Balkan EU States Drop Roaming Fees
Mobile phones users all over the EU, which includes Bulgaria, Romania, Greece and Croatia, will benefit from new "roam like at home" rules from Thursday, when new pan-European rules enter into force. The new rules were agreed by the European Parliament and the Council in January.
The minutes of calls, SMS and megabytes of data that a person consumes abroad within the EU will be charged the same as at home, the European Commission explained.
After reaching their mobile consumption limit, consumers will continue to use data roaming for a small fee of up to 7.7 cent/GB + VAT, which is 6.5 times less than before June 15, the Commission has noted.
However, if a person has unlimited mobile data or very cheap mobile data at home, his operator may apply a safeguard [a so-called fair use] limit on data used while roaming, the EU executive has warned.
Consumers must be aware, however, that while the roam-like-at-home rules apply to services between mobile operators from one country within the whole of the EU, they do not apply to foreign telecoms, experts have warned.
Calls made to neighbouring countries outside the EU will also remain at the higher prices determined by the local operators.
In Bulgaria, the state Commission for Consumer Protection reminded people to be aware of "fair use" limits that telecom firms may apply to roaming services. Any lack of information from mobile services providers will be considered as unfair business practice, it said.
Following signals from consumers, the Commission has also warned clients of telecom firms not to fall into the trap of signing contracts with new tariff plans at favourable prices which at the same time try to avoid the abolition of free roaming.
In Romania, the telecom...