Roaming Charges in the EU are gone – but beware of data roaming

Yes, the day has finally arrived. Roaming charges in the EU are gone. But there are still things that you’ll need to watch out for, especially around data roaming.

Back in February, we posted about how roaming charges for customers travelling within the EU could be gone by June of this year. As it turns out, today is the day that these charges are finally gone, but only for calls and texts.

Fees abolished for calls and texts

That’s right. From today, any call or text message made while travelling in the EU come from your monthly allowance. Providing you are making a call to an Irish number of course as international charges still apply. No doubt, this is great news, but there is still a grey area around data roaming.

What to know about Data Roaming?

Much like calls and texts, data usage depends on your network having a roaming agreement. This allows you browse the internet, post on Facebook,  or, if you’re like Jon, spend your day sending silly Snapchats to everyone.

What’s different, you ask? Data you use while abroad doesn’t always come out of your normal monthly allowance. This is significant, and it’s something to be wary of. Most bill shock stories nowadays relate to data usage.

Remember the White Moose Cafe hoo-hah with Eir? That was caused by using Snapchat abroad. Fortunately, the Irish networks have data roaming options available to you.

What is each network offering?

Lets start with the best offering out there. Vodafone have kept things simple. For anyone who is on a contract, you can use your data allowance within the EU just like you would at home. No stress. Any out of bundle charges are the same as if you were in Ireland as well.

Meteor and Eir are doing things a little differently to Vodafone. Depending on your monthly plan, your data roaming allowance can change significantly. Allowances range from 5GB up to 9GB. You’re best to check what you’re allowances are with Meteor or Eir before travelling.

To find out what you’re entitled to from Three is a bit of a minefield. Best to quote directly from their site:

Take the sum of your monthly mobile tariff, take the Vat away, divide it by 7.7 (€7.70 is the agreed EU inter-operator price per gigabyte of data) and multiply it by two.
For example, if you are on a bill pay plan our Sim only plan is €30 per month. The ex-Vat price of that is €Y. So divide €Y by 7.7 and you 2.1. Multiply it by two to get your EU data allowance – ZGB.

It breaks down as 6GB if you are on a €30 or €45 per month plan, and 9GB if you are on the Unlimited €60 per month plan.

ID data roamingare offering up to 6.3GB of data allowance while roaming, dependent on what data package you have signed up for.

Remember, before travelling, always check what you’re signed up for and that roaming is active. Happy roaming!

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Gary is a leading tech expert with loads of experience around the latest gadgets on the market. He's also an avid movie fan and Fantasy Football guru.

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