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#371374 - 12/11/2018 04:37 Repatriating. Anyone have a cellular plan they love?
JBjorgen
carpal tunnel

Registered: 19/01/2002
Posts: 3508
Loc: Guadalajara, MX
I'm going to be starting a new job in the States on December 10th.

I have to now decide on a cellular carrier after 4 years away, so I'm not familiar with the landscape these days.

We have an iPhone SE and a iPhone 6+ and are not looking to upgrade at present, so prepaid is absolutely a great option for us if it makes financial sense. We will only have 2 lines.

I don't require unlimited data but would like to have at least 3gb and closer to 5gb.

Right now, I'm on Telcel with unlimited talk and text in Mexico, US and Canada and 3gb of data for $25/mo. I'd be happy to find something in the same price range if possible. Anyone have any suggestions or a carrier they love right now?

EDIT: We qualify for T-Mobile's military phone plan because of my wife's air national guard service. That averages out at $40/mo per line, but does have "unlimited" data. A little more than I want to pay but perhaps worth the extra.


Edited by JBjorgen (12/11/2018 04:44)
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~ John

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#371375 - 12/11/2018 08:23 Re: Repatriating. Anyone have a cellular plan they love? [Re: JBjorgen]
larry818
old hand

Registered: 01/10/2002
Posts: 990
Loc: Fullerton, Calif.
I thought Tmobile was all "unlimited". Anyway, they are the way to go, all the other providers are way more crooked.

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#371376 - 12/11/2018 18:03 Re: Repatriating. Anyone have a cellular plan they love? [Re: larry818]
K447
addict

Registered: 29/05/2002
Posts: 682
Loc: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Originally Posted By: larry818
I thought Tmobile was all "unlimited". Anyway, they are the way to go, all the other providers are way more crooked.

Check coverage in the area(s) you will be moving into.

Monthly price is not much fun if the signal is weak or traffic congested.

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#371377 - 12/11/2018 18:19 Re: Repatriating. Anyone have a cellular plan they love? [Re: JBjorgen]
JBjorgen
carpal tunnel

Registered: 19/01/2002
Posts: 3508
Loc: Guadalajara, MX
I'll be in Columbus, OH, and according to T-Mobile's coverage map, it's fully blanketed. Any idea on how to check congestion and real-world speeds in a particular coverage area?
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~ John

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#371379 - 13/11/2018 03:17 Re: Repatriating. Anyone have a cellular plan they love? [Re: larry818]
Dignan
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/03/2000
Posts: 12105
Loc: Sterling, VA
I can endorse TMobile.

These days, I find that coverage issues are hyper-local and that all carriers technically have coverage "everywhere." At least in fairly populated regions. If I ever have issues as I'm out and about (and I cover a far greater portion of my area than most people do), it's because I'm in dead zones that I might expect. New developments, industrial areas, or inside warehouse stores.

I've had TMobile for - I believe - around 10 years. I've had no complaints about the service, and from my experience the customer support is unmatched. That is to say, TMobile has it and the others don't laugh But seriously, I've had nothing but pleasant experiences with their employees on the phone or in the stores.

My experience with the other carriers is quite old now (older than a decade), but I've had service with all of them. I started with Sprint in 2000, had Verizon off and on for a few years, as well as ATT. I even had a Nextel phone for work with push to talk. Anyone complaining about being connected to their work because of their cell phone should count their blessings that their cell phone isn't a walkie talkie anymore!

Anyway, there was a weird two year period where I had service on all three of the major carriers before I settled on TMobile. In the northern Virginia area where I live I found that they were all roughly the same in their coverage. Sure there were areas where some were stronger than others, but they all their strong areas. I suspect that, after a decade, they've only evened out more.

My family has the 4-line plan for something like $25/month/line. We have my wife and I and our moms on this plan and it works well. I think we get 3GB/month. Whether that's enough for you is ENTIRELY SUBJECTIVE. Some months I never approach it. Some months I hit it after 20 days. But much of this is because I'll be stupid and do a remote desktop session on one of my client's systems while I'm out on the road and too impatient to get back to wifi. Or I just can't wait to get the latest episode of my favorite podcasts.

You should check if that military plan that includes unlimited also includes their promotional free Netflix subscription. That'll save you around $15/month right there if you're also a Netflix subscriber.

Another factor in deciding whether you need unlimited is how much music streaming you do on your current provider. TMobile whitelists most music streaming services and doesn't count them toward your data usage (a net neutrality issue to be sure, not that it matters anymore).

Lastly, TMobile - like most carriers - offers wifi calling. After all my talk about all the carriers having decent coverage everywhere, my home actually doesn't have great coverage. 1-2 bars on every carrier despite being a quarter mile from a busy highway. But I have perfect reception everywhere in my home with wifi calling. I've never dropped a call.

Originally Posted By: larry818
I thought Tmobile was all "unlimited". Anyway, they are the way to go, all the other providers are way more crooked.

Technically unlimited. After your data usage is up they throttle you to dial-up speeds so you can still get texts and emails. Worthless for anything else.
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Matt

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#371381 - 13/11/2018 07:04 Re: Repatriating. Anyone have a cellular plan they love? [Re: JBjorgen]
JBjorgen
carpal tunnel

Registered: 19/01/2002
Posts: 3508
Loc: Guadalajara, MX
Thanks Matt. Some good info there. Especially that I can get Netflix for free, which effectively lowers my cost by $11/mo, bringing my effective cost to about $35 per line. Nice!
_________________________
~ John

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