09 Aug Vodafone to reintroduce roaming charges for UK customers in Europe | Business News
Vodafone will reintroduce roaming charges for UK customers who travel in mainland Europe from next year.
New and upgrading customers will have to pay up to £2 a day to use their monthly allowance of data, calls and text messages.
Travellers from the UK had been able to escape roaming charges thanks to a ban on the fees throughout the European Union since 2017.
But the trade deal brokered between the bloc and the UK did not allow for Britons to keep this advantage.
Despite this, the four main networks – EE, O2, Three, and Vodafone – had said there were no plans to reintroduce roaming fees.
But EE, which is owned by BT, became the first to change its mind in June.
Vodafone said on Monday that customers travelling to the Republic of Ireland will be exempt from the charges.
Also, existing customers will not be affected while they remain on their current phone plan and, while terms and conditions for new and upgrading customers will change from 11 August, the roaming charges will apply from 6 January next year.
Ahmed Essam, Vodafone’s chief executive in the UK, said: “The majority of our customers are not regular roamers.
“Indeed, fewer than half our customers roamed beyond the Republic of Ireland in 2019.
“And the reality is that including roaming – a service that costs us money to provide – in every plan means more than half of our customers are paying for something that they don’t use.
“What’s free for one person usually has to be paid for by someone else.
“So we think it’s fairer to give people more choice over what they pay for, either opting into a price plan that includes free roaming, or paying for roaming only when they roam.
“Otherwise people who rarely or never go abroad end up paying for something they don’t use.”