Save RM100s a year by choosing the right prepaid plan provider! Read this guide to find out the ultimate way to Save Money on your mobile prepaid plan.
Prepaid vs. Postpaid
So..rocking a new smartphone, are we? Staying frugal and avoiding sky-high phone bills have never been easier! The tricky part comes when you are deciding whether to rely on a prepaid plan or a postpaid plan to power up your mobile. On one side, a postpaid plan allows you to perform endless calls and SMSes without ever running out of credit. On the other corner, prepaid plans offer more versatility with their Pay-As-You-Use billing concept which relieves prepaid users from being tied to any contract or monthly bill.
So, which type of plan should you choose? It all depends on your usage! We did a bit of research and this is what we noticed :
When to use a Postpaid Plan
If you use your mobile phone frequently, such as for business purposes, the best way for you to Save Money is by using a postpaid plan that fits your needs (check out our Cheapest Postpaid Plans article here!). Yes, the monthly commitment could be quite high (around RM50 to RM400) but you will enjoy a much, much lower call and SMS rates (which means you get to make more calls and SMSes!) and Save Money overall.
When to use a Prepaid Plan
On the other hand, if you are spending between RM20 to RM50 a month for your monthly calls and SMSes, then going prepaid is definitely the best way to Save money!
Pay-as-you-use method vs Postpaid Plans
Pay-as-you-use is the billing method that most prepaid plans have where you basically pay for what you use. For ‘light’ users, going prepaid will make them Save Money compared to the lowest postpaid plans.
Here’s an example:
Lily is a ‘light’ user currently subscribing to the Maxis Value First plan (lowest available monthly commitment fee offered by Maxis) with a monthly commitment fee of RM30.
Rates for Maxis Value First:
Calls - (RM0.18/min to Maxis, RM0.20/min to all network)
SMS - (RM0.10/min to Maxis, RM0.10/min to all network)
Lily’s average monthly usage :
Calls – 50 minutes
SMS – 50 SMSes
Billed Amount: RM30.00! (minimum commitment)
Actual Usage: RM14.50 (assuming usage is half to Maxis, half to others)
So at Lily’s average usage amounts, she does not hit the minimum commitment fee level and will end up having to pay RM30 each month!
In comparison, if she was using the New Hotlink Plan, her usage will only cost her around RM14 – RM16!
Jargons Made Easy
Just to make it easier for you, here are some definitions of mobile jargons that might pop up in the article from time to time:
Monthly Commitment Fee
The minimum fee that you have to pay every month regardless of your monthly usage.Eg: Amir subscribed to Telco A 50 that has a minimum commitment fee of RM50. So Amir has to pay RM50 every month for his mobile bills even though his actual bill is RM 30 this month.
Pay As You Use
A billing method where you only pay for what you use. Eg: Network Provider A’s internet data cost RM0.10 per 1MB. So if you 2MB today, you will pay RM0.20 for your usage.
Postpaid customers are those that are billed on a monthly basis and could be bound by a contract. All postpaid plans in Malaysia have a monthly commitment fee that needs to be paid monthly.
Basically companies that provides mobile services. Examples of network providers in Malaysia are Maxis, Digi and many others.
This is how the network providers charge your calls. Eg: Telco A has a 30 second charge block. This means that you will be charged for every 30 seconds of your call.
|Call Period||Charge Block|
|0 - 29 seconds||RM0.15|
|30 - 59 seconds||RM0.30|
|1 minute - 1 min 29 seconds||RM0.45|
The Top 3 Prepaid Plans in Malaysia
How do we choose the best plan among these providers? Basically, we compare each call and SMS rates from all the providers in Malaysia and calculate it with what the network provider categorized as the minimum user quota (around 50 minutes of calls / 50 SMS / 10MMS ) per month.
Celcom XPAX24 Prepaid Plan – Cheapest plan for long calls!
Starter Pack : RM8.50
Celcom XPAX24 is a plan that understands your need to talk more (especially when there’s juicy gossip to be told!), which explains their quite generous 3 minutes call block. Basically, this means that you can talk for a full 3 minutes and still be charged at RM0.28! But this plan is not quite as noble-hearted as the previous X Pax package. The old plan gives you a full 10 minutes charge block, which means that you can update all of your day’s activity to the person on the other line in at RM0.28/10 minutes!
But here lies the problem: if you call a friend just to say you’ve arrived in front of his / her house, then that 10 second phone call would still cost you RM 0.28 (yikes).
Tune Talk Prepaid Plan – Low Rates to all networks
Starter Pack : RM 5.00
Thinking of trying plans other than the usual leading network like Celcom, DiGi, and Celcom? For a light user (someone who averages 50mins of calls, 50 SMS, and 10 MMS per month), Tune Talk offers quite the low rates! If your mobile communication priorities is set at talking and sending SMSes only, then Tune Talk could be your soulmate (or mobile-mate?)
However, if you are considering a data plan, Tune Talk’s DATA TATATA will set you back RM0.88 per day for a mere 50MB data.
U Mobile Prepaid Plan – RM0.03 SMS to U Mobile Numbers
Starter Pack : RM8.00
|Go To U Mobile|
Love sending out those SMSes? U Mobile’s prepaid plan holds the third place in the cheapest prepaid plan throne. We gave a quick call to the U Mobile call centre for more information and from what we’ve gathered, Hotlink gives you an okay charge of RM0.18 or RM0.18 per minute for calls, and RM0.03 (3 sen, woohoo!) or RM0.08 to send an SMS.
For those who makes the average amount of 50 minutes of phone call, 50 SMSes, and 10MMSes, then be prepared to pay RM14.25 for your usage!
If your calls are often less than 2 minutes, then the most economical plan for you would be the DiGi Best Prepaid Plan!
DiGi Best Prepaid Plan – RM0.06 for the first 10 seconds voice calls
Starter Pack : RM8.50
|Go To DiGi|
For prepaid users who only make calls to announce their arriving time to a destination, or to get someone to call them back, or basically to make calls that last less than 10 seconds, DiGi Best Prepaid might be the plan for you. DiGi Best Prepaid is a plan that caters for those who like to make short calls, and the charges vary according to the call blocks :
Tier I : RM0.06 /10 seconds
Tier II : RM0.20 / next 2 minutes
Tier III : RM0.20 / every subsequent minute
Unlike most prepaid plans that charge in a 30 second call-blocks (eg : RM0.20 / 30 second call-block means you have to pay RM0.20 even though your conversation lasted only for 4 seconds), DiGi Best Prepaid will only charge you RM0.06 for the first 10 seconds (convenient for those “I’m five minutes away from X” conversations). But the normal charges of RM0.20 / minute applies after the first 10 seconds though! SMS charges and MMS charges are both RM0.08 / SMS and RM0.25 / MMS to all networks.
What we don’t like is that there’s no internet data given with this plan, and getting internet data on prepaid is sometimes more expensive than postpaid plans. In DiGi’s case, you can simply browse the internet up to maximum of RM8 daily (which will burn your credit!), or take a cheaper route of subscribing to DiGi’s Mobile Internet package. Then again, if you’re a prepaid user looking for data for your smartphone or tablet, there’s always the DiGi Prepaid Smart Plan.
The Prepaid Table
Want to know all the prepaid plans available in Malaysia? Here they are!
|Provider||Plan Name||Starter Pack (RM)||Preloaded Value (RM)||Call Charge : Own Network (Per Min)||Call Charge : Other Network (Per Min)||SMS Charge : Own Network (Per SMS)||SMS Charge : Other Network (Per SMS)||MMS Charge : Own Network (Per MMS)||MMS Charge : Other Network (Per MMS)||Cost for 50 Minutes + 50 SMS + 10 MMS (half to own network and half to other network)|
|Celcom||XPAX24||8.50||5.00||0.28 / 3 minutes||0.28 / 3 minutes||0.02 ||0.08 ||0.15||0.35||RM9.50
|Tune Talk||Tune Talk Prepaid||5.00||2.00||0.16||0.16 ||0.05 ||0.05 ||0.25 ||0.25 ||RM13.00|
|U Mobile||U Prepaid Plan||8.00||5.00||0.18||0.18 ||0.03 ||0.08 ||0.25||0.25 ||RM14.25
|DiGi||Digi Best Prepaid||10.80||6.00||0.20 ||0.20 ||0.08 ||0.08 ||0.25 ||0.25 ||RM16.50
|Tron||Tron Beon Lite||9.00||3.00||0.20 ||0.20 ||0.10||0.10 ||0.30 ||0.30 ||RM18.00
|Maxis||Hotlink Social Edition Starter Packs (for balances > RM10) ||10.00||RM5.00 credit / 50MB / Free access to Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp 5 days||0.20 ||0.30 ||0.05 ||0.10 ||0.25 ||0.50 ||RM20.00
|XOX||XOX Prepaid Plan||8.80||5.00||0.32||0.32||0.07||0.12||N / A||N / A||RM20.75
|DiGi||DiGi Easy Prepaid||16.80||8.00||0.30||0.30||0.08||0.08||0.25||0.25||RM21.50
|Maxis||Hotlink Social Edition Starter Packs (for balances < RM10) ||10.00||RM5.00 credit / 50MB / Free access to Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp 5 days||0.24||0.36||0.05||0.10||0.25||0.50||RM22.50
Internet Data for Prepaid Plans – Daily, Weekly, Monthly
Generally, the cost of surfing the web using prepaid credit is costly because of the pay-per-use method (you can burn up to RM 10 credit for just 1 MB of internet data!). So if you want to save money on internet data, it’s best if you use the available WiFi near your area and surf to your heart’s delight.
Alternatively, most prepaid plan provides daily, weekly, and a monthly bundle plan that is cheaper than paying per data used. So if you already have a prepaid plan, these are the data plans for each network provider :
|DiGi||RM3 - 150MB||RM7 - 100MB||RM30 - 750MB|
|Hotlink||RM5 - 500MB||RM12 - 250MB||RM68 - 3GB|
|XPAX||RM5 - 500MB||RM18 - 1GB||N/A|
|Tune Talk||RM0.88 - 50MB||RM10 - 200 MB, 20 minutes to Local Networks||RM38 - 1GB, 60 minutes to Local Networks|
|RM58 - 3GB|
|TRON||RM1 - 30MB||RM5 - 150MB||RM18 - 600MB|
|XOX||RM3 - 100MB||N/A||RM38 - 1GB
|RM68 - 3GB|
If you intend to use a whole lot of data continuously (and not on a day by day, week by week basis), it might be worth having a look at the section below, where “All Rounder” plans are featured, as they typically bundle calls/SMS/data together in their prepaid plans and are typically cheaper on a monthly basis than bolting on a separate internet plan.
The Best Prepaid Plan for All Rounders (Internet Data + Calls + SMS)
So you have a smartphone and you require a plan that gives you internet data, calls, and SMSes all in one plan? We’ve got the comparison of network providers, right here :
|U Mobile||UMI 18||250 MB||25 Mins||25 SMS||N/A||RM18||30 days validity, Unutilised minutes and SMS will be carried forward (Maximum of 50 minutes and 50 SMS)|
|U Mobile||UMI 28||500 MB||100 Mins||30 SMS||N/A||RM28||30 days validity, Unutilised minutes and SMS will be carried forward (Maximum of 50 minutes and 50 SMS)|
|DiGi||DiGi Prepaid Smart Plan RM30 reload||600 MB||60 Mins||60 SMS||30 MMS||RM30||30 days validity, All bundled quota can be accumulated until you hit maximum capacity: 2GB (Internet), 300 mins (voice calls), 300 SMS and 200 MMS.
|Tune Talk||The Cun Plan Monthly||1GB||60 Mins||N/A||N/A||RM38||30 days validity, Unused balance is NOT carried forward!|
|DiGi||DiGi Prepaid Smart Plan RM50 reload||1GB||100 Mins||100 SMS||50 MMS||RM50||50 days validity, All bundled quota can be accumulated until you hit maximum capacity: 2GB (Internet), 300 mins (voice calls), 300 SMS and 200 MMS.
From the table, the two top plans are from U Mobile and Digi!
U Mobile Unlimited Mobile Internet Plan – UMI 18/ at RM18 for 250MB Data, 25 Minutes and 25 SMSes
Package: UMI 18
|Go To U Mobile|
Ahoy data users, great news! U Mobile has recently introduced a cheaper variation of their Unlimited Mobile Internet Plan 28 into the market. Aimed specifically for lower data users, the UMI 18 comes with 250MB of free data bolted on with the flexibility of 25 minutes of free talk time and 25 free SMSes to all networks. Once you’ve exceeded your 250MB quota, you can still use the internet without extra charge but download speeds will be throttled down to 64kbps.
This plan is comparable with the DiGi Postpaid Tablet Plan, the Tablet 500MB SuperSIM. Although only RM15 for 500 MB, you have to factor in the fact that the price is only valid for existing Postpaid DiGi subscribers (non-subscribers have to pay RM25) and does not include any free Minutes or SMSes. As such, when compared, the UMI18 makes it one of the cheapest plans in the market right now for people who want minutes, SMSes and data (albeit in small quantities).
While other prepaid plans normally burn unused talk time and SMS, the new UMI 18 plan lets you carry forward a maximum of 50 minutes of calls and 50 SMS at any one time. If you need more data and talk time, there’s always the UMI 28 which offers 500MB of data, 100 minutes of calls and 30 SMS for RM28/month.
DiGi – DG Prepaid Smart Plan RM30 topup for smartphones
Package: DG Prepaid Smart Plan
|Reload Amount||Data||Voice (All Networks)||SMS (All Nerworks)||MMS (Own Network)||Validity|
|RM10||200MB||20 mins||20 SMS||10 MMS||10 days|
|RM30||600MB||60 mins||60 SMS||30 MMS||30 days|
|RM50||1GB||100 mins||100 SMS||50 MMS||50 days|
|RM100||2GB||200 mins||200 SMS||10 mms||100 days|
Other Services : Unlimited access to Whatsapp Messenger
- All bundled quota can be accumulated until you hit maximum capacity: 2GB (Internet), 300 mins (voice calls), 300 SMS and 200 MMS.
- Voice call usage will be blocked upon reaching the given Minutes reloaded.
- SMS usage will be blocked upon reaching the given numbers SMS reloaded.
- MMS usage will be blocked upon reaching the given number of MMSes reloaded.
DG has joined the likes of U Mobile and Tune Talk in providing a prepaid data + calls bundle for smartphone users who prefer to use a prepaid service! But is it any better? Let us see. First up, the starter pack will cost you RM25, and with it comes 300MB worth of data, 30 mins + 30SMS to all networks, and 10MMS to fellow DiGi users. Once the usage is up (or the 25-day validity is over), you can actually choose your preferred denomination of top ups of RM10, RM30, RM50, RM100. The ability to top up like a regular prepaid service sets DiGi apart from U Mobile and Tune Talk as these two networks have a fixed weekly/monthly prepaid plan. What we like about this plan is that it offers unlimited Whatsapp Messenger service, so you can save on the SMS quota and just use Whatsapp for you daily messages!
We suppose DiGi came up with a variety of top up denominations to cater to multiple smartphone users, be they low, average, or heavy users. For low users, RM10 gives you 10 days of validity and 200MB+20 mins + 20SMS. This makes it comparable to Tune Talk’s “Cun Plan”, which offers the same amount of data and calls. But what about the average users? Assuming that most average users prefer a monthly top up / validity, there’s RM30 top up which gives you 600MB data +60 mins + 60SMS + 30MMS and RM50 which gives you 1GB data + 100 mins + 100 SMS + 50MMS. Here’s a table comparison with other data+calls+SMS bundle from other networks, namely Tune Talk and U Mobile :
|Network||Plan Cost / month||Validity||Data||Calls||SMS||MMS|
|DiGi Prepaid Smart Plan||RM30||30 days||600MB||60 mins||60 SMS||30 MMS|
|DiGi Prepaid Smart Plan||RM50||50 days||1GB||100 mins||100 SMS||50 MMS|
|Tune Talk's "The Cun Plan"||RM38||30 days||1GB||60 mins||25 SMS||N/A|
|U Mobile's UMI 28||RM28||30 days||500MB||100 mins||30 SMS||N/A|
(Do keep in mind that Tune Talk’s unused balance will not be carried forward to the next month!)
For this plan, we don’t like the fact that voice calls, SMS and MMS usage will be blocked once the quota is used up. So if you’re a heavy smartphone user, we suggest you read our “Cheapest Postpaid Deals – Comparison of Postpaid Plans in Malaysia” article for a more Save Money way to use your smartphone!
So there you go! We at SaveMoney.my have performed our duty to give you the information that we hope can help you Save Money on your prepaid plan. Now, all you have to do is to choose a plan that suits your needs (and budget)!
Come check our forum if you have any comments, feedbacks, or if you have any additional information on the plans above. Additionally, do let us know of any possible wrong information, or if you discover a plan which can Save even more Money out there!
*All the information above is collected from the network providers’ websites and customer service personnel