Southern Phone waives January usage fees for customers in fires affected areas

Elka Wood12 January 2020
In a show of support for it's local fire-affected customers, Southern Phone won't bill you for the month of January. Photo: Facebook.

In a show of support for its local fire-affected customers, Southern Phone won’t bill you for the month of January. Photo: Facebook.

In a disaster, it’s difficult to remember the life-admin that needs to happen – renewing licences and car registration, enrolling kids in school and, perhaps especially, paying bills.

Many people’s incomes have been abruptly cut off during the fires and for some, it’s unknown when their means of income will return.

In a show of support for its local customers during the bushfires which have affected the Eurobodalla and Bega Valley regions, Moruya-based company Southern Phone has announced that it will waive all mobile and home phone usage fees and charges for the month of January.

“This will impact around 6,500 customers in NSW and around 600 customers in Victoria. Southern Phone will automatically credit the accounts of all customers, firefighters, and SES volunteers involved in the bushfire disaster,” says CEO David Joss.

David acknowledges that the bushfires have been a period of extreme phone and internet usage as families call loved ones, keep up to date and seek essential services and that many people have been without power and phone services throughout the disaster.

These delays in service have been unavoidable due to fire damage.

“We’re a community-focused company, and our headquarters is in Moruya on the NSW South Coast. Many of our employees and customers work and live in areas that have been devastated by these fires.

It has been heartbreaking to watch the scenes unfold in communities across the South Coast and right around the country,” David says.

David and his team have been inspired by the heroic efforts of volunteer firefighters whose efforts have prevented further destruction and by the tireless work of SES volunteers.

“As a way of supporting residents in these communities and our volunteers, we are automatically waiving service charges in January and providing a range of other services to assist.

And for our customers who have experienced property loss, we will also waive their current bill including any accrued or outstanding costs,” he says.

If your home service isn’t working due to damage, Southern Phone will provide free call diversion services to mobile or fixed lines, as well as offering payment extension services for anyone experiencing financial hardship due to the fire disaster.

“We hope that these measures provide some relief for our customers who have been impacted by this tragedy and our wonderful firefighter and SES volunteers who we have so much to thank for.

Clearly, the rebuilding effort will take significant time and we will continue to provide support services to our customers as this process continues,” he says.

For more information, please visit Southern Phone.

What's Your Opinion?

10 Responses to Southern Phone waives January usage fees for customers in fires affected areas

Leanne Richardson Leanne Richardson 4:50 pm 13 Jan 20

Amazing! Thank you! 👏👏

Stephanie Ford Stephanie Ford 10:40 pm 12 Jan 20

Awesome generosity of spirit to fire affected people. Amazing.

Caroline Long Caroline Long 7:02 pm 12 Jan 20

I had an email that have waived 3 months fees as there records show I was in the fire zone. I will still get my book credit.

Michelle Luvee Sullivan Michelle Luvee Sullivan 5:45 pm 12 Jan 20

If this local company can do this why can’t others.

The govt’s offer of $1,000 per adult & $400 per child to those affected..... has a mountain of forms to be filled out & lots of questions most not eligible for the payment.

Why.....???? if the taxpayers have such a surplus. Can’t each & every person receive this relief if you reside in the regions affected.

We have all suffered in some way..... some loosing everything, others having to evacuate, throw food out due to no power, unable to work.... there is a long list.... the losses are far & wide.

We need to be more vocal folks, no more quite Australians!

Time to band together & lobby for the change we are all wanting!

    Warren Purnell Warren Purnell 9:43 pm 12 Jan 20

    Michelle Luvee Sullivan not to mention the criteria for RFS volunteers to jump though!

Helen Britten Helen Britten 5:36 pm 12 Jan 20


Ann Schroeder Ann Schroeder 5:27 pm 12 Jan 20

That's awesome.Thank you southern phones.

Su Fletcher Su Fletcher 5:17 pm 12 Jan 20

Thats you Joe?