Choosing the right 1300 number plan
With so many 1300 number service providers in the market right now, it’s easy to get overwhelmed with the hundreds of different plans and offers. So how do you choose a 1300 number plan that’s right for your business?
With so many 1300 number service providers in the market right now, it’s easy to get overwhelmed with the hundreds of different plans and offers. So how do you choose a 1300 number plan that’s right for your business? This handy guide will show you what you need to look for when making your decision.
Compare apples with apples
A no-brainer, right? Well, it’s easier said than done, particularly if you’re getting a new 1300 number (and not just looking to switch providers and port your number).
When you start researching all the companies that offer a 1300 number for sale, you’ll realise how difficult it can be to get the same information from each one so you can determine which is the best 1300 number plan for your needs.
The best way to get an idea of the 1300 number plan inclusions is to compare the Critical Information Summary (“CIS”). A CIS is a maximum two page documents which all telecommunications companies must provide for each of their regulated services (the sale of 1300 phone number is a regulated service). Legislation mandates the order in which these documents must be laid out – this is so consumers can quickly and easily compare the features, inclusions, exclusions, qualifications, fees and terms of a product like a 1300 number plan.
What does a 1300 number plan look like?
How providers structure their 1300 number plans and offers can vary hugely, but plans in general have the same broad layout.
- Monthly hosting fee
- Once-off setup fee (you shouldn’t pay more than $20)
- Call rates, including flagfall charges
Call rates – how do you compare them?
There are a few 1300 costs you need to compare. 1300 numbers incur charges based on what device is used to call them, and also on what device is used to answer them. Some providers list each and every configuration, but most will have a single rate if you answer calls on your mobile, and a couple of different rates if you answer calls on a landline.
All charges are incurred on a per minute basis. You should never pay an additional flagfall call cost. Here’s an idea of how much you should be paying (based on our January 2020 data).
|Call origin||Answered on landline||Answered on mobile|
|National calls||6.5 cents per minute||13.5 cents per minute|
|Mobile calls||6.5 cents per minute||13.5 cents per minute|
If you pay more than the amounts in the table above, you should consider changing your providers because they are far too expensive. Better yet, pick a 1300 number provider who offers 1300 number plans with a $0 call rate.
Paying more for your 1300 number than the call rates in the above table?
The above table is a good ballpark of how much you should be paying for your 1300 number calls and is based on January 2020 data.
If you’re paying much higher rates than those indicated, you should consider changing your plan or changing providers altogether and porting your 1300 number to a different telco.
1300 number providers will often have inflated rates coupled with a lower monthly hosting fee – you should definitely not choose a cheap hosting plan like this if you’re expecting a high call volume.
Alternatively, you might be on a relatively expensive hosting plan to take advantage of the lower call rates. This type of plan is not right for your business if you don’t receive many calls. You need to consider exactly how many calls your business 1300 number receives, how long those calls are, whether your callers typically ring from a landline or mobile, and whether you typically answer 1300 calls on your landline or mobile.
Be careful of hidden fees and charges
You need to know what else you might be charged for when you buy a 1300 number plan. There are many types of fees that telcos like to keep hidden until you’re a paying customer, so do your due diligence before you buy your 1300 number and ask if there are any charges for the following.
- Changing your 1300 configuration (ideally you want to be able to do it yourself online for free)
- After hours emergency support requests
- Plan changes (if you want to upgrade or downgrade your plan due to your changing business needs)
- International call costs
- Changing an IVR audio file or routing point
- Cancellation fees
- Port-away fees (when you want to transfer your 1300 number to a different provider)
- Reconnection fees after service suspension
- Reconnection fees after service cancellation
- Quarantine release fees
- Minimum monthly commitment in terms of call volume
- Overage charges (also called penalty rates if, for example, the 1300 number plan has an ‘included value’ minutes)
- After-hours change requests
- Payment processing fees
- Admin fees if you default on a payment
If you’re still unsure about which 1300 number plan is best for your business, read our article on how to find the best 1300 number provider so you know all the ins and outs of choosing a 1300 number that suits your needs.