Wednesday, November 21, 2007

More Vodafoniness

I'm heading to Sydney on Thursday for Wayne's Small World (which replaces Wayne's World that was cancelled, pending a triumphant return in 2008, hopefully) which will, if nothing else, be a good chance to finally catch up with Dana and Susan (and whoever else is heading down under) for a chat, beer, coffee, whatever.

Then, after that I'm heading off to New Zealand for a bit of R&R (aka not work), as well as visiting a couple of colleagues and clients. I have a family reunion on my mother's side on Dec 1st and 2nd in between Taupo and Rotorua and aside from that, I'm pretty much following my nose around the North Island. I'm meeting with a mate/colleague near Wellington and another near Rotorua, but the rest is basically whatever, wherever, whenever. And no, I'm not looking forward to it!

Anyway, if I roam my Vodafone handset to NZ, I have to pay (all prices per minute) AU$1.49 to ring local numbers, AU$3.02 to ring back to Australia, AU$1.17 to receive calls and finally AU$0.75 to send an SMS. So I decided to hire a Vodafone SIM whilst I'm in NZ, and the rates are then NZ$1.00125 for national calls (AU$0.86219), NZ$2.5875 for calls to Australia (AU$2.2271), nothing at all to receive calls and NZ$0.87961 for an SMS (AU$0.75714). All prices inc of GST. So, you can see the benefit of the NZ$1.6875 (AU$1.4525) per day SIM card hire! [Note: NZ SIM Card calls to Australia rate updated.]

Now, to make matters weirder, I checked into the GPRS rates in NZ. If I roam my Vodafone SIM, it costs me AU$0.01/KB. In New Zealand, local GPRS costs NZ$0.016875 (AU$0.014525) per KB. Now, that's insane - how can phone calls be so much cheaper, but data be so much more expensive?

So, that means I'll take my SmartPhone and use the NZ SIM in it and take the PDA and use GPRS on that to check emails occasionally. Utterly ridiculous.

And consider this also - Vodafone is the sole NZ mobile carrier. And yes, I have a Vodafone account here. And NZ is just across the ditch from Australia - we're practically in each other's back yards. And Vodafone STILL thinks it is worth overcharging both roaming Australians in New Zealands, as well as native New Zealanders in their own homeland.

Maybe I'll stop complaining that we're getting shafted on telecommunications costs in Australia, when I compare us to our nearest neighbors. Maybe we'll just realise that we're both getting shafted, and by the same company, but not as hard as we are by the Australian Government and Telstra. Now, I *do* apologise for my use of foul tasting language there!

Anyway, to hell with the cost of calls, I'm heading across the ditch and spending some of my hard earned cash in good old Kiwiland. I've paid for the airfares and the hire car, have booked the SIM and at this point, still intend to book a motel when I arrive somewhere I feel like spending the night - I have few plans (aside from what I mentioned above) and will be making my relaxed way around the island in a, well, relaxed manner. If only Frankie was there with me... (no, not in a gay way, not that there's anything wrong with that, I'm just not into it personally.)

If I get the chance to blog whilst over there, I may do it. No promises. Not that anyone here really cares anyway - its just more stuff to read!


The Outspoken Wookie

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