My Rogers Mobile Phone Bill

Now that both Catherine and I have Rogers Wireless Pay as you Go prepaid SIMs, it seemed like a good time to look at how much we’re spending each month, and whether it makes sense to move from pre-paid (flexible, maximum control, but hassle of topping up) to a monthly bill (less flexible, no top-up hassle, and may actually be cheaper). To this end, I logged on to the Rogers website and look at my last month of usage (which is all they make available). While they don’t have an export option on their report page, I was able to simply cut-and-paste the tabular text into Numbers on my Mac for further analysis; here’s what I learned:

  • I spent $26.50 over the month:
    • $14.55 on 29 voice calls: 19 outgoing calls and 10 incoming calls; that’s roughly 35 minutes of “talk time” at my 40 cents/minute rate.
    • $11.95 on data (wifi-less situations where I needed to check email, generally — quickly mounts up at 5 cents/KB).
    • $1.65 on 11 outgoing SMS text messages.
  • My most frequent voice calls were to Catherine on her mobile (twice) and at home (9 times). I also called 1-800-GOOG411 three times.
  • I received 11 incoming SMS text messages, but Rogers doesn’t bill for those, so they didn’t cost me anything.
  • The average cost of an outgoing call was 48 cents.

Over the same period, Catherine’s bill was $39.50. She doesn’t use data on her mobile, and she doesn’t send text messages: in other words she uses the phone as, well, a phone. And she talks more: the average cost of her outgoing calls was $1.12.

So, in the end, our combined monthly cost for mobile service was $66. Rogers has a “family plan” where 2 lines share 300 minutes a month for $35 total, which seems like a good alternative. Stay tuned.

Update: through the magic of wireless plan pricing voodoo, the so-called $35 family plan actually comes out to $49.90 per month before taxes, as they add on a $6.95 “system access fee” per phone, plus a 50 cent per phone 911 fee. But it’s still less than $66, and we would get to talk back and forth between the two phones an unlimited amount with no per-minute fee.