5 Easy Ways to Keep Your Family Data Usage in Check

Kids and families love to stream digital media. Here are 5 ways my family keeps our data usage in check.

Whether we’re on the road or cozying up on the sofa at home, our family enjoys consuming digital media. With two older teenagers who LOVE to stream YouTube videos for hours at a time, managing our family data could be a big deal and expense. To make sure we’re getting the most out of our data buckets, I follow a few simple rules so that binge-watching Rick and Morty until 2 AM is no problem at all.

Here are 5 easy ways to keep your family data usage in check.

*This post is brought to you by Rogers Communications”

Kids and families love to stream digital media at all hours of the day and night. Here are 5 great ways that you can keep your data usage in check.

1. Track Data Usage

My children don’t watch television. They stream YouTube videos and online shows, when and where they want to. It’s a whole new world of consumer choice, and a whole other world of data usage that could cost an arm or leg.

As parents, we need to be on top of data usage, including everything from checking emails to streaming videos. Who wants to face a nasty bill surprise at the end of the month? You can usually keep track of how much data you are using via your online account or app. Most apps, like the MyRogers app, allow you to check on where you are with your data consumption, to see if you’re getting close to your max, need to buy a top-up, or simply turn off your data.

2. Pay Attention to Notifications

Some service providers will send you an alert via text message when you’re nearing the end of your data bucket (for example, when you get to 90 per cent). It’s kind of like a terrifying alarm bell. When you get these notifications, it’s much more cost-effective to top up your data rather than go into overage. Most providers will give you the option to buy top-ups when they send you the alert. Alternatively, you can always choose to turn your data off just to be safe. Hard, but sometimes necessary.

Kids and families love to stream digital media at all hours of the day and night. Here are 5 great ways that you can keep your data usage in check.

3. Make Use of Extra Data Features

Keep an eye out for the right plans or features that compliment how your family uses their phones. If you’re a Rogers Share Everything customer like me,  check out the new #StreamSaver feature. It allows you to consume more video using less data. For example, my son can watch up to 18 minutes of standard def video (think DVD quality) on YouTube compared to 6 minutes in high def, all while using the same amount of data. On a small phone or tablet screen, any loss in video quality is negligible at best.

Kids and families love to stream digital media at all hours of the day and night. Here are 5 great ways that you can keep your data usage in check.

4. Turn on Wi-Fi when Available

Two of our favorite words are Free and Wi-Fi. The first thing the kids ask for when they check in to a new hotel or café is that precious Wi-Fi password. Being prudent in your data consumption by using Wi-Fi when available is just smart practice. Since it’s found nearly everywhere, we would be silly to say ‘no thanks’ to such a thoughtful, free gift, no?

5. Close Apps When You’re Not using Them

This is such a good habit to get into, especially with data-sucking apps like Google Maps. When you’re done with an app, make sure that you properly shut it down so that’s it not running in the background and eating into your data. For example, on an iPhone you just need to double click your home button and then swipe up on the pages you want to close.

Whether your kids love, YouTube, Twitch or Rogers NHL Live, keeping tabs on your family’s data usage make sense, and is easier than it’s ever been. As Rick would say, Burgertime!


Photos Credits: Shutterstock






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  • Natalie says:

    I use the Rogers app which tells me my real time data usage!

  • Dan Martin says:

    I manage my family data by using the my alerts on the my Rogers app and if someone gets too high I turn the data off to that line

  • No word of a lie, I JUST turned on Stream Saver. BEST IDEA EVER.

  • Hayley says:

    I definitely need to remember to shut off any apps and background data while travelling. Great tips!

  • Jackie M says:

    We use one of your tips, keep WiFi on and make sure we are automatically connected at home and went place we frequent. Like grandparents, work, etc.

  • Ben says:

    I have a 9gb Roger Share Everything plan and have a notification for each line. There’s still additional data beyond each limit in case we need it.

  • Karen Lee says:

    My family manages our data usage by turning on WiFi access and connecting to a free wifi hotspot whenever we are outside of the home! That way we keep a limit where we can, whenever we dont have access to our free WiFi in the house.

  • Paul A says:

    We make sure to turn on wifi and also set alerts for our data usage. When we are close to our data limit we are sent or triggers a warning.

  • Amie says:

    Checking it daily! It never hurts to be safe ! They also know they have a limit so they are good at being careful and using free wifi when ever they can !

  • Gord says:

    We encourage them to use free wifi when possible. No phone usage during class times. No calling during the most expensive time according to our phone plan. Also no calling during any meals. Limits on data usage, if they go over they lose the use of the phone for the rest of the payment period.

  • Francine says:

    I turn off data, only turning it on as necessary when there’s no wifi.

  • Elena says:

    We have notifications set for when we reach 75% of data usage. Time to tighten up the usage if we get those messages!

  • tania capredoni says:

    Our family uses free wifi all the time. Most comunity centres, libraries, malls, some cofee shops, indoor playgrounds and other places have free wifi. Thats the first thing we check for. In case of emergency if I need to check my messages ill log in to get data otherwise its just free wifi for us, our data is always turned off.

  • Jonnie says:

    Our teens don’t have data on their phones. If they can’t find wi-fi, they have to do without. I keep my data turned off and only use it very occasionally. With so much free wi-fi out there, it’s easy to get by without it.

  • Piroska says:

    I encourage free wifi usage, and check the apps often.

  • Zarn says:

    Setting a data limit on Android phones so I know when I’m close to going over my limit.

  • Jenny Major says:

    We use Wifi when we are at home and check our account regularly

  • Linda says:

    Our family uses data only when wifi is not available to cut down on data usage.

  • Yong says:

    Tell them to keep track of their data usage, setup the data usage monitor.

  • Amanda T. says:

    Limit the activities on the cell network, e.g. youtube, app updated

  • Maritess S says:

    I put limits on each user and our provider gives us alerts when we are close to our limits then I turn it off for that account.

  • Christina D says:

    We rely on wifi most of the time, but in cases where we step out or whenever we go on family road trips we use data. For me personally, I connect to it a lot when I go for my evening runs so it can track where I am, for safety percussion I use. Thank you for sharing all your lovely tips, it was a joy to read it.

  • Laurie Paranica says:

    Always connect to wifi.

  • Katrina says:

    We use wifi as much as possible.

  • I am grateful for the text alerts my provider sends when we are getting close to our data limits!

  • lori galbraith says:

    I use wifi and so does hubby when and where ever we can. That really helps manage data. We also share data that also makes a difference.

  • Suzie B says:

    I use WIFI as much as possible to cut down on personal data use, and have notifications set to keep track of what has been used

  • Erin W says:

    Man, we’re not with Rogers, and now I think we’re totally missing out! We use wifi as much as possible, and when we hit the 90% notice, we turn our data off. We don’t get an option to top up! We also try and close our apps multiple times during the day.

  • Kirsten G. says:

    My husband and I share a data plan. We have alerts set up so we get a notification when we used 75% of data plan.

  • Tracy Leong says:

    Currently, we use the Fido app and text alerts to track usage. We also turn off cellular data and roaming until we get free wifi access. Most of the time we totally unplug while on vacay.

  • Nicola says:

    We shut it off from Sunday evening to Friday morning. We’re evil 🤣

  • Johanna Read says:

    I turn off my cellular data for all but the apps I really need on the go … and then turn almost everything off if I get the dreaded “you’re at 95” message!

  • Sheena K says:

    We use wifi whenever possible and kids don’t have data on their phones unless they need to hotspot from us in emergencies:)

  • Judy Cowan says:

    We manage our data by keeping our wifi shut off unless we are using or need it.

  • Jenness M says:

    My kids have phones that only allow texting and telephoning so I don’t worry about going over our data limit.

  • Amy Heffernan says:

    Well….we have THREE boys! Its nearly IMPOSSIBLE for us to manage out data. I tried it and had to cut it out. There fingers just seem to love to wonder and there eyes on the internet! Now we all just connect to hot spots or our internet at home!

  • Melissa says:

    Limit data and we use free Wi-Fi everywhere. Also the kids don’t have data.

  • Sarah says:

    We use free wifi wherever possible, limit usage when we are not connected to wifi and pay close attention to our usage levels. Thanks!

  • Laurie P says:

    We definitely turn on wi-fi when available. I try to also pay attention to apps, and closing them when needed!

  • Jenn Erin says:

    We make sure our phones uses Wi-Fi over data when possible and we pay attention to our notifications. Sometimes I’m using data I will also choose to watch my videos on lower video quality.

  • Jenny B says:

    I have to admit that the only thing we do right now is turning on Wi-Fi when available. So far that has been sufficient but there have been many times that we’ve gone over so these tips are very helpful!

  • Lisa says:

    We have the Rogers Share Everything plan and their data usage alerts helps us manage data big time! I’ve also found their option to temporarily pause data very handy in the past.

  • Katrina says:

    I use wifi as much as possible

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