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unexpected roaming charges Brits

Brits hit by GBP 539 millin of unexpected roaming charges

A recent Opinium survey, commissioned by Uswitch, has revealed that British citizens have paid an estimated £539m in unanticipated roaming charges over the past year, following the reintroduction of EU roaming charges by most mobile operators. unexpected roaming charges Brits

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The survey found that while 32% of participants plan to use their mobiles overseas, a staggering 83% are unaware that the mandatory £45 cost cap, designed to shield consumers from unexpected bill shocks due to roaming charges, is no longer in effect.

Certain networks, including Sky Mobile, giffgaff, O2, and Three UK, have chosen to maintain this cost cap voluntarily (unless the customer opts to modify it). However, others, such as Tesco Mobile, have reportedly done away with it. Remember, even if your network maintains data roaming caps, these caps don’t cover calls and texts. You can still accumulate significant charges from these services.

It’s worth noting that some mobile operators offer specific add-ons to help manage roaming charges, typically priced around £2-£3 per day. However, not all operators offer this, and it’s often restricted to specific countries. If your operator provides a roaming add-on for the country you’re visiting, this is usually the best approach.

Alternatively, there are numerous global travel SIM providers, typically utilising eSIM technology. However, choosing a hotel or AirBnb with reliable WiFi has also become increasingly important.

‘Be wary of shock costs’

Rehan Ali, Uswitch mobile expert said: “Anyone travelling abroad from the UK should be wary of potential shock costs, even if they think roaming is included in their tariff. These costs can sometimes be incredibly expensive, so it’s vital that customers research ahead of their trip and put measures in place to avoid a sky-high bill.”

“The safest option is to manually apply a monthly spending cap before travelling for each account that will be used abroad. This is particularly important for children and teenagers with access to a phone, as one in 10 parents say their kids have been responsible for an unexpected roaming bill.”

Six tips to reduce roaming bills unexpected roaming charges Brits

  1. Download maps, films, and music while in the UK. An hour of Google Maps equates to 5MB. Streaming an HD movie for an hour uses 2GB.
  2. Arrange a personalized spending cap with providers to avoid surprise bills and confirm limits to avoid unexpected charges.
  3. Some providers charge for voicemail. Arrange to deactivate this before traveling.
  4. Enable Wi-Fi calling or download apps such as Whatsapp to make audio calls and avoid using minutes. Ensure access points are secure before using public Wifi.
  5. Utilise flight mode to avoid charges while in transit across different countries.
  6. Consider a no-contract one-month SIM-only deal to eliminate unexpected costs while abroad. For £4.96, Lebara offers a 5GB monthly SIM with free roaming in the EU and India

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