Posts Tagged ‘roaming’
Today, Sara Graham, editor of TheTravelPresse.com, shares some highlights from her recent travels. The soon-to-be Prague-based travel writer has also written for various print and online publications including The Huffington Post. Follow her on Twitter @thetravelpresse.
Usually when I travel, it means taking photos with my camera, and waiting to upload them to social media until I get back to my computer.
Life just got so much simpler (and the photos so much better) for this traveler. Here’s how:
- Take your shot easily in low-light or nighttime: For low-light landscape photos, and night scenes, I easily made the shot by tapping on the screen to select the focal point. Presto … what was dark became light!
- Getting the perfect shot with HTC Zoe. The HTC One mini comes with an exclusive feature called HTC Zoe, which allowed me to take three-second living pictures (think Harry Potter). Afterwards, I was able to pick stills out of each Zoe. Brilliant!
- Share instantly: Good photos should be seen in the moment. Thanks to my Rogers data pack, I was able to keep my Instagram, Twitter and Facebook accounts alive with images every day. And by selecting a roaming pack before I left, I was able to stay on budget.
- Stay on track: Prague is a cobbled maze of streets, so GPS and long battery life is practically a lifeline. The HTC One mini helped me find addresses and get to appointments on time. Heck, I was even early for once!
After using the HTC One mini on my trip, I don’t think I’ll be returning to lugging my laptop or camera around on my travels again.
How do you use your smartphone when you’re travelling?
The CRTC’s Wireless Code comes into effect today. It applies to individual and small business customers who sign up for a new contract or renew their existing contract on or after Dec. 2, 2013. Rogers is in support of a national code, and we’re excited that Canadians now have a set of consistent standards across the country that provide equal protection to wireless customers no matter where they live.
We’ve put together this handy Q&A to help you understand what the Wireless Code means for you as a customer.
Who does the Wireless Code apply to?
The Code applies to individual and small business customers who have signed up for a new contract or renew their existing contract on or after Dec. 2, 2013.
What can I expect from the Code?
The Code sets specific requirements that all Canadian carriers must follow when it comes to key areas such as: easy to understand wireless services and fees, reasonable unlocking policies, a cap on certain fees, and the availability of online tools to monitor usage and any additional fees.
At Rogers, we have been proactive in addressing some of these areas even before the Code took effect:
- Rogers first introduced device unlocking in 2012. In March 2013, we revised our policy so that customers have the option to unlock their device sooner for a fee – as early as up to 90 days after activating the device on the Rogers network.
- We launched our new two-year term plans in August 2013, allowing our customers to upgrade to a new phone faster. Our new plans include unlimited Canada-Wide Talk and Text, and with Share Everything, you can share your plan with up to nine more devices.
- Rogers provides all customers with a welcome text message as soon as they start roaming. The message provides pay-per-use rates for voice, text messages and data use, as well as a link to purchase discounted roaming offers.
Additional changes covered by the Code:
- Roaming data overage charges for Travel Packs and roaming data pay-per-use charges will be capped at $100 per billing cycle.
- Domestic data overage charges will be capped at $50 per billing cycle.
- The 30-day cancellation notification period has been eliminated.
- Prepaid customers have a seven-day grace period, from the date their balance expires, to top up their balance and retain the unused amount.
Where can I find more information about the Code?
For more info about the code, check out the CRTC’s website here.
We’re always looking to improve the Rogers experience. With these changes, we’ll continue to work hard to deliver more value and to create a better experience for our customers.
There’s nothing more important to me than being home for the holidays. But travel during the holiday season rarely resembles the romance of Love Actually. In reality, it’s long drives in crowded carpools and delayed flights at the airport. So, when I embark on the long road home, I want my smartphone as a travel companion – but also worry about spending too much on roaming when I’m out of town. And I’m not alone, according to new research from Rogers:
- Seventy-eight per cent of Canadians would be more likely to roam if they knew exactly how much they would be charged;
- More than half of those who turn data off while travelling feel negative about the experience – twenty-nine per cent feel disconnected and out of touch if they can’t go online or use data and 28 per cent feel dependent on others for information;
- Data while travelling is important to them – eighty-one per cent of respondents who never roam admitted they see a need for data connectivity while travelling;
- Seventy-nine per cent admit to not understanding how roaming charges are incurred though most (69 per cent) know that certain activities use more data than others when roaming
- Messaging and use of maps are the most important tasks when travelling with sixty-one and sixty per cent, respectively, of respondents ranking them above email, checking the weather and social media.
Fear not! Just in time for your next trip, we’re introducing changes to make roaming even easier and more affordable:
- New U.S. Travel Packs. Fifty-four per cent of Canadian smartphone users consider access to voice, text and data equally important when purchasing a roaming package so we’ve added data to select packs while lowering the price points and increasing the bucket sizes.
- Coming soon: New International Travel Packs: We’ll soon introduce new simplified International Travel Packs that offer a lower price point, larger buckets and give you access to all three services – voice, SMS and data – bundled in one accessible package. These new Travel Packs will also provide notifications as you use data, so you can better manage your usage. Talk & Text only plans will continue to be available. Plan details and pricing will be announced in the coming weeks.
- More resources and tools available on TECH Essentials, a website packed with the information and tools you need to make informed decisions when travelling to the U.S. and overseas, including a data calculator to help estimate your usage.
Do you think you can just rely on Wi-Fi when you travel? If so, you’ll want to watch this video where we debunk some of the most common roaming myths.
While Canadian retailers are starting to get in on the act with their own offers, many Canadians still travel south of the border to enjoy great deals and rock-bottom prices.
If you’re thinking of heading south this week, here are some tips to make the most out of your trip.
Canadian shoppers who stay in the U.S. for 48 hours are now allowed to bring back up to $800 worth of duty-free goods, so you might want to consider staying for a couple of nights.
You’ll also want to leave early in order to avoid delays at the border (you can also check on border crossing times via the Canadian Border Service Agency’s website).
Make a list and check it twice: Know which stores you want to hit. As well, prioritizing your list is important. The first store you visit should be the one that has your must-have item so you’re not disappointed by sold-out shelves.
Look for deals online
Do you ever watch Extreme Couponing in envy? Websites and Twitter accounts specific to Black Friday savings are a great resource for finding the best high-value coupons.
Be sure to check the fine print before you head to the store and stay on top of any early bird specials as these can offer the deepest discounts.
Your smartphone can be your Black Friday lifeline if you need directions, want to find exclusive online offers, or share the great deals you’ve found on Facebook or Twitter.
Rogers customers who are staying in the U.S. for a couple of days may want to consider getting one of our travel packs, which give a combination of talk, text and data when roaming in the U.S. We recently doubled the amount of data and minutes on select packs while cutting prices.
Just going for the day? Rogers customers can stay connected worry-free with the Rogers U.S. Roaming Internet Rate, which gives you 50 MB of data for up to 24 hours. You don’t need to add this to your account; just turn data roaming ON and it will automatically kick in once you cross the border. (Customers in Newfoundland and Quebec will need to opt-in one time only.)
Send a free text with the word “usage” to 3330 at any time to check how much data you have used. You’ll also get a text message to let you know if you’re approaching 50 MB. If you need more data, it’s only an additional $7.99 and you get another 50 MB to use during the 24 hour period.
To celebrate Black Friday, we’re giving away a Samsung Galaxy Note 3, a Moto X and a Nexus 5. To be entered to win one of these prizes, you just need to take a picture of your Black Friday purchase or what you would have liked to purchase and tweet the picture to @RogersBuzz with the hashtag #RogersRoamTrip.
Enter the contest here.
Contest starts at 10 a.m. on Nov. 25, 2013 and continues until 4 p.m. on Dec. 2, 2013. No purchase necessary. Read the full contest rules here.
Are you heading to the U.S. in search of Black Friday deals?
Guidebooks – once a necessity – are quickly being rendered obsolete by the wealth of information that can be accessed online and by the multitudes of travel apps available on our smartphones.
As a professional travel blogger, I travel a lot and have come to rely heavily on my Samsung Galaxy SII Android smartphone for information. Here are a few of the apps and tricks I use on the road.
Find great restaurants
The days of taking a chance on an unfamiliar restaurant are over. Yelp (free) has become far and away the most-used app for user-generated bar and restaurant reviews. Yelp is hooked in to your smartphone’s GPS, so it will find restaurants near you and recommend the best based on other people’s reviews. When you choose your restaurant, just push the ‘get directions’ button and Yelp will open up Google Maps and auto-load driving directions. You can also try Alfred (free), which is similar to Yelp but is programmed to learn your taste and make suggestions based on the restaurants that you enjoyed in the past.
Checking your email and Facebook from your phone on the go is convenient, but if you spend a significant amount of time online like I do, you need to find Wi-Fi. WiFi Finder (free) finds both free and paid hotspots near you so you can plop down and crack open the laptop to really get some work done.
Save Your Battery
Using maps to navigate can drain your battery and power sources aren’t always readily available on the road. Getting the most out of my battery is a top priority, and Juice Defender (free) is an exceptional power saver. When I installed it, my battery life appeared to last 20 to 40 per cent longer. You can also purchase second batteries fairly inexpensively.
When you find yourself lost on a back road in Minnesota, you won’t need to worry about the potential costs of opening up Google Maps for a couple of hours, thanks to the Rogers U.S. roaming rate. Rogers offers a $7.99/day roaming rate for Canadians travelling in the United States, which allows for up to 50 MB of data download per day (way more than most people use). For more information visit Rogers.com/roaming.
On some trips, everything seems to go wrong. It’s as though Murphy’s Law applies tenfold while travelling — so it’s important to be prepared for the worst. Fortunately, there’s an app for that. You can also protect your smartphone from loss or theft using Lookout Security (free), which enables you to remotely lock your lost or stolen phone, locate it using GPS, or wipe all the data.
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Home or away, I’m always on my smartphone – mapping where to go, looking up restaurants and sharing with friends. Now, Rogers is offering customers LTE roaming in the U.S., allowing travellers to enjoy the same blazing fast speeds they’re used to at home on the Rogers network.
In partnership with AT&T Mobility, we’re excited to be the first Canadian carrier to offer LTE roaming for customers travelling in the U.S. Rogers customers can also enjoy LTE speeds while roaming in Switzerland, Hong Kong and South Korea.
We know our customers want to get the most out of their phones when they’re roaming – and to help, we:
- Offer fast LTE speeds with a worry-free $7.99 per day U.S. roaming internet rate
- Send you free data usage notifications when you text “usage” to 3330 while roaming in the U.S.
- Offer international roaming plans with prices as low as $1/MB and lowered our prices on default international data rates
- Send Data Pass customers text alerts when they reach 50 per cent, 80 per cent and 100 per cent of their data usage. To ensure you never spend more than you expect, we stop your data usage once you’ve hit the MBs included in your Data Pass.
Want to learn more about roaming? Read about how Rogers employees used the $7.99/day U.S. roaming internet rate to stay social in San Francisco and share their excitement at a Buffalo Bisons game or visit www.rogers.com/roaming.
“Do I really have to pick just one?” she asks the day after completing her four-day trek.
Finally, Julia settles on Hearst Castle, located in San Simeon, Calif. With nearly 200 rooms, including one that reminded her of Hogwart’s from Harry Potter, Julia said it definitely was the top of her list. “It had amazing views of the Pacific Ocean,” she said, adding the property even has animals, such as zebras and cattle.
But her favourite spot at Hearst Castle reminded her of the Roman Baths, with marble tile and columns and statues as well as a swimming pool. “It’s one of the most beautiful rooms I’ve ever seen.”
Julia travelled from Los Angeles to San Francisco this week, via the Pacific Coast Highway. She documented her trip on a Rogers Samsung Galaxy S4 smartphone, which was enabled with the new Rogers U.S. roaming internet rate. For only $7.99/day, Rogers customers get up to 50 MB of data.
Julia said it’s really important to be able to stay connected while travelling. Thanks to the Rogers U.S. roaming internet rate, Julia was able to plan her trip as she travelled, and look up area restaurants and attractions while she was on the road, instead of waiting until she got back to the hotel.
“It was so nice not to have to search for Wi-Fi. I could just pull up (the info) on my phone.”
The Rogers U.S. roaming internet rate also allowed Julia to stay in touch with her friends, family and followers on social media. She was able to share up-to-the-minute travel photos in real time, so those following along on her trip could share all the sights.
Looking for a road trip idea? Julia recommends the route she took this week because there are lots of places to stop and explore. After all, being on a road trip doesn’t mean you spend all your time in a car.
There’s still time to enter the Rogers Roamtrip contest. Click here and tell us what you would do with the new Rogers $7.99/Day U.S. roaming internet rate. You could win a Rogers Ultimate Roamtrip prize pack: which includes a cash prize of $5,000, a Samsung Note 8.0 tablet and a Samsung Galaxy S4. Contest closes August 15, 2013. Open to residents of Canada who are 18 years or older. No purchase necessary. See full rules for all details.
Where have you road-tripped this summer?
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We’ve been a little travel-crazy this summer, talking about everything from the best apps to get you through your vacation to how to manage your data when you’re on the road. So, we figured, why stop now? We hit the streets to find out how travellers are using their smartphones this summer.
With our new worry-free U.S. internet roaming rate you can get up to 50 MB of data per 24 hour period for $7.99 – that’s a lot of mapping, social networking and sharing! There’s no sign-up required, so you can get started the second you cross the border. Existing customers in Quebec and Newfoundland may need to opt in, one time only, by visiting www.rogers.com/m/dus on their mobile device. For more, visit http://www.rogers.com/travel.
How do you use your smartphone when you’re on holiday?
She caught the travel bug on a trip to Italy at 16. Since then, Julia has travelled to 80 countries on all seven continents.
The Canadian writer, who now lives in Los Angeles, is currently taking a Rogers Roamtrip along the Pacific Coast Highway in California. Her road trip started yesterday in L.A., and she’ll make her way to San Francisco by Thursday.
She’s documenting her trip on a Rogers Samsung Galaxy S4 smartphone, that’s enabled with the new Rogers US roaming internet rate. For only $7.99 a day, Rogers customers get up to 50 MB of data. You can follow Julia’s travels on Twitter or on her blog, Travel Junkie Julia. Of course, we’ll also be posting the highlights from her trip here on RedBoard and on @RogersBuzz.
Before she left, we asked Julia for her travel and technology tips.
How do you use your smartphone on the road?
I use my smartphone for maps, getting from point A to point B with the least amount of traffic in the quickest amount of time. I also use it for restaurant recommendations or areas of interest that might be nearby.
Was there a trip from the pre-cellphone age where you wished you could access the internet from your wireless device? What happened?
I went on a road trip with my parents through Arizona when I was a teenager. As a cranky teenager, a family road trip was the last thing I was interested in. I know my teenage self would have wished to have the technology of today, so I could stay in touch with friends, tweet, share photos and stay connected.
Why is it important to stay connected while you’re travelling?
For safety, for ease, to have information at your fingertips, to stay in touch with loved ones and share the travel experience in real time.
How has technology changed the way you vacation over the past 10 years?
The ease of acquiring and sharing information has changed the way I travel. With the click of a button you can pull up maps, reviews, apps, language translation services and currency exchanges.
Is there something you used to bring on trips that your smartphone replaces now?
I used to bring paperback guide books with me when I travelled, but having a smartphone changes that. I can now pull up valuable travel info (from maps, to hotels, attractions and transportation advice) using my phone.
What advice do you have for someone planning a U.S. roadtrip?
- Don’t get too ambitious with your itinerary. You don’t want to be pulling 10-hour drive days.
- Make plenty of stops — at least one every two hours;
- Pack a phone charger for your car;
- Use these apps:
- Gas Buddy (Android, iOS, BlackBerry, Windows): Select a city, plug in your zip code and the aggregator will present all of your fuel options by distance and price;
- SitOrSquat (Android, iOS): A bathroom finder that provides a list of nearby places to make a pit stop;
- Sites like Groupon, yipit and Living Social have deals to the cities you may be visiting. Sign up and check out the activities they offer.
Rogers and Samsung would like to send you on your own Rogers Roamtrip. Click here and tell us what you would do with the new Rogers $7.99/Day US roaming internet rate. You could win a Rogers Ultimate Roamtrip prize pack: which includes a cash prize of $5,000, a Samsung Note 8.0 tablet and a Samsung Galaxy S4. Contest closes August 15, 2013. Open to residents of Canada who are 18 years or older. No purchase necessary. See full rules for all details.
Where would you go on your ultimate summer road trip?
Update: Aug. 21: We’re happy to announce Victoria Smith from Halifax has been awarded with a Rogers Roamtrip. She is super excited to take her “extremely good-looking” boyfriend to New York this September. While in New York, she’ll be using her new Samsung Galaxy S4 smartphone to stay in touch with friends, snap photos, and resolve arguments she has with her boyfriend. Her new Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 LTE tablet will be used to take and view pictures, keep up with work and play scrabble. Thank you to everyone who participated in our Rogers Ultimate Roamtrip Contest! We’ll stay in touch with Victoria as she travels to the U.S. in the fall and share her experience here on RedBoard.
While I work in social media (catch me @RogersSarahM) I’m also active on social networks — particularly Twitter — in my downtime. It’s rare to see me without my smartphone in hand.
I’m also a huge fan of the Toronto Blue Jays baseball team, so I was so excited about a summer road trip to the U.S. to see the Jays Triple-A farm team, the Buffalo Bisons I wasn’t sure if I could live without my phone.
Normally, I turn off my roaming internet when I cross the border. But this time, thanks to the new Rogers U.S. roaming internet rate, I didn’t have to. For $7.99, I got 50 MB of data for 24 hours. That was more than enough for me to tweet, Instagram and Vine my way through my 24 hours in Buffalo (not to mention use Google Maps when I got lost).
How it worked
My husband and I decided to walk across the Rainbow Bridge from Niagara Falls, Ont., to Niagara Falls, N.Y. Once we got through customs on the other side, I got a text message from Rogers telling me I was roaming and would be charged the $7.99 rate. There was nothing for me to subscribe to, and I didn’t need to call ahead, it just happened.* So easy!
One of the first things I did with my data was to check-in on FourSquare, naturally.
As we navigated our way to Buffalo, I looked up our hotel on Google Maps as well as where we would be eating dinner.
But the game was where I really made use of my data.
When I attend events, especially baseball games, my tweeting goes into overdrive. Thanks to the U.S. roaming rate, I was able to do the same at the Bisons game.
I sent out tweets, shared photos and even shot videos on Vine as I normally would do at a Toronto Blue Jays game. In total, I sent nearly 40 tweets, created four Vine videos, and posted seven photos to Instagram and on Facebook.
I knew I didn’t have to worry about my usage, because as part of the U.S. roaming internet rate, Rogers would send me a text message when I hit 90 per cent of my data (used 45 MB). Of course, I did all my social media activity without coming close to the 50MB — so there was no need for a text message alert! On top of that, I could check my usage at anytime by texting 3330, as my colleague Katie did when she was in San Francisco.
Before the U.S. roaming internet rate, I would have switched my phone into airplane mode before I crossed the border, but now I’m able to stay connected just like when I’m at home. Now I can travel and keep my fellow fans up to date on every pitch, catch and stadium hotdog!
* Existing customers in Quebec and Newfoundland may need to sign up, one time only, by visiting www.rogers.com/m/dus on their mobile device.
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