Can you trade in your phone? How and where Telstra, Optus and Vodafone


Maybe you have a good smartphone. You take care of it, everything works and it’s a decent brand. You would like to fall for the latest model, but is it worth it? And besides, you already have one. If it ain’t broke, as they say…

But there is a surprisingly simple and potentially profitable option: to exchange your mobile.

Let’s break it down.

What is Mobile Commerce?

Collage of a woman flipping her old phone and holding a new one in a shopping bag.

In a nutshell, trading in your phone means that you give your old model to your provider in exchange for a credit on your bill. This can be a smart way to reduce your environmental impact while increasing your savings. Two-fer!

There are, however, a few common terms and conditions. You usually need to have an existing mobile plan with where you are trading, especially the big three telcos, and you need to own the phone directly (i.e. you don’t pay for it yet). Other terms and conditions will depend on the provider.

However, provided you meet the eligibility criteria and aren’t too sentimental about your current phone, it can be a great way to save money on your monthly plan.

Mobile Exchanges FAQ

What is a mobile exchange?

A trade-in means you trade in your old phone for credit for a new device, usually as part of a monthly plan. An exchange, however, only gives you credit on your bill.

Can you trade in your tablet?

Yes! Telstra, Optus and Vodafone will all allow you to trade in your eligible old tablet for credit. Check out data-only plans for your tablet here, or read below for general steps to take with each provider.

What if my phone is not eligible for trade-in?

Maybe your phone is too old or too damaged: in any case, you are not eligible for an exchange. You can always recycle your device through MobileMuster, Australia’s official phone recycling service, or at a local recycling centre. You could even fetch a few bucks for it through Facebook Marketplace or Gumtree – refurbished phones are a thing.

Can I swap a phone from an old network to a new network?

Generally yes, you can trade in devices you purchased from one mobile operator to another, as long as you meet their eligibility criteria (and depending on the operator).

What if my trade-in phone was rejected or returned?

There are a number of reasons why your trade-in phone may be rejected and returned to you. The device might be in worse condition than reported, or it might be a different model than you claim, or maybe your security protocols like TouchID or FaceID were still on. assets. Check with your carrier for more information and next steps.

Can you get a new iPhone 14 with a trade-in? Telstra, Optus and Vodafone explained

Yes! Depending on the mobile provider, you may be able to buy a new iPhone 14 series device by trading in your old one.


Telstra has just announced a special offer until 11:59 p.m. on October 15, 2022. If you pre-order the iPhone 14 and trade in an eligible phone, you could get up to $1,000 credit on your bill (conditions s apply).


Vodafone has offered a trade-in plan if you want to get a new iPhone 14 series smartphone. If you pre-order iPhone 14 models (normal, Plus, Pro or Pro Max) on any Vodafone Infinite plan, trade in an eligible device and stay connected for more than 12, 24 or 36 months, you could save up to $1300 (conditions apply).

Offer ends October 9, 2022 and you must redeem by October 23 (T&Cs).


Optus hasn’t announced any special deals for iPhone 14 trade-ins yet, but the new series of smartphones are available for pre-order through the telecom carrier, and Optus’ trade-in service is still valid for eligible customers.

Things to do before trading in your mobile or tablet

Collage of a blank iPhone on a blue, checkered background.

First, some obvious housekeeping. Before you trade in your device, keep everything you want from it. Make a backup or two and remove any SIM cards, cases or bling. But don’t do a factory reset just yet – your provider will want to assess its condition.

You can do this either at home if the supplier has a system in place, or in store. Basically, your vendor will run your gadget through standard tests or ask you questions (checking speeds, hardware, screen integrity, brightness, camera lenses, etc.) so that it can determine if your phone is eligible for a trade-in – and if so, how much you can get for it.

Once you get a quote and know you’re eligible, you can decide whether or not to trade in your phone. Below we have described the general procedure with the big three suppliers.

Telstra trade in

Collage of two people texting on their smartphones.

If you are an existing Telstra customer and own an eligible phone or tablet, you may be a good candidate for Telstra’s trade-in service provided by its partner, Kingfisher.

By trading in your mobile in good condition, you could get up to $1150 credit applied to your next Telstra bill (applied from the second month, conditions apply).

Eligible brands include:

  • Apple
  • Samsung
  • Google
  • Oppo
  • Huawei.

Keep in mind that only specific models are eligible for trade-in, so if your device is more than a few years old or damaged, you might not get as much.

To start the process, visit the store or log in to the redemption portal via My Telstra using your Telstra ID. Once you have completed the device assessment and received a quote that suits you, Telstra will send you instructions on how to send your old phone back using Australia Post.

Once Telstra has received and accepted your trade-in phone, it will apply the credit to your bill within two billing cycles or refund you via your automatic payment method (debit or credit card) if you have an initial plan or data only.

Optus trades in

Collage of two people reaching out to each other on their smartphone screen.

If you are an eligible new or existing Optus customer, you can potentially trade in your device for store credit (or trade in for credit for a new device). Their recovery service is powered by their partner Alegre.

While Optus doesn’t have standard trade-in values ​​available, a simple search of their trade-in quote tool reveals that an undamaged Apple iPhone 13 512GB could net you up to $710 in bill credit ( conditions apply).

Eligible phone brands include:

  • Apple
  • Samsung
  • Google
  • Oppo
  • Huawei.

Keep in mind that if your device is old or damaged, you may not get as much credit (if any).

To start the process, visit an Optus store or get a quote online using their finder. Remember that online quotes are only valid for online exchanges: your quote may be different in store.

Optus will then ask you a few questions to assess the condition of your device before giving you a quote for how much credit you could receive for it. If you’re happy to continue, Optus will then send you a pre-paid bag for you to mail in your old device. You can also trade in your device in-store or over the phone.

Once Optus receives and accepts your device, you will receive a credit applied to your bill within two billing cycles.

Vodafone Trade

Collage of a young woman swiping on her smartphone.

If you have an eligible phone and your cellular plan is through Vodafone, you may be able to trade in your device for a credit on your next bill or a new device cellular plan, provided by Vodafone trade-in partner Asurion .

According to Vodafone’s trade-in quote tool, by trading in a well-maintained Apple iPhone 13 512GB, you could receive up to $740 in credit.

Vodafone will also run special offers from time to time where you can use your traded-in phone for over $1000 in credit towards a new one (as long as you remain signed into a Vodafone plan for a certain period, terms and conditions apply) .

Eligible phone brands include:

  • Apple
  • Samsung
  • Google
  • Oppo
  • Huawei.

To start the process, visit a Vodafone store or use the online tool to get an estimated quote on eligible devices. If you wish to continue, download the free Vodafone Trade-In app via the Apple Store or Google Play to check your eligibility and assess the status of your device.

Once your device has been assessed, the app will give you a unique trade-in ID which can be used to complete the trade-in in store or over the phone (1300 650 410). Keep in mind that your final credit may change after status assessment by Vodafone or Asurion staff.

Once Vodafone has received and accepted your phone, your credit will be processed and applied to future bills until depleted. You can only trade once a year or trade twice a year.

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