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Best phone network to use when on a working holiday in New Zealand

Best phone network to use when on a working holiday in New Zealand

When you arrive in a new country, the natural choice will be to just get the first prepaid SIM card that you can find. It’s actually a choice that will cost you a lot of money. Keep in mind that you will have to use your phone a lot to find work, a flat, organise your social life, book activities and travel.

We think that Skinny is the best offer available in New Zealand. Skinny Mobile offers some of the cheapest rates and uses the super fast Telecom XT network, which offers super coverage in 97% of places that Kiwis live and work.

Check out our charts that compare your different options and find the perfect fit.

Skinny has weekly prepaid “Combos”. You can choose either weekly or monthly Combos that offer super value by bundling texts, minutes and data together. They are a great option to get your dollars to stretch that little bit further.

Being prepaid, you are not locked into any contracts and can close your account at any time by simply stopping payments! Of course, when you’re not on a Combo, Skinny also has great flat rates (standard rates) available. The great thing about Combos is that you can change them any time. So, if you find that you are using a lot more data than you thought, then change your Combo to something that offers more data. You could save a lot of money with Skinny.

The Skinny Network (XT Telecom Network)

New Zealand has 3 big network providers. We’ve tried them all, we’ve compared them extensively, and we’ve chose to deal with Skinny on the XT Telecom Network for the following reasons: extensive network and coverage, great value and very flexible.

Really, it’s a no brainer..

We’ve found that Skinny’s Network Coverage is the best on the territory. The XT network is fast and efficient and covers 97% of the places Kiwi’s live and work, which is more than some competitors. There is nothing more frustrating as a traveller to be stuck somewhere with no network.

Skinny’s offer is very flexible. Their weekly and monthly plans give you freedom without the hassle of a long tem contract. You can have the advantage of a plan without signing up for 12 months. They are also great for travellers, as their conditions are clear and it is very easy to close an account by just stopping the payments.

Finally, Skinny is a great value! As travellers, we are all looking for a good deal and this is the network to get it. Every Combo is packed with value. We make sure that what we present to you is worth it! On top of that, the company makes sure that you are in control with their text service that alerts you when you will run out of credit and other very easy ways to control your remaining credit online or simply with your phone. They have a handy app too, where you can manage your Combo.

Can you explain those fuzzy terms?

TXT: Text message
PXT-MMS: Picture or media text message
Data: Internet usage

Prepaid is a way of getting a phone number and using a mobile phone network without subscribing to a long-term phone plan. With a prepaid phone, you will pay as you go. The rates on Skinny can often be cheaper than with a long-term plan on another network. You can top up your account with as much money as you want, then spend your credit how you want on a Combo or standard flat rates.

A postpaid phone plan is a longer-term commitment (usually 12 or 24 months) where you choose a plan and get charged monthly for the price that you choose to pay. It often requires a credit check and a permanent NZ address. You have to pay extra to add on minutes, texts or data if you run out during the month.

The data is measured in Mb (Megabyte). It is a way to quantify electronic usage. Usages vary a lot depending on websites and Internet usage. By using or uploading videos, photos and games, these tend to use a lot of data. For example, average use of 1 hour of Internet and 10 emails a day will be around 225Mb per month. Skinny makes it easy to control your usage. By sending a free text to one of their numbers you will receive your current balance. Clever!

Combos are terms used by Skinny to describe a deal that you will be able to buy with your credit for NZ$4 a week. The allocation of minutes/texts and data on a Combo get used before you are charged the standard rates. Your Combo will auto-renew every week unless you have no credit remaining or you choose to cancel the Combo.

Standard Rates & Overage Charges are the rates that will be applied when your Combo runs out or if you choose not to subscribe to a Combo. If you go over your Combo’s limits, Skinny overage charges apply. If your Combo ends, Skinny standard rates apply. You can find those rates on our Combos and Prices page, and at skinny.co.nz/pricing.

Skinny runs on a 3G network (3rd generation) to allow people to download and send data quickly and easily. This gives you a super fast and reliable coverage.

Skinny runs on a WCDMA network. If you choose to use your current cell phone, first check it is unlocked, then go to skinny.co.nz/willmyphonework to see if it will work on Skinny.

Please note that some of the phones sold by Skinny have been setup to only work with a Skinny SIM. If you want to use it with another network’s SIM, a NZ$30 fee may apply, see skinny.co.nz/unlock for more information.