options from smaller and regional carriers too.
  • If you get a prepaid mobile plan for a child, then you can put limited call minutes in the mobile. You won’t face an astronomical bill from unlimited calls. So, parental control is applied effectively.

Cons of Having Prepaid Mobile Plan

  • The per-minute call cost is usually higher than the postpaid ones. If you make long conversation on phone, then make sure that you get a plan with lower per-minute call rate.
  • The total price of a prepaid mobile plan is less than the postpaid plan. But it has an expiration term. The mobile plan’s validity may range from 30 to 90 days. You need to keep on checking the deadline before the credit runs out. Therefore, one has to worry about the remaining balance.
  • You often miss out on additional bonus features offered by the providers. They tend to reserve their best deals, including things like music or video streaming for postpaid customers.
  • You can’t check the call details as you won’t get the bill.
  • If you sign up for a service contract, then you get a significant discount on your handset. However, this is not applicable in the case of prepaid connection.

Prepaid Summary

  • Price
  • Freedom
  • Choice
  • No credit check
  • Time limit
  • Parental Control
  • Paying for extras

What is a Postpaid Mobile Plan?

Postpaid mobile phone plans are contract mobile plans. A postpaid user uses services throughout the month and receives the bill at the end of the month. The services are call minutes, text messages, and mobile data. You can also exceed your plan’s limitations and pay for it afterward. There is a monthly fixed rental and one has to pay at end of the billing cycle.

There is no tension of recharge. You make any number of calls and pay for it later. There are three types of postpaid mobile plans. They are auto-renewing month to month based plans, contract plans with a handset, and contract plans without a handset.

Pros of Having Postpaid Mobile Plan

  • The per-minute call cost is lower than the prepaid mobile plans. Postpaid plans are very cost effective.
  • Postpaid plans are highly reliable. You do not have to keep on checking the deadline before the credit runs out. Therefore, no need to worry about the remaining balance.
  • There is a convenience of auto-renewal. That means no manual recharging is required.
  • If you sign up for a service contract, then you get a significant discount on your handset. However, this is not applicable in the case of prepaid connection.
  • If you sign up for a service contract with a handset, then you can use the latest iPhone X. You can simply pay it off monthly in addition to your plan features.
  • You can recover all your call logs by requesting for the Call Detail Records (CDRs), which include all the data regarding the calling number, dialed number, the date and time of the call, its duration and call type (MOC, i.e. Mobile Originated Call or MTC, i.e. Mobile Terminated Call).
  • Better network coverage than prepaid connection.

Cons of Having Postpaid Mobile Plan

  • Large mobile data plans can be costly for postpaid users.
  • You cannot switch from one network service provider to another as and when you like.
  • Postpaid plans also require a little more effort to cancel. Unlike prepaid where you can simply not recharge again, postpaid plans need to be canceled through your provider; otherwise, they will keep billing you.
  • Sometimes hidden charges are levied when you receive the bill.
  • You have to pay the minimum monthly charges even if you are not using the service.
  • The customer cannot check the usage on a daily basis. The user needs to wait for the bill to view the same.

Postpaid Summary

  • Price
  • Short or long term contracts available
  • Auto-renewal option
  • Additional plan features
  • No risk of extra charges
  • No time limit
  • Large choice of handsets
  • Minimum monthly charges is applicable

Which is Better Value?

One really needs to know whether a prepaid plan or a postpaid plan is better for them. The table below is a comparison depicting a comparison of average prepaid and postpaid mobile plans in terms of price and mobile data. We have assumed unlimited calls and text messages as constant and mobile data as the variable factor. Check out the table to know more.

Cost per Calendar Month (in $)Prepaid Plans Average Data (in GB)Postpaid No Contract Plans Average Data (in GB)Postpaid 12 Months Plans Average Data (in GB)

Both prepaid, as well as the postpaid connection, has its own merits as well as demerits. When you purchase a new mobile plan, check out all its features. This will help you to choose better for yourself.

ryan broadwater
Ryan Broadwater

Ryan Broadwater is the telecom guy at Austele.com. He's been unpacking all the tricky stuff about Aussie phone plans and network tech for over 8 years, making it super simple to figure out what’s best for you.

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