3 cuts costs of roaming

3 Group has introduced a no-surcharge roaming policy. ‘3 Like Home’ allows its customers to travel abroad and use other 3 Group networks for a price “similar” to what they pay at home.
“The visited 3 network can be considered a virtual extension of their home network and can therefore be used as if the customer were not roaming at all,” says 3. This is of course consistent with the European Commission’s campaign to reduce the cost of mobile calls when roaming in Europe.

3 Like Home is being introduced progressively for customers of 3 in Australia, Austria, Denmark, Hong Kong, Italy, the Republic of Ireland, and Sweden as well as the UK. The rollout will be tailored to specific market conditions in each 3 country. 3 says that exact pricing details will become available as the service is implemented.

An independent thumbs-up comes from Pure Pricing, which offers independent assessment of mobile pricing. Its analysis shows 3 saving customers up to £6.50 on two short calls compared to the other UK networks.

The good news buried in the small print is that the no-surcharge roaming applies to data as well as voice – web access is normally charged at a premium when you use a phone abroad. This will particularly benefit users of 3’s fixed-rate X-Series tariffs (including those who choose to use Skype rather than make a normal voice call).

Pure Pricing does point out some disadvantages with the 3 offer – the limited 3 footprint means that customers roaming to other key holiday destinations such as Spain and France will find 3’s standard pricing one of the more expensive options available. And, as with the Vodafone Passport offer, customers must remain on the preferred network for the discounted pricing to apply.

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