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Thread: Best plan for truck driver

  1. #1
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    Best plan for truck driver

    My husband is a truck driver and travels mainly from Springfield, MO to Kingman, AZ along I44 and I40. Occasionally he will go to Fort Worth, TX. We have been using Selectel (Verizon MNVO) for several years and it's worked out fine. But now Selectel is losing their roaming capability and there are enough areas where his phone won't work that he's pretty disgusted with it. He is using a Moto Barrage flip phone, about 500 minutes talk a month, and practically no data. He doesn't text at all, but occasionally receives an MMS text from others. I thought about switching him to Boom Mobile, but it seems like their roaming capability is up in the air and will end up just like Selectel.

    I am wondering about AT&T GoPhone or one of the MNVO's that use their service. Does anyone have any experience using them across the western states, mainly Arizona and New Mexico? That's where he's seeing most of the problems with Selectel right now. He also had trouble calling while in Muskogee, OK last week, coming up from Fort Worth. We may have to switch to Verizon postpaid if we can't find something else that will work, but that will be more expensive.

    Also, if we do switch to AT&T GoPhone/AT&T MNVO, do you have any suggestions for a flip phone for that service? He absolutely refuses to use a smart phone and prefers the flip phone to a candy bar style phone.

    TIA for taking the time to read this long post and for any suggestions you may have.

  2. #2
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    Although their roaming capabilities could be up in the air, too, Tracfone, using the Vzw network, with a TF branded NON smart phone, has historically included voice roaming.

    One problem with AT&T MVNO's is that usually roaming off of the AT&T network isn't included.

    However, it has been widely reported that Consumer Cellular DOES include roaming off of the AT&T network.

    Consumer Cellular is not the cheapest MVNO, but that might be one AT&T MVNO to consider.

    Note: It has also been reported that Consumer Cellular is now also sometimes providing T-Mo SIM cards, so if you go with Consumer Cellular, make sure you specify that you need an AT&T SIM.

  3. #3
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    For ATT prepaid, GoPhone has some amount of roaming, at least for voice/text, that many of the MVNOs don't have. Or Cricket, for example.

    Along that route, there are at least a few dead spots for ATT, but at least in Oklahoma not large. The few times I've looked for I-40 west, the main problem I remember is dropping to Edge for data, and poor performance for data. Voice should be fine. And if 500 minutes/month is sufficient, probably not many long calls to worry about.

    My brother in law drives a truck. He uses Straight Talk (ATT), but when he was driving cross country ST had a better roaming package than they do now.

    Maybe signup for a month and carry a second phone to test. See if it is actually any better than Selectel. My Verizon voice coverage has been better with VoLTE, but inexpensive flip phones don't yet support VoLTE.
    I now have the 7+, continuing my pattern of buying every other iPhone generation.

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    I40 should be covered OK by both AT&T and Verizon.
    His old phone will not "cut it" anymore. The cell providers move all their equipment and re-allocate bandwidth towards LTE. So a phone that is only 2G will suffer. AT&T doesn't even have 2G anymore, only 3G is left, they shut it down in January. Verizon announced that will shut off 2G and 3G soon.
    So you need a new smart phone, just for that reason - coverage with VoLTE besides 2/3G. An unlocked Moto G Play would cover any provider in US.

    Verizon Prepaid plan for basic phones is $30 and it has VoLTE, roaming (including that stretch in OK). Coverage (select Prepaid from top-left menu): https://www.verizonwireless.com/feat...E-SR-LP-T#maps
    AT&T GoPhone plan without data is $30 ($25 with autopay), has roaming (not needed on the I40 though, only in Wyoming and Nebraska). Doesn't have VoLTE (yet) but since AT&T 3G is still up and running, I don't think to be an issue for voice only plans. Coverage here (select GoPhone): https://www.att.com/maps/wireless-coverage.html
    Last edited by SoNic67; 03-31-2017 at 07:22 AM.

  5. #5
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    I've always been told that a basic
    Clamshell verizon prepaid phone
    Would be the best as not only
    Will you be on Verizon but also
    Have roaming on US Cellular.

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    He should have two services for backup on the road:
    1) $10 a month Airvoice Wireless plan (AT&T Signal)
    2) Any Verizon MVNO plan.
    Make cheap national and int'l telephone calls with a calling card! Click here!

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    Quote Originally Posted by blacksurfer View Post
    He should have two services for backup on the road:
    1) $10 a month Airvoice Wireless plan (AT&T Signal)
    2) Any Verizon MVNO plan.
    In general, this is probably the best solution, providing access to BOTH the Vzw and AT&T cellular networks.

    However, for 1) above, it's possible that the $10/90 day H2O paygo plan, or ~$3.33/mo, would be sufficient if the Vzw phone would still be primary and working in most areas. I think you can use any prepaid GoPhone on H2O. Calls are deducted from the $10 at $0.05/min, so it would provide ~67min/mo over 90 days. It can be set up on auto-pay, with a discount to $9 for the $10 credit, and is also refillable at any time funds run low.

    With that said, for 2) above, I'd suggest Expo Mobile's $30/120 days paygo plan, or ~$7.50/mo, on the Vzw network, which can use the phone currently on Selectel. That plan charges $0.02/min from the $30 balance, so it would provide ~375 min/mo over 120 days. It can be set up on auto-pay every 120 days, but you can call to add funds any time funds run low.

    For the above 2 plans, the minimum total YEARLY cost would be ~$130, which would work out to ~$10.83/mo for ~442 min/mo. Of course, the actual cost would be slightly more if 500 min/mo are really used, making early refills necessary.

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    Verizon has recently come out with an attractive single line postpaid plan for basic phones. It may be a little more each month but you get full roaming and enough data for MMS to work properly. I have pasted the text from the Verizon web site below. I would go with this to be sure of functionality when needed.

    Simply the basics, just for you.

    Introducing the Single Basic Phone Plan, the new single-line plan that connects your basic phone to America’s most reliable network.

    Unlimited Talk & Text, plus 500MB of data for $30/mo. Plus taxes and fees. No more counting minutes. All at a great price.

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    Quote Originally Posted by music4praise View Post
    Verizon has recently come out with an attractive single line postpaid plan for basic phones. It may be a little more each month but you get full roaming and enough data for MMS to work properly. I have pasted the text from the Verizon web site below. I would go with this to be sure of functionality when needed.

    Simply the basics, just for you.

    Introducing the Single Basic Phone Plan, the new single-line plan that connects your basic phone to America’s most reliable network.

    Unlimited Talk & Text, plus 500MB of data for $30/mo. Plus taxes and fees. No more counting minutes. All at a great price.
    That's definitely more expensive, and definitely overkill for what is needed, and the $30/mo may become ~$35/mo with taxes and fees, depending on location, but it may be worth it for peace of mind. It's probably worth considering.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boz1 View Post
    That's definitely more expensive, and definitely overkill for what is needed, and the $30/mo may become ~$35/mo with taxes and fees, depending on location, but it may be worth it for peace of mind. It's probably worth considering.
    With all the weirdness and uncertainty going on currently with the Verizon MVNOs, I thought I would suggest something that would most likely provide trouble free service. It seems like an important consideration for a truck driver.

  11. #11
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    If you go AT&T, consider the ZTE 223. 3G flip phone, currently 17.99 I believe. Got one for my mother when 2G got eliminated last year.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boz1 View Post
    That's definitely more expensive, and definitely overkill for what is needed, and the $30/mo may become ~$35/mo with taxes and fees, depending on location, but it may be worth it for peace of mind. It's probably worth considering.
    I agree, especially if I was an over the road trucker.

    For a rotten 35.00 a month (using your estimation) you bet it's worth it.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

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    When my brother in law became a truck driver, he got his first personal cell phone (not company provided). And went with traditional pre-paid. With calls home, it quickly became expensive, as in $100/month. So changed to a prepaid service that was better (so no T-mobile or sprint native coverage only plan).

    If the driver had a plan with more minutes, he would probably use it. Removing limits can change behavior.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jolycu View Post
    My husband is a truck driver and travels mainly from Springfield, MO to Kingman, AZ along I44 and I40. Occasionally he will go to Fort Worth, TX. We have been using Selectel (Verizon MNVO) for several years and it's worked out fine. But now Selectel is losing their roaming capability and there are enough areas where his phone won't work that he's pretty disgusted with it. He is using a Moto Barrage flip phone, about 500 minutes talk a month, and practically no data. He doesn't text at all, but occasionally receives an MMS text from others. I thought about switching him to Boom Mobile, but it seems like their roaming capability is up in the air and will end up just like Selectel.

    I am wondering about AT&T GoPhone or one of the MNVO's that use their service. Does anyone have any experience using them across the western states, mainly Arizona and New Mexico? That's where he's seeing most of the problems with Selectel right now. He also had trouble calling while in Muskogee, OK last week, coming up from Fort Worth. We may have to switch to Verizon postpaid if we can't find something else that will work, but that will be more expensive.

    Also, if we do switch to AT&T GoPhone/AT&T MNVO, do you have any suggestions for a flip phone for that service? He absolutely refuses to use a smart phone and prefers the flip phone to a candy bar style phone.

    TIA for taking the time to read this long post and for any suggestions you may have.
    we just got back from a big road trip on I44 and I40 from Kingman headed east and coverage was excellent with MetroPCS. Wife has At&t and at many places, I had full bars of 4G/LTE, her At&t phone showed 3G. Very happy with Metro and they also have a dealer only, port in promo if one is porting in from another carrier, of $60. making most phones free! Their $30. plan is what I use with unlimited talk/text and 1GB data. Here is their flip phone: https://www.metropcs.com/shop/phones...0/610214637475 Like with any carrier, look at their coverage maps! If holes in the MetroPCS network (T-mobile network), definitely check out Tracfone! They have a flip phone (nice size screen too) that is actually also a smartphone (gps too) and highly rated: http://www.bestbuy.com/site/tracfone...?skuId=5581014
    Another sweet deal and on the Verizon network for $89.99 and includes 1200 minutes, 1200 texts, and 1.2 GB of data and good for 1 year. http://www.qvc.com/TracFone-ZTE-Cymb...tml?sc=NAVLIST

    Good luck!

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    Twigby. $13/month. Sprint coverage with Verizon roaming. It's been awesome.

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