Internet And Cable Services In Australia For Expats

Internet And Cable Services In Australia For Expats

Being connected to the internet is a non-negotiable aspect of our lives today. And it’s often one of the first things we look into when moving to a different country.

For expats living in Australia, applying for your connection and installing it in your new home is imperative. And with almost 96% of Australians being internet users, there are a variety of internet services to choose from.

Learn how to set up your internet and cable services in Australia as soon as possible.

Overview of Australia’s Internet and Cable Services

Upon arrival in Australia, you can temporarily rely on a 3G dongle to go online or buy a prepaid SIM to have mobile data. But if you plan to stay in Australia, whether to work, study or live there, you will need a more stable, reliable internet connection for your needs.

In Australia, you can pick from various internet connections, such as ADSL (or ADSL2+) Cable, NBN, and mobile internet. Here’s an overview of these connection types:

#1. ADSL

Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL) is widely available throughout Australia. It works by using your telephone line to transmit the digital data and can provide you with up to 24Mbps download speed and up to 1Mbps for upload.

A primary advantage of ADSL is its availability. In Australia, even remote areas can have an ADSL connection, although the quality of the service and its speed are not guaranteed. Factors like distance from the exchange or DSLAM, the quality of the physical cables, interferences, and the number of people currently connected can all significantly impact the speed and stability of the internet connection.

#2. National Broadband Network (NBN)

The National Broadband Network (NBN) is Australia’s government-owned broadband network available nationwide. The NBN’s full fibre connection allows you connection speeds of up to 1Gbps.

It aims to make internet connection more reliable and faster in all homes and establishments in Australia.

#3. Cable Internet

Another kind of Australian internet connection is cable, which is delivered via the Pay TV Network. The ideal upload speed it can provide is up to 100 Mbps, but factors like the distance away from the exchange and line congestion can adversely impact the target speed.

If you’re a heavy internet user or your work or education entails massive download requirements, cable internet would be more suitable for you. It’s also a better choice if multiple people are using the internet with multiple devices.

#4. Mobile Internet

Almost everyone has access to the internet through their mobile internet plans. It lets you go online using your phone or tablet wirelessly, making it a top choice for people on the go. It also serves as a secondary connection in cases of an internet outage.

Most households in the country are subscribed to NBN internet or cable, while homes in more remote areas can have connections through ADSL or satellite internet. In Australia, the two major internet service providers are Telstra and Optus. Each of these companies offers monthly packages at diverse prices and different inclusions.

To address the challenges Australia is experiencing regarding internet connectivity problems, the government is also moving towards the NBN to handle slow speeds and intermittent connections through fibre optic connections.

Applying for an Internet Connection in Australia as an Expat

Australia has a simple process for applying for an internet connection.

Whether you’re a citizen, resident, or expat, you first have to check what kind of connection is available in your area. You can do this by visiting your prospective internet service provider’s website and entering your address.

If it’s available, you can then go through the bundles, inclusions, and monthly prices from here. This will help you assess the speeds for every plan and what’s included, such as unlimited internet or a free modem. This is also where companies would entice you with special offers, like no-lock-in contracts or zero connection fees.

Once you’ve selected the plan, you’ll be asked to choose the minimum monthly cost and provide your primary customer information.

Additional documents to complete the application can also be submitted online. Some common documents that internet service providers will ask for include the following:

  • Australian passport or driver’s license
  • Student ID
  • Income statement
  • Employment details
  • Proof of residence or address
  • Your bank account details if you plan to pay directly

For expats, you will also need to provide some additional documents, such as:

  • Passport from your home country
  • Additional proof of identity
  • Proof of income through bank statements for at least the last three months,
  • Proof of residency showing an Australian address
  • Bank account for direct payment transfers

If you rent an apartment, you should check with your landlord if the previous owners had an internet line. If a line was previously established, you could have internet access within a week.

But suppose the address has never had any internet line, regardless of your ownership type. In that case, you will need to bring in a technician to physically install the lines first, given that a port at the exchange is available. This process can take up to a month or longer if there’s no exchange close to your area yet.

Internet Costs in Australia

The monthly charges for internet vary depending on your internet service provider. But to provide an overview, here are the current charges of the two major players in Australia based on the internet type and speed plan.

#1. Telstra

ADSL Plans

Plans Cost
Monthly Allowance: 500 GB AUD 75 per month
Monthly Allowance: Unlimited AUD 90 per month

NBN Plans – Unlimited Data

Plans Ideal and Best Effort Speed Cost
Basic Download: 25 Mbps Upload: 4 Mbps AUD 80 per month
Essential Download: 50 Mbps Upload: 17 Mbps AUD 95 per month
Premium Download: 100 Mbps Upload: 17 Mbps AUD 90 for the first 6 months; AUD 110 thereafter
Ultimate Download: 250 Mbps Upload: 22 Mbps AUD 110 for the first 6 months; AUD 140 thereafter

 #2. Optus

Home Internet Plan – 5G and Unlimited Data

Plans Ideal and Best Effort Speed Cost
Optus Everyday Download: 50 Mbps AUD 69 per month
Optus Plus Everyday Download: 100 Mbps AUD 79 per month
Optus Plus Entertainer Superfast Uncapped Speed AUD 89 for the first 6 months; AUD 99 thereafter

Home Internet Plan – 4G and Unlimited Data

Plans Ideal and Best Effort Speed Cost
Everyday Basic Download: 25 Mbps Upload: 5 Mbps AUD 59 per month

NBN Plans – Unlimited Data

Plans Ideal and Best Effort Speed Cost
Optus Plus Everyday Download: 50 Mbps Upload: 18 Mbps AUD 79 per month
Optus Plus Everyday Download: 100 Mbps Upload: 18 Mbps AUD 89 for the first 6 months; AUD 99 thereafter
Optus Plus Everyday Download: 240 Mbps Upload: 22 Mbps AUD 99 for the first 6 months; AUD 119 thereafter
Optus Plus Everyday Download: 600 Mbps Upload: 40 Mbps AUD 129 for the first 6 months; AUD 149 thereafter
Optus Plus Family Entertainer Download: 50 Mbps Upload: 18 Mbps AUD 89 for the first 6 months; AUD 99 thereafter
Optus Plus Family Entertainer Download: 100 Mbps Upload: 18 Mbps AUD 109 for the first 6 months; AUD 119 thereafter
Optus Plus Family Entertainer Download: 240 Mbps Upload: 22 Mbps AUD 119 for the first 6 months; AUD 139 thereafter
Optus Plus Family Entertainer Download: 600 Mbps Upload: 40 Mbps AUD 149 for the first 6 months; AUD 159 thereafter

Conclusion

Applying for and setting up an internet and cable service in Australia is simple, even for expats. The country understands how essential being connected is and thus offers a streamlined process for anyone wanting to get internet access.

Make sure you have all your documents, do your research, and contact your provider of choice to determine whether they fit your needs.