The best Black Friday internet deals are in-store

Once again, I trawled the streets of Toronto to see if popping into actual carrier stores would get me a better deal online than shopping online—and again, it did.

I wasn’t expecting nearly every carrier to offer the same upload speed, leaving me with only one real option to upgrade.

Here is the summary of my trip.

Any adventurous shopping journey begins online

First, I needed to find the best deals in my area, any restrictions the salespeople might have on us, and determine what my current plan offered.

I started with Teksavvy’s $79 per month plan at 150mbps and 30mbps downlink. This isn’t a bad plan, but I was aiming to find something that would lower my monthly rate or offer me much faster speed for the same price. At the time, Teksavvy wasn’t running any deals, but the day after I sat down to write this story, it launched several great offers.

Overall, the best deal I could find in my online area was a $74 plan from a seller called Primus that lets me download 1.5Gbps but only upload 30Mbps.

I also searched the Red Flag Deals tech deal forums to see if there were any deals I could try to get into by calling or chatting online with the carrier’s sales department. I found some users getting a great deal of 1.5Gbps with a basic Bell TV for $60, but the company refused to offer that deal at my house. Based on what I found out, it appears to be an apartment exclusive plan.

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After some more searching, I left the house and went to the mall.

real world deals

On my way to the mall, I stopped by the Rogers & Bell stores across the street and picked up a few offers to start. One thing to note here is that these sales seem to be highly dependent on where I live. So while I can’t promise the same deals will be available across Canada, I’d suggest popping into some of your local stores and asking.

The Bell shop offered me 500mbps up/down for $85 a month with no contract. On the other hand, Rogers had a much better deal, but not as good as the internet. The carrier offered 1Gbps downstream and up to 30Mbps for $65 per month for a year with a $100 bill balance.

Finally, going to the mall, Virgin Plus and Fido brands have cut their plans by nearly 50 percent. You can probably get a 100Mbps plan for $45 per month or a 50Mbps plan for $40. These are ridiculously good deals for most people’s internet purposes. However, as I mentioned, I’m looking for a reasonable upload speed upgrade and they both top out at 10Mbps, which is a downgrade from the current 30Mbps.

“Online, this package still gets you a $200 gift card and six months of Crave, but the internet speeds aren’t quite as fast, and the prices are much higher.”

And the fact that these companies have upload caps feels very anti-consumer. It’s strange that Virgin Plus (owned by Bell) doesn’t offer faster upload speeds since that’s a huge selling feature that Bell uses to lure people away from Rogers and other high-profile players in the internet business.

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After finding out that the release and Rogers brands wouldn’t work for me because the best upload I could get from them would be 30mbps or less, I unfortunately headed to another Bell shop.

This was a very nice move. I’m not too happy with the price I have to pay, but the salesperson at this store was helpful and built a package that matched the $85 price of the previous site but instead included 1.5Gbps upload and download speeds, six months of Crave ($20 class) and a card $200 Visa Gifts and Basic TV Package No Contract. I tried as hard as I could to get 500mbps speeds instead because that’s all I needed to give myself a bit of an upgrade, but the way the bundle discounts worked, the offer couldn’t budge any lower. This deal at least gave me more for my money, but who knows if I’d actually watch the TV package.

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One side note regarding the TV portion of the package is that originally it was a standard cable TV package with a receiver that had to be installed in my house under a two year contract. The salesperson told me that the contract can be waived if you self-install or use Internet TV through the Bell app. This was huge for me, since this coming Black Friday, ideally, I’ll try to lower that price again.

This online package still gets you a $200 gift card and six months of Crave, but the internet speeds aren’t quite as fast, and the prices are much higher.

What does this mean for you?

Overall, I hope everyone can take advantage of the deals I’ve found, but since internet service and deals are so dependent on your home address, it’s hard to say what people could actually be getting this year on Black Friday.

Having said that, if I’ve learned anything, it’s that going into stores and calling sales representatives seems to provide the best deals on the Internet. If you are as lucky as me and can change providers, shopping around will always help as well.

For a roundup of all of our Black Friday deals, follow this link. You can find the best deals at Canadian retailers here.


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