Wireless Carriers Urge Caution Over $48/5GB Plans Bought from Kijiji

Last summer we wrote about how some creative entrepreneurs were selling access to out-of-market plans like Koodo and Fido’s $48 per month Canada-wide plan with 5GB data, available only in Saskatchewan and Manitoba, online via sites like Kijiji.

Due to regional competition from SaskTel and MTS (now that Bell owns MTS…), these provinces are able to better compete against the ‘Big 3’ when it comes to wireless prices.

Screenshot 2016 05 31 13 29 20

Fast forward nearly a year later, and it appears more sellers have popped up offering access to these plans outside of the Prairies, catching the attention of CBC News. Sellers have increased in numbers, jazzing up their services with dedicated websites, Facebook pages and Twitter accounts pushing the $48/5GB plan. It appears business is booming.

Screenshot 2016 05 31 13 29 58

Wireless carriers were asked by CBC News if they were going to take action against these sellers, and provided some warnings.

TELUS spokeswoman Luiza Staniec in an email “Purchasing plans via a third party is risky, and we are taking several steps to prevent it.”

Meanwhile, Rogers spokesman Andrew Garas, said “Customers should use caution when exploring plans online that aren’t being offered directly through one of our official channels,” adding “Sharing your personal information can result in fraud.” Rogers did not indicate if it was looking into the practice.

iPhone in Canada editor-in-chief, Gary Ng, told CBC News high wireless prices outside of the Prairies are fuelling demand for lower prices, which has resulted in third parties offering services for access, saying “Because our Canadian wireless prices are some of the most expensive in the world, some people will always want to find a better deal and they might do whatever it takes to get it.”

Anyone out there using the $48/5GB plan outside of SK/MB? Has Koodo or Fido ever caught on and made you switch back to a plan for your home province?

Founder and Editor-in-Chief of iPhoneinCanada.ca. Follow me on Twitter, and @iPhoneinCanada, and on Google+.

  • Tim

    Pretty sure you don’t have to pay someone to do this for you. I forget the method exactly, but I believe it involves registering and then porting via the online account center or something. In any regard, you can still do it without giving info to an intermediary party.

  • Matt Martone

    I literally did this 2 days ago. I did it all myself, and it was really easy. Koodo hasn’t said anything to me but then again, I literally just did it. If anyones curious on how to do it themselves…

    Go to koodo say your going out to winnipeg for school or something of that nature, get a manitoba number with the cheapest post paid plan. Go home setup self serve, on the first day of billing cycle (4-9 days) switch plan to $48 one then port over your current number on the website.

  • JB

    This should be TOTALLY permissible, as the plans specifically support Canada-wide roaming. This should not be called grey-market or black-market or anything of the sort. There are no violations of terms. The issue is one of subsides for new phones, which should simply be outlawed. Let the carrier loan you the money and take payments over 2 years of whatever, but make them operate as a lender in this capacity. Further, prohibit carrier locking except during the term of the loan, and automatically unlock for free once the commitment is paid. Problem solved, fairness prevails. Markets open up and competition can begin.

  • Peter

    I am using it. Plan from Manitoba. Changed my phone number 2 months ago for a really cool one and switched my plan from $54/month (2GB) to $48/month and I don’t mind not having a “local” phone number. It’s really cool, now I finally have enough data (5GB).
    It’s a nonsense to charge long distance charges within a country in 2016! There should be only one type of a phone number. Canadian. Regardless of what dial code it uses, as long it’s within Canada.

  • aaloo

    So you can keep your existing number once you port it??

  • Jesse

    I’ve been on that koodo plan twice! But now switched to wind due to the current upgrading in Edmonton as well as their built in canadian/us roaming.

    But yeah I had no troubles when I was on that plan. It’s ridiculous how you can only get it in SK/MB especially if your BYOP.

  • Matt Martone

    Yes, just don’t cancel you’re current plan and then port over your number on the first day of the billing cycle while you’re on the $48 plan

  • Tim

    of course the carriers “urge caution”, they want you to buy plans directly from them.

  • Lakh Jhajj

    Matt, Do you know which Koodo location any in GTA?. I went to a Kiosk inside Loblaws in Heartland , Mississauga ON and they said we can’t activate a Manitoba or Winnipeg number from here , you have to be physically present their.

  • TM

    Did you port a non-MB/SK number?

  • kkritsilas

    Somebody want to repeat the old “the Big 3 are not colluding” line? When there is viable competition, they do lower prices. In the absence of viable competition, they jack up prices to the max. Proven here without any doubt left. If this is not collusion, I don’t know what is. They will compete with Sasktel, they won’t compete with each other in areas not served by Sasktel.

    I love the line “Available to Saskatchewan residents only”, because you know, it is cheaper to transmit data in Saskatchewan……NOT.

    The $48/5 GB plan is good, but the Wind $45/5GB with Canada wide roaming is better in those areas outside of Sasktel’s influence.

  • Matt Martone

    Yes

  • Matt Martone

    Try going to a local mall kiosk, they didn’t care that I needed a winnipeg number. If you can’t get a manitoba number then you can always change it yourself on self serve.

  • aaloo

    thank you. I’m going to try it. But is koodoo any good compared to the big 3.

  • Matt Martone

    Its Telus, so it is part of the big 3

  • YoGoerz

    I have the slightly older one at $49.00 but yep. No problems.

  • Larry

    Did mine with *plan by joe* on kijiji. has no issue. Loving it

  • Sidney

    Same here, and my number ends in xxx-yyyy (same numbers) 🙂

  • Chuck B

    After ruthlessly pursuing every deal here in BC I am finally at a reasonable amount of data with Virgin Mobile with BYOP – unlimited calling and 2 gigs for $49 with an adon of 1/2 gig for $2 and now paying $51 + tax. Not bad for BC and frankly I never use more than a gig.