Author Topic: Mustachian Cell plan for Canadians?  (Read 752 times)

Seadog

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Mustachian Cell plan for Canadians?
« on: November 19, 2018, 04:26:47 AM »
As someone who likes taking extended trips to different places, I bet I've had 20 different cell phone numbers across 7 different countries in the last 10 years. I know what these things cost around the globe, and invariably anytime I return to my home country of Canada and have to deal with these criminals I end up wanting to pull my hair out.

How do other Canadians cope, and how specifically do you structure your cell phone plan? I am currently leaning towards switching to Public Mobile which seem to be the best of the lot, but still twice as expensive as the next most expensive country.

The straw that broke the back was a recent 5 week trip to Indonesia. I called to put my plan on hold, and they informed me it would still be $15 a month... for literally no service. It used to be $5. $5 for nothing is egregious enough, but $15?! That's almost half my entire bill. I told them to just cancel it then, and I'll get a new sim when I come back. Apparently however they've introduced in the last year a $30 'activation fee' which as far as I can tell pays for a 4 cent sim and a bit of profit.

I have friends in France who for half the price get 10x the service, *including* unlimited calls and roaming in Canada. Several other countries also offer this. (Italy, Mexico) What's going on? How is it that you can buy a plan from 5000km away, bring it home, and its still 10x a better deal and equally functional to here?

The salt in the wound of course was that while over in Indonesia, I basically spent less than $15 for 5 weeks on cell service, and had about 20x the data that I would get in Canada on my $40/mth plan. They love to mention country size and population density here, but I was down in Oz not long before. Free sim cards handed out by the bushel in hostels, pop in a CC and for a few dollars/GB you have a working phone in an hour.

daverobev

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Re: Mustachian Cell plan for Canadians?
« Reply #1 on: November 19, 2018, 02:11:01 PM »
Heh.

If you're in a big city, try Freedom (used to be Wind).

If not, yeah, Public Mobile. Oh, or try this - a dual SIM phone, with PM in one slot, and a Fido tablet data SIM in the other. Assuming you can use Skype or whatever most of the time and don't send many texts, you'll be at $23 a month plus tax. $10 less $2 recurring payment to PM for 50 mins/texts, $15 to Fido - and after 3 months you can ask Fido for a loyalty discount, they gave some people a discount to zero, others 50% off for a year. Oh, plus you get a tablet you can sell.

PM are doing $25 activation credit as well, I think I can refer you if you want to go down that route.

Here's a link to a thread on Fido http://forums.redflagdeals.com/fido-data-plan-15-3gb-free-huawei-t3-lg-g-pad-4-tablet-warm-deal-2239141/

ElleFiji

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Re: Mustachian Cell plan for Canadians?
« Reply #2 on: November 19, 2018, 05:14:29 PM »
I switched from my $40/month Koodo plan to a $15 prepaid on Koodo last winter. And then went over my talk time two months in a row. So then koodos plan division sent me a promo for a $25 plan with little/ no data and I took it.  Two switches in 3 months and basically halved my expense.

If you're willing to ditch data, there are options. Look into lucky mobile as well... And maybe see what speak out from 7/11 is offering. There are usually promo deals this time of year.

I'm not sure what @okits final plan decision was, but I know she was looking at options earlier in the year.

GuitarStv

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Re: Mustachian Cell plan for Canadians?
« Reply #3 on: November 19, 2018, 05:15:59 PM »
Ditch your cell phone, back to nature.

okits

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Re: Mustachian Cell plan for Canadians?
« Reply #4 on: November 19, 2018, 09:48:37 PM »
I'm not sure what @okits final plan decision was, but I know she was looking at options earlier in the year.

I ended up doing nothing, and am still on a $33/month Rogers plan with no data.  In the next few months my usage patterns might change (and I may have a better handle on what they will be), after which I could make a decision on switching to something else.

I loooong time ago I read about Petro Canada prepaid plans (you buy the cards at 7-Eleven, IIRC).  Anyone use that?

snacky

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Re: Mustachian Cell plan for Canadians?
« Reply #5 on: November 19, 2018, 11:34:53 PM »
I got my kid the 7-11 plan. For $10/ month he has unlimited texing and no minutes. He can call me or 911 in an emergency and we pay a few cents a minute.

The best plan is different for everyone, because everyone uses their phones differently.

joonifloofeefloo

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Re: Mustachian Cell plan for Canadians?
« Reply #6 on: November 20, 2018, 12:55:48 AM »
My kid had $10/mo with Fido, sufficient for quick texts/phone with me for emergencies/transport. Then Fido offered him a $20/mo plan, unlimited texting, unlimited phone in Canada. Seems like a skookum deal and he loves being able to call and text (including images) with a bunch of relatives so we took that. I never saw that advertised, and we waited through a couple of years of insufficient offers before that one came.

Itís waaaaaaaaaay better than my plan with Koodo ($35/mo, unlimited text, 200 daytime minutes) but in our rural areas Rogers works best in some spots, Telus in others so Iím keeping us with one of each for now.

tardis

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Re: Mustachian Cell plan for Canadians?
« Reply #7 on: November 20, 2018, 01:48:40 AM »
Seconding pre-paid bundle options.  Longer calls are all via internet and WhatsApp for non-urgent frequent texting so Telus $10 for 50 minutes of local calls + 50 texts is plenty usually.  I never mind going over because it means my social life is going better than usual, haha.  :)  There are add ons for unlimited long distance to one number, reduced long distance rates, added texting and so on so they are easily customizable.  If I desperately need data (emergency maps usually) I'll just pay the extra.  Almost all carriers have some version of this and prices are more or less the same because you aren't locked into a phone contract.

Seadog

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Re: Mustachian Cell plan for Canadians?
« Reply #8 on: November 21, 2018, 04:12:00 AM »
Ditch your cell phone, back to nature.

I was actually half tempted to do this, but seems like the sort of thing that you'd be fine 99% of the time, but then when someone needs to get ahold of you for something important and can't, you end up screwing yourself. Do you really survive in this day and age with no phone number? 

Seconding pre-paid bundle options.  Longer calls are all via internet and WhatsApp for non-urgent frequent texting so Telus $10 for 50 minutes of local calls + 50 texts is plenty usually.  I never mind going over because it means my social life is going better than usual, haha.  :)  There are add ons for unlimited long distance to one number, reduced long distance rates, added texting and so on so they are easily customizable.  If I desperately need data (emergency maps usually) I'll just pay the extra.  Almost all carriers have some version of this and prices are more or less the same because you aren't locked into a phone contract.

Maps were a big thing for me too, as I was often getting lost in strange cities. I found a great little program called OsmAnd, which is basicaly offline maps ties to your GPS. Essentially before you go some place, download the maps, (from a great little thing called the open street map project - crowdsourced maps) and then GPS sorts you out with no data.

GuitarStv

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Re: Mustachian Cell plan for Canadians?
« Reply #9 on: November 21, 2018, 10:06:15 AM »
Ditch your cell phone, back to nature.

I was actually half tempted to do this, but seems like the sort of thing that you'd be fine 99% of the time, but then when someone needs to get ahold of you for something important and can't, you end up screwing yourself. Do you really survive in this day and age with no phone number? 

I have a VOIP home phone.  No cell though.