Friday, May 27, 2005

Virgin Mobile

Forgot to put this in my last post. Does any of my readers reader have any experience with Virgin Mobile. I was at a Radio Shack earlier this week and since I had nothing better to do (I was waiting on my car) I actually talked to the sales guy for a bit about my cell plan.

Now as I have mentioned before I am not much of a cell phone guy. I have a $10/month for life plan I got 10 or so years ago. No minutes and few bells & whistles, but it serves its purpose of allowing me to call someone if I need some help.

Now the Virgin Mobile plan is $20 every 3 months. Right now with tax, title, dealer prep, fondling & molesting I pay about $140 per year, assuming I do not use the phone at all. This would be $120 and, according to their advertising, all the money stays on the phone as long as you have the account open. Plus the cost per minute is lower than my Verizon plan.

The only downside I can see is Virgin Mobile uses Sprint for their carrier in the US. Sprint is not bad, but apparently if I am out of Sprints service area I have no phone service. This seems a bit unclear since both the Radio Shack salesman & the Virgin Mobile site says "No Roaming fees", but then again if I have no service outside of Sprint's area then they are teling the truth when they say "No Roaming fees" - if you can't roam there is no roaming fee. However given that I want to do a trip across some of the northern prairie states next year at best coverage is going to be very sporadic.

So, I was wondering if anyone has had any experience with Virign Mobile and possible roaming situations. Frankly I don't mind paying the roaming when I need my phone. I am very happy with Verizon, but damn $60/year difference is quite a bit, and it essentially has roll over. The downside is that if this ever goes belly up I would be looking at a 400+% increase in my cell bill. If I was not so attached to my landline I might consider killing it and just going with a cell phone. I am very attached to the number since that is the same number I have had all my life. I don't think I can transfer a landline to a cell line though.

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