Have you ever thought that we can barely live a day without our cell phones? Your reliance on mobile devices is at an all-time high regarding instant communication. Choosing a Canadian cell phone carrier to provide your mobile service is challenging. It’s a constant battle between national coverage, monthly cost, and more.

A “Cell Phone Carrier” is a type of wireless service provider that offers data services to mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. The best Canadian cell phone carriers will offer low-cost plans, including advanced smartphone use and minimal rate increases.

With so many telecom companies and plans to choose from, it can be challenging to figure out which one is right for you. The guide below provides tips and information about Canadian mobile carriers, their services, the best geographical network coverage, and speed. So if you’re interested, follow up! 

Major Canadian Cell Phone Carriers

The mobile service providers in each province offer different bundles of phone, internet, and television options. In this piece, we focus on mobile phone carrier services. A razor’s edge separates the following businesses, so read carefully.


Bell is usually famous among people who prefer luxurious data plans and services, but it has an economical package for users who like to stay on a budget. However, it’s Canada’s Second Largest Mobile Carrier by subscriptions. You can save money by bundling other services with your mobile strategy, which helps offset the high prices they charge individually.

Bell discontinued the Unlimited Share plan after a short period. A new “Lite” plan with 10GB of high-speed data is available for $30 per month, but it is only compatible with 4G LTE networks. The Essential program offers 5G and a hotspot; you can achieve a throughput of up to 25GB.

Remember that these prices are only for people who use their own devices to connect to Wi-Fi. If you want to save money and avail of Bell’s services but don’t require a lot of data, Bell’s Basic Phone 30 plan is a good option. The $30 monthly fee includes unlimited voice and text messaging throughout Canada.


Fido by Rogers Communication plans is generally the best option for regular smartphone use. Cheap talk, text, and data plans are available. Switching to Fido may liberate you from the clutches of a Canadian service provider.

The company now allows customers to customize their phone service. To begin, determine how much data you will require from each plan (Data and Text, Talk and Text, or Talk, Text, and Data). Every program includes unlimited texting, and you can get up to 15 GB of data for as little as $60 per month in Canada.

Fido offers a large selection of smartphones at a significant discount for an additional monthly fee. Throughout the year, there are a variety of exciting promotions to check out.

Freedom Mobile

The owner, Shaw Communications’ Freedom Mobile plans, provides popular services at significantly reduced rates. This appealing quality has helped propel the carrier to Canada’s fourth-largest subscribed network. The service from Freedom is inconsistent at best, but at least the company is honest about its flaws.

The Canadian government’s plan isn’t perfect, but it aims to give people a cheaper alternative. For $15 per month, you can sign up for Freedom’s most basic plan, which provides them with 250 MB of data, 100 minutes, and more. Freedom’s price may have become pricey, but it’s still much cheaper than in Canada.

Unlimited data plans from Freedom Mobile start at CAD 50 per month. The minimum Freedom data plan size is 20GB, and customers receive an additional 500MB of nationwide data each month regardless of their data plan size. All plans include unlimited talk and text.


Koodo, supervised under Telus Mobility, offers cell phone initiatives that are reasonably priced without compromising on quality or features. Koodo’s $15/month plan might be enough if you don’t make many phone calls monthly.

You can now subscribe to a decent standard plan that includes unlimited calling across the country, unlimited texting, and 10GB of data for CA$55 per month. Having data that is free of surprises can help you avoid unpleasant financial surprises when your monthly bill arrives in your inbox, but it will not change the game.

When you sign up for Koodo’s data plan, you gain automatic access to their “shock-free data” feature. In other words, you won’t have to worry about being charged exorbitant overage fees because you never exceeded your data cap. Instead, once you’ve used up your allotted data, the system will automatically disconnect you.


Rogers Wireless joins other major Canadian providers, such as Bell, in offering low-value plans that won’t help you save much money. But it’s the center of attraction among the people as their network coverage is nationwide. Rogers Internet and TV, on the other hand, are more affordable.

You can also look at available family plan comparisons, which may be very useful. Rogers simplifies avoiding the Canadian provider curse by providing a CA$15 discount for each additional line on a family plan.

All of Rogers’ services, rebranded as Rogers Infinite, now work with Canada’s most extensive nationwide 5G network. Storage capacities range from 20GB to 60GB to 100GB in the available packages. Prices in Canada start at $80 for the most basic plan and rise to $50 for the most data-heavy tier.


Telus Mobility is the second largest Canadian cellular service provider, with 10+ million customers as of 2022. Telus offers a selection of Internet-only and smartphone plans and upgrades for those interested in mobile broadband. The service includes 5G, LTE, and HSPA+ in their main networks. 

They can install one plan on a given device at a time, and some strategies are incompatible with certain types of hardware. In Canada, you may send and receive an unlimited amount of text messages and phone calls throughout the country and use “unlimited” data up to 25GB per month for just $75 per month

A shared pool of 40GB costs as little as CA$85 per month because you may use it across all of your devices. Telus has a CA$95/month 50GB package if you need more space. Even better, 5G connectivity at rates of up to 1Gbps is now standard with all Telus plans. 

Mobile Coverage Map in Canada

Canada is the second-largest country in the world by area, and because of all that space, cell phone coverage is minimal. Rogers, Bell, or TELUS only service less than 30% of Canada’s total land area. The Canadian countryside is mainly unpopulated, and services are typically worse in those areas.

However, the major networks have coverage in 99% of the largest cities in the nation. In addition to the Big Three, Canadians have a variety of other smaller providers to select from.

Koodo, Fido, and Virgin Mobile are a few of these; they run on the TELUS, Rogers, and Bell networks, respectively (There are also several separate service providers across the country, including SpeakOut, 7-Eleven, and Petro-Canada Mobile).

Customers of smaller cell phone companies have access to similar coverage to their holding companies when collaborating with the Big Three. Additionally, regional carriers like SaskTel, Freedom Mobile, Videotron, and MTS offer benefits for Canadian cell phones.

These businesses each provide coverage for specific regions of Canada; they might not function well elsewhere. Because of this, it’s essential to verify coverage and roaming restrictions before selecting a plan.

Roaming is a service that many cell phone providers in Canada provide, which extends coverage by enabling users to connect to another network when they are outside of their primary coverage area. While the range of mobile phones is only available in a third of Canada, it is present where it matters.

Following are some major mobile coverage maps of Canada:

Bell Coverage Map

Bell has Canada’s largest coverage map in terms of customers served. 99% of Canadians are served by its mobile network alone. Consumers are unlikely to switch to 3G coverage because Bell also has Canada’s largest 4G network.

The network covers every major city in Canada, focusing on Bell’s coverage of those areas. Bell’s coverage is robust in Saskatchewan and Alberta. Bell offers coverage for its customers across the nation at much more than 4,000 Wifi hotspots, in addition to their cell phone network.

Every province has access to the company’s wireless signal, though less populated and remote areas have limited or no coverage. Lucky Mobile, Virgin Mobile, and P.C. Mobile are just a few of the smaller carrier brands Bell supports. Canadians now have cheaper access to the same complex web, thanks to this.

Bell doesn’t offer any options for domestic roaming, but there are several options for international roaming. Thanks to Bell’s extensive coverage, consumers are unlikely to require direct exposure to another network.

BellMTS Coverage Map

In Manitoba, MTS dominated regional phone plans; however, Bell purchased the business in 2017 and changed the name to BellMTS. This significantly expanded its network, allowing it to cover the same territory as Bell.

With service trying to reach 99% of the population and excellent network coverage across Canada, the company now has all the same benefits and drawbacks as Bell. Like Bell, BellMTS doesn’t offer domestic roaming, so phone calls outside their service area are costly.

Freedom Mobile Coverage Map

Freedom Mobile, a corporation of Shaw Communications, offers fewer services than its rivals. The provider performs well in Vancouver and thrives in traditionally difficult-to-reach places in British Columbia. The coverage map of Freedom Mobile now includes Southern Ontario and Québec.

Despite covering less than 1% of Canada, Freedom Mobile’s network is accessible to nearly 30% of Canadians. The company heavily relies on partner organizations for roaming among its primary coverage zones. The idea of wandering is such a key selling point that most Canadian cell phone plans come with allowances for roaming charges.

With the help of unique coverage options, Freedom Mobile is expanding, along with a new frequency channel that enables their signal to pass through concrete structures as long as consumers have a compatible phone. Unfortunately, the company frequently receives the worst national rankings for network dependability.

Rogers Coverage Map

Rogers’ network reaches 97 percent of Canada’s population despite covering less than 20% of the country’s land area. Its biggest flaw is the Territories and the Maritimes, which have less crowded provinces than the rest of the nation.

Although Rogers pioneered the 3G network, the company has lagged recently. Although the company still boasts a solid nationwide LTE network, some customers in sparsely populated areas might still connect to the company’s outdated 3G infrastructure. Thankfully, they are creating a new 5G network.

Only international travel is eligible for roaming options from Rogers. Chatr, Fido, and Cityfone are just a few smaller carriers sharing Rogers’ coverage map. Customers will have more price and plan options as a result of this.

TELUS Coverage Map

Bell and TELUS are using the same mobile phone towers across Canada, which may surprise many Canadians. This indicates that TELUS covers 99% of the inhabitants in Canada. Given that TELUS’ Mobility network typically operates a little bit more quickly than Bell’s, TELUS has a solid reputation for dependability.

TELUS has an area that covers 28.8% of Canada, the same as Bell and almost 10% more than Rogers. Similar to its rivals, TELUS collaborates with a variety of smaller mobile service providers, including Koodo and Public Mobile, which both utilize TELUS’ expansive network. TELUS, like Bell, provides some domestic roaming options.

Users who purchase a roaming pass as an add-on can roam for free for as long as 30 days after making their purchase.

SaskTel Coverage Map

The clue is in the name: 57% of Saskatchewan is geographically covered by SaskTel, making it the best provider in the province. SaskTel offers the best cell phone coverage in Saskatchewan, surpassing established competitors Bell and TELUS. Regina and Saskatoon, the two most populated cities in the province, have an almost complete range.

Regarding cell phone service, Sasktel’s network is the only option available in rural areas. There are options for roaming when traveling abroad. Customers who leave the SaskTel network, or essentially leave Saskatchewan, will still have access to all U.S. networks through SaskTel’s partner networks.

Videotron Coverage Map

Regional carrier Videotron provides service all over Quebec. Where the vast majority of the province’s population lives along St. Lawrence, Videotron’s coverage leaves a significant impression.

Although the Videotron coverage map covers about 6% of Quebec, wider systems like Bell and TELUS outperform them. Plans from Videotron can be used anywhere in the nation with no additional roaming fees.

With the provider trying to reach 99% of the population and strong network coverage across Canada, the company now has all the same advantages and disadvantages as Bell. BellMTS, like Bell, does not offer domestic roaming, so phone calls outside their service area are expensive.

How To Select The Best Canadian Phone Plans for Your Needs?

Particularly regarding data, Canada is infamous for having some of the world’s most pricey cell phone plans. Prepare yourself if you want the newest iPhone and enough data to install a whole Netflix series while you’re out for a daily stroll.

Although we’ll try to present you with the most affordable options, there’s a good chance you’ll spend more than you were planning to. You can determine the type of your own phone plan by following these straightforward steps:

Coverage for Cell Phones

Despite having some of the quickest mobile data speeds in the world, it is difficult to provide cell service across the second-largest country. Despite this difficulty, nearly every business where Canadians reside has coverage thanks to Rogers, Bell, and Telus.

Although the cell phone plans offered by these three top-quality carriers are very pricey, they also run many “flanker” brands that are more reasonably priced.

  • Telus Mobility owns Koodo and Public Mobile.
  • Bell Mobility owns Lucky Mobile and Virgin Plus.
  • Fido and Chatr are owned by Rogers Wireless.

Access to the entire nationwide network of mobile phone towers is available to each sub-brand. Even on more affordable plans, you can still get premium network coverage.

Area-based Carriers

Regional carriers operate independent mobile networks in some regions of Canada and collaborate with Rogers, Bell, or Telus to offer nationwide service. Prices are frequently less expensive but come with restrictions; the main one is that you must reside in the carrier’s primary coverage area to subscribe.

Here are a few of the most well-known regional carriers and their locations:

  • Freedom Mobile: Urban areas in Ontario, Alberta, and British Columbia
  • Shaw Mobile: Alberta and British Columbia’s urban areas
  • Fizz: Ontario
  • SaskTel: Saskatchewan

Who Controls the Canadian Wireless Spectrum?

You may be wondering what “wireless spectrum” means first. All of our wireless technology uses radio frequency, also known as spectrum. The government initially owned and managed these frequencies before selling them to mobile phone providers. Carriers erect network towers to ensure that the signal reaches every part of the country.

Therefore, controlling the wireless spectrum is akin to maintaining the conduits that link cellular devices to the rest of the global infrastructure.

Although there has been much debate on the subject and constant talk of an oligopoly in the Canadian mobile carrier market, the top 3 carriers (including subordinate brands) control close to 90% of the market. That is a significant amount of share, for sure! They are:

  • Rogers Communications owns Rogers Wireless
  • BCE Inc. owns Bell Mobility
  • Telus Corporation owns Telus Mobility
  • Shaw Communications owns Freedom Mobile
  • Vidéotron owns Vidéotron Mobile
  • Sasktel – Owned by the provincial government owns Sasktel Mobility.

Who Is the Owner of All These Subsidiary Brands?

Consequently, you may think, “Great, all these big carriers are sponsored by bigger corporations with tonnes of assets at their disposal.” But who owns companies like Public Mobile, Koodo, Virgin, Chatr, and Lucky Mobile? What purpose do they serve?

These and other subsidiary brands may exist for several reasons, including:

  • Ability to distinguish service offerings: Koodo, owned by Telus, does not require you to sign a contract; in fact, there are no contracts at Koodo.
  • Reaching various market segments or demographics is possible. For instance, Bell owns Lucky Mobile but only offers prepaid services.
  • Through acquisitions: Rogers bought Mobilicity, and its customers were added to its Chatr brand.

These subsidiary brands rely on their parent company’s network strength and resources to provide their services. As a result, you can anticipate the same network quality and service area as the parent organization.

Defining Mobile Virtual Network Operator

So hopefully, things are starting to become a little clearer for mobile carriers. But who owns those arbitrary brands like P.C. Mobile, Petro Canada Mobility, and 7-Eleven SpeakOut that we see in gas stations and grocery stores, if not the major ones?

This brings us to the Mobile Virtual Network Operators, or MVNOs, who make up the next tier of mobile carriers. These mobile phone providers typically enter into rental contracts with the major carriers to operate their services on those networks; they do not own any wireless spectrum.

While these brands still require all business functions to operate an independent branded carrier, they can either set up their organization and support infrastructure or employ a company that we’ll discuss below:

  • Ztar Mobile owns 7-Eleven SpeakOut Wireless, which is operated by Rogers Wireless.
  • Cityfone is owned by Rogers Communications, which is operated by Rogers Wireless.
  • P.C. Mobile is owned by Loblaws, which Bell Mobility operates.
  • Petro Canada Mobility is held by Ztar Mobile, driven by Rogers Wireless.
  • Zoomer Wireless is owned by Zoomer Wireless operated by Rogers Wireless.

Defining Mobile Virtual Network Enablers

As mentioned above, an MVNO can be as clear and simple as a brand, with all network capabilities rented from those who own the spectrum. To complete the business model, they can also bring in an MVNE like Ztar Mobile to provide operational support, business support, and organizational functions.

Check Out MVNOs EXPLAINED! How Can They Charge Less?:


What Countries does T-Mobile Coverage?

There are almost 210 countries covered by T-mobile international plans, including:

• St. Lucia
• Curacao (Netherlands/Dutch Antilles)
• Bahamas
• Martinique
• Barbados
• Mexico
• Bermuda
• Montserrat
• Argentina
• Guyana
• Chile
• Costa Rica
• Paraguay
• Colombia
• Panama
• Aland Islands
• Cayman Islands
• Faroe Islands
• Luxembourg
• San Marino
• Alderney
• Finland
• Scotland
• Armenia
• France
• Canada
• Pakistan
• St. Barthelemy
• Afghanistan
• India
• Germany
• Wales
• Malaysia
• China
• Singapore
• South Korea
• Sri Lanka
• Sint Maarten
• Japan
• Thailand
• Indonesia

Who is the Biggest Cell Phone Provider in Canada?

Only a few organizations are attempting the business of the 30 million Canadians who own smartphones, who make up nearly three-quarters of the country’s population.

In Canada, there are three major telecom firms:

• The Rogers Corporation
• Inc. BCE
• Telus.

Each company has roughly 91% of the country’s telecom market control, serving 10,8 (Rogers Communication systems), 9,96 (Babylonian Inc.), and 8.1 (Telus) million users, respectively. The following two most popular mobile service providers in Canada, Shaw, and Videotron, currently have over 3 million and more than 2.2 million users, respectively.

Rogers Communications is the largest and, in the eyes of many, the best telecommunications provider in Canada. This company’s headquarters are in Toronto, and it has the most subscribers.

Can a Canadian get an American Cell Phone Plan?

Many Canadians abandon their Canadian plans in favor of a United States cell phone provider. The cost of American cell phone plans is significantly lower than that of Canadian programs. There are no additional add-on fees when you travel because they allow unlimited coverage plans in Mexico, Canada, and the United States. 

The top 5 U.S. cell phone providers that provide Canadians with the world’s best plans are listed here.

• Verizon
• T-Mobile
• AT&T
• Mint Mobile
• Chrome Fi

Final Thoughts

Finding the best mobile phone plan in Canada is more complex than ever because there are many cell phone companies and thousands of plans with large numbers of carriers. The prepaid carrier Fido offers the best deal, 20 G.B. of data, and a month of unlimited nationwide calling for just $55.

Check out a Koodo plan if you want to buy a new iPhone, or sign a two-year Fido contract to save money on a high-end Android smartphone. We have streamlined the process by emphasizing the top plans in each category and then outlining their salient features and potential benefits for you.

Last but not least, it’s crucial to realize that no Canadian phone service provider or phone plan is ideal for everyone. As a recent immigrant to Canada, you must conduct some research to understand your options and determine which phone plan best suits your requirements.