Vodafone UK cuts roaming charges for summer

UK mobile operator Vodafone hit the headlines again this week, announcing plans to do away with roaming charges for the summer.

From June 1 to the end of August, Vodafone prepay and postpay customers will be able to call, text and send picture messages to the UK from over 35 countries for the same price as if they were in the UK. Bundled minutes are included in the offering and business customers will also benefit, but mobile data is not included.

Customers that are already signed up to Vodafone’s Passport plan will automatically benefit from the promotion, but others will need to sign up at

In addition, Vodafone prepay customers on the Simply tariff will get cheaper international calls to both landlines and mobiles from May 15.

Countries included in the summer promotion include Albania, Andorra, Austria, Belgium, Bosnia, Bulgaria, Canary Islands, Channel Islands, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Faroes, Finland, France, Germany, Gibraltar, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Isle of Man, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Madeira, Malta, Monaco, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Republic of Ireland, Romania, San Marino, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, The Netherlands, Vatican City, New Zealand, Australia.

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  1. Avatar Fred Perkins 14/05/2009 @ 12:53 pm

    Vodafone is guilty of gross distortion here, in its press release. The are NOT “doing away with roaming charges”. They are, for a limited period, merely removing the “connection charge” applied to roaming calls FOR WHICH SUBSCRIBERS ARE ALREADY PAYING EXTRA, via the Passport service add-on.

    The ASA’s phones are already ringing from complainants…

    • Avatar editorial 14/05/2009 @ 3:23 pm

      Vodafone UK is indeed cutting the £0.75 charge that had previously applied to each initiated call and each received call, the firm has told us. But given that Passport doesn’t cost anything to sign up to – it’s not a ‘bolt-on’ that’s charged for – the carrier is in fact cutting the cost of roamed calls dramatically.

      Now, if you wanted to have a dig, you could argue that it’s only able to cut the cost of roamed calls dramatically because it had hitherto been overcharging its customers by some margin. You could also point out that It’s choosing to grant this temporary reprieve in a year when as many as 60 per cent of Britons have indicated that they will not holiday overseas because of financial difficulties coupled with the weakness of Sterling.

      Vodafone’s deal does not apply to calls made from one host network to a third country. However, calls in country and back to the UK are all covered, irrespective of the recipient’s network, Vodafone said.

      It’s also interesting to note that up until the last minute, according to a Vodafone insider, there was group involvement in this announcement. Only yesterday, apparently, was responsibility devolved to the individual op-cos. Read into that what you will.

  2. Avatar chan kin hung 14/05/2009 @ 12:57 pm

    This is a new development.It comes with registration of postpaid customers . Data roaming is excluded.

  3. Avatar chan kin hung 14/05/2009 @ 12:58 pm

    This is a development in the global space<?

    Rgds Buck Chze

  4. Avatar Seamus 18/05/2009 @ 1:54 pm

    This is a smart marketing move from Vodafone. The whole tenor of the press announcement and the online advertisements is “roaming charges are abolished” thereby encouraging those fortunate enough to be holidaying abroad this year to use their mobile phone as if they were at home. At the moment many phone users are scared to use their phone when they roam. I’d guess the extra usage that their subscribers generate as a result of this marketing will more than compensate for the (temporary) drop in roaming tariffs.

    Note that Vodafone is not first to introduce this type of “free” roaming tariff, 3 currently have their “3 Like Home” service which allows their subscribers to have their calls charged as if they were at home, when roaming on 3 networks. Coincidentally (or not?) the “3 Like Home” service is due to be withdrawn at the end of June!

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