This blog post was originally published in 2014. It was accidentally deleted and restored in January 2018.
I had done my research before heading in and found what I thought was the best deal with one network and it would work out cheaper for me to buy the $75 phone and get a sim. I asked about the plan whereby I pay $20 for free texts as well as having the $20 credit which I could use to make calls, or so I assumed. She told me actually, I would get free texts but I can’t make or receive calls. I misunderstood at first, as I thought she meant the calls won’t be free, but actually she was telling me I can’t make or receive calls at all because I don’t keep the $20. If I want to simply make or receive a phone call, I have to pay a lot more per month.
I had already bought the phone because I thought I was going in for something different entirely, so all I could do was look for a better deal elsewhere and pick the least expensive. In the end, the best deal I could find was to go for a plan which is $35 a month for unlimited Canadian and international texts and 250 minutes with free calls after 5pm and on the weekends. That’s not even including data, which I don’t need, but shudder to think what I’d be paying if I did.
However, I knew this was the best I was going to get so I decided to go for it and I was just glad it was all over.
But it wasn’t.
It took nearly and hour and a half just to have them sell me my sim card. Firstly, they wanted ID, my study visa (which I only had with me because I also went to open a bank account), a credit card and my address. The issue was with the address, as because I’m going to be living in student residence, someone else had made an account with the same address and the system couldn’t compute that maybe more than one person lives at the same postal code. This took an hour and a half to fix.
I genuinely never thought someone could have this much trouble simply setting up a new phone. I would say in all, including buying the phone and going to the different networks to ask about their plans, it took over 2 hours when I was expecting it to take 20 minutes.
Everyone will tell you everything is so much better in places like Canada and that’s why everyone is getting out of Ireland, but maybe we shouldn’t take everything for granted because at least we can more easily afford owning a phone.