ACCAN Lists Telcos Still Charging For 1800 Calls

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A number of telcos, including Vodafone, are still charging Australian consumers for 1800 calls past the January 1 delivery date to make these calls free from mobile phones, the Australian Communications Consumer Action Network (ACCAN) has stated.The initiative was announced mid-last year, with ACCAN stating it is “disappointed to learn that a number of Australian telcos” have yet to make the calls free.

“Six weeks past the delivery date, the number of telcos that have yet to implement this change is disappointing,” commented ACCAN CEO Teresa Corbin.

“It’s unfair for some consumers who are still paying for mobile calls to 1800 numbers which are used by essential services like Centrelink, financial counsellors, and drug, alcohol and mental health services.

“These organisations are keen to let their clients know they can call their 1800 contact numbers for free.”

Fiona Guthrie, Financial Counselling Australia executive director, noted for low-income consumers “the cost of calling a 1800 number from a mobile phone is really prohibitive”.

“Waiting on the phone to talk to Centrelink, for example, quickly chews through a person’s credit,” Guthrie commented.

“It is of huge concern to us if people are unable to contact service providers and miss out on vital information or assistance.”

Meanwhile, eight telcos, including Telstra and Optus, have confirmed to ACCAN that they have made 1800 calls free for their mobile phone customers.

The other telcos to have made the calls free are: amaysim, Virgin, iiNet, SpinTel, Jeenee Mobile and Boost Mobile.

ACCAN stated, as of 13 February, the telcos yet to make the calls free from all mobile phone plans are: Vodafone, TPG, Dodo, Vaya, Yatango, Cmobile, Live Connected, Bendigo Bank Telco, Hello Mobile, GoTalk, Lebara Mobile and AldiMobile.

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