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Retaining US phone number in Canada

Discussion in 'Settlement Issues' started by frazman007, Feb 24, 2018.

  1. Hi,
    I recently got the Canadian Permanent Residency and am in process of moving to Canada. But I was wondering if I can port my current US number into canada.
    Is there a Canadian telephone provider which does that?

    Or if there is any other way I can keep my current number "alive" in Canada.
  2. No Canadian provider will allow you to maintain a US number (it is a different country, after all). You may be able to port it to a VoIP provider and use it on your phone through an app.
    APPNOV2014NY likes this.
  3. Seems like T-Mobile has a plan which offers free roaming in North America.
  4. #4 Bs65, Feb 24, 2018 at 12:11 PM
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2018
    Guess that assumes the OP is referring to a cell phone not a residential . Cell phones obviously work anywhere generally I guess and just matter maintaining the contract in the US from Canada. Residential a whole different matter given different residential service providers and after all is a different country. Although I do not know I would be surprised if moving states in the US someone could take their residential number with them given if nothing else the different area codes state by state.
    frazman007 likes this.
  5. If you dig deeper into the terms of their North American plan, it says that more than 50% of your useage every three months must be from a T-mobile cell tower. Unless you travel frequently or live very close to the border/major US urban area, this is unlikely to be a long term solution. Better to port to a VoIP service as suggested earlier.
    northern sunshine likes this.
  6. Yeah, I will be calling T-mobile today and see if this offer is still valid (https://www.howardforums.com/showthread.php/1836080-Moving-to-Canada-and-trying-to-figure-out-how-to-save-my-US-and-forward-calls)
    essentially, see if i can transfer my current number over t-mobile prepaid plan and then get another dedicated line in canada.
    I need to keep my US number to receive those rare but once a month calls..
  7. Ah.. seems like that the ideas in that link wont work. maybe I will just stick with verizon and pay like $5 per day for using cell in canada..(https://www.verizonwireless.com/plans/travelpass-countries/) :( Will increase my monthly bill by $150. But any cheaper alternatives <$150 pm where I can keep my US number?
  8. According to FCC rules, you may not be able to port your number to VoIP service unless you can maintain a billing address in the US. In other words, you cannot port your number if you are changing your geographic locale, even for wireless service.


    Nearly all Canadians, with the exception of the prairie provinces, have to deal with some of the most expensive cellular services in the world. You were bound to pay more whether you port your number or not.
  9. Well.. I am not worried about the bills. Heck, I would get a local Canadian number.. That is not the issue. I am in Marine Corps Reserves and its a hassle to change number across entire system. Hence, I just want my current number to be "live". Also, because of this I will also have a "local" US address..
    But.. I guess I will start with this list... and see which one fits the bill
  10. What are your findings with T-Mobile?
    My "Simple Choice Plan" has "North America Feature" - for extra $10 a month :

    "Enjoy all the benefits of Simple Choice North America on your current plan at only $10 more per month.
    Feature includes:
    • Call and text to and from the U.S., Mexico, and Canada as much as you want, and use your monthly high-speed data (up to 5GB) in Canada and Mexico at no extra charge.
    • Streaming music on top services like Pandora and iHeartRadio without using your data on our network or in Canada or Mexico."
  11. I came across this thread while looking for a solution to this exact problem because my T-Mobile Simple Choice plan, which had been working for nearly three years, suddenly cancelled on me today. I had received a single warning back in May, thought it was taken care of, but it wasn't, and they won't do anything now. So FYI, the T-Mobile's Simple Choice plan is not an option for extended stay in Canada! Even if you use both voice and data very sparingly, and spend 95% of the time connected to a wifi network, they will eventually cut off your service without much warning or flexibility.

    For now, T-Mobile says that I'll keep the voice/texting, only have data shut off, but I don't trust them any more because I had previously been told that if I kept data roaming off and turned it on only sparingly as needed, it would be ok.

    So has anyone else found a solution to keeping a US number active while in Canada? I have a US billing address, I don't use my text/talk/data but I use enough that I need a complete plan, I'd like to keep it cheap and simple, and I really don't want to give up my US number.
  12. Thank you for the warning, but in my case I have 3 lines for 12 years. One line will be as before only US based, second one will be mix US/Canada ( since I'll keep commuting to US daily) and only third one (my spouse) will be in Canada. We will see what happens.
  13. Easy and not expensive solution. Get a VOIP account in US (really easy and can probably get one for less than $30/month (unlimited calls). Transfer you US number to your VOIP account and then forward the number (now on your VOIP account to your Canadian number. All online, inexpensive and easy. I use Vonage and Ring Central for different versions of this.

    Hope this helps.
  14. If is just for keeping the US number active, T-Mobile has a plan for $3/month with 30mn talk I believe, extra is charged per minute. I have used the same for almost 2 years without issue. It does not come with any data. Whenever I travel to the US for more than a week, I activate the simply choice or other unlimited data package for a month, and then revert to the original plan before the end of the 30 days.

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