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Confused about roaming in US

dajeanne
Great Neighbour / Super Voisin

We'll be travelling to US shortly and trying to decide best roaming options. I'm aware of the 3G shutdown, but I'm not sure it I understand it enough to know if it impacts us since we are both on a grandfathered 4G LTE speed plan. Public Mobile website doesn't address this in any way, that I could find. Can I get quality roaming because we keep our 4G LTE speed or are we downgraded to 3G because we are roaming and thus the add-ons are pointless and it would be best to go the What'sApp route for text/call and/or a local sim card? We'll be there for the equivalent of just over 11 days (so the 10 day expiry is also super annoying lol).

1 ACCEPTED SOLUTION

Accepted Solutions

softech
Mayor / Maire

@dajeanne   10 days roaming with Data only could be your solution if you can stand for the trouble on the 1 extra day trouble.

 

Yes, using data is easier as you don't have to worry about the 3G issue.  Voice and text is something to think about it.  But use VoIP app such as TextNow and Fongo as as workaround.  Should be no problem if you are just calling or texting friends.  If you need to receive 2FA, you can still receive but unable to send.  Or better yet, change it to Authenticator app for best security.

 

And if you are mainly relying on Whatsapp, then roaming data certainly able to solve your problem 

 

On the other hand, I also think it is still good deal to go with local mobile data sim.  Yes, you are there for 11 days and not a month, the cost likely a bit more than $10 or $20 for the roaming data charge, but you will definitely get more data to use and for sure able to connect (peace of mind)

 

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9 REPLIES 9

MrSpock
Model Citizen / Citoyen Modèle

@dajeanne personally I would skip the add on and purchace a local sim or a travel sim

will13am
Oracle
Oracle

@dajeanne , the 3G network sun setting in the US means that if you are roaming in the US, you will only be able to connect to 4G/LTE or in the case of phone calls, it will be on the 2G network if it's available in the area you intend to use the phone.  None of this affects usage in Canada or the type of plan in the account which applies to Canada only.  

BKNS27
Mayor / Maire

@dajeanne 

You will need wifi to use WhatsApp and you will need to pay for a full month of service if you go with a local SIM (this will be good if you are stay longer than a month). 
Are you with PC or PM?

dajeanne
Great Neighbour / Super Voisin

PM - PC was a typo 😉

@dajeanne 

OK 😆 just clarifying.

When you are Roaming in the US, it should work on 4G/LTE on AT&T or M-Mobile cell towers if your phone works on 4G.

 

softech
Mayor / Maire

@dajeanne   10 days roaming with Data only could be your solution if you can stand for the trouble on the 1 extra day trouble.

 

Yes, using data is easier as you don't have to worry about the 3G issue.  Voice and text is something to think about it.  But use VoIP app such as TextNow and Fongo as as workaround.  Should be no problem if you are just calling or texting friends.  If you need to receive 2FA, you can still receive but unable to send.  Or better yet, change it to Authenticator app for best security.

 

And if you are mainly relying on Whatsapp, then roaming data certainly able to solve your problem 

 

On the other hand, I also think it is still good deal to go with local mobile data sim.  Yes, you are there for 11 days and not a month, the cost likely a bit more than $10 or $20 for the roaming data charge, but you will definitely get more data to use and for sure able to connect (peace of mind)

 

ShawnC13
Oracle
Oracle

@dajeanne wrote:

We'll be travelling to US shortly and trying to decide best roaming options. I'm aware of the 3G shutdown, but I'm not sure it I understand it enough to know if it impacts us since we are both on a grandfathered 4G LTE speed plan. Public Mobile website doesn't address this in any way, that I could find. Can I get quality roaming because we keep our 4G LTE speed or are we downgraded to 3G because we are roaming and thus the add-ons are pointless and it would be best to go the What'sApp route for text/call and/or a local sim card? We'll be there for the equivalent of just over 11 days (so the 10 day expiry is also super annoying lol).


Even with a 4G/LTE plan when you make a call in Canada that is done on the 3G network.  That is the issue when travelling to the States now.  Supposedly we should be able to use T~Mobile 2G (if available in the area you are in)

 


I am happy to help, but I am not a Customer Support Agent please do not include any personal info in a message to me. Click HERE to create a trouble ticket through SIMon the Chatbot *

darlicious
Mayor / Maire

@dajeanne 

When roaming in the US you will recieve the data speed of the roaming partner as pm cannot throttle data speed of another provider. So while current market plan holders would see their data speed go up yours could go up, down or stay the same depending on the network traffic of either T-Mobile or at&t.

 

Only T-Mobile offers a viable voice services in areas where the 3G network has yet to be decommissioned and/or where 3G network access is unavailable and 2G network access is available your phone should connect to the 2G network for voice services. 

 

The current workaround would be to download a voip provider app like textnow and choose a canadian phone number then just purchase the US Roaming Data add on. Since there are two of you travelling together try this....one of you call forward your pm phone # to your voip phone # before leaving Canada. Remove the pm sim card  before leaving Canada or before it can connect to a US tower. All incoming pm calls will forward to voip app on the phone while on wifi or mobile data (hotspot off the other).

 

The other half of the travelling pair can preload funds to cover the purchase of the $20/1gb 10 Day US Roaming Data add on and buy upon departure or arrival in the US. The following day the mobile "data-less" one can either purchase a pm 10 Day US Roaming Data add on and reseat their pm sim card so the data purchases are staggered and the other travel partner can hotspot the data on Day 11 or they can purchase a local sim card from tello or T-Mobile starting around US$10/1GB and unlimited texts/calls** and continue to recieve call forwarded pm calls.

 

**Calls will only work if they have access to a 2G network.

 

If both customers just purchase 10 Day US Roaming Data add ons they will recieve incoming pm SMS texts regardless of any roaming add ons. They can send/recieve voice calls and SMS texts on the textnow app while using wifi or mobile data. MMS, RCS and iMessage can be sent/recieve on mobile data. And you have....mobile data to use.

 

This info on US Roaming is helpful as well...

Spoiler

Here is some info about US roaming add ons that should help you.....

 

  1. While you have to have an active plan to purchase and use US roaming add ons the type of plan you have does not affect the roaming add ons features.
  2. US roaming add ons start the moment you confirm and submit your purchase in your self serve account and expire 240 hours later (10 days×24 hours).
  3. You can pre-load the funds needed to purchase the add ons in your self serve account so you only have to log in, select the US roaming add on and then confirm and submit your purchase.
  4. Wait til late as possible to purchase since they are immediately valid so on free wifi at the destination airport or stopping shortly before the border at mcd's or timmy's to buy the add on while on free wifi.
  5. If you are staying longer than 10 days you must wait a minimum of 24 hours to purchase the same US roaming add on or contact the CSA's to add it before the waiting period ends.
  6. If you have two US roaming add ons with a talk feature that overlap the talk feature basically gets disabled. Avoid this....but you will have to get one removed by a CSA to get your calling feature back if this happens.(You will hear 3 beeps and your call disconnects after 1 minute and 53 seconds on average.)
  7. After purchase reboot your phone and manually select either at&t or T-mobile to get better reception. Some areas have better coverage by either provider so when travelling around the US you will be better served by choosing the provider with better signal strength by locale.
  8. You will recieve incoming texts without any US roaming add ons. Adding the fongo app and/or the textnow app for use on wifi are good to use for a back plan.
  9. All US roaming add ons have either unlimted text, talk or both. Only data has limits depending on your purchase 250mb/500mb/1gb. Once the data is consumed it will just stop you could then purchase different roaming add on, wait 24 hr to buy or contact the moderator to buy the same US roaming add on again. (* except talk as previously mentioned.)

Happy travels and Stay--Safe!

 

Please note currently due to the decommissioning of the 3G network in the US by pm's roaming partners at&t has already begun this process but as of July 4th 2022 there are very few areas that are still served by the 3G network. T-Mobile has an end date of July 1st 2022 but calling will work on their 2G network where available.  This will affect the ability of pm customers to send and receive voice calls and emergency service such as 911 while in the US and using pm's US roaming add ons. The current work around is to download a voip app such as textnow or fongo for use while on wifi or mobile data for voice calls when in areas no longer served by the 3G network which will eventually include all areas served by at&t and T-Mobile. (T-Mobile will default to the 2G network for voice services when available.)