Many user seems to use their email address from their ISP, such as optusnet and bigpond. The biggest drawback is the unavailability of the email account if you change your internet service to other ISP or end up paying the rental just to maintain the email address.
There are many free email services you can use for life, and they are as good as your ISP email service. Such as Gmail, hotmail and yahoo mail. Pick a free email service now and start moving your friend over, it never gets too late.