Europeans will know the pain of roaming charges. Head to another country on holiday or business and try and check email, or text the boss/wife/husband/partner/colleague/friend (delete as applicable) and you'll be hit with fees. However, in a good piece of news, the European Union, the legislative body that governs most of Europe, is set to abolish roaming charges by summer 2017. Fantastic!
The EU has been gunning for this since 2007. It's been pushed back and delayed, with a final date of June 15 2017 finally proposed almost two years ago. This means it's been in the works, in one form or another, for a solid ten years. That date gives networks and carriers enough time to implement and react to the changes that the ruling will bring. The European Commission is calling this 'wholesome roaming markets,' and means carriers charge each other a certain amount when their customers use other networks when in a different part of the EU. Specifically, this will be 3.2 cents per minute of voice call, 1 cent per SMS text, and €7.7 per GB, reducing to €2.5 per GB by 2022.
The EU is calling this 'roam-like-at-home' in its marketing to consumers. The next step is for the European Parliament and Council to approve the changes, but since all the various parties have already agreed to the new charges and rules, this approval should be a formality. For British readers, this will still apply until the UK formally leaves the European Union, which according to the schedule will be sometime in 2019. Head to the source link for more information.
- European Commission