[Press Release] The EU must put an end to high roaming charges!

Europe’s millions of smartphone customers will continue to face rip-off data roaming prices unless Europe’s institutions take real action now.

  • Europe’s politicians and institutions have a matter of weeks to take action over high data roaming prices or consumers risk a decade of rip-off prices simply for using their smartphones abroad.
  • The European Parliament’s draft proposal will still leave data roaming charges at over 25x domestic prices.
  • Europeans for Fair Roaming calls on Europe’s politicians to put an end to data roaming fear by voting for fair roaming prices that protect Europe’s smartphone customers, not punish them.

Europeans for Fair Roaming calls on Members of the European Parliament to take decisive action against excessive data roaming charges.

While many of the proposed amendments to the new EU roaming regulation are going in the right direction, the discussed price caps for data are still much too high. We believe that a faster alignment of roaming prices with domestic prices is urgent and necessary.

We regrettably note that neither the European Commission’s draft proposal nor the proposal put forward by the European Parliament rapporteur Angelika Niebler will address the massive gap between domestic and roaming data prices. While we welcome the prospect of new ways to increase competition for Europe’s roamers, we believe any ‘structural solutions’ must be backed by much lower price caps if they are to deliver for European citizens.

We fear the proposed caps EU politicians will be voting on in just a few weeks time will fail to deliver attractive prices for consumers.

To achieve this objective we call for fair and meaningful price caps that will kickstart the roaming market, offer Europe’s roamers a reason to use their smartphones without fear when they travel and create a single telecommunications market.

We believe the regulated wholesale cap at the end of a three-year glide path should be no higher than 3 to 5 cents per MB by July 2014, with a retail rate no greater than three-times wholesale pricing (approximately 10ct/MB for data by 2014).

Campaign Coordinator Bengt Beier stated: “European politicians have long promised us prices for roaming services that are near domestic rates. Now they have to practice what they preach and actually drive prices down. European mobile phone users will not accept anything less.”

Download the Press Release here (English version): Press Release 07 February 2012 or here (German Version): Pressemeldung 07 Februar 2012

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