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Free roaming this summer on Carephone Warehouse’s iD network

Mobile phone on beach

Now that the summer holidays are well underway, a recent study claims that almost a quarter of UK holidaymakers will be burnt by the cost of data whilst they’re away. Unfortunately, they’re paying over the odds for playing games, using Facebook and just surfing the Internet.

It turns out that most holidaymakers spend around 40 minutes online every day on holiday. But for the younger generation between 25 and 34 years old this rises to about an hour. Two thirds of that age group say that using Facebook is the main reason they want to access the Internet abroad.

iD network’s “SPF22” could save you money abroad

The fact that most people now want to be always connected even when outside the UK means that many people spend more than £27 extra on top of their normal phone bill, with one in seven people getting a bill of more than £100 when they return home.

The Carphone Warehouse’s iD network commissioned the research, which was done to mark the launch of free roaming in 22 countries in a new promotion called SPF22 (Summer Phone Factor).

The survey found that thousands of holidaymakers are downloading music (10% of people) and eBooks (8%) while on cellular networks. Furthermore, 8% are streaming music or video on their phone or tablet using their mobile data allowance. That’s one way to rack up huge data charges while roaming!

The study suggests that many UK mobile users don’t fully understand that using a mobile phone abroad my incur hefty charges. And even though data roaming charges (which will be capped from May next year) remain until 2017, 32% of people say they have no idea if they pay more for data when they’re abroad. Just one in five people have free roaming in their existing plan and just a third use free Wi-Fi to get online.

“Free roaming in the EU might be just two years away, but our research shows that people are in need of greater flexibility and tailored tariffs right now. Being constantly connected has become the norm whether at home or abroad, and worrying about running up high bills shouldn’t get in the way of that. The free roaming offer from iD – across more countries in the EU than any other network, as well as the USA and Australia – recognises just that” – Aman Bhachu, UK General Manager – Connectivity and Customer Solutions at Carphone Warehouse.

As for the cost of roaming on iD networks’ plans, they start at £22.50 per month (for a two-year contract) and include free roaming in 22 countries (including the USA and Australia) for the duration of the plan, which is more than any other UK network.

Here’s a quick rundown of the number of countries included in the promotion:

iD Network Roaming

For more information about roaming abroad on iD, visit

By Roland Banks

Roland Banks has been passionate about mobile technology for the past 20 years. He started his career at British Telecom's research division working on collaborative virtual reality environments, before becoming a video streaming specialist at 3 UK where he helped launch some of the world's first mobile video services. More recently he enjoys writing about his obsession, and developing software that helps mobile operators analyse their subscriber data.

Roland has lived in Asia for the past 5 years, and tries to indulge his other passion for riding motorcycles whenever possible.

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