Mobile phone roaming charges dropped across the EU from June 2017

Mobile phone roaming charges dropped across the EU from June 2017

Phone, Cell, Cell Phone, Cellphone, Technology, Mobile

 

After what seems like hours queued in the airport, fighting your way through the throngs of people heading off on their summer holidays, followed by a couple more hours in a cramped airplane, there are few things more exciting in the world than the moment the wheels touch the tarmac at an airport, such as Alicante. This is the moment the summer break can truly begin. This bliss is quickly interrupted by the pings and beeps as mobile phones, which have been silent for the last couple of hours, start springing back into life and people rush to check what’s been happening in their world after 2 frustrating hours of isolation.

This is the too familiar sound over years of holiday makers landing in Spain, matching that with “Will my phone find a signal“ All is good with the world again, communication is restored and people can go back to sharing every moment of their break with friends and family via email and social media.  

It’s not until a month later when the tan has faded and you are back at work, the bill arrives and reality kicks in, “shock, horror a Hugh bill!!!” While most people avoid calling or texting home due to the high call charges, too few consider the cost of data when using their phone abroad. Those selfies on the beach can start adding up after a while.

 

However, good news for the traveling who wishes to stay in touch (or document their holiday and make friends jealous), from the 15th of June 2017 the European Union has capped the wholesale roaming charges – the money the networks charge each other for using their network. This move was celebrated by European Parliament member Miapetra Kumpula-Natri who has long backed the standardisation of these charges

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The demise of roaming fees has been a European Union political goal for many years to offer consumer protection. Viviane Reding, in 2006, then the European commissioner responsible for telecoms and media regulation, announced the project by saying that “it is only when using your mobile phone abroad that you realise there are still borders in Europe”.

 

What does this mean for me, the phone user?

These new rules give you one fewer thing to worry about when you are enjoying your break. You can continue to use your mobile phone the same way as you do at home – the only restrictions you now face are those set by your network contract.

 

Euro, Seem, Money, Finance, Piggy Bank

 

Every EU citizen’s home plan will work anywhere in Europe, at no extra cost, so if you have a bundle that gives you free calls and texts that will also be free in Spain also you will have the same data limit to use while away. This can be a massive saving on previous holidays. I have spent more on my phone than my flights in the past, Data, on average was costing us €6 per MB, Calls €0.49 a minute, and a text cost €0.28.

From now on, our home network must pay the cost that we rack up connecting to Spanish networks, but not pass that on to us as roaming charges.

But just before you ran out of the terminal and start streaming movies, posting every day’s events on social media sites and face timing your mates for hours at a time a few things to consider

Exceeding your data, minutes and text allowances is still chargeable like at home, what data package do you have, you could use even more when you are away. A great money saving tip for when you travel is to connect to Wi-Fi as often as you can. Not only will you receive a faster connection (on average) but any data transferred will go via the Wi-Fi connection and not your mobile data plan. That said, remember to be careful when using Public Networks. Don’t let the holiday sun affect your judgment. Make sure you don’t get careless with your privacy, don’t connect to online banking (or other sensitive sites) unless you know for certain the connection is secure, and remember to look after your device, it is still a gateway to your world that criminals want access to, so put that password on your device and be careful what you do in Public and on Public networks.

 

 

Before you head off on your travels..

While having lower roaming charges is a great money saver for most people, exceeding your data allowance can still prove to be super costly. Therefore, it is vital that you check the details of your tariff with your provider before you travel to avoid being caught out by surprise charges.

For more information please visit your provider’s website, or give them a call:

Three Mobile - http://support.three.co.uk/SRVS/CGI-BIN/WEBISAPI.DLL?Command=New,Kb=Mobile,Ts=Mobile,T=Article,varset_cat=mobilebroadband,varset_subcat=3889,Case=obj(38359)

Vodaphone - https://www.vodafone.co.uk/explore/costs/data-charges/

EE - http://ee.co.uk/help/accounts-billing-and-topping-up/sign-up-and-manage-your-account/ee-check-your-data-usage

02 - http://www.o2.co.uk/data-allowance

 

What happens after Brexit I here you say

Well, no one knows yet as citizens of a non-EU country, we will have no automatic right to roam free. However, ABTA has demanded, “we retain this highly valuable and pragmatic EU-level agreement once we leave the EU”.

I believe the UK will negotiate the same deal, but like many things with Brexit, which this space. Over the coming months, as exit negotiations get under way, we will discover more information on what the future holds.

 

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