EU roaming charges have been officially abolished today, meaning that you can now use your monthly allowance of calls, texts and data from anywhere in the European Union at no extra cost.
This news comes after years of horror stories about unsuspecting consumers receiving extortionate bills for using their phone abroad.
So, will this really mean the end of hefty holiday bills? Which countries are included in EU free roaming? And will UK holiday-makers still be able to benefit from this after Brexit?
Read on to find out more.
Free calls and texts in the EU
From today, you can now make calls and send texts from anywhere in the EU and it won’t cost you any more than it would back home.
So, if you have a monthly allowance of unlimited calls and texts, you can phone home for free. Or if it costs you 10p to send a text in England, it will also cost 10p to send it from anywhere else in the EU.
Data roaming in the EU
The rules around data are a tad more complicated. Although you can use your monthly allowance of data for no extra charge from anywhere in the EU, most networks are imposing a “fair usage” policy, which caps your data allowance while you’re away.
While this won’t affect most consumers, heavy users might get landed with a hefty bill if they go over the fair usage cap.
EE, for example, have capped all users at 15GB. While this is more than sufficient for most users, if you’re used to streaming videos and filming yourself on Facebook Live, you could eat that up pretty quickly.
To find out more, check out our international roaming guide.
Countries included in the EU free roaming scheme
EU roaming applies in all 28 EU countries. These are Austria, Azores, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canary Islands, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, French Guiana, Germany, Gibraltar (UK), Greece, Guadeloupe, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Madeira, Malta, Martinique, Poland, Portugal, Reunion Islands, Romania, Saint Barthelemy, Saint Martin (French), San Marino, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, The Netherlands and Vatican City.
Some operators will also cover countries in the European Economic Area or even further afield. To check which countries are included your provider’s free roaming scheme, check out our handy network-by-network guide on free roaming.
EU roaming charges after Brexit
Currently, there’s no word on whether or not Brexit will affect free EU roaming. But seeing as leaving the European Union is quite a lengthy process, you should be able to enjoy free roaming for a while at least.