Read The Fine Print!

I have had the same cell phone number and have been with the same cell phone company Rogers since I was 14. I’ve never had any issues with them and have always been treated very well. I guess my 18 year relationship with them made me feel like I didn’t need to read the fine print, which is so unlike me because I usually read everything.

I have two cell phones, one which my company pays for and my personal cell phone. My work cell phone is what I use during the day for work and some personal calls. The company allows us to use the cell phone for personal reasons as long as we don’t abuse it. Since my personal cell is most often used in the evening and on weekends, I began looking for plans that would suit my needs. For years I had a plan that had unlimited weekends and evenings and 150 free minutes during the day. I also had free text messages and voice mail. I have a cheap phone that probably couldn’t handle data, so there was no need for a plan with data. Besides my work cell is a blackberry and I bring my iPad everywhere.

My plan cost $45 including taxes every month. I thought that was a bit much for what I was getting so I checked out their pay as you go plans. They have a $25 per month plan with free evening and weekends and 35 cents a minute for weekday calls. It sounded good, so I got it. What I didn’t realize, because I neglected to read the fine print was that they don’t sell $25 pay as you go minutes you have to buy $30. (What a way to make an extra 5 bucks off of customers) Also, voicemail and text messages are 25 cents each. If my phone is off and someone leaves a message, I am still charged regardless if I check my messages or not. Of course I didn’t realize this until my minutes were finished within a couple of weeks of topping up my phone.

I was honestly better off with my $45 plan. I didn’t have to worry about topping up my phone every month, or about how many people left me messages.  I am trying to keep my cell phone budget under $40 including taxes, so I decided to check out  the competition to see what else is out there.

Here are a few companies I’ve checked out.

Wind Mobile

  • $25/m
  • Unlimited incoming and outgoing calls Canada wide
  • Unlimited incoming and outgoing text messages Canada wide (incoming picture messages are free, outgoing are 20 cents/MMS)
  • Outgoing U.S text messages are 10 cents/per text
  • International text messages are 25 cents/per text
  • 100 MB free, overage $5/100MB
  • $8 for voice mail

This plan would cost me $37.29 including tax. I do have a few friends with Wind Mobile and they complain about their phone not working in some remote locations which would be a problem for me.

Public Mobile

  • $19/m
  • Unlimited province wide calling
  • Unlimited Canadian, U.S, and International text messages(not all countries are included)
  • $3 call display
  • $5 calling features(call waiting/forwarding and 3 way calling)
  • $7 voicemail
  • Unlimited email $5
  • Unlimited 2G data $10
  • Unlimited Canadian long distance $8
  • Unlimited U.S long distance $10
This plan would cost me $38.42 including tax for what I want.


  • $20/m
  • Unlimited local weekend calling, plus unlimited text, picture and video messaging
  • 20 cents/minute local anytime rate
  • 50 cents per picture attachment
  • 50 cents per video attachment
  • $2 per MB
  • Voicemail $7
This plan requires way too much work. I am not going to keep track of when I am charged 20 cents or 50 cents.
Public Mobile sounds like the best deal for my needs. I may check out some more companies to see if I could find a better plan.


Do you have a pay as you go plan? If so, who are you with?


  1. seedebtrun says:

    i recently contacted my cell phone company and they offered to shave $20 off my plan if i lowered my minutes.. i thought this was a sweet deal until I realized that this change had the side effect of removing a $40 promotion that I also had.. My bill had gone UP when I lowered my minutes.. Not good.


  2. Kim says:

    We don't have a ton of options in our area. We used to be with a small company that got bought out my AT&T and their plans are much higher. We are grandfathered in and pay around $85 for both my husband and I. If we ever switch, we may look into a pay as you go plan. I'm not sure how they work. Do you have to contact them each time you run out or minutes or texting?

  3. That sucks — but fun fact, I've never heard of any of the companies you discuss!

  4. I've been with Telus for over 8 years and I always do a three year contract so I don't have to pay for the phone. I think I have another two years left on my plan which is good for now since it's a Blackberry I got for free and it only comes to $38/month but the fact that me and my BF want to move out of province next year means I may have to pay some penalities. I think my sister is with Wind and she likes them.

  5. LadiesGoFirst says:

    We don't pay as we go. In fact, our cell phone bill is one of the most expensive ones we pay. I would love to figure out a way to make it less expensive but it appears that we have exhausted all of our options ;(

  6. Edward says:

    Cell phone companies love gotchas. I'm going to be switching to a no-contract provider when my contract expires. They have an almost identical plan for HALF the price! But no-contract providers don't offer free nights and weekends, which means I need more monthly minutes. Instead of saving half, I'll wind up saving only a quarter. Still good, but not as exciting.

  7. SB @ OCAAT says:

    These companies no longer earn profit from providing tlak time, they get money from extras you apply for.

  8. Marissa says:

    I would call and tell them you want to cancel and talk to retention. There is a $22 plan that gives you 150 mins 6pm eve and weekends and free texting.

  9. evencheap says:

    Which company is that plan with, and do you have to pay for extra's such as voicemail, call display, etc?

  10. gregjohnson975182420 says:

    I hate plans that nickel and dime me. There is no way that a person can keep track of each voicemail or text message!

  11. […] why their FICI score was so low because of someone else’s mistakes. Not reading the fine print when obtaining anything is just a bad idea because you always get blind sided which sucks! I use […]

  12. […] Me What You Want Even Cheap presents Read The Fine Print! posted at Call Me What You Want Even Cheap. I have had the same cell phone number and have been […]

  13. Really nice article-to make a research of plan is my second step after choosing the operator.I do this every 6-7months.Cause it just the way to safe your budget and it's not so silly like the comments of gregjohnson975182420.

  14. I'm being using public mobile since long time and just like you I've become a great fan for this mobile network service provider. Their monthly plan is quite good and I'm happy to use such plan for long time. Thanks.

  15. I also prefer straight, flat-rate monthly phone plans. When I see that company has a huge chunk of fine print, I immediately understand that one or another they will screw me. Fortunately, the competition is present and you could still find good deals in this area.

  16. I don't want to be on a contract. I don't like the feeling of being locked in with a phone company. Plus I would have to pay a fee to break the contract, which is not to appealing.

  17. You listed some fairly good plans there. There are so many different cell phone plans it is hard to keep track. I also do not like to sign any kind of long term contract, since eventually you will get charged a bunch just for leaving for a better service. I have been using the Virgin Mobile plan. A simple plan with no contract, $20 for 400 minutes per month is easy to keep track of for a simple no frills cell phone plan.

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