TPG - issues with new billing portal?

Has anyone else had issues with TPG’s new billing portal? Last November TPG started to ‘upgrade’ the portal through which we manage our mobile phone services. Our four family mobile numbers were progressively moved across to the new portal. The new system has some colourful graphics but two major flaws. The first is that we can no longer see the cost of individual calls, just an overall balance of value available. We can watch the balance decrease over the billing month - if we happen to log into the website to check - but can no longer tell how that balance is calculated. Secondly, we maintain a pre-paid balance to provide a buffer just in case one of us goes over our talk and text or internet in a given month. Under the old system, this buffer would automatically top up using our stored credit card details, so that we were never without mobile services. This has now been discontinued and the Terms and Conditions have been altered to reflect this, so in theory one of us could find ourselves stranded in the bush or overseas without internet or mobile services and no way of topping up the buffer. We are told that we can ‘go into the account’ and top it up manually, but this is impossible if TPG has just turned off our mobile internet. Or we can telephone TPG – but because of ‘privacy and security’ they insist on sending a text to just one mobile of the four before speaking to us or taking any action, so that option is essentially useless to the stranded person. Our repeated requests to TPG about these two issues have met with weasel words saying that they understand that these changes have not been a good experience for us (really?) and offering to waive the port-out fee if we wish to take our business elsewhere, in other words ‘take it or leave it’. And what is the use of a billing system that does not list the cost of individual items? Is it even legal? We have contacted the Telecommunications Ombudsman about the second issue since we think it puts TPG customers at risk, but they have essentially referred us back to TPG to sort it out between us.


How do you know whether your account is on the new portal or the old portal?

I can still get a list of all calls and texts in gruesome detail, and even download it as a CSV file.

However the cost is always shown as $0.00. I think that’s because I’m on an unlimited* Talk & Text plan (postpaid). I don’t know how much you are in practice paying a month on average but if you don’t need much data (I don’t) maybe that is a better option.

I gather that you are on a prepaid plan.

Are you trying to access the portal from a smartphone or from a desktop/laptop?

Is that actually true? Have you tested that? When they “cut you off” they might be smart enough to make it that you can still get in to top up your balance (but not access any other web sites until you have done so).

That’s certainly a valid question.

Are all calls the same cost? (If they are then TPG might argue that they only need to tell you how many calls you have made and not the cost of each call.)


Thanks for your responses, person! The old portal does not have the new graphics and I have to switch manually from one to the other. The old one still lists individual call charges for one mobile phone that hasn’t been completely switched over yet. Yes, the cost of all phone calls is always shown as $0.00 in the new portal which - to me - is hopeless. What it means is that there is no way of checking how much individual calls cost. We are all usually well under our upper limit of talk and text, but I still like to have the information - particularly if TPG is still collecting it!
I’m not sure I want to ‘test’ running up to my upper limit of calls and over the buffer just to see if TPG really does cut me off! It would be a rather expensive exercise.


And no - the calls do not all cost the same at all. Some are to overseas numbers, some are to 1300 numbers (usually for long periods of time ‘on hold’), and a few are local!


It appears leaving it would be your top choice would it not? Even when the telcos bundle NBN and anything else they sell from insurance to whatever there are usually more economical choices even when it is all added up.

The only benefit of bundling might be a single invoice to pay every month, provider dependent, although I’ll allow your individual plan might have other benefits known to yourself, financial or otherwise.

I have only changed mobile carriers 3 or 4 times in 2 decades, but was only off the air for about 30 seconds during the changeovers, with very few irritations such as new numbers for voicemail and so on.


Are you on a prepaid plan?

That doesn’t really help. I very rarely bother to log in.

I see that my account says “Moved to Novus”. That might mean moved to the new portal. Do you see that text?


1300 numbers are a single flag fall cost no matter how long you spend waiting. They are not timed for the purposes of billing cost, they are timed purely for listing call duration. This is the same for 13 numbers, they charge a single fee on connection then no matter how long the wait there is no further cost.

1800 numbers are free of any call cost as the provider of the number has chosen to bear the entire cost of calls to their number, they still list times of call duration.

Most plans have unlimited talk and text subject to a fair use clause, that is the calls are not to run a business, that the number of calls and texts are reasonable for a private user (I never hit a point where they queried my usage), and if data is unlimited that it is a reasonable usage test as well. These figures are opaque but I can attest that the limits are quite high such that with over a TB in some months I was never cut off or query about my usage.

I now use ALDImobile exclusively for our smart devices. I use Aussie Broadband for our home connection as they provided a 1000 Mbps download plan which TPG did not.

The fact they list $0.00 for a call should mean there is no cost for the call due to your plan allowances and so you have not been charged. Of course this may be an error that the cost has somehow been omitted due to a bug in their software, not likely but possible. If they have stated that the $0.00 is a true reflection of the cost then I would be accepting that explanation.

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As far as I can see only the overseas calls etc. will cost, plus video calls, plus directory assistance.

You can even pay an extra $5 a month to make overseas calls etc. with 37 specific countries (that may or may not suit your specific calling) also unlimited.

That’s what I am wondering. Are any calls that are actually costing anything being shown as $0.00? Or is it only the included calls that are shown as $0.00?


Without pre-empting the OP he is worried about hitting his cap so it is implicit he is not on an unlimited plan or is on a PAYG of some sort.

While I share your love of Aldimobile that includes 13 numbers there are ‘unlimited talk and text plans’ that do not include 13 numbers. Even though they are fixed costs per call there would need to be a prepaid balance to ring them when that is how the plan works but how that is presented could be done many ways, some more acceptable to any individual customer. If one is out of data?

I have a service contract that moved the accounts info to a US based ‘services portal’ last year. It lost or moved (to wondrous new places in the menus) 1/4 the information I used. The company has apparently gotten lots of feedback on the retrogressive ‘features’ and how it sends notices as if the world runs on the US federal holidays calendar, and how it distils information to its most simplistic form. It was their business decision; they are working on getting it back to standard albeit slowly, so it happens.


It may help if the OP would link to the Critical Information Summary or other relevant documentation for the actual plan that he or she is on.


Yes, ‘moved to Novus’ means moved to the new portal. You have to follow the dialogue at the top “Looking for your other services? Click here to manage your other services” to see the new portal.


OK. As I said though all my calls show as $0.00 but that is correct. All my calls are indeed free because they are within the included calls of the plan e.g. unlimited standard Australian voice and texts (and would also be unlimited 13/1800 calls although there don’t happen to be any recently).


Well they are contributing to the talk and text cap because I can see the balance coming down (when I log in to check). My issue is that the call charges are being collected anyway, so why can TPG no longer tell me what they are?!
13 calls are not free under my plan. I ‘spent’ over $60 in one call on hold to Virgin Airlines last year. Which is just the sort of information that I like to have!


Are you on a grandfathered plan?

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Sorry - I’m not sure what you mean. We’ve been on the plan for some time.


Yes, I understand that they are not additional to my included value, but I still like to know how much each one costs!


A grandfathered plan is a plan that is no longer offered to new customers but existing customers are allowed to remain on that plan.

If that is the case then maybe you would be better to move to a current plan. Sometimes companies give you a push to get you off the obsolete plan (and it would be understandable if their IT systems did not fully support the obsolete plan).

$25 a month will get you unlimited standard Australian calls and texts, unlimited international calls and texts to the 37 identified countries, plus 12 GB of data. If you need more data then obviously the monthly cost will go up from there.


Well possibly that’s the answer - we are being pushed to get off our less than $25 per month plan without TPG telling us directly that they want to discontinue that plan. Are you talking about a TPG plan?




I think @person may be onto it. Modern plans generally do not have ‘included value’ excepting on data caps. They either have a prepaid amount and each call is charged, or they have unlimited text and call with/without the inclusion of 13 numbers, and some form of data allowance, often rolling over if unused.

Most modern plans are truly unlimited and only differentiated by the 13 inclusion and the amount of data in the plan.

See this topic.