Welcome to Canada! As you settle into your new life here, one of the first things you’ll need to do is set up your phone and internet services. Don’t worry, we’re here to help make it a breeze.
This simple guide will walk you through the process, so you can stay connected without any stress.
What is Canadian Telecom Landscape?
Before diving into the details, it’s important to know the basics of the Canadian telecom industry. Telecom providers, often referred to as “telcos,” offer a variety of phone and internet plans. These plans can be broadly categorized into two types:
Prepaid Plans: With prepaid plans, you pay for the services upfront before using them. This can be beneficial if you want to have full control over your spending and usage.
Postpaid Plans: Postpaid plans allow you to use the services and pay for them at the end of each billing cycle, usually on a monthly basis. These plans also contribute to building your credit score.
Choosing the Right Phone Plan
When it comes to phone plans, there’s no one-size-fits-all solution. It’s crucial to find a plan that suits your needs and preferences. Here’s what you should consider:
Coverage: Canada is vast, and its cellular coverage varies. Before selecting a provider, check their network’s size and strength. Most providers have coverage maps on their websites for your reference.
Data: Many Canadian providers offer data that you can add to your phone plan. Unlike some countries with unlimited data plans, here, you might need to pay for a specific amount of data. Be sure to choose a plan that aligns with your data usage.
Navigating Internet Options
In addition to a phone plan, you’ll likely need an internet plan. Here’s what you need to know:
Bundle Deals: Many telecom providers offer bundled services, including TV, internet, and mobile. Bundling can save you money and provide a convenient package for all your communication needs.
Value-Added Services: Look for providers that offer additional value beyond basic services. Some companies provide perks, rewards, and discounts on everyday purchases.
Making the Most of Your Plan
To ensure you’re getting the best out of your phone and internet plan, here are some tips:
Research: Take your time to research different providers and their offerings. Don’t rush into a decision; compare plans to find the one that suits you best.
Extras: Consider what extra benefits a provider offers. These could range from special offers to entertainment packages that include streaming services.
Customer Service: Good customer service is a big plus. Look for companies that prioritize customer support, as it can make a significant difference when you need assistance.
As an international student, staying connected is essential, but with Wi-Fi available on most college campuses and in most rented accommodations, you might not need an extravagant mobile plan. Consider opting for a plan with a lower data allocation. If you still require a mobile plan, several reputable options are available:
- Freedom: Known for its affordability, Freedom offers plans starting as low as $25 per month. You can even add features like direct calling to India and China.
- Rogers: A well-established telecom company, Rogers provides nationwide coverage and reliable service. While not the cheapest, their extensive network could be worth the investment, especially if you rely heavily on the Internet for research and communication.
- Bell: Offering excellent coverage and student-friendly plans, Bell ensures reliable connectivity with various data options.
- Telus: Renowned for its fast and reliable network, Telus provides a range of plans suitable for different budgets and data needs. They also offer additional perks like student discounts and rewards programs.
- Fido: A budget-friendly option, Fido provides various data plans, including pay-as-you-go and unlimited options.
Getting a phone and internet plan in Canada might seem overwhelming, but with the right information, it’s a manageable task. Remember, your plan should align with your communication needs and budget.
Take advantage of the variety of options available, and choose a plan that keeps you connected and suits your lifestyle. As you settle into your new life in Canada, having a reliable phone and internet plan will undoubtedly enhance your experience.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q1. What’s the Difference Between Prepaid and Postpaid Plans?
Prepaid Plan: You pay upfront for the services before using them.
Postpaid Plan: You pay after using the services, usually at the end of the billing cycle.
Q2. Can I Get a Postpaid Plan Without a Credit History?
Q3. Should I Bring My Own Phone or Get a New One?
You can bring your own device (BYOD) or finance a new one with the provider.
New phone plans often include a financed device, but BYOD plans are also common.
Q4. How Do I Find the Best Coverage Provider?
Check coverage maps on provider websites to see network strength in your area.
Use websites and apps to compare coverage options in your location.
Q5. What’s the Average Cost of Phone Plans in Canada?
Plans start around $55-65 CAD with Canada-wide texting and data.
Prices increase for more data and features; international calling adds to the cost.
Q6. What Documents Are Needed to Open a New Plan?
1. Government ID (Provincial ID, Passport, etc.)
2. Social Insurance Number (SIN) may be needed based on the provider.
3. Temporary residence visa/permit (study/work visa or permit)
4. Credit score or credit check for specific plans.
Note: Check with your chosen provider for the exact documents required based on your situation and plan choice.