Awayphone warns of high call costs abroad

Brits heading abroad due to the UK’s dismal summer could be brought down to earth by their post-holiday
mobile phone bill, according to AwayPhone, who also revealed a 150% increase in 2007 summer
holiday bookings.

Despite this month seeing the introduction of the European
Commission’s ruling to cap mobile roaming costs, holiday-makers
heading for the sun in Europe will still pay considerably more than
they do at home to use their mobile phone.  In addition, there is no
restriction to call costs when travelling outside the EU. 

“There is no denying that this summer’s poor weather has encouraged
many more people than usual to travel abroad to seek the sunshine - 
and it seems likely that a lot will take last minute autumn breaks,” 
says AwayPhone CEO, Sherry Madera.  “However, their enjoyment of
their holiday could be severely compromised by the unpleasant shock
of their phone bill when they arrive home.”

AwayPhone is advising people to check their existing tariff with
their home operator before travelling, and changing to a better value
option if necessary.  In particular, it highlights the costs of
making calls in the following popular sunny European destinations:

Holiday makers seeking the sun in Spain and Portugal can reduce their
call costs by an average of 52 percent when calling home using
AwayPhone’s international roaming service, while those heading to the
south of France can make savings of 50 percent.  People preferring to
take a break in Italy will benefit from 48 percent lower charges when
ringing a UK landline.


AwayPhone also draws attention to roaming charges levied in holiday
hotspots outside Europe.  Turkey, for example, although
geographically close to its EU neighbours does not share their mobile
price reductions.  A ten minute call home will cost on average
£14.74.  Using AwayPhone’s service can reduce that to under £3 - a
saving of more than 80 percent.

Likewise Morocco, only four hours by plane from the UK, and eight
miles across the water from Spain has very high roaming rates.  Ten
minutes on a mobile to the UK costs on average £15.94, compared to
just over £3 with AwayPhone, another saving of more than 80 percent.

Madera concludes:  “Although the EU ruling is moving mobile phone
costs in the right direction, making phone calls when overseas can be
very expensive.  Not only that but operators can still charge what
they want for any country outside Europe.  We are advising people not
to be complacent - it is worth checking how much it will cost to use
a mobile while they are away before getting on the plane, rather than
having a huge bill on their return.”