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I have my UK-based Android smartphone, but yay for Orange (sarcasm), it's locked and will take 3 weeks to unlock! Fortunately I also have a low-tech Nokia - I just need a sim. Rogers quoted me $70 CAD to get up and running with a pre-pay sim. Given it costs about 10 pounds in the UK to do the same, this seems pricey. Any suggestions for pre-pay sims (I don't need data, just text and phone). In Vancouver.

8

With Fido you can get a pre-pay sim for $10.

There are a variety of prepaid rates available. Personally I use the $10/month rate. You can change rates whenever you refill your account.

From Google it looks like there are plenty of Fido stores in Vancouver. So you could pop in and pick up a sim when you arrive.

The Fido website is good for managing your account. Note that I did have trouble refilling my account via the website using an overseas (New Zealand) credit card. If you have the same problem you can always buy refill voucher from a Fido store.

8

7-Eleven sells SIM cards for $10. They are a MVNO reselling Rogers service. Their main attraction is that prepaid credits are valid for one full year. However, it is not available for sale in all provinces (notably Quebec).

  • Using this right now. They also have a very cheap data Option ($10 for One month), but it has serious limitations: EDGE speed only, and requires setting a Proxy, which for iPhones requires running a config utility on the PC – Michael Borgwardt Jul 14 '12 at 2:38
  • +1 Speakout Wireless (7-Eleven); they're the cheapest, despite the limitations. – Cole Maclean Sep 30 '12 at 1:20
5

The price sounds rather high....

Looking on the Rogers Website I see a Pay As You Go SIM for $9.99, and you can get plans where you pay on the days you use it. That was my plan for when I'm in Canada.

A price of $70 sounds like it includes a phone too. I'd suggest trying a bigger Rogers store and hope you get someone more helpful the 2nd time!

(You can also get new Rogers Pay As You Go SIM Cards off ebay for around $10 too, including shipping, which does look like it's the correct price)

  • Oddly no, they wanted an additional $79 for their cheapest phone... – Mark Mayo Supports Monica Oct 3 '11 at 1:59
  • 2
    @Mark AFAIK, if you do not buy a phone from them, they charge you 20$ for the SIM card, + 20$ for "activation" + 10$-30$ for pre-paid funds (the specific ammount depends on the plan you choose).However if you do buy the phone, they are supposed to charge you only the pre-paid funds and the phone. At least this is what they told me 2-3 months ago when I went to buy one. – yms Nov 9 '11 at 13:29
2

First of all, please note that there are 3 Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) in Canada providing services to ~90% of mobile phone users in Canada.

Parent companies for these 3 MNOs are:

1- Rogers Communications (10M+ subscribers (subs) as of Q2-2016) [1]
2- BCE Incorporation (9M+ subs) [1]
3- Telus Corporation (8M+ subs) [1]

These MNOs have subsidiary brands:

1- For ROGERS COMM: (Rogers Wireless, Fido Mobile, Chatr Mobile, Cityfone, Primus Wireless, Zoomer Wireless, and SimplyConnect)

2- For BCE INC. (Bell Mobility, Virgin Mobile, Lucky Mobile, Solo Mobile, and Bell MTS).

3- For TELUS Corp. (Telus Mobility, Koodo Mobile, and Public Mobile).

The remaining 10% of subscribers are served by smaller regional providers referred to as Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs). The difference between MNOs and MVNOs is that the latter rely on partnerships with MNOs to connect their customers across Canada. In fact, MVNOs do not own spectrum or network infrastructure, instead, they lease network capacity from MNOs at wholesale rates and distribute it in retail.

MVNOs are:

**Operator                      Ownership**
7-Eleven Speak Out Wireless     Ztar Mobile
Cansel Connect                  Cansel
DCI Wireless                    DCI Telecom
Execulink Mobility              Execulink Telecom
good2go Mobile Canada           Ztar Mobile
KORE Wireless[19]               KORE Telematics
OnStar                          General Motors
PC Mobile                       Loblaws
Petro-Canada Mobility           Ztar Mobile
Lucky Mobile                    Bell
Public Mobile                   Telus   
Chatr                           Rogers

With all these options, in order to select the package that is suitable for your needs, I suggest that you check the following website: www.planhub.ca

It helps you identify the ideal package for you based on your calling minutes per month, data per month and cell phone (bring/buy).

Hope this helps.

Reference:
[1] http://www.cwta.ca/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/SubscribersStats_en_2016_Q2.pdf

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