As bushfires around the country continue to take their toll, we know staying in touch with loved ones is vital. That’s why, until further notice, we’re making our payphone network around the country available to provide free local, national and standard mobile calls. We will also be allowing free use of the Telstra Air Wi-Fi network at locations where payphones are equipped to provide this.

As part of our existing disaster assistance packages for Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia, we are already providing free calling on our payphones and free use of our Telstra Air network.

However, given the scale of the emergency, we’ve made the decision to extend this across the county allowing all Australians to keep in touch with family and friends.

We also know how important it is to stay informed during this crisis. That’s why we’ll be making a number of key websites unmetered for Telstra mobile services. The following sites will not count towards consumer mobile data limits throughout the month of January:

State and Territory rural fire services for information about current fires and responses:

Government agencies for emergency response information:

Other critical information websites:

Our teams are continuing to work around the clock with emergency services to access infrastructure in order to get services back online. However, as I have said previously, this may take time given a lot of these areas are still inaccessible.

Again, I want to take this opportunity to commend our emergency services for their incredible work, and thank our Telstra technicians and staff on the ground in bushfire-affected areas for their tireless efforts to restore communications.