Best mobile network for someone with ties to Northern Ireland

PoundMan

Registered User
Messages
29
Hey folks, I recently moved to the Republic from Northern Ireland and I looking for some advice in relation to mobile networks to help me choose between Vodafone, Eir & Three.

I've looked at the comreg.ie coverage checker for the eircode where I'm living in a small Westmeath village and this is the results:

Vodafone
3G = Very Good, 4G = Fringe
Eir
3G = Good, 4G = Good
Three
3G = Good, 4G = Fair

I've also checked there coverage at my place of work in Portlaoise and all three network providers are classed as "Very Good" for both 3G & 4G coverage in the area.

So from a pure coverage standpoint, it would seem on paper like Eir might be the best bet. Vodafone has better 3G coverage in my area, but the 4G is classed as only fringe coverage and I'm not sure if that is likely to improve at any stage in the near future. My current handset is 5G capable so it would also be useful to find a network provider with strong future 5G plans but I don't know which provider is likely to eventually have the best 5G coverage.

I still have lots of connections and ties to Northern Ireland. Most of my friends and family are contactable through apps these days (WhatsApp, Facebook video call, etc.) but I still have some older relatives such as my parents who I would need to be able to call and I also sometimes have to contact places in the UK when I'm conducting business on behalf of my disabled father. So I'm guessing I would need a plan that includes international minutes. Would I be correct in assuming that calls to Northern Ireland is now classed as International minutes as opposed to European minutes ever since Brexit?

Once the covid travel restrictions ease and things hopefully settle back to some kind of normality, I intend to be travelling up North one or two weekends per month so I would need some kind of plan where my calls and data continue working as normal even when I'm away from the Republic.

Can anyone recommend the best plan for my circumstances?
 

gipimann

Registered User
Messages
4,893
If you get a dual-SIM phone (or have access to 2 phones), you could get a PAYG UK SIM for contact with UK numbers. If you had a UK mobile number already, you might be able to keep it and switch to PAYG.

As far as I recall, the European mobile phone agreements haven't been undone (as yet) by Brexit
 

PoundMan

Registered User
Messages
29
My phone has dual-SIM but sadly one of the slots is for eSIM only. If I wanted to have my mobile network provider as a form of utility bill, would it need to be a 12-24 month contract or does the 30-day rolling contracts also have statements?
 

paulhynes

New Member
Messages
9
I know that Gomo (who do 30day contracts) provide PDF statements/bills on their website. Most "bill pay" providers will be similiar. I have used Gomo as proof of address before.
 

PoundMan

Registered User
Messages
29
I stuck with 48 network since it was so cheap at €7.99 per month for unlimited calls and 100GB data, and decided to use an app called Yolla (https://yollacalls.com/) that offers cheap international calls as it was recommended to me. I have been using it since July 2021 and have worked out that it is costing me approximately €15.82 on average per month, bringing my total phone-related spending to €23.81 per month. This has me thinking that I could probably find a better deal with another provider that would include UK/NI minutes. Does anyone know which network currently offers the best price package that includes UK minutes?
 

nest egg

Registered User
Messages
328
I stuck with 48 network since it was so cheap at €7.99 per month for unlimited calls and 100GB data, and decided to use an app called Yolla (https://yollacalls.com/) that offers cheap international calls as it was recommended to me. I have been using it since July 2021 and have worked out that it is costing me approximately €15.82 on average per month, bringing my total phone-related spending to €23.81 per month. This has me thinking that I could probably find a better deal with another provider that would include UK/NI minutes. Does anyone know which network currently offers the best price package that includes UK minutes?
One tip which you might already know, is that if you use the 048 prefix, NI landlines are counted as ROI landlines which means they're included in your bundle of minutes/not as international calls. Granted we're all phoning landlines less and less, but it might help you control costs to some extent.
 
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