How much does a 4G phone plan cost around the world?

21 July 2014

Complaining about the cost and service of a wireless phone plan is global pass-time; it seems no one is ever really happy with what they are currently paying for.

But maybe your phone plan isn't as expensive as it seems, especially when you compare it to similar plans from across the world.

We were particularly interested in which countries offered the most generous data plans, so we've compiled a list of the best plans we could find, and how much it will cost you in USD and the local currency.

All of these plans operate on a SIM-only monthly contract basis, so there are no phone repayments factored into the costs. We've also highlighted WhistleOut regions for easy reading.

Country Company USD Local currency Calls SMS&MMS 4G data
1 France Free $27.33 19.99€ Unlimited Unlimited 20 GB
2 Denmark Bibob $39.80 218 kr Unlimited Unlimited 10 GB
3 USA MetroPCS $60.00 $60.00 Unlimited Unlimited Unlimited
4 Thailand DTAC $64.81 ฿2,100.00 Unlimited Unlimited 12 GB
5 Sweden Comviq $65.52 445.00 kr Unlimited Unlimited 13 GB
6 Spain Vodafone $68.30 50.00€ Unlimited Unlimited 6 GB
7 U.K. EE $70.30 £40.99 Unlimited Unlimited 6 GB
8 Russia MTS $72.90 RUB 2,500.00 Unlimited Unlimited Unlimited
9 Australia Vodafone $75.10 $80 Unlimited Unlimited 6 GB
10 Germany O2 $75.10 54.98€ Unlimited Unlimited 5 GB
11 Hong Kong Tree $77.20 HK$598.00 Unlimited Unlimited 10 GB
12 Mexico Iusacell $91.60 $1,199.00 Unlimited Unlimited 3 GB
13 United Arab Emirates Etisalat $95.29 AED 350.00 Unlimited Unlimited 10 GB
14 Italia Tim $107.50 79.00€ Unlimited Unlimited 9 GB
15 NZ Vodafone $113.00 $129.00 Unlimited Unlimited 5 GB
16 Canada Telus $117.00 $125.00 Unlimited Unlimited 10 GB
Worlds apart

While browsing the world's telcos to find the best high-data plans, we did come across some interesting comparison points -- some very cheap and others that are much more expensive.

French telco Free is an interesting case study. After starting out as a home broadband company, Free built its own wireless network in France and launched its services at the beginning of 2012. It is known for its two industry disrupting offers -- the high value plan in the table above, and a free plan for customers who also signed up for fixed-line broadband.

At the opposite end of the pricing spectrum is the UAE telco Du, who offer a ' Diamond Plan' for the princely sum of USD$680 per month. In return you get 2,500-minutes to calls any number in the world, 2,500 international text messages and 10GB data per month. You also get to choose your phone number from a VIP list of special numbers, and a 24/7 concierge service included.

The Diamond Plan is only available on a 12-month contract, and Du will charge an extra one-month's tariff on top of all remaining month's owing if you want to cancel the contract.



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