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Telstra, Optus customers hit with higher bills

The logos for both Telstra and Optus outside their respective shops.
Telstra and Optus customers are getting hit with higher bills. (Source: Getty)

Both Telstra and Optus customers will be hit with higher phone bills.

Telstra’s mobile phone plans will be increasing up to $4 a month - costing customers up to an extra $48 a year.

From August, Optus is also upping phone plans by $4 a month, but customers will benefit from some extra data.

Only Optus customers on a subscription month to month plan will see the price increase.

If a customer buys a handset over 12, 24 or 36 months, and they want to cancel, they will have to pay out their outstanding handset repayments.

On top of that, Optus will also start charging customers to access Optus Sport, which until now was free to access on all postpaid plans.

Eligible Optus customers will need to pay an extra $6.99 per month, or $83.33 per year.

For everyone else, the price will be $24.99 per month or $199 per year.

Cost-of-living pressures

The changes come as Aussies struggle to keep up with the rising cost of living.

And a number of everyday expenses are set to rise in the coming months, including home loans, energy prices, health insurance and transport costs.

Energy prices in particular have been a major source of pressure for Australian consumers.

Default market offer (DMO) prices increased by as much as 18.3 per cent in New South Wales, 12.6 per cent in South-East Queensland, and 9.5 per cent in South Australia, Finder research found.

This could raise the average quarterly energy bill in New South Wales by as much as $63, equivalent to $252 per year.

On top of that, the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) raised the official cash rate on Tuesday, bringing interest rates to 1.35 per cent - up from 0.10 per cent in May.

RBA governor Philip Lowe said the central bank had been focused on trying to bring down inflation.

Lowe said global factors, including the COVID-19 pandemic and the recent floods in New South Wales, have been putting pressure on supply chains and pushing prices higher.

As a result of the interest rate hike, mortgage holders will see their monthly repayments rise for a third consecutive month.

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