Roam like home!
As of June 2017 one need no longer worry about extra roamng charges when travelling throughout the European Union and as the name suggests “Roam Like Home” means that whatever your national plan allows you, you can use it across the EU. Therefore if you have, for example, 120 minutes and 300 texts - that is precisely what you can use anywhere in the EU over the course of one month, irrespective of how long your contract has yet to run.
It needs to be pointed out the premium numbers are not included nor are free phone numbers - these could be charged - check before calling.
It took a long time for the European Commission to bring this about as not surprisingly the telephone operators were not too happy about it, particularly as the mobile phone user does not have to apply to roam like home.
Those that have unlimited minutes or texts can now spend their entire holiday showing their mates back home how great it is by the pool. As far as data is concerned the operator must provide a large volume of roam like at home data depending on the price of your mobile bundle and the operator needs to make it clear how much you can actually use. This is a bit complicated. It is calculated by dividing the price of your mobile bundle (excluding VAT) by EUR7.70 and then doubling it. EUR7.70 is the maximum price that an operator pays a foreign operator for 1 GB of data. This price is set to drop to EUR3.85 in 2018 and EUR2.25 in 2019. However if the operator does not inform the user of a cap then the user can have the full allowance.
As an example, if you pay EUR20 per month your data will be EUR20 divided by 7.7 and doubled means that the user has at least 5.19GB of data to use.
Please note the sums quoted are exclusive of VAT!
Charges will still apply for going over the limit. The maximum that can be paid is 3.2 cents per minute for voice calls, 1 cent per SMS and €7.70 per gigabyte of data, all excluding VAT.
There is unfortunatly a fair use policy which will effect those that spend a lot of time aborad - more than four months per year. If you spend over this time then you will be expected to get a local operator.
Of course this only works in the European Union - so be wary of huge bills from places outside of it!