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Thread: What stops an American from using Roam?

  1. #1
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    What stops an American from using Roam?

    Silly question, what stops an American from getting a Canadian friend/relative to sign them up on the Snowbird Plan, and keep renewing service as needed? Roam says the Snowbird Plan can be renewed for up to 180 days, but can't you just start a new plan thereafter? And would Roam care if you did this? Customers are customers, right? Roam is cheaper than any U.S. option now, it seems to me. Even cheaper than T-Mobile and MetroPCS.
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    Lumia 950 XL dual-SIM -- SIM slot 1: Rogers (small business flex data) -- SIM slot 2: Public Mobile ($120/12GB/90 day plan)

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    Digging a little deeper, I saw on Roam's website:

    "Combining Plans
    If you need more than 6 months of service with the Snowbird Plan, you can easily schedule multiple plans to start one after the other for service throughout the year."

    Roam used to be OK compared to American prepaid plans. Now it's actually better. They'll only sell service to Canadians, but I could see Americans getting Canadian friends/relatives to run interference for them. Unlimited everything for $39.95 Canadian a month, with LTE throttled only after 2GB each month? That's what, $36 USD at the current exchange rate? Insane. T-Mobile charges $50 USD per month and throttles after 1GB. MetroPCS charges $40 and throttles after 1GB.

    Sounds like Canadians should be helping out our American friends, eh? :-)
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    I think we help them out enough... I think its time for them to show us a little more love

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    We should definitely show some love to our Canadian neighbors. Your winters scare me! Don't know how you cope. 💟💟💟💟💟

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    Quote Originally Posted by futurephone View Post
    We should definitely show some love to our Canadian neighbors. Your winters scare me! Don't know how you cope. ����������
    About 10% of Canadians aren't subject to bad winters. Those of us living in south-coastal British Columbia, like myself. Victoria, Vancouver, and surrounding environs in other words. Mild winters, and mild summers. It's just mild pretty much all the time here.

    Back on topic: I wonder how Roam can financially justify offering better deals than any of the prepaid U.S. options offer? No bricks-and-mortar? Limited customer service costs? Roam seems to spend a lot on internet banner ads, so they have customer acquisition costs, and many of their customers only purchase service for a few days/weeks a year. It doesn't seem like a great model. Though perhaps the $20 SIM cards they sell cover their customer acquisition costs adequately.

    I can understand their motivation to do so: they want to start appealing to people who'd otherwise use T-Mobile prepaid, etc., if those options were slightly cheaper than Roam. But is it financially sustainable for Roam to be cheaper than other T-Mobile MVNOs? That's an interesting question.

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    Wow that is a Great plan! Do you get good reception most places you go in the US? I wish there was something like this only reversed. With a college student in Canada, I have had some cell bills that were awful. I tried Wind, but it didn't have coverage for the area. If you have any advice, please let me know.

    The website for Roam does mention that you can lend your line to a friend and can even change it over to their credit card. If you get good coverage, this is a great cell company for traveling. I hope you have enjoyed your trips.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steven Hurdle View Post
    Silly question, what stops an American from getting a Canadian friend/relative to sign them up on the Snowbird Plan, and keep renewing service as needed? Roam says the Snowbird Plan can be renewed for up to 180 days, but can't you just start a new plan thereafter? And would Roam care if you did this? Customers are customers, right? Roam is cheaper than any U.S. option now, it seems to me. Even cheaper than T-Mobile and MetroPCS.
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    I'm a Yankee living on the Canadian border. I have had contract plans with both Rogers and Telus. What makes you think that Roam would turn me down? The issue for most people would be the hassles of getting involved, the fact that most Americans would get hit with foreign currency transaction fees paying a debt in Canadian dollars for their US cellphone. Canadian businesses cannot demand a social insurance number is a precondition to extending credit. It is child's play to come up with the Canadian mailing address if needed.

    Telus has the ability to run US credit checks. In my case, they've never had to do that. I pass a Canadian credit check for simple things pretty easily. If intried to get a car loan or a mortgage I'm sure it would be different, but I've had no problem getting ordinary retail credit.

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    Quote Originally Posted by stufried View Post
    I'm a Yankee living on the Canadian border. I have had contract plans with both Rogers and Telus. What makes you think that Roam would turn me down? The issue for most people would be the hassles of getting involved, the fact that most Americans would get hit with foreign currency transaction fees paying a debt in Canadian dollars for their US cellphone. Canadian businesses cannot demand a social insurance number is a precondition to extending credit. It is child's play to come up with the Canadian mailing address if needed.
    Telus has the ability to run US credit checks. In my case, they've never had to do that. I pass a Canadian credit check for simple things pretty easily. If intried to get a car loan or a mortgage I'm sure it would be different, but I've had no problem getting ordinary retail credit.
    Do you know what is needed for a Canadian credit check? Would paying a lease and utilities in Canada help with that? She could try to get a contract plan on Bell perhaps, but I wonder if she doesn't pass if that would look bad for later on?

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    Quote Originally Posted by KTee View Post
    Do you know what is needed for a Canadian credit check? Would paying a lease and utilities in Canada help with that? She could try to get a contract plan on Bell perhaps, but I wonder if she doesn't pass if that would look bad for later on?
    I doubt it. If she doesn't have Canadian credit, they'll ask for a deposit. If Bell is like Rogers and Telus, they'll let you open the account. They'll just want a $500 or so deposit.

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    Quote Originally Posted by stufried View Post
    I doubt it. If she doesn't have Canadian credit, they'll ask for a deposit. If Bell is like Rogers and Telus, they'll let you open the account. They'll just want a $500 or so deposit.
    Thanks! But how does someone get Canadian credit? I guess if she gets a line open with a deposit, eventually she will have a credit history there.

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    I don't know enough about your life to answer that question. You can go in there with no credit and see if they'll take a deposit, you can posture some accoutrements of Canadian connections, you can go in there with the Canadian cosigner, or you can set up a Canadian credit card with the Canadian branch of the bank you already have US relations with. For exampleif you are a customer of Harris Bank, there is an operational agreement with BMO. If you are an American express credit card holder of good standing, Amex has a special office for that purpose. My experiences you don't have to work that hard.you won't pass the second should tier check for international roaming, but you should be able to get a postpaid account in Canada. Rogers eventually turned I am international roaming for me, but I never used it. Canadian roaming rates make Verizon and AT&T look positively reasonable.


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    Thank you for your reply. She is a college student from the USA. I didn't know about the connection between Harris and BMO, but when I inquired about BMO I was told it was very much separate from the banks in the US. I guess she will have to look into it more from there. She has a bank account at a bank there. Thanks!

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    Quote Originally Posted by KTee View Post
    Thank you for your reply. She is a college student from the USA. I didn't know about the connection between Harris and BMO, but when I inquired about BMO I was told it was very much separate from the banks in the US. I guess she will have to look into it more from there. She has a bank account at a bank there. Thanks!
    My BMO web portal gives me the option of linking to a Harris Bank account. I have a number of administrative options when using my US Diner's Club card in a BMO ATM that I don't have using a third party ATM. Fees are waived using my BMO ATM card in Harris ATMs and I believe that US chequing accounts are routed through Harris. I don't know the answer to this question, but I think the two banks are becoming closer by the day.

    When my brother moved to London UK, Citibank issued him his first UK credit card based on his US credit history. Amex did that for us in the UAE. The offices that do this are buried in corporate headquarters and often take a digging to find.

    Note: Since June of last year, anything you do with a Canadian bank will be reported to the IRS.

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    Thank you I will have to learn more about the Harris and BMO connection. When she was in France, her Chase atm was easy to use, although I'm sure there were fee's. Meanwhile, the cost of her ATT cell plan is outrageous. On her drive back they charged her data roaming at $20 per MB, which with an add-on plan would be more like 25 cents per MB.

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    For frequent travelers, look at Bank of America. They have roaming agreements with various banks around the world where the fees are waived. For example, Scotiabank and Bank of America have such an agreement.

    http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Global_ATM_Alliance


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