Canadians get gouged on anything and everything

Life is hard in Canada if you do not make a fortune or have access to taxpayer money to spend freely, because Canadian get gouged on just about anything and everything.

While Canadians are not known to take home big salaries, we have always been paying premium prices for practically anything and everything in life.

We all know what it takes even just to own a shoebox apartment that is not much bigger than a dog house these days, what not many of us realize is we also pay some of the highest prices on earth for everything else  … starting from accommodation rent to consumable products like car and shampoo, and all the way to even basis necessities such as telecommunication services …

Canadians continue to get gouged on phone, Internet and TV prices

Telecom companies have all seen their expenses decline, their revenues climb, and their subscribers grow, yet they continue to raise their prices, a new report from the CRTC shows.

Last year, cellphone bills went up for the average Canadian from $61 to $67 – a 9.8 per cent jump. Landline bills also saw an increase, according to the the Communications Monitoring Report out Thursday.

Canadians also saw price increases greater than the rate of inflation for all their communications services. The report shows Canadians paid an average of $185 per month, compared to $181 the previous year, which is a 2.2 per cent increase. In the meantime, the inflation rate was 1.2 per cent for the year, and spending by telecommunications companies decreased by 0.8 per cent, according to the report.

The report also found that revenue for telecommunications companies climbed, as did subscriber rates. And Canadians don’t seem to be cutting the cord in any significant way, since only four per cent of Canadians said they watch television exclusively online.

What does this all mean? It means there is something seriously wrong with our telecommunications sector.

The industry had a bit of a scare in 2010 when new players arrived on the scene, but when it became clear they would never be able to survive in the market, the old guard just went back to its old habit of continually jacking up prices.

Now we know why the big telecom companies were united in their lobbying effort earlier this year against allowing Verizon to enter the cellular marketplace. Such a big player could definitely outdo the Big three for cellphone pricing, and it also has enough access to capital to make major inroads competing as a Cable TV and home Internet provider.

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