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EU reaffirms plans to abolish “rip-off” mobile roaming charges

The cost of using our devices when travelling internationally can prove prohibitive, with most mobile carriers imposing severe surcharges for the privilege of calling, texting and consuming data while abroad. These roaming charges vary wildly, depending on your network, which country it’s from, and which nation you’re visiting. Some carriers offer bundles or inclusive minutes to use abroad on certain price plans; others charge absurd, eye-watering prices per megabyte of data used.

The European Union has had enough of all this inconsistency, and what it calls the “rip-off” regime that carriers have enjoyed for too long Tomorrow, the European Commission will push forward new legislation and regulatory frameworks that will force carriers to drastically reduce roaming charges – to just one-third of their current level – and encourage them to abolish international premiums altogether across the EU.

The vice-president of the European Commission, Neelie Kros, told The Telegraph: “We need business models based not on yesterday’s rip-offs, but on tomorrow’s digital opportunities; with revenues not from outrageous margins on roaming, but from new innovative services that people will want to pay for.”

The Commission’s intention is to introduce regulation that will oversee a significantly less expensive array of mobile roaming charges; but the hope is that the burden of red tape required to manage those greatly reduced charges will prove to be all the incentive needed for carriers to abandon the charges altogether.

Given that roaming charges currently account for around ten percent of carrier revenues, the operators are unlikely to simply wave that money goodbye. We'll have to wait and see what batshit crazy charges the carriers will slap on to your bill to make up for it creative and exciting innovations the carriers will introduce to help generate revenues in new ways.

Source: The Telegraph

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