Roam Mobility, the Vancouver technology startup born out of consumer frustration with high roaming charges, has struck a partnership deal with London Drugs to have Roam SIM cards available in 76 stores across Western Canada.
It's the biggest partnership so far for the company, which now has its products in 400 locations in six provinces, including duty-free shops and airports.
Roam Mobility launched in January 2012 after signing a deal with T-Mobile in the U.S.
Roam Mobility is designed for Canadian travellers who want to avoid roaming shock when travelling to the U.S.
Travellers who own unlocked cellphones or smartphones can buy Roam SIM cards, starting at $20, and a number of plans, including a talk, text and data plan.
Canadians stuck with an unlocked iPhone (carriers charge their customers to have their phones unlocked) can buy a bare-bones Roam phone for $50. Roam also sells a portable WiFi hotspot for $130, which can be used to connect up to five phones, tablets and laptops.
London Drugs will be selling only the Roam SIM cards. They won't be sold in the electronics departments, where other phones or sold; they'll be sold in the travel section, along with travel insurance and passport photos.
"It is more effectively sold as a travel product," Christian Paul, Roam's director of marketing, told Business in Vancouver.
Chris Gibson, electronics buyer for London Drugs, said, "London Drugs is proud to be partnering with Roam Mobility to provide our customers with more choice in how they use their mobile phones when travelling."
This article was written by Nelson Bennett and was originally published in Business in Vancouver.