EU roaming charges return? What O2, Sky, Virgin, Tesco, EE, BT, Three, Vodafone say
[caption id="attachment_2578" align="aligncenter" width="900"] Vodafone and EE will reintroduce roaming charges for UK customers in the EU, which Brexit allows them to do, but what are their rivals' plans?[/caption]
Two of the UK's leading mobile phone networks have confirmed they will reintroduce roaming charges for customers to use their phones in the EU.
Despite EE and Vodafone initially saying they had no plans to start charging UK customers for roaming data in the EU after Brexit, both have since announced customers will be charged £2 a day to use their network in EU countries.
Customers in the UK had benefitted from free roaming in the EU since June 2017, as the UK was a member state, but now networks have the right to charge extra.
From January 6, 2022, Vodafone will charge a daily fee of £2 will apply to use data, minutes and text allowance while travelling in affected EU countries . The charges will apply to new customers and anybody who starts a new contract after Wednesday August 11.
Vodafone says customer can save money by buying multi-day passes, which work out at about £1 a day.
EE will also charge £2 a day to use roaming in the EU from January 6, 2022. EE says customers can add a £10 a month 'Roam Abroad' bolt-on to their contract, which will allow them to use data and make calls abroad without the £2 daily charge.
And BT Mobile indicated that its customers could face roaming charges, as its policy is "under review".
Will my phone network add roaming charges to use phone in EU?
We asked the UK's major mobile phone network providers if they plan to follow Vodafone and EE and re-introduce roaming charges for customers travelling in the EU.
Customers with O2 will continue to benefit from free roaming in the EU for the foreseeable future, as O2 has "no plans" to change its current policy.
An O2 spokesperson said: “We’re committed to providing our customers with great connectivity and value when they travel outside the UK. We currently have no plans to change our roaming charges across Europe.”
Roaming will remain free with Sky Mobile, it says.
A spokesperson said: "Sky Mobile customers will not be charged roaming charges in EU countries and will be able to continue to use their data, call and text allowances as they do in the UK."
A 'fair use' policy allows Virgin Mobile customers to roam for no extra cost - within reasonable limits - in the EU.
A Virgin Media spokesperson said: “There are currently no changes to our Roam Like Home offering or roaming fair use policies. Customers can continue to use their inclusive airtime allowances in 43 European destinations and can find more information about roaming on Virgin Media’s website.
“Should we make any changes to our roaming policies in the future, we’ll provide guidance and updated information on our website and notify customers where necessary.”
Good news if you're a Tesco Mobile customer, it has "no plans" to reintroduce roaming charges
Tesco Mobile says: "We have no current plans to reintroduce EU roaming charges. Tesco Mobile customers can continue to use their data, minutes and texts at no additional cost, in 48 destinations across Europe and beyond."
EE announced plans to reintroduce roaming charges for Europe back in June, starting at £2 per day – though it has bundle passes that can reduce the overall cost.
Customers can still use their roaming for free in the EU, but that could change, a BT Mobile indicated, as the policy is "under review".
A spokesperson said: “Our customers currently enjoy inclusive roaming in Europe and beyond but like all aspects of our customer contracts, this remains an area of pricing that is under review.”
The amount of data Three Customers can use in Europe has been cut, but customers won't pay any extra if they limit their EU roaming to 12GB a month.
A Three spokesperson said: “In June, following a review of our fair use policy, we decided to make some changes to our Go Roam policy in the EU to bring it in line with our Go Roam Around the World fair use policy. From July 1 (2021) our fair use limit for data while in the EU reduced from 20GB per month to 12GB. The fair use limit is still more than enough for holidaymakers to use their phone like they would if they were in the UK. There was no change made to our surcharge, so data usage over 12GB (up to the customer’s allowance), remains subject to a small fee of 0.3p per MB.”