Premium Direct Billing - Refund Eligibility

Support Team
Support Team

We’ve been reviewing Third Party content charges that were billed to our customers’ under our Premium Direct Billing (PDB) service.


We no longer offer PDB as a payment option for third party digital content, however our investigation shows that some customers experienced issues when trying to unsubscribe/opt-out of being billed for these services.


What is Premium Direct Billing?

Premium Direct Billing (PDB) was a payment option that allowed customers to subscribe online to third party content like apps, games, ringtones, wallpapers, music and videos from other companies for use on mobile phones or tablets. The charges were added to the customers Telstra bill.  Many PDB services are subscription services which involve recurring charges on a weekly or monthly basis.  There may also be one-off charges such as voting competition charges.


Telstra ceased its PDB service from 3 March 2018.


It is different to Premium SMS services to which the customer subscribes by sending an SMS. 


Will all content be affected?
No. This change only impacts some 3rd party (non-Telstra) services and subscriptions. The following Telstra content will be unaffected, and will continue to be charged to your Post-Paid Telstra bill, or debited from your Pre-Paid credit balance as normal: 

  • AFL
  • AirG Chat
  • Apple App Store
  • Apple Music
  • Telstra TV Box Office
  • Foxtel/Now/Go
  • Google Play (post-paid customers only)
  • Infocall services
  • Telstra Mobile Fun
  • Telstra reverse call
  • 1800 Reverse
  • Netball
  • Netflix
  • NRL
  • Sensis
  • Caller Tones
  • Windows Store
  • Premium SMS Content 
  • Other Telstra content 

How did charges appear on my Post-Paid bill?

Telstra billed Premium Direct Billing charges on behalf of content service providers.  If you subscribed to a service online by selecting a purchase now button and for services purchased after June 2016, accepting the service provider’s conditions and charges, those charges were billed on your Telstra mobile phone account.   


If customers saw additional charges on their Post-Paid bill (under Third Party/Separate Purchases), or had money debited from Pre-Paid accounts, it meant Telstra has paid the content provider on the customers behalf then recovered the cost on their mobile bill.  Not all third party charges were impacted by this issue.  Only Premium Direct Billing charges were impacted. 


Has this issue been fixed?

Telstra took a number of steps to improve the customer experience: two years ago we introduced double opt in for these services and last year, we stopped selling new services. From 3 March, we have completely exited these services.


Why has it taken you so long to identify this issue?

We have taken a number of steps to improve the customer experience over the years, including double opt in.  Last year we also stopped allowing new subscriptions to be billed under this service. From 3 March we completely exited these PDB services.


How do you know that this error is limited to this particular issue and no other examples of incorrect charges?

We’ve undertaken extensive analysis and put controls in place to ensure that the procedures for determining impacted customers are correct.


For more information contact us on 1800 007 413 (Prepaid customers), 1800 007 763 (consumer customers) or 1800 007 830 (Business customers) we’re available 7 days week between 8am - 9pm (AEST).



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Level 23: Superhero

Admittedly the double opt-in mentioned as a step Telstra took to prevent this is simply not true. Not a single provider instituted this, and Telstra never enforced the 'requirement' for double opt-in. They just kept on billing for these companies.


Click the link for the refund - this is the result.


Just Registered

Yes, click the link to fill out the form .....access denied as above... kalak

What's going on ???????

Support Team
Support Team

If you're having problems with your request the teams on the relevant 1800-number mentioned at the end of TommyR's post would be the best points of contact for investigation and help.

Just Registered

Thanks Greg

Just Registered

I recently changed over to Optus, on the 4th of April, yesterday{25th April} I was checking my bank acc and I see that $100 has gone out to Telstra. \i checked with telstra this morning and they said I owed them $100. This is absolute rubbish. The reason I changed over to Optus was because of the worst possible customer service I have ever experienced from a Telstra shop. MIDLAND W.A. 

well you've got my $100 dollars but that's the last you'll ever get from me. I worked for Telstra for 20 years in NSW and if I had ever behaved in the manner Midland did I would have been sacked.

Just Registered

Currently on hold now, have been hung up on twice this morning already, adding up minutes I've been left on hold and am up to 70mins already, all I want to know is what details are required on the web form??? 

Just Registered

I've submitted my form, and the next screen says...

 "Your account will be reviewed and, if eligible, a credit will be applied to the billing account listed on your email/letter within the next 1-2 bills. We will contact you via SMS on the preferred number you have listed within the form"


But that billing account, which is mentioned in your original email as a *former* Account Number, is no longer active (the service in question has been moved from pre-paid to a plan on my single bill). How will I receive a credit? Will Telstra contact me to ask for a current account number?


Telstra (Retired)
Telstra (Retired)

Hi nico666,


Our team should be able to trace charges back to your prepaid service/account. 


- Tim 

Just Registered

Thanks for the response TimmyT. Do you mean they will be able to associate the old account number with my current account number?

Telstra (Retired)
Telstra (Retired)

If all you did previously was change from a prepaid to a postpaid plan, then it will still be under your name so they can refer back to the history when it was on a prepaid account. 


- Tim