For the best part of half a decade, businesses and consumers have traversed the continent with their mobile phones – striking deals and sharing memories – safe in the knowledge that they won’t incur any extra or hidden charges for using their mobile data whilst abroad.
With 2022 fast approaching, it also means the end of those guarantees with many of the UK’s mobile networks set to reintroduce roaming charges from the New Year.
Unwelcome news to many, the charges could see bills rise exponentially. As travel restrictions begin to ease and more countries reopen their borders for business and tourism, many travellers will be unaware of any changes to their current contracts.
Roaming charges were commonplace throughout Europe, where travellers would be charged a fee for accessing their mobile data, sending or receiving text messages or making phone calls when abroad. Charges would vary on a customer’s usage but would typically cost between £1.50 to £3 per day.
Whilst not an eye-watering sum of money on the face of it, charges would soon begin to mount up for both businesses and consumers.
Aware of this, the European Union brought in strict regulation to abolish roaming charges in 2016, which saw travellers then charged only their standard rates as if they were at home.
After the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union at the end of 2020, UK travellers now find themselves subject to roaming charges once more – but there is time to act, as Mark Pattman, Managing Director, RoamingExpert, details.
“Two major networks have announced these charges are going to come back from the 1st of January,” Mark explained. “They will be put back in for any new contracts, anybody that upgrades or anyone that moves networks from the 1st of December onwards. That’s why this is now really, really relevant.”
RoamingExpert specialise in creating bespoke solutions to help businesses reduce their mobile data and roaming charges.
“Our background is, basically, focusing on lowering roaming charges for UK businesses. We know that one of the major networks in the UK is bringing back charges alongside another already announced and we expect the rest to follow suit. We’re in a position where we can help manage those costs for people and do something about it now to ensure they don’t get hit so hard by those charges in the next year or two and can make some savings.”
Priding ourselves on a truly personal service, we can help businesses analyse their costs and provide new, cost-effective solutions to reduce expenditure and help make savings.
“We aren’t constrained by the network tariffs,” Mark said. “We analyse what a business does with their phones and then we put in place the right thing for them on a bespoke tariff that’s built specifically for them.
It’s all multi-network. We can have different phones on different networks based on what their calling profile is like, their roaming profile or their signal at home. From there, we can bring all of their bills under one roof and provide a single bill from RoamingExpert that covers multiple networks.”
Mark explains the rising costs that businesses with a fleet of mobile phones may soon face, as roaming charges can quickly become a growing blot on the balance books.
“Businesses that have got to travel more are the ones that are really going to feel it,” Mark outlines. “I’d like to say two pounds a day doesn’t sound like a lot but if you have over 15 users spending two, three or even four days abroad a month, then that cost will soon become a few hundred pounds at least. It probably won’t be mentioned to a lot of people who re-sign with their network. They’re not going to see it until six or twelve months into the future as things get back to normal. As we return to the rate of travel we were all doing back in 2019, all of sudden the bills are going to go through the roof once again.”
Before charges return, some as early as the start of December, there is a window of opportunity where RoamingExpert can help businesses prepare for the upcoming changes. We can examine a business’ current mobile usage and contracts to highlight where changes can be made to reduce costs.
“We’re in a really good position to work with businesses on their mobile and data coverage,” Mark added. “We know the industry inside out and where the real savings can be made. Everyone’s circumstances will be different but that’s where we have the expertise and experience to know what a particular client needs and how best to provide it.”
To find out how we can help your business, please get in touch.