Everything You Need to Know About the End of Roaming Charges
We’ve already talked about EU roaming charges, but they have finally been abolished. On the 15th of June, the ‘Roam Like Home’ legislation came into effect and customers across the EU can travel anywhere in the European Union without finding their bill hit with high roaming charges when they get home.
This is great news for business travelers and holidaymakers, but it’s not as straightforward as it seems so we’ve produced this short guide to some of the hidden pitfalls so you can get the most out of your European travels.
Location Location Location.
Make sure you’ve checked that your destination is covered by the ban on roaming charges. Some countries that are physically inside Europe are not part of the EU, or even the European Economic Area. If you’re traveling to Switzerland, for example, you will still be subject to your network’s usual roaming charges because Switzerland, though connected to the EU by a series of bilateral agreements, isn’t bound by all EU regulations including the ban on roaming charges.
Another example is the Isle of Man: though it’s a British Crown Dependency, and geographically near the centre of the British Isles, it’s self governing and is also not subject to EU regulations.
If you’re unsure, check with your network provider before travel to make sure you can make calls and use data without fear.
Exceeding Your Limits
While you’ll be charged at your usual rate for calls, texts and downloads while you travel, there’s no similar bar on charges when you exceed your contractual limit.
If you go over your data limit, or allotted call time you will still be charged for the excess and the charge can vary depending on your network provider. If you’re concerned this may happen, check which company is providing your service when you arrive and look up their terms and conditions. If the local charges are too high, make sure you cut yourself off before you exceed your data limit.
Rising Prices and Careless Contracts
Make sure you double check your phone’s contracts. With prices falling for travellers in Europe, Mobile Phone companies are looking to balance their books so there are numerous small price rises to be on the lookout for, especially in places not governed by the EU, as described above.
Prices are rising for calls from the Isle of Man to the UK, for example, as a way for networks to claw back some of the revenue lost on excessive roaming charges.
It’s also possible that only some of your data allowance is covered by ban on roaming charges, with a chunk of your data still subject to large prices for use abroad, so make sure you’re informed about your service before you travel. For example, one of Three’s tariffs only has free roaming on 2.31GB of it’s 4GB data allowance, with big charges on the remaining data.
And wherever you’re traveling, in the EU and beyond, if you need additional airtime you can top up online quickly and safely with Senditoo.