Best Cell Phone Coverage In Calgary

10 January 2018

Situated on a vast prairie not far from the towering Canadian Rockies, Calgary has grown into Canada’s third-largest municipality—and with good reason. 

The city boasts clean air (consistently topping lists of the the world’s cleanest cities), a rowdy cowboy character (see the city’s annual Stampede festival), and great professional sports (the Flames and the Stampeders). 

Sure, the winter’s are cold—it’s not uncommon for it to snow all 12 months of the year here—but there’s plenty of fun ways to distract yourself in “Cow Town.” Plus, all that snow makes for world-class skiing nearby. 

While not quite as world class as the skiing, Calgary also boasts generally solid cell phone coverage from Canada's major cell phone carriers. This means you'll have more options when it comes time to pick a plan. Read on to learn the ins and outs of coverage in Calgary. 

Coverage in Calgary At-a-Glance

Winters may be cold in Calgary, but the cell phone coverage is not. Calgary earns a strong coverage score of 91 out of 100. Here's the coverage rundown for the entire province of Alberta

What we love
  • Rogers, Telus and offer great coverage in Calgary
  • MVNOs that run on Rogers and Telus offer similarly excellent coverage
  • 4G LTE widely available
What could be improved
  • Coverage less reliable the further you travel from the city
  • Freedom the weakest of the four networks by far

Carrier Network Coverage in Calgary

While no carrier's perfect, three of the major networks perform excellently throughout Calgary. This means you can join any of to get great coverage--or the multitude of smaller carriers that run on their networks. 

Best Coverage in Calgary by Network
Network  Covered Area %
Bell 99.87%
Rogers 99.82%
Freedom 49.08%
Telus 99.87%

Cell Phone Coverage in Calgary by Area

The Calgary region encompasses 1,076.10 square miles, and the most robust local carriers, Telus, Rogers and Bell, cover nearly all of it. 

Geographic Area Covered in Calgary per mi2
Network Percentage Geographic Area Covered
Bell 99.87% 1075.58
Rogers 99.82% 1074.19
Freedom 49.08% 528.15
Telus 99.87% 1075.58
Coverage data generated November 11st 2017 from carrier maps

Calgary is broadly covered by both 3G and 4G LTE technology. 3G is the network that some older phones run on, and the one newer 4G LTE-capable devices fall back to when unable to reach a primary network. Here's how much territory the top carriers cover:

Coverage in Calgary (1076.10 m2) by 3G/4G LTE
Bell Rogers Freedom Telus
3G 1074.75 1074.20 528.16 1074.75
4G LTE 1075.59 1074.18 267.53 1075.59

Big Carriers vs. Small Carriers in Calgary

When choosing a cell phone providers, there's no need to limit yourself to the big companies. There are dozens of smaller carriers that run on the major networks, but charge a fraction of the price for service. Known as Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs for short), these carriers purchase network service from the major providers at wholesale prices, then pass the savings on to consumers. 

Getting the Best Plan & Coverage

WhistleOut's industry-leading coverage check feature supercharges an already robust comparison engine by allowing you to instantly see what coverage is like at your location. Just  punch in your address, and we'll do the rest. 

In addition to showing you a map of your area with the coverage from all four major carriers, we filter through the available cell phone plans and present only those from carriers who provide good reception to you.  

Cell Phone Carriers in Calgary

Here's the list of wireless carriers (big and small) in Calgary, and the network that each belongs to. Note that the smaller carriers—PhoneBox, Fido, etc.—utilize the networks of the major carriers.

Carrier Network Available in Calgary
Bell MobilityBellYes
Chatr WirelessRogersYes
Freedom MobileFreedomNo
Koodo MobileTelusYes
PC MobileBell/Telus Yes
Petro Canada RogersNo
Public Mobile TelusYes
Rogers RogersYes
Videotron VideotronNo (roaming network only)
Virgin Mobile BellYes
7-11 SpeakOutRogers Yes

One More Thing: Using Public WiFi in Calgary

Calgary offers free WiFi in a variety of public spaces, including libraries, museums, and parks. Check out some of the places offering free WiFi below. This is handy when you want to save your cellular data.

  • Devonian Gardens
  • Olympic Plaza
  • Shaw Millennium Park
  • Foothills Aquatic Centre
  • Murray Copot Arena
  • North Mount Pleasant Arts Centre
  • Shouldice Aquatic Centre
  • Shouldice Arena
  • Sire Winston Churchill Aquatic & recreation Centre
  • Henry Viney/Stew Hendry Arenas
  • Village Square Leisure Centre
  • Stup Peppard Arena
  • Wildflower Arts Centre
  • Calgary Soccer Centre
  • Ernie Starr Arena
  • Inglewood Aquatic Centre
  • Max Bell Centre Arenas

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