EU roaming charges to be scrapped – but what’s the catch?Blog Home
From the 15th of June 17, UK mobile phone users can use their normal phone bundles within the EU without incurring roaming charges – but there could be some hidden costs!
As of June 15th, anyone can use their mobile phone bundle anywhere in the EU, (except from Turkey unless you’re with Vodafone) for no extra charge.
This new ruling is effectively a Europe-wide law meaning all UK providers, big or small, must adhere to it.
Whether you are have a contract, or a pay-as-you-go Sim card with your provider, there will be no extra charges to use any aspect of your standard bundle in the EU.
Although this new regulation is clear, we dug deeper to see whether there are loopholes which providers could exploit.
What happens if you use up all your data, call minutes or texts?
New EU regulations are clear, stating that you cannot be charged more for using your UK bundle in the EU, including out of bundle charges. However, these out-of-bundle charges can vary significantly depending on your provider. For example, Three charge 3p per each out-of-bundle minute, whereas Vodafone currently charge 55p. It is definitely worth checking this with your provider if you are running low on texts, minutes or data allowance.
What if you call an EU country from the UK?
Calling an EU Nation from the UK, is not technically roaming, as you are not abroad. This means that providers are free to charge what they like for any calls made to the EU, from the UK.
Research shows that Giffgaff came out the cheapest, being 9p per minute on its own network, and Vodafone being one of the most expensive at £1.50 per minute.
What if I am traveling to Turkey?
Unfortunately, if you are going to Turkey on holiday, this EU regulation will not apply, since Turkey is not a member. This means that the use of your UK bundle will incur standard roaming charges, unless you are with Vodafone, which is the only provider with Turkey added to their list of free-roaming countries.
Which provider is best if I’m traveling outside the EU?
As this new regulation only applies to EU countries, by using your bundle outside of the EU exposes you to your provider’s extensive roaming policy.
If you are a frequent traveller to the US, Australia, Hong Kong or New Zealand, then Three is your best option since these countries are included under their list of free-roaming countries.
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