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Old 09-13-2016, 09:18 AM   #1
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Connectivity in Canadian Maritime Provinces

We just returned from five weeks in the Maritime provinces (not including Labrador). Before leaving, I was very concerned about phone and internet service because I still work and need to stay in touch with clients. The worry was wasted time; here's our experience:
1. We switched to Verizon (from ATT) prior to the trip. We bought a 24 gig data plan. Verizon offers a service for users of their two largest plans (16 or 24 gig) that allows no charge roaming in Canada and Mexico.
2. The coverage all throughout the Maritimes was excellent. We were usually on TELLUS, Rogers or Bell Canada.
3. In almost all cases we had an LTE connection. That includes Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, PEI, New Brunswick. My wife and I both commented on the outstanding cell coverage everywhere, even in remote locations like Gros Morne NP.
4. No roaming charges at all from Verizon.

So, if you're planning a trip, and staying in touch is important, you should be able to accomplish it in the Maritimes. With other than Verizon you may have to pay roaming. Before switching my plan was to go to Canada and buy a phone and plan in the first town; that would have been hard because some of the carriers require you to be a Canadian citizen to get the most economical plan.
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Old 09-13-2016, 10:27 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BCook57 View Post
We just returned from five weeks in the Maritime provinces (not including Labrador). Before leaving, I was very concerned about phone and internet service because I still work and need to stay in touch with clients. The worry was wasted time; here's our experience:
1. We switched to Verizon (from ATT) prior to the trip. We bought a 24 gig data plan. Verizon offers a service for users of their two largest plans (16 or 24 gig) that allows no charge roaming in Canada and Mexico.
2. The coverage all throughout the Maritimes was excellent. We were usually on TELLUS, Rogers or Bell Canada.
3. In almost all cases we had an LTE connection. That includes Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, PEI, New Brunswick. My wife and I both commented on the outstanding cell coverage everywhere, even in remote locations like Gros Morne NP.
4. No roaming charges at all from Verizon.

So, if you're planning a trip, and staying in touch is important, you should be able to accomplish it in the Maritimes. With other than Verizon you may have to pay roaming. Before switching my plan was to go to Canada and buy a phone and plan in the first town; that would have been hard because some of the carriers require you to be a Canadian citizen to get the most economical plan.
Did that require a two year commitment or since we already have a smaller plan with Verizon can we up to the 16 gig and then drop back to our normal plan?
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Old 09-13-2016, 12:24 PM   #3
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Did not require a commitment.
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Old 09-13-2016, 12:46 PM   #4
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Canada roaming isn't that unusual these days. As mentioned Verizon offers it on their larger plans, and for a fee on smaller plans. T-Mobile offers it for free on many plans, as does Cricket (an AT&T MVNO), and Millenicom even offers Canadian coverage on their hotspot data plans. No commitment required on any of these.

As in the OP, if you are roaming in Canada on one of these plans you will be on one of the big Canadian carriers and service should be excellent, and operation pretty much transparent.
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Old 09-17-2016, 11:00 AM   #5
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My experience in Canada is that coverage blows away anything in the states, especially in the more remote areas. Exploring the Canadian Rockies last year, we had coverage pretty much all the time. This was using the excellent no-commitment roaming plan from T-Mobile.
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Old 09-17-2016, 01:07 PM   #6
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My experience in Canada is that coverage blows away anything in the states, especially in the more remote areas. Exploring the Canadian Rockies last year, we had coverage pretty much all the time. This was using the excellent no-commitment roaming plan from T-Mobile.
Yes, we used our T-Mobile service on a recent trip to Alaska and service was surprisingly good in Canada (we seemed to be roaming on Telus mostly) considering how very remote many areas are in northern BC and the Yukon. There were some middle-of-nowhere highway miles that weren't covered but for the most part just about any town had a cell site and LTE data, and throughput was very good. Service was also excellent in AK (using our T-Mo account we roamed on GCI, a regional carrier that specializes in AK coverage) with decent coverage in most any town or major highway. I'm sure that in all these locations you wouldn't have coverage as soon as you entered the true backcountry, but in most places an RV would go there was service. I also carry a Verizon phone and service was good on it too, although Verizon wanted $2/day extra for any day the phone was used in Canada. Also in AK GCI's coverage seemed to be a little bit better than Verizon but that's not surprising I guess since GCI specializes in the area and has been there a long time.

Bottom line, for the most part coverage wasn't a problem at all north of the border and in Alaska and there were only a couple of nights on the entire trip that we had no service (via either cellular and/or park wifi.) It's a modern world.
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