May 11, 2009, 10:47 PM
Post #10 of 10
Re: [johanson] No Minuet Count, Unlimited Calls to Mexico Cheap!
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Another very good cell phone company is Iusacell. Unfortunately, although their roaming service is very good throughout the Republic, their regular reception is not good in many areas. A couple of years ago my wife and her Mom went over to Ajijic to visit her aunt. We had an add on to both of our plans at that time and for a flat fee of $90 Pesos per month we could call each others cell phone anywhere in the Republic at no cost or use of our minutes. When I called her in Ajijic the phone would ring in the house, but she had to go outside to talk to me.
Iusacell will furnish you a good, better, or best phone at no charge if you sign a one, two, or three year contract with them. They will also furnish new batteries at no cost as needed. We weren't aware of that benefit for several years. One of our daughters sent us one of her old Verizon phones from California, it used the same batteries as the Iusacell phone Doris had. The batteries would not hold a charge very long though, she had to charge the phone frequently using the car cord.
One of our nieces in México City then told Doris that Iusacell would give her free batteries. When Doris came home and told me that we could go to one of the Iusacell offices and get free batteries, I thought privately that it sounded like pie in the sky to me. To keep peace in the family, I went to the Iusacell office with her.
When Doris showed the phone to a young woman at the counter and asked for new batteries, the woman looked at the phone and took the battery out of it and said “they don't make this model of phone anymore, and we can't get batteries for it anymore. We can give you a new phone though.” I thought, here comes the hook. I asked her how much a new phone was going to cost us. She replied, we are obligated to furnish you new batteries, we can't do that, so we will give you a new phone at no cost. I was happily flabbergasted.
It turned out that the young woman that helped us with the battery problem speaks fluent English. She has become our friend. She was transferred to a couple of different offices, and we followed her. She is now the Gerente of the office where she is assigned now. It is extremely rare to find an English speaking person in any business or government office in Cuernavaca. It is kind of neat for me to have a n English speaking friend that is the chief of an office for our cell phone provider. Any little problems I have, she solves them quick. Doris has no problem speaking Spanish to her of course. For me, it is often a problem finding the right words for technical stuff.
We earn a couple of thousand premium points every month with Iusacell. I never could find out what they were good for except I was always told for “benefits.” It turns out that about every two years, we have enough points to get a new phone at no cost on each of our plans. Doris is on her third new, free phone and I am on my second.
We are allowed to keep the old phones whenever we get a new one. If we want to buy a $200 Peso prepaid phone card, Iusacell will program the old phone and assign a new number to it at no cost other than the price of the prepaid card so we may loan it to visitors. At present, we have four perfectly serviceable spare cell phones, not counting the one with the weak batteries.
Our daughter gave me a couple of her old Verizon phones on my last couple of trips to visit her in California in case I wanted to have them reprogrammed to use prepaid cards down here. She gave me a Nokia phone last February that is only two years old. She installed a long life battery in it and it still has the new, unused standard battery, owners manual, car cord, etc. I verified that I can buy a prepaid card for it from Verizon and they will assign a new number for it. I plan to use it on future trips to The US, like some of the business people do. Iusacell will loan me a phone to use in The US and I must pay for any calls made up there when I return the phone to them. I don't even want to guess how much the charge per minute might be.
Iusacell service is not particularly cheap. I pay about $350 Pesos per month, that includes about 350 minutes and road service for minor repairs, tire changing, towing, and delivery of 5 liters of gasoline if needed. I dropped the $90 Peso charge to call Doris phone at no cost as I seldom use any of my minutes in any month. I carry a cell phone mostly for security in case of a car wreck to call an adjuster, etc.
Doris' Iusacell plan costs about $650 Pesos per month and includes 750 minutes (not too much for her), it includes the feature of free calls to my cell phone anywhere in the Republic, the same road service that I have, etc.
The road service costs $30 pesos additional for each phone. For about US$2.25 each it is cheap insurance that I hope we never need to use, but it is a comfort to have it.
I know it isn't useful everywhere here, but in the central highlands, Iusacell is king.
"The supreme happiness of life is the conviction that we are loved" - Victor Hugo