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The European Union implemented regulation in 2007 that mandates a limit on the cost of using your mobile phone while travelling (roaming) within the EU and EEA member states. This limit or cap is known as the Eurotariff.
The regulation puts a cap on the rates mobile operators can charge their customers and also the rates they charge each other while roaming within the EU. While roaming in another state, a consumer's mobile phone will continue to operate on a foreign network (since the home network is unavailable).
The foreign network can charges the home network for this service and this additional cost to the home network is then passed on to the consumer, whether using a pre-paid or bill phone. These charges apply to voice calling services, SMS and MMS services and to ever-growing use of mobile data services.
The European Union acted to keep these charges under control utilizing tariffs for citizens within the area using the regulation titled: "Regulation (EC) No 717/2007 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 27 June 2007 on roaming on public mobile telephone networks within the Community and amending Directive 2002/21/EC"
The tariff is now automatically applied to all customers regardless of whether they are bill-pay or pre-pay customers unless there is an agreed alternative roaming plan.
European Union sources now claim that the Eurotariff has led to a 73 percent reduction in the cost of making and receiving calls abroad compared to 2005, and that the cost of sending SMS has fallen by 60 percent. By July 2011, the maximum charge that can be applied to the cost of making a call abroad will be 35 cents per minute, and the maximum charge for receiving a call abroad will be 11 cents per minute.
Since July 2010, a data limit of €50 is also applied automatically to consumers using data services abroad, and the operator must send a warning SMS when 80 percent of this limit has been used. A consumer can of course opt for a higher or lower limit. This measure was put in place to prevent incidences of bill shock. In addition, maximum wholesale prices for data roaming have been reduced from €1 to 80 cents per MB of data.
To check Tariffs by country, click here.