February 2017

How to prevail the new EU regulation is becoming your new EU nightmare?

  • Be informed about how your operator will fill in the regulation
  • Make sure you know the impact on your specific contract and usage
  • Be aware of new bundles and options which have been processed to ensure that this regulation should not be applied
  • Ensure that, where necessary, you add a new annex to your current contract which ensures that there can be no financial or operational disadvantage for your company
  • And last but not least; if you do not have the right knowledge, resources and/or time, Tam Tam Consulting would like to help you. For more information: info@tamtamconsulting.com or +32 14 70 10 70


Current status of the EU regulations

End of EU roaming charges: the final piece to make it happen

‘Roaming’ is a term referring to the ability for a customer to make or receive calls, send text messages or access mobile data services abroad with a Belgian mobile subscription. For several years the European Union is trying to reduce the costs for this traffic. A “last” important step seems to be taken to eliminate the difference between the national tariffs and the tariffs you pay in other European countries. On February 1, 2017 the European Union reached an agreement on how to regulate wholesale roaming markets (the tariffs that telecom operators pay each other for roaming services by their clients).


Wholesale rates

The agreement that now has been reached, concerns the rates that telecom operators can charge each other. For example, the rate Vodafone Netherland may charge at Proximus or Orange is they have a customer calling, sending text messages or using data in the Netherlands on the Vodafone network.

As from June 15, 2017 the maximum cost for data usage becomes 7,7 euro per gigabyte. In the years after this price should decrease further to a maximum of 2,5 euro per gigabyte by 2022. The telephony price drops this summer from 5 cents per minute tot 3,2 cents per minute. The price of an SMS drops from 2 cents to 1 cent. It was agreed that the ‘price cap’ will be reviewed every two years and if necessary, they can be adjusted.


Next steps

Before the new roaming tariffs can enter into force The European Parliament and the Council must now formally approve the agreement.

When offering roaming, telecom operators operating in a given EU country must include «Roam like Home» by default in contracts they offer to people who live in that EU country. The will have to adapt their products and contracts to comply the European regulations.


What does this mean for you as customer?

In recent years, the prices for roaming have already reduced systematically. If all goes well then the difference between national rates and the rates in other EU countries will disappear by June 15, 2017. This principle is called ‘Roam-like-home’. This does not mean that roaming traffic in other EU countries will be for free!

The way ‘Roam-like-home’ will be specified depends on your telecom operator. Some possibilities;

  • Option 1: the usage in other EU countries will count towards your subscription
  • Option 2: your operator chooses to adjust the consumption rates (price per minute, text messages or Mbyte)
  • Option 3: your operator will offer new subscriptions and bundles
  • Option 4: …

The choice of your telecom operator to fill in the new EU regulations is of great importance for you as customer. The new regulations might generate additional savings, but at the same time you must be aware of the consequences; modification or termination of bundles, modification of subscription or bundle prices.