Yes, United States peeps, Canada really is a different country….just ask Sprint

At the risk of sounding like I can’t come up with a blog post idea of my own, this will give a shout out, again, to Paul at The Captains Speech for reminding me how mad I am at Canada.  Kidding!  But this weekend, my son went to Toronto. He wanted to know if he could use his phone in Canada, how it worked for voice, texting and data.  We have a family phone plan and the kids pay their portion of the bill.  I had never thought about it before.  I know there are international plans, but the only times my husband and I have traveled internationally in a few years have been on cruises.  I purposely have not brought my phone, because that would completely defeat the goal of rest and relaxation.

I called our phone provider, which is Sprint.  I’m hoping that Sprint isn’t big brother and that my plan won’t go up astronomically because I’m complaining about them a lot a teensy bit.  After going through round 4 of “if you require different information press 5” I finally got a human.  I felt sorry for him and told this guy right up front.  Initially, I would have been very pleasant and would have tried to get the information in a kind way.  Now I was pissed and apologized to him but continued to act annoyed.  And I realize that he probably gets this from every single customer who finally reaches him.  He was so helpful. He very nicely explained how the International Plan costs 8 million dollars for the year (hyperbole) but they would be happy to accommodate me.  I responded with, well, I only need the plan for 3 days.  So he happily sent me to the menu that I click a few times and get a human-in-charge-of-international-plans-for-3-days.  She was lovely.  She gave me a mountain of information that included that we already had free voice and texting (I knew that because I’m not stupid  a savvy consumer) and that would “count” in Canada, too.  But the data ranged from plans that were megabites (now I’m not as savvy a customer) that for x number that would count for x amount or better yet x number of mb that would count for x amount to finally x number for $199.95 for 3 days but it wouldn’t last very long if he used data.  Are you effin kidding me?

I said it a little more nicely.  And then she said that if he went to settings, to cellular, to this, to that, to the other thing and clicked his heels 3 times saying “there’s no place like cell coverage than Canada,” for $2.99 he could get unlimited everything, as long as he was in a wifi area and only using wifi for data.  Hallelujah!  And before you judge me, I wrote all of this down so I could send him the step by step process, even though he knew immediately what I was talking about.  And I repeated it back to the Sprint person to be sure I had it down correctly, even though I knew exactly what she said.

Then being the crazy Mom that I am, I texted him that as long as he was facing the US it would all be free.  He wasn’t amused.  The bottom line after all of that, is that it didn’t work.  That’s okay.  It only took about 45 minutes and every drop of patience in my patience arsenal to find out that the Sprint plan, as explained to me in detail, didn’t work.  Yet I was being charged.  And I live in fear that if everything else didn’t work the $2.99 wouldn’t work either.  And that wasn’t a set fee.  It was the fee that allowed everything else that he used to be cheaper. We decided that he wouldn’t use his phone.

So I faced Canada and sent Sprint a message.

About Barb Knowles

The things that are important to me are family, friends, teaching, writing, languages and using my sense of humor to navigate this crazy world. Please join me on this blogging adventure...
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13 Responses to Yes, United States peeps, Canada really is a different country….just ask Sprint

  1. We have friends and family all over the world. A bunch live across the pond in England. We use “WhatsApp.” It’s easy as pie to download, it’s free, and you can text anyone, anywhere, for free. Actually it may cost a few cents per year, but that’s as good as free.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Paul says:

    Phones are a complicated thing. I went to the US for 4 days around New Years of 2014 and kept my phone off the whole time. My parents told me that I couldn’t text or there would be charges, and at that time I didn’t understand data usage at all but was told I couldn’t use that either or it would cost money. So I went phone less is a foreign land (Michigan) for 4 days. It was great! I also could’ve died and no one would’ve known, but then again if I’m dead, who am I gonna tell anyways? Also, facing your own country while texting should be a thing that actually works. It’s genius. I hope your son enjoyed Toronto and our clean city and weird accents.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Glazed says:

    This is the sort of thing that could finally set off a war between the U.S. and Canada. We need to own Canada in order to get cell coverage up there. Maybe there was a good reason for the old motto, “54-40 or fight”.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Barb Knowles says:

      haha But I’ve never understood why they didn’t fight to get Alaska. Then I would have been Canadian. Not really, because I was born on a US airbase. But it would have sounded cool. And I could have tried for dual citizenship.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Glazed says:

        I believe Russia owned it first, and they didn’t want to fight the Russians. Then we bought it from the Russians shortly after the civil war, when the Canadians must have realized we were too crazy to fight against. But I wonder how good the cell phone coverage is in Alaska. I wonder if it was really worth buying.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Barb Knowles says:

        I don’t know. I imagine the oil is worth it. But when we moved from there in 1955 I don’t think cell service was on anyone’s mind.

        Liked by 1 person

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