TELUS “Looking Into the Practice” of People Selling Koodo’s $48 Prairie Plan

Earlier this month, the unspoken practice of signing up for a cheaper cellphone plan from the Big 3 in Saskatchewan or Manitoba hit the limelight, when journalist Peter Nowak shared details of grey market sellers offering Koodo’s $48/5GB plan to those outside the region.

As we mentioned at the time, veteran members of online communities such as RedFlagDeals or Howard Forums have been using ‘creative ways’ to sign up for cheaper Prairie plans for a while now, despite not living in the region.

In an interview with CBC News, TELUS spokesman Shawn Hall said the company is “looking into the practice” of people like ‘Tony’ advertising sales of the plan. He also explained why Koodo prices are cheaper in the Prairies, as the lower pricing “reflects that Koodo is a new entrant without the same market and network advantages the provincial incumbent enjoys.” In other words, competition from local carriers MTS and SaskTel.

Hall also warned customers jumping on these ‘deals’ that require your personal information to open accounts means there’s “the possibility of fraud,” something similarly echoed by president of Ottawa-based Wall Communications, Gerry Wall:

“You’re giving up on one hand in terms of security. You’re taking a chance,” said Wall, who calls ads like Tony’s a “grey market.”

Wall says the tiny number of people signing up for these plans won’t affect the bottom line of the Big 3, saying “If I’m Rogers or Bell, am I going to be worried about these types of resellers? Not now because I think it’s a very, very limited take up.”

In a phone interview with the CBC, Tony said his method of signing people up does not require the changing of addresses, as “that would be fraud”.

Tony did refer to his service as a “grey area,” and also said “But [cellphone companies] are screwing us over too,” adding “They’re stealing money from us because it shouldn’t be this expensive.” He said he’s signed up people from coast-to-coast and did not mention any numbers, only to say “it’s a lot.”

Tony similarly reached out to to explain his method does not require changing addresses as a method to obtain these region-specific plans.

Last October, members on Howard Forums brought up concerns over the practice of signing up for regional plans, noting a Koodo representative said over the phone the member’s plan was subject to an audit.

It will be interesting if TELUS actually tries to stop this practice, or if it’s not worth their time given the ‘small number’ of people who will actually go through with this to get access to the $48/5GB plan.

Anyone out there subscribed to one of these plans, while living outside Saskatchewan or Manitoba?

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  • Max Power

    Crazy so Koodo might be auditing these plans just like Rogers & Bell.

  • Fiddlesticks

    Yup, I’ve been on TELUS’ 5GB SKMB plan in Vancouver, with a local number, for 9 months now, heck, even got a phone on a 2 year contract. TELUS store employees didn’t care if I had a Saskatchewan plan. LOL. I picked TELUS over Koodo because even though they’re the same network, TELUS has faster data speeds and has an option for live chat, etc.

  • Fiddlesticks

    Bell audits them too? I have a friend who recently got a SK plan in BC, but he HAD to get a SK number. No one cares about that really since most people nowadays have Canada wide calling.

  • Lakh Jhajj

    Thx to some journalist, The Big 3 will more money by closing these loop holes. And as usual the consumers who were getting some benefit by saving few bucks a month will have to pay more once this is done. The proper way should be forcing the Big 3 to offer SKMB PLAN PRICING to other provinces. Other than that I don’t see any win for consumers by posting these articles.

  • Cornfed710

    Can you tell me more about these data speeds. I was under the impression that the network was the same Koodo/Virgin/Belus

  • Tim

    How do you get from $48 to $65 with a 10% discount? That would be about $20 in taxes. I pay $35 + tax for 5gb of data (tablet plan) and use Fongo.

  • bapps

    So, if I live in BC, but have my billing address as Manitoba (through a friend or family member’s address), would I be able to slip through the cracks and get this deal without being flagged? Or would the fact that nearly 100% of my time being in BC be something that would flag this and possibly get it revoked?

  • While we aren’t going to provide instructions, Howard Forums has lots of information on this plan.

  • INavin Kalimuthu

    Has anyone tried this with FIDO? I have a Fido wireless home phone id like to change over to a cell.

  • Fiddlesticks

    That’s not how the 10% discount works. TELUS SKMB plans are either $55 for 1GB or $65 for 5GB. So, with me having the $65 plan, tax included it would go up to $73. But with the 10% discount, $65 is all I have to pay, so essentially the tax gets paid itself each month with that discount.

  • Fiddlesticks

    My friend has Koodo and the speeds he gets are around 20-30Mbps down on LTE while I get 50-60Mbps in the same spot.

  • Fiddlesticks

    They won’t let you, just like Robbers – I mean Rogers. They either threaten to cancel your service or keep harassing you until you switch to a plan that is in your province.

  • Cornfed710

    That’s f$@ked up, I had no idea, thanks. Maybe someone who knows more about these networks could chime in.

  • z_zz

    why telus? why??

  • LAlakers

    Hey can I get your email to ask a couple questions if that’s alright with you? Thanks