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Vodafone UK bites the bullet and bundles Euro voice/data/text roaming for £3/day

Vodafone has bitten the bullet. And it’s brilliant news for the consumer. 

From today (as Dan from CoolSmartPhone reports), you now only need to pay £3 per day and everything will be priced at your standard UK price plan rate. 

As Dan points out: 

So say for example you are in sunny Spain for 5 days (which I will be in August), I can pay £3 a day and use my 3000 Minutes, 3000 Texts and 1GB data use which for a heavy smartphone user is a fantastic deal considering past roaming deals on data costing a lot more.

This is genius.

Previously, Vodafone wanted 75p every time you used your phone abroad for voice calls (receiving or calling). And they’d charge you £2 for 25mb a day of data usage. 

It was always a pain. I liked the fact it was there, though. I liked the fact that at least they were offering something. But it all added up — and frankly, it made traveling abroad super annoying. I have never liked having to limit my usage because I happen to have crossed a border. 

Being able to take my price plan abroad is excellent. There’s also a nice differentiation now between contract and Pay As You Go users. The latter have to stick with the old Vodafone passport model. Now there’s a bit of a reward for being a contract customer and heading abroad.

Somewhere, someone in Vodafone UK has got the message and I’m delighted. 

Although £3/day will add up — that’s £21 for a week — I think it’s now at a level where, for most people, the utility will more-or-less match the price charged. Yes it’d be nice to see that daily fee hit something like £1 or even £0.50 in the fullness of time. 

It won’t be long, I don’t think, until the other UK networks are prompted to do similar. Hutchison’s 3 is going to have a pretty bad time of it. For the longest time they’ve been sat at the back quietly charging £1.28/mb for data in Europe (and a frankly ridiculous 36.6p/minute back to the UK).

Right now I can imagine the marketing teams at the other UK operators standing around in huddles panicking about just how to respond. They’ve not much choice but to eventually swing into line.

Only today I was giving some though to swapping to O2 on the basis that they gave you 50mb of roaming data (as opposed to 25mb with Vodafone). I won’t be bothering now. 

Roaming has always been a touchy subject for the operators. They do make a lot of money from it. At the same time almost half their customers literally switch off their phones when they go abroad (figures from Mach, the planet’s expert roaming service provider). So they’re losing a huge amount of possible revenue. Moving to a simple £3/day option should seriously change a lot of minds. It should also deliver a good amount of additional revenue to Vodafone. Remember that previously, when I went abroad for a week, my usage of Vodafone’s services was deliberately reduced. I’d encourage people not to call me. I’d avoid calling folk. In short, I did everything possible to reduce my expenditure on Vodafone services whilst out of the country. Now, though, it’s game on. I’ll quite happily natter away, text, email and whatnot. And that communication will result in greater use of Vodafone services by me. Some of the people I speak to will be Vodafone customers who’ll end up spending more (whether they’re abroad or at home). It should hopefully be a virtuous circle for Vodafone.

Nice work Vodafone.

Here’s the overview from the Vodafone EuroTraveller page

With Vodafone EuroTraveller, for just an extra £3 a day, you can use your UK price plan in Europe.

Vodafone EuroTraveller allows you to use your phone in Europe with the same confidence as in the UK – so you’ll have freedom from unexpected bills. For just £3 a day, you can take your UK minutes, texts and mobile internet to Europe – and you’ll only be charged on the days you use your phone.

What’s covered?
It’s only making calls (including to your voicemail), sending texts and using mobile internet that trigger the daily charge – with Vodafone EuroTraveller, there’s no charge for receiving calls and texts.

Just £3 a day
Use your minutes, texts and mobile internet with the same freedom as in the UK (excludes extras)
You’ll only be charged on the days you use your phone
No charge for receiving calls and texts
No monthly commitment – opt in and out whenever you like
Check your remaining allowance just like at home – with My account or the My Vodafone app

The one fly in the ointment for me? I think I’m a “small business” customer. So I’ll need to get that changed. 

By Ewan

Ewan is Founder and Editor of Mobile Industry Review. He writes about a wide variety of industry issues and is usually active on Twitter most days. You can read more about him or reach him with these details.

22 replies on “Vodafone UK bites the bullet and bundles Euro voice/data/text roaming for £3/day”

Not at all pleased with this. Just cancelled my Vodafone contract. I was paying 10 quid a month for 25Mb a day in Europe. I spend at least half my time in Europe every month and Vodafone no longer do monthly flat fees. This, therefore, has just added 30-40 quid a month on to my bill.

Heading off to another network that has more reasonable charging. 

Ah then that is a little bit limiting. From my point of view and typical usage pattern, I think it’s great — but I can see why you’re not happy!

If you have the £10 service or get 25MB free you can keep it by not opting in…. if you opt in to the new service you cant get the old ones back

Got a similar problem.  Have a voda sim with a very low tariff and no data included for my trips to Europe. £10/ month was great for me, but this prices Voda out, because not only am I now looking at £42 for a fortnight, but I’d also need a UK tariff with perhaps 500mb of data as opposed to being able to add the £10 on those months I’m abroad

I don’t tend to make calls abroad, and don’t feel the massive need to start. Texts are already priced reasonably. Data is the one… i’ve actually swapped out to a Voda sim just for data while abroad on my last few trips, using the £2/25Mb deal – but this would cost me more (at a time when, post-EU rulings, data should be getting cheaper).

I would maintain that a £5/month charge to be able to use your UK allowances abroad would be more like it. Maybe £10, tops. £3/day is fairly ridiculous IMO.

This is a very bad deal.  By pressing an option to just find out more details, as the voice option implied, I now find I’m forced onto Euro Traveler instead of being on passport.  So I send a text message and immediately rack up a £3 charge.  What sort of good deal is that?  There’s enough WiFi access around – usually free – to limit the need to use data roaming.  The old deal was far better value.  Eurotraveller is a swizz. 

This is t total rip off and a way for Vodafone to maximise revenues in response to changes in EU Legislation over roaming charges. I travel all over Europe every week for work for 2-3 days at a time, this mean a monthly increase of £36/month!!!!!!! How is that fair! I would limit my data usage for checking emails and use wifi where possible, have 10 free texts and only pay a .75p connection charge. This may seem like a good offer but for regular EU travellers this is utterly disgraceful. Vodafone should be ashamed and Ewan, “Nice work” what planet are you on!

Apple, Google, Samsung or Nokia. Step right up and conqueror the world. How? Build a multi country mobile network. Start with one that covers all the member countries of the Euro (as of 01/01/2012). Make it so that anyone who buys a SIM in Finland pays the same price for the same amount of calls, texts, data as someone in Greece or someone in France or Ireland etc. Make it so that there is no roaming for people on your network. If they are in a country whose currency is the euro then their SIM works just like it would in the country in which it was brought/registered. After two years roll it out to cover Norway, Sweden and Switzerland. Your network would be just incredible!

I suppose Nokia are in pole position for this one given that they are the ones with a network building division…

Vodafone Euro Traveller works out incredibly expensive if you are mainly a data user with varied roamed call use.

Data Traveller cost only 10 pounds a month for 25mb a day. In my case
calls varied but in total monthly bill if I was roaming for a month was
never as high as what it would cost with Euro Traveller – around 90
pounds!

As Vodafone removed the old services without giving the option to
keep them, many customers and I are fighting to be released from our
contracts as they are now pretty much useless when abroad and we chose
Vodafone due to these services being available. Vodafone, however, are
not allowing this and so complaints have been lodged with Ofcom, the
Ombudsman and BBC Watchdog.

You can see the discontent here:

http://forum.vodafone.co.uk/t5/Pay-Monthly-Services/Eurotraveller-questions/td-p/1150087

I urge all of you who are unhappy not to just sit back and take this
kind of treatment. The more Vodafone see that people are upset and their
reputation going down the drain, the more they are likely to worry and
listen!

you’re absolutely wrong Ewan. 2 weeks in the Netherlands in April with my wife, total data roaming cost for us both =£20. Now same will be £84

So sorry its a great way for Vodafone to look like they’re helping, while actually ripping us off

Happy to show you the bill to prove it!

Ah I was defining occasional as popping to Europe twice or three times a month for a day each time.

For continued periods — ie 2 weeks, yeah. Not ideal.

I think Vodafone are an absolute shameful rip off company – our lad was charged 208 pounds by these crooks for 7 days – We have now cancelled 8 vodafone deals in our family – The cheapest way abroad is to get a local sim – or use an internet shop for home calls. VODAFONE ARE A RIP – AS ARE TELEWEST – THE BEST I FOUND WAS GIFF GAFF AND 3.

It is clearly the fault of government for not clamping down on provider crooks.
Oftel is not worth a carrot – They just waffle rubbish and take ages – Punish these companies by changing provider – GIFF GAFF IS THE BEST POUND FOR POUND DEAL ‘GOODYBAGS FROM 10 POUNDS. ALL THE DATA U CAN EAT 5000 TEXTS – ONLY 10.00 – STOP GETTING RIPPED BY THE LIKES OF VODAFONE – GET RID.

I just signed up for vodafone monthly sim and they gave me euro traveller for free – which is an even better price. It was offered via the online chat.

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