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New to Koodo under the "$60 10GB offer," concerned about roaming in USA?


I just let the WOW kiosk employee who originally signed us up for Telus several months ago talk us into this deal...and it seemed amazing until I got home and realized that we'd lost our ability to travel to the USA and use our data, voice, and texting the same as in Canada with no fee. We didn't have "easy roam" on Telus, we had a plan for people who go to the USA a lot that let us do it with zero fees, not $7 per phone per day up to $100 per month per phone!?

How screwed am I now? I don't even see our old plan on Telus to switch back to. This is a nightmare because my wife travels for work into the USA all the time and we have lots of family there that we visit...any suggestions involving any other carriers or plans welcome. Thank you to anyone who can help me.

6 replies

Userlevel 7
Hi khyron,

How often is your wife in the USA? She might want to look into a USA provider that allows usage in Canada. Quite a few US cellular companies let you use your monthly plan in Canada provided that 50% of your monthly usage is in the USA.
Thank you Mathieu, I should have been a little more specific...been freaking out a little bit. We're aware of that option, in fact we both used to have Verizon phones when living in the USA full time. However at present we live in Canada full time and one or both of our phones only travel to the USA for a few days at a time during certain months of the year (and not along a very predictable pattern). We wouldn't satisfy the requirements for any US carrier plans that we're aware of.

The plan we had with Telus cost us CAD $180/month for two phones, but it was totally worth it for the carefree US roaming. With the new Koodo plan, we now have even more data and pay only CAD $120/month, but the only option for travel seems to be "Easy Roam" which I dislike because it's going to make us have to stop-and-think every single time we cross the border and consider whether we want to turn one phone off or both, etc. which is just a complexity that I don't want.

It's possible we might end up paying less, or paying more, this way...it's not really possible for me to predict accurately due to uncertainty about travel details but the fact that it's going to be super [i]annoying and make us always second guess ourselves when making plans is what I'm upset about. Before, there was never a concern and the phones "just worked," data and all and we could feel spontaneous about visiting family or my wife accepting work opportunities.
Userlevel 7
khyron wrote:

Thank you Mathieu, I should have been a little more specific...been freaking out a little bit. We...

Okay, so for easyroam you only get charged if you actually use the phone. 

So, say you receive a text message but don't send one back, no charge. If you receive a call but don't answer, no charge.

The only time you would get charged the 7$ for the day is if you send a text message, place/answer a phone call, or use data.

If your wife crosses the border, keeps her phone on and doesn't use it, then there won't be a charge. 

If she is also just crossing for a few days here and there, then say she crosses for 4 days and uses her phone then it would only be 28$ which is still less then the price Telus was charging you. 
khyron wrote:

Thank you Mathieu, I should have been a little more specific...been freaking out a little bit. We...

That's good to know about easy roam, and I get that easy roam is a big improvement over previous roaming methods where incoming stuff would trigger a fee...but with us it's all about data. We don't actually use voice or SMS all that much honestly. 99% of our smartphone use is data, data, data. If we have them turned on, we're streaming, we're navigating, we're making FaceTime audio and video calls, etc.

It just so happens that in January one or both of us will be in the USA for some portion of more than a dozen days. I'm not super clear whether Easy Roam maxes out at $100 per account (across both phones) or $200 (each phone with its own max) but either way kind of sucks. While it might average out over the course of a year to cost us a little less this way (we travel a different number of days per month every month and sometimes not at all) it's just not a desirable use case for us. Having to [i]think about this all the time is not a variable I really want as a part of the planning we do between work and family. I'm aware that may sound odd...but sometimes the absolute bottom dollar "cheaper" option isn't actually nicer to use for a given consumer.

We jumped on this offer because it sounded like "OMG this will be $800+ a year cheaper" but in reality it's looking like it might be close, or a wash, and will totally be more complicated and bothersome.
Userlevel 7
Badge +4
khyron wrote:

Thank you Mathieu, I should have been a little more specific...been freaking out a little bit. We...

100 per line per billing cycle. Well there's also the added care free use while in Canada. To not have to worry abouthitting your data limit almost ever is definitely a value unto its own. I'm not sure bow you'd have to think about it all the tjme though? You would just have to think about it when you travel and even then, not for much. I see it as "ok this month we are going x days times 7 is this many dollars" and that's it. You'd also have that 10gb for use in the US then so you get even more data to use while in the US. You would have to contact Telus to ask for your old plan back but I'd guess your chances are less than 50/50 but you never know. And if you need more data, you could always get a prepaid daily use sim with T-Mobile or anyone else with good daily or short use options instead.
khyron wrote:

Thank you Mathieu, I should have been a little more specific...been freaking out a little bit. We...

Getting back to Telus wasn't a workable option so we're just making this work...I hate stopping to think every time we near the border, but honestly this might still save us some money...I thought I would come back and reply just to clarify in case others come across this: the maximum isn't exactly "$100 per line per billing cycle."

If you're in the USA, the daily rate is $7 and the max cycles you can be billed for in a month is 10, which works out to $70 per month per phone.

If you're international and outside the USA, such as in Europe, the daily rate is $10 and the max cycles you can be billed for in a month is 10, which works out to $100 per month per phone.

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