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Cheaper EU phone charges introduced

Cheaper EU phone charges introduced

Category: Mobile Phones

Updated: 05/12/2017
First Published: 04/07/2011

This article was correct at the time of publication. It is now over 6 months old so the content may be out of date.

People jetting off on their holidays will be able to use their phones without the prospect of a bill running into the hundreds on their return home.

The European Commission has implemented a new set of charges which mobile operators must stick to.

Companies have long been criticised for sky high charges for customers when they are abroad.

But from now on, they will not be allowed to charge more than 32p a minute (plus VAT) for making a phone call, while a limit of 10p per minute (plus VAT) has been set for receiving calls.

The changes are part of the European Commission's effort to reach a point where prices abroad are the same as those at home.

The body said that it is looking to reach this goal by 2015.

"These new price caps will temporarily reduce retail prices for making and receiving voice calls when in another EU country during the coming year,"
Neelie Kroes, European Commission vice president for the Digital Agenda said.

"But we have to tackle roaming problems at the root with a long lasting structural approach.

"The Commission will therefore be coming forward very shortly with comprehensive new proposals for long-term solutions to address the underlying problem of lack of competition in roaming markets."

The new measures also include a cap of 45p per megabyte, with operators forced to impose a cap of £45 on downloads, which can only be removed at the request of the customer.

Under the new rules, receiving and retrieving a voicemail in the European Union will also be free.

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