Way back in June 2015, the European Union officially voted to remove data roaming charges for travelling citizens. This finally meant that networks could no longer gouge customers for using their data plans abroad in Europe. Unfortunately for those of us in the UK, Brexit may have thrown a spanner in the works, although UK networks claim that they do not plan to reintroduce roaming charges once all is said and done.
Recently as part of new guidelines, the UK government warned that a no-deal Brexit would mean that free roaming in Europe would no longer be guaranteed. However, the government would look to pass legislation that would ensure that charges were capped and that data usage alerts were mandatory to give customers a heads-up before going over their data limit.
Fortunately, as The Register reports, several major UK-based networks have said that even after Brexit, they don’t plan to reintroduce roaming charges in Europe.
EE told the site that it doesn’t “have any plans to change” its current inclusive roaming offers. O2 echoed that statement, with “no plans to change” its roaming services across Europe. Three said that customers will be able to “continue suing their usual allowances” when travelling in the EU. Finally, Vodafone also chimed in, telling the site that it has “no plans to introduce charges”, while also reminding us that it was the first UK network to step back from EU roaming charges in the first place.
So from the sounds of it, even if Britain walks away from the EU with no deal in place, the networks won’t be in a rush to bring back expensive roaming costs. However, with no law hanging over them to prevent it, it will always be a possibility.
KitGuru Says: The removal of data roaming charges in the EU was a hugely consumer-friendly move and it would be sad to see that go away after Brexit. Networks aren’t looking to do a complete 180 just yet though and hopefully, things will stay that way.