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Public Mobile vs Chatr vs Lucky Mobile

written by Mia Nancy Last Updated: February 17, 2019
Public Mobile vs Chatr vs Lucky Mobile

Quick Links: Network & Coverage | Phones | Plans | Similarities & Differences | Discussion

If you don’t want to read the details, skip straight to our Recommendation


Understanding the options available to you when choosing a new mobile carrier is definitely an important part of the decision-making process. In this comparison, we place 3 entry-level or discount carriers side by side to help you decide which carrier will best suit your needs. We’ll compare Lucky Mobile, Public Mobile and Chatr Mobile.



 Lucky MobilePublic MobileChatr Mobile
Credit ChecksNoNoNo
Sim Card Fee$10$10$10
Phone SupportYesNoYes, processing fees may apply
Parent CompanyBellTelusRogers


Coverage & Network

Since all 3 of these carriers run on large, well-built out networks, overall coverage is strong nationwide, comparable and in a high-level view, almost equal. Coverage will differ individual by individual, based on exactly where you are, if you spend majority of your time on the ground floor of your home or the basement, or high up in an office building or condo. We suggest you look at the coverage maps on the carrier websites to see exactly what the coverage is in the areas in which you spend most of your time: Lucky Mobile Coverage Map, Public Mobile Coverage Map, Chatr Mobile Coverage Map.

If you are bringing your own device, you’ll want to know the frequencies each of these carriers operates on and ensure the phone you’re bringing is able to operate on one of these frequencies along with being unlocked.


 Lucky MobilePublic MobileChatr Mobile
HSPA850 MHz/1900 MHz850 MHz/1900 MHz850 MHz/1900 MHz
LTE1700 MHz (AWS)1700/2100 MHz (AWS)
LTE Advanced (LTE-a)700 MHz2600 MHz and 700 MHz



Since all 3 of these carriers are discount carriers, they do not carry the latest high-end smartphones. Public Mobile actually carries no phones. Lucky and Chatr offer entry-level devices from a variety of brands. This doesn’t mean that high-end smartphones won’t work, most will (phone by phone basis based on above network frequencies) however the target market these carriers are appealing to aren’t looking to spend tons of money on a phone along with the fact that these carriers do not have contracts or ‘tabs’. Below are the brands that these carriers currently carry.


Lucky MobilePublic MobileChatr Mobile
No PhonesHuawei



Below we’ll compare 4 different types of plans across all 3 carriers that will cover most types of users. This should help you get a side by side view of the differences in price for the same or very similar offering from each carrier.

Please note the below plan prices may vary in Quebec, Manitoba and Saskatchewan.

Basic Plans

These are basic plans at a low cost for those who just need a phone to make and receive calls.

 Lucky MobilePublic MobileChatr Mobile
Price$20 per month$20 per month$20 per month
TalkUnlimited province wideUnlimited province wideUnlimited province wide
TextNoneNone$0.40 per message
FeaturesVoicemail & Caller IDVoicemail & Caller IDVoicemail & Caller ID
NoteThis used to be a zone plan however Lucky has removed thoseThis used to be a zone plan however Chatr has also removed those


Plans with lots of Data

These plans feature the highest amount of data possible for those who like to browse while they are out or commuting and there is no access to WiFi.

 Lucky MobilePublic MobileChatr Mobile
Price$50 per month$50 per month$50 per month
TalkUnlimited Canada & USUnlimited Canada & USUnlimited Canada & US
TextUnlimited Canada & InternationalUnlimited Canada & International Text & Picture MessagingUnlimited Canada & International
Data8 GB at 3G
(Plus 500 MB if you set up automatic payments)
8 GB at 3G
(Plus 500 MB if you set up automatic payments)
8 GB
FeaturesVoicemail & Caller IDVoicemail & Caller IDVoicemail & Caller ID
NoteRecently updated planRecently updated plan


Plans with lots of talk & text

These plans have tons of talk and text included however they don’t have data so it’s good for those that are in places where WiFi is usually available.

 Lucky MobilePublic MobileChatr Mobile
Price$25 per month$25 per month$25 per month
TalkUnlimited Province WideUnlimited Province WideUnlimited Province Wide
TextUnlimited Canada & InternationalUnlimited Canada & International Text & Picture MessagingUnlimited Canada & International
FeaturesVoicemail & Caller IDVoicemail & Caller IDVoicemail & Caller ID


Best Overall Value Plans

Editor’s Picks: The plans that provide a combination of talk, text and data at a reasonable price.


 Lucky MobilePublic MobileChatr Mobile
Price$40 per month$40 per month$40 per month
TalkUnlimited Canada WideUnlimited Canada WideUnlimited Canada Wide
TextUnlimited Canada & InternationalUnlimited Canada & International Text & Picture MessagingUnlimited Canada & International
Data4.5 GB at 3G4.5 GB at 3G4 GB at 3G
FeaturesVoicemail & Caller IDVoicemail & Caller IDVoicemail & Caller ID
NoteGet an extra 500 MB of data by signing up for automatic paymentsGet an extra 500 MB of data by signing up for automatic paymentsNationwide plan



  • Pricing is very competitive with one another – In late 2018, Lucky Mobile and Chatr Mobile have gotten rid of their ‘Zone’ plans – After doing this, their plans align very closely to what Public Mobile was offering so all 3 carriers now have plan tiers that are almost identical
  • Network coverage is good for all 3
  • No contracts
  • No credit checks
  • Bring your own phone



  • While we haven’t outlined them above, Public Mobile is the only one from the 3 that offers 4G LTE data service, so if the primary function of your phone is to use the Internet, especially for things like streaming video, you may want to look at their plans with 4G data – it’s obviously more expensive
  • Public Mobile does not offer phone support, so if you need to speak to someone to assist you, that’s not possible
  • Public Mobile does not sell any phones so you have no choice but to bring your own
  • Public Mobile does not have the ‘zones’ concept, while Lucky and Chatr do



There are definitely pros and cons to each carrier. Here is what you need to know.

Lucky Mobile

  • Overall, plans are priced reasonably, however the real win with Lucky are there International Talk Add-Ons. If you’re going to be calling back home quite a bit, Lucky seems to have the best long distance rates out of the carriers in this comparison.
  • They have in-zone plans but also Province/Canada plans, be sure to think this through before picking an in-zone plan.
  • For more details, you can check out our full Lucky Mobile Review

Public Mobile

  • Ability to build your own plan – Although we didn’t cover it in this comparison, Public Mobile lets you build your own plan and pick exactly what you want it. Details here.
  • They offer 4G LTE data service, so for heavy data users, this is the only carrier out of these 3 to offer 4G LTE data service.
  • They offer 4 ways to save, ways to actually bring your monthly phone bill down, so if you’re going to take advantage of them then this may be a deciding factor for you.
  • There’s no phone support – as long as your good with online support, Public will work for you.
  • For more details, you can check out our full Public Mobile Review

Chatr Mobile

  • Plans are priced reasonably, however Chatr is only available in certain zone cities, list here
  • If you’re a keen data user, you need to know that data is ONLY available in-zone The ‘zones’ no longer exist and you can now use your data province wide or nationwide depending on the plan
  • For more details, you can check out our full Chatr Mobile Review



Was this comparison helpful? Which carrier did you choose? Let us know in the comments below!


*Disclaimer: We have no affiliation with Lucky Mobile, Public Mobile or Chatr Mobile, this is an independent review of their services and offerings.

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David March 19, 2019 - 5:18 pm

Cost, coverage, and plans are all similar but Public Mobile is best since they offer $ credit discounts. For example, if you setup automatic payment them you get a $2 credit every month. If you refer someone new to Public Mobile, you’ll get a $1 credit every month plus a one-time $10 credit. If you stay with them for 1 year then you’ll get an additional $1 credit every month. We are 5 people in my family and I have converted all of them to get the maximum monthly credit for each person. We have been with them for over a year now and coverage is exceptional since it’s the Telus network.

Mia Nancy March 19, 2019 - 5:30 pm

Nice, glad to hear! How much have you saved off of your plan?

john March 14, 2019 - 1:09 pm

very useful chose chatr…setup was easy…we will see what happens…thank you all

Mia Nancy March 19, 2019 - 5:31 pm

Glad you’re happy!

Craig February 11, 2019 - 2:34 pm

I believe Chatr, and also Lucky, have no data overages. Instead, they just throttle your data to a slower speed when you hit your monthly allotment. However, Chatr throttles aggressively (64kbps ?) What about Lucky? What do they throttle to?

Shawn Gant February 12, 2019 - 6:02 pm

Hi Craig,

Yes you’re right, Chatr and Lucky also throttle.
Chatr is 64 kbps as you’ve mentioned.
Lucky is 128 kbps (Here is the official link stating this – https://www.luckymobile.ca/support/plans-add-ons/zone-province-canada-plans)

faway January 9, 2019 - 6:22 pm

Thank you. Very helpful. Had Chatr, but problems (coverage and billing), so switched to Lucky, frustrated with attempts to contact by phone and on-line. Your info and suggestion by clerk (Walmart) has made me consider changing to Public.


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