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Which SIM Card to purchase and internet plans to buy ?

Rocky83

Star Member
Sep 10, 2017
89
8
Hi All,

Can anybody suggest good SIM card and internet plans which i can purchase at Toronto airport ?
Looking to land on 11 March 2018 for a short landing for a week .
Is TD a good bank to open an account with. Have read elsewhere that RBC,BMO are not recommended due to lack of good services.
 

Rocky83

Star Member
Sep 10, 2017
89
8
Can anybody suggest good SIM card and internet plans which i can purchase at Toronto airport ?
Looking to land on 11 March 2018 for a short landing for a week .
Is TD a good bank to open an account with. Have read elsewhere that RBC,BMO are not recommended due to lack of good services.
 

BC4life

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For short term use Chatr would be fine not sure if you can get it at the airport. It is prepaid and it uses 3G for the internet. For details check www.chatrwireless.com

Another option is Speakout which you can find at 7-eleven stores. There is no monthly fee (or very low, something like $2) but you do pay for receiving calls. Also internet options are very limited or expensive.

For long term you can use one of the "fighter brands" such as Virgin Mobile, Fido, Koodo or Public Mobile. I use Public Mobile so if you plan to choose that one I can refer you.
 

rsid

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For short term use Chatr would be fine not sure if you can get it at the airport. It is prepaid and it uses 3G for the internet. For details check www.chatrwireless.com

Another option is Speakout which you can find at 7-eleven stores. There is no monthly fee (or very low, something like $2) but you do pay for receiving calls. Also internet options are very limited or expensive.

For long term you can use one of the "fighter brands" such as Virgin Mobile, Fido, Koodo or Public Mobile. I use Public Mobile so if you plan to choose that one I can refer you.
You can use Koodo, I have been using it with no issues at all and comparatively less expensive than others.
 

APPNOV2014NY

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For short term use Chatr would be fine not sure if you can get it at the airport. It is prepaid and it uses 3G for the internet. For details check www.chatrwireless.com

Another option is Speakout which you can find at 7-eleven stores. There is no monthly fee (or very low, something like $2) but you do pay for receiving calls. Also internet options are very limited or expensive.

For long term you can use one of the "fighter brands" such as Virgin Mobile, Fido, Koodo or Public Mobile. I use Public Mobile so if you plan to choose that one I can refer you.
Howz quality of Public Mobile. I have read that it's worse than Koodo though both piggy back on Telus infrastructure. Any issues with dropped calls or internet.
 

rsid

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Dec 20, 2017
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Well, I never had any issue with Koodo and better coverage than other so called sister concern providers.
 

torontosm

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Apr 3, 2013
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Howz quality of Public Mobile. I have read that it's worse than Koodo though both piggy back on Telus infrastructure. Any issues with dropped calls or internet.
Public Mobile operates using the TELUS network (which Bell shares in certain provinces). So it is as reliable as Bell, Telus, Koodo, Virgin, etc. as they all operate on the same network, but just at a lower cost.
 

anujoshi

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Apr 18, 2015
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For banks, TD is pretty good. They have some basic no-fee accounts which you can take advantage of. Also, I've heard RBC has a newcomer program, where I think it's same as TD in terms of no-fee account and they also give you a credit card. You should verify this info online though, as their offers continually change.

On a separate note: credit is quite important in Canada as a lot of things happen on credit history and score. For example, it is often used for residential lease approval (renting a place), getting a cell phone, leasing a car, getting approved for house loan (mortgage), etc. Credit is vitally important. So it would be helpful to get at least 1 credit card to your name, and do some basic expenditures with it and pay it, that will build your credit score. Literally even if you buy only 1 carton of milk on that card the entire month, that's fine... as long as you pay it off on time. It takes minimum 3 payment cycles (on time) to get a good credit rating so that should be a priority. Just a suggestion!

Re: cell phone
I am on Bell and their cell reception is decent. On the other hand, their customer service is terrible. Rogers has a little less reception outside the GTA but within Toronto/Brampton/Mississauga, they are perfectly fine. I have used Rogers and Bell and not had any issue. I would advise checking with a cheaper counterpart on the same network, as many other people have mentioned. I've also heard Wind/Chatr are very cheap and have some unlimited data plans (never tried these myself) but people say the network is spotty.
 

Rocky83

Star Member
Sep 10, 2017
89
8
For banks, TD is pretty good. They have some basic no-fee accounts which you can take advantage of. Also, I've heard RBC has a newcomer program, where I think it's same as TD in terms of no-fee account and they also give you a credit card. You should verify this info online though, as their offers continually change.

On a separate note: credit is quite important in Canada as a lot of things happen on credit history and score. For example, it is often used for residential lease approval (renting a place), getting a cell phone, leasing a car, getting approved for house loan (mortgage), etc. Credit is vitally important. So it would be helpful to get at least 1 credit card to your name, and do some basic expenditures with it and pay it, that will build your credit score. Literally even if you buy only 1 carton of milk on that card the entire month, that's fine... as long as you pay it off on time. It takes minimum 3 payment cycles (on time) to get a good credit rating so that should be a priority. Just a suggestion!

Re: cell phone
I am on Bell and their cell reception is decent. On the other hand, their customer service is terrible. Rogers has a little less reception outside the GTA but within Toronto/Brampton/Mississauga, they are perfectly fine. I have used Rogers and Bell and not had any issue. I would advise checking with a cheaper counterpart on the same network, as many other people have mentioned. I've also heard Wind/Chatr are very cheap and have some unlimited data plans (never tried these myself) but people say the network is spotty.
Thanks Anushree, very helpful. However I am going to come there only for a week and will then return to India. Not sure if i can really do some meaningful purchases. Which credit card is usually popular ? If you have any info that
 

anujoshi

Star Member
Apr 18, 2015
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Toronto, ON, Canada
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Thanks Anushree, very helpful. However I am going to come there only for a week and will then return to India. Not sure if i can really do some meaningful purchases.
Buy something on Amazon using a Canadian credit card :) pay it off immediately. I was only saying it as a helpful tip, but you don't need to go out of your way to do that if it doesn't make sense for you right now. It has helped people before you though. Good luck!
 

Rocky83

Star Member
Sep 10, 2017
89
8
Buy something on Amazon using a Canadian credit card :) pay it off immediately. I was only saying it as a helpful tip, but you don't need to go out of your way to do that if it doesn't make sense for you right now. It has helped people before you though. Good luck!
Thanks Anushree, I will go with your plan. If it helps to make a good credit history. Worth it. Just one more thing, once i get it and swipe it. Can i log into the bank website and pay it off immediately. Generally i would wait for the bill and then pay it off. Please guide.
 

anujoshi

Star Member
Apr 18, 2015
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20
Toronto, ON, Canada
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Thanks Anushree, I will go with your plan. If it helps to make a good credit history. Worth it. Just one more thing, once i get it and swipe it. Can i log into the bank website and pay it off immediately. Generally i would wait for the bill and then pay it off. Please guide.
Hi Rocky. I am with TD and they have a TD "MySpend" mobile app, where the transaction shows up almost immediately... if I swipe for coffee, by the time I walk to my car with my coffee, it gives me a phone notification that $4 were spent at Starbucks. So if I wanted to, I can view and pay that off immediately. But even if you wait for the bill to appear (tip: sign up for email bills if you are not going to be living here), it usually gives you 2 weeks from date of statement to pay the bill. Just make sure your dates are secure. This works fine for me. That's just my personal experience :)
 

dora115

Star Member
Jul 7, 2017
122
49
Thanks Anushree, very helpful. However I am going to come there only for a week and will then return to India. Not sure if i can really do some meaningful purchases. Which credit card is usually popular ? If you have any info that
Any master/Visa card you get is fine, you can create amazon.ca account, buy Amazon gift card and keep loading it every month to build credit history in Canada from India, make sure to pay only after you get the statement otherwise if balance is 0 credit history might not get updated. Utilization below 10% of your credit limit is the best way to build good credit history.
 
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Rocky83

Star Member
Sep 10, 2017
89
8
Any master/Visa card you get is fine, you can create amazon.ca account, buy Amazon gift card and keep loading it every month to build credit history in Canada from India, make sure to pay only after you get the statement otherwise if balance is 0 credit history might not get updated. Utilization below 10% of your credit limit is the best way to build good credit history.
Thanks mate
 

Rocky83

Star Member
Sep 10, 2017
89
8
Hi Rocky. I am with TD and they have a TD "MySpend" mobile app, where the transaction shows up almost immediately... if I swipe for coffee, by the time I walk to my car with my coffee, it gives me a phone notification that $4 were spent at Starbucks. So if I wanted to, I can view and pay that off immediately. But even if you wait for the bill to appear (tip: sign up for email bills if you are not going to be living here), it usually gives you 2 weeks from date of statement to pay the bill. Just make sure your dates are secure. This works fine for me. That's just my personal experience :)
Thanks Anushree. Very insightful :)