Roaming with Virgin Mobile Canada: All You Need to Know

Virgin Mobile offers great deals for Canadians. The plans are competitive in the domestic market, but are their roaming plans also competitive? Is roaming with Virgin Mobile Canada worth it, and what are your roaming options? We will find out today.

Can I roam with Virgin Mobile Canada?

Virgin Mobile Canada customers on a plan can roam in over 190 destinations, of which you get access to LTE (4G) networks in more than 170 destinations with Roam Sweet Roam. Roam Sweet Home has two options: roaming with home data and with 100 MB that does not come out of your plan. Roaming options start at $8 a day and include unlimited talk & text.

No idea how roaming works? I made this comprehensive guide about what roaming is and how it works. It is worth the read – promised!

If your destination is not covered with Roam Sweet Home, which are not many, then you can purchase a travel pass.

What do I need to know about roaming with Virgin Mobile Canada?

Virgin Mobile Canada offers 4 types of roaming options:

  • Roam Sweet Home with Home Data
  • Home Sweet Home with 100 MB
  • Travel Passes
  • Pay Per Use Rates (No Data)

Each roaming options has its sub-options, which we will discuss throughout this article. There are a couple of things you need to know before we discuss each roaming option in-depth.

Important notes for Roam Sweet Home Options

  • Your Roam Sweet Home allowance will remain valid each day until 11:59 PM Eastern Time (ET) regardless of where you are roaming
  • Taxes are extra
  • You should not purchase a travel pass if you are in a Roam Sweet Roam destination. If you do, then you will not have access to your travel pass allowance. Instead, Roam Sweet Roam prices will apply to your roaming usage
  • Calling to Virgin Care is free regardless of the destination you are

Important notes for International Travel Passes

  • You have to activate the Travel Pass within 30 days of purchase. It activates as soon as you use your first minute, text, or kilobyte of data roaming
  • Your Travel Pass expires 72 hours or 30 days after activation, depending on the validity of the pass
  • Travel Passes are stackable, meaning you can buy as many as you want and need

Virgin Mobile Canada – Roam Sweet Home

There are 2 variants of both Roam Sweet Home options:

  • Roam Sweet Home – The U.S
  • Roam Sweet Home – International

With Roam Sweet Home – The U.S., you can roam in the United States, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands for $7 or $8 a day depending on whether you want to use your home data or not (Canadian Dollars – CAD). You can make unlimited outgoing calls within the U.S., Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands and calls back to Canada. You do not have to pay for receiving incoming calls, and those are unrestricted too. Finally, you can send and receive as many text messages as you want.

With Roam Sweet Home – International, you can roam in 191 destinations for $11 or $12 a day depending on whether or not you want to use your home data. You can make as many unlimited outgoing calls within your destination and to Canada as you want. Receiving calls is included in the deal, and you can send and receive unlimited text messages.

If you want to roam with your home data, you have to text ROAMHOME to 6800.

If you want to Roam Sweet Roam with data that does not come out of your plan, you have to text ROAM100 to 4800, and you get 100 MB that does not come out of your bundle.

Virgin Mobile Canada – Roam Sweet Home With or without home data

Virgin Mobile customers get the option to choose whether they want to use data from their plans or not. Until November 6th, 2019, the option without using your plan’s data, with 100 MB, costs $1 less per day than with your home data ($7/$11 a day vs. $8/$12 a day). From that date, the prices will be equal.

It can be useful to opt-in for the with 100 MB roaming option in case you do not have that much data left or is your data plan does not have data included. For example, with the Bring Your Own Phone $35/$45 with 500 or unlimited minutes plan, you have to pay per used data.

Virgin Mobile Canada – Travel Passes

For destinations not covered with Roam Sweet Roam, one can purchase a travel pass. You can also get a travel pass if Roam Sweet Roam covers the destination you want to go to but do not want to spend at least $7 a day on roaming.

The following travel passes are available:

  • US Travel Passes ($10, $20, $40, $50 & $80)
  • International Travel Passes – Zone 1 ($30, $60, $75 & $100)
  • International Travel Passes – Zone 2 ($30, $60, $75 & $100)
  • International Travel Passes – Zone 3 ($40, $75 & $100)
  • International Travel Passes – Zone 5 (Cuba) ($30, $60, $75 & $100)

There is no International Travel Pass for zone 4 destinations.

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You can purchase travel passes on the Virgin Mobile My Account App (Android/iOS) by tapping on the Travel & Roaming section. From there, you select the destination you want to go to, select the pass you want, and buy it.

You can also buy travel passes on the web by logging into My Account and going to the Travel Pass Page (login required). Click on Roaming & Travel, enter the destination you want to go to, select the pass you want, and buy it.

Virgin Mobile Canada – US Travel Passes

The following 5 US Travel Passes are available:

  • $10 US data Travel Pass – 50 MB (72 hours)
  • $20 US data Travel Pass – 100 MB (30 days)
  • $40 US voice, text & data Travel Pass – 200 MB (30 days)*
  • $50 US data Travel Pass – 1 GB (30 days)
  • $80 US voice, text & data Travel Pass – 1 GB (30 Days)*

Below you can find an overview of perks you get of each US Travel Pass:

Note: The table is best viewed in landscape mode or desktop view (when on mobile)

$MinTextDataValidity
$10 50 MB 72 hours
$20 100 MB30 days
$40* 200Unlimited200 MB30 days
$50 1 GB30 days
$80*1000Unlimited1 GB30 days

* If you use all the included data, your data roaming service will be suspended until you add more. This can be done by purchasing a data-only pass. If you run out of your minutes, you will be charged $0.20 per minute.

Virgin Mobile Canada – Zone 1 International Travel Passes

The following 4 International Travel Passes for zone 1 destinations are available:

  • $30 Zone 1 data Travel Pass – 250 MB (30 days)
  • $60 Zone 1 voice, text & data Travel Pass – 250 MB (30 days)*
  • $75 Zone 1 data Travel Pass – 1 GB (30 days)
  • $100 Zone 1 voice, text & data Travel Pass – 1 GB (30 days)*

Below you can find an overview of perks you get of each zone 1 Travel Pass:

Note: The tables are best viewed in landscape mode or desktop view (when on mobile)

$MinTextDataValidity
$30 250 MB30 days
$60*100200250 MB30 days
$75 1 GB30 days
$100*1002001 GB30 days

* If you use all the included data, your data roaming service will be suspended until you add more. This can be done by purchasing a data-only pass. If you run out of your minutes or texts, you will be charged $0.50 per minute or $0.15 per text.

Virgin Mobile Canada – Zone 2 International Travel Passes

The following 4 International Travel Passes for zone 2 destinations are available:

  • $30 Zone 2 data Travel Pass – 200 MB (30 days)
  • $60 Zone 2 voice, text & data Travel Pass – 200 MB (30 days)*
  • $75 Zone 2 data Travel Pass – 500 MB (30 days)
  • $100 Zone 2 voice, text & data Travel Pass – 500 MB (30 days)*

Below you can find an overview of perks you get of each zone 2 Travel Pass:

$MinTextDataValidity
$30 200 MB30 days
$60*75200200 MB30 days
$75 500 MB30 days
$100*75200500 MB30 days

* If you use all the included data, your data roaming service will be suspended until you add more. This can be done by purchasing a data-only pass. If you run out of your minutes or texts, you will be charged $0.80 per minute or $0.20 per text.

Virgin Mobile Canada – Zone 3 International Travel Passes

The following 4 International Travel Passes for zone 3 destinations are available:

  • $40 Zone 3 data Travel Pass – 100 MB (30 days)
  • $75 Zone 3 data Travel Pass – 250 MB (30 days)
  • $75 Zone 3 voice, text & data Travel Pass – 100 MB (30 days)*
  • $100 Zone 3 voice, text & data Travel Pass – 250 MB (30 days)*

Below you can find an overview of perks you get of each zone 3 Travel Pass:

$MinTextDataValidity
$40 100 MB30 days
$75 250 MB30 days
$75 2550100 MB30 days
$100 2550250 MB30 days

Virgin Mobile Canada – Zone 5 (Cuba) International Travel Passes

The following 4 International Travel Passes for Cuba (Zone 5) are available:

  • $30 Cuba data Travel Pass – 300 MB (30 days)
  • $60 Cuba voice, text & data Travel Pass – 300 MB (30 days)*
  • $75 Cuba data Travel Pass – 1 GB (30 days)
  • $100 Cuba voice, text & data Travel Pass – 1 GB (30 days)*

Below you can find an overview of perks you get of each Cuba Travel Pass:

$MinTextDataValidity
$30 300 MB30 days
$60*50200300 MB30 days
$75 1 GB30 days
$100* 502001 GB 30 days

* If you use all the included data, your data roaming service will be suspended until you add more. This can be done by purchasing a data-only pass. If you run out of your minutes or texts, you will be charged $0.75 per minute or $0.15 per text.

Set up FREE flight alerts and get notified when ticket prices drop via Airfarewatchdog!

Virgin Mobile Canada – Pay As You Go Roaming Rates

Pay As You Go Roaming options are available to those who do not want to Roam Sweet Roam or get a Travel Pass. You cannot, however, data roam on Pay As You Go Roaming rates.

Below is an overview of the Pay As You Go Roaming Rates:

ZoneVoiceText
United States$1.45$0.75
Zone 1$2.00 $0.75
Zone 2$3.00 $0.75
Zone 3$3.50 $0.75
Zone 4$3.50 $0.75
Zone 5 (Cuba)$2.00 $0.75

You pay for both incoming and outgoing calls. Receiving text messages is free.

Where can I roam with Virgin Mobile Canada?

Each roaming option has different destinations where you can use them or uses different zoning systems. The destinations per product will be listed below. Note that the zoning system is only relevant if you wish to get a Travel Pass and do not want to roam with any Roam Sweet Roam options.

Virgin Mobile Canada Roam Sweet Roam The U.S. $7/$8 Destinations

  • United States
  • Puerto Rico
  • U.S. Virgin Islands

Virgin Mobile Canada Roam Sweet Roam $11/$12 International Destinations

  • Afghanistan
  • Aland Islands
  • Albania
  • Algeria
  • Anguilla
  • Antigua & Barbuda
  • Argentina
  • Armenia
  • Aruba
  • Australia
  • Austria
  • Azerbaijan
  • Bahamas
  • Bahrain
  • Bangladesh
  • Barbados
  • Belarus
  • Belgium
  • Belize
  • Benin
  • Bermuda
  • Bhutan
  • Bolivia
  • Bonaire
  • Bosnia & Herzegovina
  • Botswana
  • Brazil
  • British Virgin Islands
  • Brunei
  • Bulgaria
  • Burkina Faso
  • Cambodia
  • Cameroon
  • Cayman Islands
  • Central African Republic
  • Chad
  • Chile
  • China
  • Colombia
  • Congo
  • Congo (Democratic Republic)
  • Costa Rica
  • Côte d’Ivoire
  • Croatia
  • Cuba
  • Curacao
  • Cyprus
  • Czech Republic (Czechia)
  • Denmark
  • Dominica
  • Dominican Republic
  • Ecuador
  • Egypt
  • El Salvador
  • Estonia
  • Eswatini
  • Faroe Islands
  • Fiji
  • Finland
  • France
  • French Guiana
  • French
  • Polynesia
  • Gabon
  • Georgia
  • Germany
  • Ghana
  • Gibraltar
  • Greece
  • Greenland
  • Grenada
  • Guadeloupe
  • Guam
  • Guatemala
  • Guernsey
  • Guinea
  • Guinea-Bissau
  • Guyana
  • Haiti
  • Honduras
  • Hong Kong
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • India
  • Indonesia
  • Iraq
  • Ireland
  • Isle of Man
  • Israel
  • Italy
  • Jamaica
  • Japan
  • Jersey
  • Jordan
  • Kazakhstan
  • Kenya
  • Kosovo
  • Kuwait
  • Kyrgyzstan
  • Laos
  • Latvia
  • Lesotho
  • Liberia
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Macau
  • Malawi
  • Malaysia
  • Mali
  • Malta
  • Martinique
  • Mauritius
  • Mayotte
  • Mexico
  • Moldova
  • Monaco
  • Mongolia
  • Montenegro
  • Montserrat
  • Morocco
  • Mozambique
  • Myanmar
  • Namibia
  • Nauru
  • Nepal
  • Netherlands
  • New Zealand
  • Nicaragua
  • Niger
  • Nigeria
  • North Macedonia
  • Northern Mariana Islands
  • Norway
  • Oman
  • Pakistan
  • Palestinian territories
  • Panama
  • Paraguay
  • Peru
  • Philippines
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Qatar
  • Reunion
  • Romania
  • Russia
  • Rwanda
  • Saba
  • San Marino
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Senegal
  • Serbia
  • Sierra Leone
  • Singapore
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • South Africa
  • South Korea
  • Spain
  • Sri Lanka
  • St Maarten
  • St. Barthelemy
  • St. Eustatius
  • St. Kitts & Nevis
  • St. Lucia
  • St. Martin
  • St. Vincent & the Grenadines
  • Suriname
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Taiwan
  • Tajikistan

Virgin Mobile Canada International Travel Pass Zone 1 destinations

  • Aland Islands
  • Albania
  • Andorra
  • Anguilla
  • Antigua & Barbuda
  • Aruba
  • Australia
  • Austria
  • Bahamas
  • Barbados
  • Belgium
  • Bermuda
  • Bonaire
  • Bosnia & Herzegovina
  • British Virgin Islands
  • Bulgaria
  • Cayman Islands
  • China
  • Croatia
  • Curacao
  • Cyprus
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Dominica
  • Dominican Republic
  • Estonia
  • Faroe Islands
  • Finland
  • France
  • French Guiana
  • Germany
  • Gibraltar
  • Greece
  • Greenland
  • Grenada
  • Guadeloupe
  • Guernsey
  • Haiti
  • Hong Kong
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • Ireland
  • Isle Of Man
  • Israel 
  • Italy
  • Jamaica
  • Japan
  • Jersey
  • Kosovo
  • Latvia
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • North Macedonia
  • Macau
  • Malta
  • Martinique
  • Mexico
  • Monaco
  • Montenegro
  • Montserrat
  • Netherlands
  • New Zealand
  • Norway
  • Poland 
  • Portugal 1
  • Romania
  • Saba
  • San Marino
  • Serbia
  • Singapore
  • Sint Maarten
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • South Korea
  • Spain 2 
  • St. Barthelemy
  • St. Eustatius
  • St. Kitts & Nevis
  • St. Lucia
  • St. Martin
  • St. Pierre And Miquelon 3
  • St Vincent & The Grenadines
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Taiwan
  • Trinidad & Tobago
  • Turkey
  • Turks & Caicos
  • United Kingdom 
  • Vatican City

1 Portugal includes the Madeira Islands and the Azores
2 Spain includes the Canary Islands, the Balearic Islands (Mallorca, Menorca, Ibiza), Ceuta, and Melilla
3 No data coverage available

Virgin Mobile Canada International Travel Pass Zone 2 destinations

  • Afghanistan
  • American Samoa
  • Argentina
  • Armenia
  • Azerbaijan
  • Bahrain
  • Bangladesh
  • Belarus
  • Belize
  • Bhutan
  • Bolivia
  • Brazil
  • Brunei
  • Cambodia
  • Chile
  • Colombia
  • Costa Rica
  • East Timor
  • Ecuador
  • Egypt
  • El Salvador
  • Falkland Islands
  • Fiji
  • French Polynesia
  • Georgia
  • Guam
  • Guatemala
  • Guyana
  • Honduras
  • India
  • Indonesia
  • Iraq
  • Jordan
  • Kazakhstan
  • Kuwait
  • Kyrgyzstan
  • Laos
  • Lebanon
  • Malaysia
  • Moldova
  • Mongolia
  • Myanmar
  • Nauru
  • Nepal
  • Nicaragua
  • Northern Mariana Islands
  • Oman
  • Pakistan
  • Palestinian Territory
  • Panama
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Paraguay
  • Peru
  • Philippines
  • Qatar
  • Russia
  • Samoa
  • Saudi Arabia
  • South Africa
  • Sri Lanka
  • Suriname
  • Syria 2
  • Tajikistan
  • Thailand
  • Turkmenistan
  • Ukraine
  • United Arab Emirates 1
  • Uruguay
  • Uzbekistan
  • Venezuela
  • Vietnam
  • Yemen

1 United Arab Emirates includes Dubai and Abu Dhabi
2 No data coverage available

Virgin Mobile Canada International Travel Pass Zone 3 destinations

  • Algeria
  • Benin
  • Botswana
  • Burkina Faso
  • Burundi
  • Cameroon
  • Cape Verde
  • Central African Republic
  • Chad
  • Comoros 1
  • Congo
  • Congo (Democratic Republic)
  • Cote D’Ivoire
  • Equatorial Guinea
  • Eswatini
  • Gabon
  • Gambia
  • Ghana
  • Guinea
  • Guinea Bissau
  • Kenya
  • Lesotho
  • Liberia
  • Madagascar
  • Malawi
  • Mali
  • Mauritania
  • Mauritius
  • Mayotte
  • Micronesia (Federated States Of)
  • Morocco
  • Mozambique
  • Namibia
  • Niger
  • Nigeria
  • Norfolk Island 1
  • Reunion
  • Rwanda
  • Sao Tome & Principe
  • Senegal
  • Seychelles
  • Sierra Leone
  • Solomon Islands
  • South Sudan
  • Sudan
  • Tanzania
  • Tonga
  • Uganda
  • Vanuatu
  • Western Sahara
  • Zambia
  • Zanzibar
  • Zimbabwe

1 No data coverage available

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Virgin Mobile Canada International Travel Pass Zone 4 destinations

  • Angola
  • Cook Island
  • Djibouti
  • Ethiopia
  • Libya
  • Maldives
  • New Caledonia
  • Somalia*
  • Togo
  • Tunesia

* No data coverage available

Virgin Mobile Canada International Travel Pass Zone 5 destinations

  • Cuba

Can I roam on planes with Virgin Mobile Canada?

Virgin Mobile customers can roam on select airlines and planes that have roaming facilities. Roaming on aircraft will be charged under zone 4 roaming rates. Do note that none of the roaming options include minutes, texts, or data for onboard roaming and that you cannot data roam on planes.

Calling on board (inbound and outbound) will cost you $3.50 per minute, and sending a text message is charged at $0.75 per text message. Receiving text messages is free.

Can I roam on cruise ships with Virgin Mobile Canada?

Maritime roaming, or roaming on cruise ships, is available to Virgin Mobile customers on cruise ships that have roaming facilities. Roaming on cruise ships will be charged under zone 4 roaming rates. Do note that none of the roaming options include minutes, texts, or data for onboard roaming and that you cannot data roam on planes.

Calling on board (inbound and outbound) will cost you $3.50 per minute, and sending a text message is charged at $0.75 per text message. Receiving text messages is free.

Is roaming with Virgin Mobile Canada worth it?

Virgin Mobile Canada’s Roam Sweet Roam program is a convenient way of roaming abroad while keeping expenses predictable, which makes it worth to consider.

You know that you will be spending $7, $8, $11, or $12 a day when you roam with Roam Sweet Roam in over 190 destinations. The cool thing with Roam Sweet Roam is that you can use it in multiple destinations at once. For example, you could visit Malaysia and Singapore in one day and only be charged once. Roam Sweet Home is excellent for those who want to explore multiple destinations in one trip.

Of course, you should not be using Roam Sweet Roam when traveling for multiple months because it will get too expensive and Virgin Mobile will suspend your service, as it is not intended to be used for semi-permanent relocation, as per their Terms of Service.

Which brings me to my next point: Roam Sweet Roam can be expensive. If you are visiting an international destination for 3 days, you would have spent $36 on roaming. For that money, you can get a local sim for less in most destinations. Therefore, Roam Sweet Roam should be used in moderation for a maximum of three days.

The only time I would consider the 100 MB data roam option over the with home data one is when I have barely any data left after leaving Canada. Else, it would make more sense to go for the with home data option.

The Travel Passes are expensive for the perks they give you. The cheapest Travel Pass is the $10 US data Travel Pass which provides you with a mere 50 MB. Paying $0.20/MB is simply not worth it, especially when you have to use it within 72 hours.

The voice, text & data Travel Passes do provide some good value for the money spent. For example, the $40 US voice, text & data Travel Pass gives you 200 minutes, unlimited texts, and 200 MB. It would be worth getting this pass if you want to stay in the US for more than 5 days. After that, the Roam Sweet Roam option becomes too expensive.

However, if you are willing to spend $40 or $60 on a Travel Pass, you would be better off getting a local SIM, as it would be much cheaper and give you more value. You can also use internet-based apps like Facebook Messenger, Whatsapp, and Skype on WIFI networks to stay in touch with your friends – that can be free.

Pay Per Use Roaming rates are, once again, too expensive, ranging from $1.45/min in the US to $3.50/min in zone 3 and 4 destinations. Luckily, sending text messages on Pay Per Use Roaming rates are $0.75 flat, but that is still pricey.

Depending on your view, the fact that you cannot data roam on Pay Per Use Roaming may be a good or bad thing. It is bad because you do not get the opportunity to do so. It is good in case you forget to turn data off and get a high roaming bill because you forgot (data roaming rates can be as high as $25/MB – it adds up quickly!).

In short, data roaming with Virgin Mobile Canada is something one should consider before taking off. The Roam Sweet Roam options may be used for up to 5 days. If you are staying longer, you will be better off getting a local sim. The Travel Passes can give some good value for the money spent, but if you are willing to spend that much on a pass, you are, once again, better off with a local sim or an international sim. Roaming on Pay Per Use Roaming rates should be avoided because of the high calling costs.

What is next?

Looking for the best companies and gadgets to enhance your travel experience? Check out my resource page for the best companies to use when you travel! Save money on plane tickets, bus rides, cruises, and accommodation. Besides that, I also list services and items I use to make my life easier – and I believe they will help you too!

Book Your Flight

It is time to book your flight. Find cheap flights with AirWander so that you can add free or cheap stopovers in destinations you have not considered yet. If you are not ready to take off yet, set up flight alerts with Airfarewatchdog, and they will notify you once ticket prices for your preferred destination drops.

Book Your Accommodation

I am a huge fan of Airbnb because it allows me to live with a local or get a local place for myself. Staying in someone’s house or apartment feels much different than being in a ho(s)tel. At least, that is how I see it. Moreover, Airbnb can often be much cheaper than staying in a hotel.

Get Your Travel Insurance

You will regret not having travel insurance once you actually need it and “forgot” to get it. Nowadays, travel insurance is cheap and comprehensive unlike back in the days. World Nomads is by far the best travel insurance for adventurous travelers like yourself. You can even get insured WHILE already traveling, which is not something many insurance companies allow you to do.

Get a Travel Debit Card

Travel Cheques are outdated. Paying with your credit card or debit card can be expensive because of all the exchange commissions banks charge you. TransferWise allows you to convert your main currency to the currency of your destination for a small fee (up to 8 times less than with your bank!) Getting a Transferwise Borderless account is FREE, so you will get an instant return on your investment.

Enjoy your trip!


Sources:

https://www.virginmobile.ca/en/support/roam-sweet-roam.html
https://www.virginmobile.ca/en/features/features-summary.html
https://www.virginmobile.ca/en/support/international-roaming-rates.html
https://www.virginmobile.ca/en/support/us-roaming-rates.html

Disclaimer: Information and prices are current as at the date of publication and are subject to change. Please refer to our Terms & Conditions for our Content Disclaimer.

Ernest Adu

Ernest Adu, going by just Adu, is the founder and editor at Phone Travel Wiz. He has been a traveler for 6 years. Although from Europe, the Netherlands, Adu's favorite region in Asia, in particular, East and Southeast Asia. He currently lives in Tainan, Taiwan, and plans on exploring Oceania and more of East and Southeast Asia.

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