Half of Brits apparently think European data roaming fees are unfair

Europe map with network points

Some research by UK operator VMO2 says data roaming charges are the second most annoying travel related bill, while some don’t even know such a thing exists.

According to some research the operator has gathered together, half of Brits think it’s unfair they have to pay additional charges for using their mobile when travelling to Europe, while a quarter of them don’t realise they may need to pay extra at all. VMO2 has extrapolated data roaming charges could cost a family of four an extra £100 for a two-week holiday.

The research lists data roaming fees as the second biggest bugbear around travel related bills, behind credit card commission. The survey also says 70% of respondents think that connectivity is important whilst abroad, and that the most common uses are staying connected to friends and family (52%), find their way around with navigation apps (37%), book restaurants (26%), and update social media accounts (21%).

This info is presented next to numerous references to the fact VMO2 is the only UK operator to still offer inclusive EU roaming as standard, and it reckons this saved its customers £3 million a week in 2022. Tricky stuff to measure surely, but the operator says its estimations are based on fees charged by other operators and anonymised, aggregated movement data collected by O2 Motion, which uses connections to mobile masts to gather various data points on ‘crowd movement trends.’

“We know that many people will be cost conscious when going on holiday this year, so we’re proud to stand out as the only major mobile provider to continue offering inclusive EU roaming, already saving our customers money and providing more value to those travelling post-pandemic,” said Gareth Turpin, Chief Commercial Officer at VMO2. “Whilst we’re not able to remove fees on sunbeds and airplane seats, hopefully not having to worry about roaming fees will upgrade the holiday experience for our customers – whether it is treating themselves to a nice meal or splashing out and ordering that extra cocktail by the pool.”

Of course as the release less than subtly drops in, VMO2 is the only carrier not charging for data roaming in Europe, so the message is a self-serving one and it has provided a useful bit of PR for the operator to deploy of late. But that doesn’t detract from the fact that the other carriers do have these fees in place – and if it’s true a lot of consumers either don’t think that’s on or don’t even know they are getting charged at all, it’s a valid point regardless of the source.


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  1. Avatar Rees-Smugg 06/02/2023 @ 1:58 pm

    Jacob Rees-Mogg invited readers of the Sun newspaper to workon a Brexit benefits project. Contact them if anybody wants to complain.

  2. Avatar Bigsunnyjim 13/02/2023 @ 8:45 am

    Over half of brits also voted for brexit. Utter fools

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