Countering data roaming bill shocks
Customers roaming in another EU Member State no longer need to worry about accidentally running up huge bills when surfing the web using mobile networks via a mobile phone or computer when abroad in the EU. Thanks to the EU's roaming rules, travellers' data-roaming limit will be automatically set at €50 (unless they have chosen another limit – higher or lower.
As of 1 July 2010, the Roaming Regulation foresees the following:
- Operators will have to impose a monthly default cut-off for data roaming of €50. Consumers can also select a different cut-off limit if offered by the operator or opt out of this bill shock safeguard entirely.
- Operators are obliged to send users a warning whey they reach 80% of their data-roaming bill limit. The operator will have to cut off the mobile internet connection once the limit has been reached, unless the customer has indicated they want to continue data roaming.
As of July 2011:
- Prices for mobile roaming calls are reduced further with a maximum tariff of €0.35 per minute for calls made and €0.11 per minute for calls received.
- The maximum wholesale prices for data roaming fall from €0.80 to €0.50 per MB.
- Receiving a voice mail message while roaming will become free of charge.
What remains in force?
- The price for sending a text message while roaming in the EU is still limited to a maximum of €0.11. Receiving an SMS in another EU country is free of charge.
- For roamed calls, operators are obliged to use per second billing after the first 30 seconds for calls made and immediately for calls received.
- Citizens should be kept adequately informed of the charges that
apply for roaming services.
See also: press release.
Note: all prices are excluding VAT.