Brexit has become one of the most controversial events in recent years. The UK has struggled to overcome the massive changes in trade, particularly the custom fees and the lack of staff. A year after the transition, Britons are now set to face additional costs when heading to member countries of the European Union (EU). Sadly, the happy times of free mobile roaming within the EU have come to an end.
The roaming charges of UK mobile operators are making a gloomy return. So you may have to prepare more money if you wish to go on a spring vacation to the UK or the European Union’s member countries. But surprisingly, there are some ways to help you avoid getting stung with overwhelming bills. Here are the things to know about roaming charges and what you can do to limit your spending.
British travelers enjoyed the free mobile roaming in the EU upon its launching in 2017. Even more, the EU members decided to extend it until 2032. So if you have your mobile phone contracted in one of the member countries, you don’t have to think about the extra fees. But things would change after the four UK mobile operators retracted their sweet promises.
This year, EE (formerly Everything Everywhere), Three, and Vodafone will bring back daily roaming fees with multi-day passes at £2. Meanwhile, O2 implemented a different policy. The customer would have to pay £3.50 per GB once the customer exceeded the 25GB cap. Right now, customers may consider the smaller carriers as cheaper options since they are still planning to apply these new policies. This is one of the things that Britons are now facing after Brexit. The UK is no longer part of the European Union’s “roam like at home” scheme to keep the bills low after holiday trips.
For many EU residents who plan to travel to the UK, changes in roaming charges must be anticipated. For example, Telia, a Swedish operator, ended free roaming in the UK and Gibraltar. So customers must pay SEK 99 daily to access 200 MB of data. But in Germany, large providers have extended their free-roaming conditions with the UK.
Also, in the Netherlands, free-roaming with the UK is still available. It remains a lenient EU member, so expats and students can pause their UK contract. They may find the best deals with a sim card in the Netherlands.
Going to the UK and the EU may become more expensive now. Here are some options to manage your budget:
A Local Sim Card May Help
Using a local sim card is a wise move to manage your travel expenses well. Before heading for the airport, check your destination to know where and how to buy local sim cards. Know that some countries in the European Union require a domestic bill when you buy. Fortunately, it’s easy to find stores willing to sell a local sim card. Alternatively, you may purchase a local prepaid card with bonus features.
It would be more advantageous to acquire a dual sim mobile phone since you don’t have to replace the UK sim card with a local one. Just place the local sim card to get access to both.
Turn to Wi-Fi
This is a very obvious option. With Wi-Fi, you don’t have to worry about excessive roaming charges or buy a local sim card. Just ask for the password whenever you enter an establishment, especially a hotel or a restaurant. For sure, you will not be refused. But of course, it may be slower than expected since other devices will connect to it.
Going out today is more inviting than ever. Imagine being in your home for two years. Giving yourself a break from the pandemic’s toll is a good thing to do. It may not be as cheap as before, but at least you still have options for a perfect travel experience.
Disclaimer: MoneyMagpie is not a licensed financial advisor and therefore information found here including opinions, commentary, suggestions or strategies are for informational, entertainment or educational purposes only. This should not be considered as financial advice. Anyone thinking of investing should conduct their own due diligence.