"When you arrive in Canada, one of your priorities is to find a way to communicate."
When you arrive in Canada, one of your priorities is finding a way to communicate and have a phone number where people can contact you either for networking, find work, and create friendships. You have three different options to do that.
Keeping Your Overseas Cell-Plan
You may keep your home-country number because you have an international plan that allows you to call, text and use data in Canada with no fees. This option is correct, but it has two significant concerns.
- Your phone company might cancel your Overseas plan if you are not geolocalized in your country during the next six months.
- The local employers and even your local friends will not call you because your number is not a Canadian one, and they would have to pay fees to call you. On average, Canadian cell companies charge $0.5 per minute (inbound or outbound calls).
"The local employers and even your local friends will not call you because your number is not a Canadian one."
This option is for you if you planned to stay in Canada for a short period or if you are here to visit or to prepare for your future installation.
Tips: If you are thinking about staying in Canada but not sure yet, you should consider a prepaid plan. Public Mobile offers plans starting at $30 with no commitment; Plus, get a $10 credit BONUS using the code E3YM5P.
BYOP: Bring Your Own Phone
You may decide to open a line with your actual phone, so you do not have to buy a new one. You should know that the costs for monthly plans in Canada are way higher than those in Europe; for a plan that you would pay 15€ in France, it would cost you around $80 in Canada. You can find different monthly offers for prepaid sim cards that give you the possibility to keep your old phone but put a Canadian Sim card in it. This option would cost you a minimum of $30 a month with low-cost phone operators like Koodo, Virgin, Public Mobile, Fido, and others for an essential service (minimum data, 500 minutes calls in Canada, unlimited texts). Alternatively, if you want better service, more data, unlimited calls and many other advantages, direct yourself to the larger operators like Telus, Rogers, and Bell (Even if these three companies have ownership of the low-cost cited before).
"For the same service, Canadian plans are 4 to 5 times more expensive than in France or Algeria."
Tips: A great option if you're staying for more than six months but want to avoid being forced into an extended contract, try using a prepaid Sim card.
Start A Contract With An Operator
You are in Canada for an extended period, and you know you can sign an agreement with an operator. Then your best solution is to start a 1 or 2 years contract with an operator (low cost or not). It also allows you to buy a new phone and to pay for it every month. For example, If you want the new iPhone X that costs $1,319 CA (before tax), you will be able to pay $319 to get it and then $41 per month for 24 months. Of course, the price to pay in the beginning will depend on the plan you are taking; if you are considering a $100 plan, it will be cheaper than if you choose a $60 plan. You can compare the price difference between the phone provider and any retailer with this tool.
"Always be sure to do a benchmark of all the market before choosing your plan."
Tips: If you don't have to save money or need a new phone, this is the best option. Just remember that if you want to stop your plan or change your phone, you will have to pay your previous tab before leaving the operator, which discourages many people. Always be sure to do a benchmark of all the offers before choosing your plan because you could regret it quickly.
Our Best Advice
- Sometimes operators are making special offers (especially during public holidays) and exciting promotions. For example, Public Mobile has a special offer that can ease your transition into a Canadian plan. Get a $10 credit BONUS using the code E3YM5P. It is an ideal discount for anyone immigrating as the offers are without any commitment.
- Always negotiate and be friendly with the shop staff when you subscribe to a plan because you may get some significant advantages like Extra data, a case or a screen protector for your phone and many other things. Also if you have any problems, do not hesitate to contact customer service or in-store employees and you might get a discount or something equivalent for your next month.
- Never forget that the prices for the plans are without taxes. We are in Canada, so all of them are added when you proceed to the payment; a $60 monthly plan cost, in fact, a bit more than $67, depending on each province's sales taxes.
Now that you have heard about these three solutions, which one do you think you would choose? Leave a comment below.