Mobile International Roaming Feature
Please note: This information is only relevant to legacy Westnet mobile plans on the Optus network. International Roaming is not yet available on our current plans powered by the Vodafone network.
International Roaming is the ability to make and receive mobile phone calls from an Australian mobile service whilst overseas by utilising other mobile networks.
Select one of the links below to jump to a query:
- Important facts about International Roaming
- Alternatives to International Roaming
- How to turn on International Roaming
- How to turn off International Roaming
- Using your mobile service while roaming
- Making international calls (including to Australia) while roaming
- Making local calls while roaming
- Calling an International Roaming customer from within Australia
- Calling an Australian International Roaming customer while outside of Australia
- Making and receiving calls while roaming
- Sending and receiving SMS while roaming
- Exchange rates
- Viewing International Roaming charges on your invoice
- Using data while roaming
Important facts about International Roaming
- Using your mobile phone overseas is expensive. In addition to higher call, SMS/MMS and data rates, you're also charged for receiving calls and MMS (picture) messages. Calls and SMS/MMS fall into 2 pricing zones depending on your location and data falls into a single flat-rate pricing zone*. Check specific roaming rates.
- *Although the majority of data use falls into 1 zone, there is a zone called 'other' which applies when traveling on a cruise ship and accessing a special network. This zone does incur a higher charge of $15.50/MB.
- All call, SMS/MMS and data charges (including social media use) while roaming are not included in your monthly call/SMS/MMS/data allowances and they’ll be charged in addition to your monthly plan fee.
- While roaming, your mobile usage details may take days or weeks to reach Westnet, meaning you won’t receive timely usage warnings or see up-to-date usage information in MyAccount.
- You are responsible for all charges accrued by use of your service while overseas, just like you are when you’re in Australia.
- Some mobile handsets may use frequencies that are not compatible with certain overseas networks.
- Network quality, coverage and capability can vary greatly from country to country. Some overseas networks don't have SMS functionality.
- For these reasons, we don’t recommend that you use international roaming where there are alternatives.
Alternatives to International Roaming
- International Call/Phone cards
Most airports and convenience stores sell prepaid phone cards that allow a fixed line phone, pay phone, or even a mobile phone (if the SIM card is localised) to make international calls at more affordable rates than those charged for an international roaming service.
- Travel SIM Cards
Available for sale from other mobile providers in Australia, Travel SIM cards allow you to use your own mobile handset while roaming, provided it’s not locked to a specific provider (handsets bought from Westnet are not locked). They work in 140 different countries and you won’t get charged for incoming calls.
If you connect to a local Wi-Fi network, you can access the internet without using your mobile data. To prevent mobile data use, you should disable 3G/4G mobile data reception in your mobile handset settings, so the internet can only be access while connected to a Wi-Fi network. If you have a smartphone, applications such as Skype and WhatsApp can be used to make calls and send messages using the Wi-Fi network.
How to turn on International Roaming
- Before you consider enabling International Roaming, make sure that you read and understand the charges and rates applicable in your destination country.
- Call us on 1300 786 068 (or use the international number for our parent company, iiNet, if you are already overseas: +61892142222) to request activation of International Roaming.
- You’ll need to listen to the terms and conditions applicable to activating International Roaming and then provide a verbal acceptance of those conditions.
- International Roaming can be activated permanently, or just for a 90-day period. Please note: To activate international roaming permanently, you’ll need to pass a credit check. This can take one business day to complete.
- Once any required credit checks have been passed, International Roaming may take up to 2 hours to activate.
How to turn off International Roaming
- To turn off International Roaming, log in to MyAccount and select My Products from the navigation bar. Next, select Mobile.
- If you have multiple mobile numbers, make sure the correct mobile number is selected from the drop-down menu in the upper right-hand corner.
- Select Configure voice settings from the left-hand column.
- Set the International Roaming toggle switch to OFF. Click Submit to finish.
Please note: this switch will not be visible unless International Roaming is turned on.
Using your mobile service while roaming
- Once you arrive at your destination, turn on your mobile handset.
- Most handsets will automatically connect to a compatible network. If this is successful, you’ll see the network name on your handset screen.
- If no network displays, you’ll need to manually select a network (carrier). Please check the user manual for your mobile handset for instructions on how to do this.
- Our preferred carriers are:
- Hong Kong – HKCSL
- India – Airtel
- Indonesia – Telkomsel
- Korea – SK Telecom
- Macau – CTM
- Malaysia – Maxis
- Philippines – Globe
- Singapore - SingTel
- Taiwan – Taiwan Mobile
- Thailand – AIS
Making international calls (including to Australia) while roaming
When dialling, use the international access prefix (+), followed by the country code and then the number you’d like to call. The county code for Australia is +61, which would replace the “0” in a call made within Australia.
For example, “08 1234 5678” would need to be dialled as “+618 1234 5678”.
Making local calls while roaming
Dial the number as it is found locally, including any local area codes.
Calling an International Roaming customer from within Australia
If you are in Australia and you’re a mobile phone number that is roaming overseas, there is no need to change the way you would dial their number. You will be charged standard mobile phone call rates.
Calling an Australian International Roaming customer while outside of Australia
When dialling, replace the first “0” with the Australian international access code +61. For example, “04 1234 5678” would need to be dialled as “+614 1234 5678”.
Making and receiving calls while roaming
- When calling Australia from overseas, you’ll be charged the cost of the international call rate to Australia in 30 second increments, with a minimum charge of 60 seconds. This includes instances where you call another Australian mobile phone number that is also roaming.
- When making a local call, you will be charged at the National call rate applicable for the country you’re currently in, in 30 second increments, with a 60 second minimum charge.
- When making an international call whilst overseas, you will be charged at the “International call” rate per 30 seconds (or part thereof) per call, with a minimum charge of 60 seconds.
- When receiving a call, you’ll be charged for the re-routing of the call from Australia to the country you are currently in. The call will be charged at the “Receiving calls” rate to that country in 30 second increments, plus flagfall, with a minimum charge of 60 seconds.
Sending and receiving SMS while roaming
- SMS sent to Australian mobile numbers (regardless of location) are charged at your plan’s national SMS rate (GST taxable) plus the “SMS International carrier charge” (non GST taxable) for the carrier you are roaming with.
- SMS sent to non-Australian mobile numbers are charged at the standard international SMS rate (GST taxable) plus “SMS International carrier charge” (non GST taxable) for the carrier you are roaming with.
All charges are subject to currency fluctuations. All call costs are converted at the current exchange rate at the time of invoicing by the network.
All call rates supplied in advance are subject to change without notice and are intended as a guide only.
Viewing International Roaming charges on your invoice
It may take up to 3 months for international roaming calls and data usage to be invoiced. You may experience similar delays when viewing itemised roaming calls in the Call Tracker for your mobile service in MyAccount.
Using data while roaming
To keep things simple, any data usage while roaming falls into a single flat-rate pricing zone of $2/MB, except when connected to maritime carriers. The carriers who fall into the maritime/other zone, which is charged at $15.50/MB are;
- Siminn On Waves
- Telecom Maritime
Currently, these are the only 3 providers and they operate in USA, Norway and International Waters only. The carrier names above will show on your handset, likely in the status bar, should you be connected to one of them.