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Stress of holiday overspending dampening summer spirits for a quarter of British holidaymakers

A new study from O2 shows that nearly half of people (49 percent) are feeling more stressed than ever in the lead-up to their trips this summer as they feel the pressure of the cost-of-living crisis. This is despite the fact that millions of Brits have booked a long-awaited vacation due to Covid restrictions. More than a quarter of respondents cited fear of overspending (27%) as their top pre-vacation concern, followed by concern about losing their passport (24%) and expensive data roaming charges (13 percent ).

SIM card e SIM shop

Since over a third (32%) of people claim they were unaware that their network provider had reinstated roaming fees, data roaming is projected to be the largest unexpected expense this summer’s holiday season.

In order to solve this problem, O2 and Love Island winner Chloe Burrows launched the first swim-up mobile phone store in Menorca, where non-O2 consumers will receive brand-new Pay As You Go Sims, allowing them to finally push play on their vacation and avoid being charged with a hefty roaming bill.

Visitors to the Suites De Lago hotel on Friday, September 29 will have access to the store.

This year, O2 is the only major network provider to not bring back EU roaming fees, with O2 customers able to enjoy inclusive roaming up to 25GB – which could help families save up to £100 over a two-week holiday by not having to pay for data roaming.

expensive roaming

Which app do you use most frequently while traveling? Probably anything that makes it easier for you to navigate? Unfortunately, most of these apps need data


A whopping 78% of holiday makers said that despite the worry about mobile data costs in Europe, they see it as a necessary expense in order to fully enjoy their trip. In contrast, 30% of British holidaymakers noted that not having access to internet made them feel uncomfortable being spontaneous while abroad.

Concerned that they might incur expensive data roaming charges, holiday makers have revealed that they have avoided, or plan to avoid going off the beaten track, exploring or even leaving the hotel, with 33% admitting they believe a lack of connectivity will have a negative impact on their overall holiday enjoyment.

In fact, many directly attributed their phones as contributing to their fun on holiday, with 51% saying they get a rush from sharing updates with friends and family and 76% said that being contactable at any moment allowed them to fully relax.

With the current cost of living crisis creating so much uncertainty, balancing budgets before and during trips also remains a top priority. Whilst 70% are still determined to get away, over 1 in 4 have said their budget for a trip abroad has been reduced.

Similarly, holidaymakers are being more cautious of what they spend whilst they’re abroad with 87% saying they’re going to try and stick to a budget whilst they’re away with eating out (49%), data roaming (15%) and day trips (33%) creating the biggest risk of overspending.

Gareth Turpin, Chief Commercial Officer at Virgin Media O2  “As a nation, we’re more excited than ever to jet away and enjoy the sun, especially after the past two years. However, travel inevitably causes some stress, whether it’s dealing with Covid admin, the risks of cancelled flights, and now trying to keep within budget during a cost-of-living crisis.

“We want to help our customers get back to what a holiday is really about – fun and relaxation. That’s why we’ve opened the O2 Swim-up Mobile Phone Shop and continue to be the only major network provider to not bring back EU roaming fees.” expensive data roaming

If you are travelling abroad and need sim cards choose between daily, monthly or data packages without expiration or if prefer instant connectivity, get  eSIM.


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