The press is routinely reporting, Ofcom and the networks themselves see our international call roaming charges prices quickly falling.Â Will there be a real change in the future or is it more of the same old story?
The Financial Director or controller of large and small companies is responsible for finding ways to reduce the cost of aÂ business mobileÂ and international roaming.
Not providing enough information to businesses and consumers is one more problem associated with using business mobile phones abroad.Â What will be the cost to us? Is it possible to use our minutes abroad? Could there be any other options or means of saving money?
Let’s take a quick look at what is available to you in the marketplace.
Orange business customersÂ cane call from the UK to 28 other countries from their minute bundle. This offer is comparable to those of o2 and T-mobile.Â Orange business world traveller scheme offers a 50% reduction in voice roaming and 25% reduction in data roaming charges.
You can find a similar service provided by Vodafone called Passport.Â When you are abroad cheaper rates are available. Â At only 75p connection charge each call when in another country, you can call people while paying your regular UK fees.Â Dial 5555 from your Vodafone handset to talk to Vodafone about receiving the service.
o2 have whatâ€™s called â€˜International Traveller Serviceâ€™ which allows customers to call from Europe to the UK for Â£0.30p per minute.Â However, if you are calling from other parts of the world then the charges can vary from between Â£0.81p to Â£1.20 per minute.Â
T-mobile also have competitive roaming offers.Â T-mobile charge between Â£0.38p and Â£0.55p per minute to call the UK from Europe.Â Receiving calls with T-mobile have recently fallen meaning the cost is between Â£0.13p to Â£0.20p for Europe.
Depending on your tariff and network, you can often tack on bundles of international minutes for use in a certain country.
If you are regularly visiting a country and using your business mobile phone to call the UK, one option is to buy a local SIM card.Â Local numbers would be provided for you whenever you are visiting in all the different countries.Â In some countries this will not be viable as you need to be a registered resident.
In the UK, you can also purchase international PAYG/Prepaid SIM cards that sometimes save as much as 50% or 60% in call charges.
The mobile phone networks are battling for our business, and competition is growing especially fierce in the international roaming market. I am hopeful that the charges for worldwide roaming will continue to go down as competition increases.Â Since the networks are all competing with each other for your loyalty, prices will decrease.Â
Finally, whilst the networks are bombarded with bad press for over charging on roaming I believe they are reacting in a positive way that will benefit business mobile users in the UK.