Will Brexit mean mobile roaming fees for UK-France travel?

Several UK and French mobile operators have stated that they will not introduce extra roaming charges for people travelling between the countries after the Brexit transition period.

9 October 2020
A woman on her phone at a café. Brexit means an end to guaranteed free mobile roaming between the UK and EUBrexit means an end to guaranteed free mobile roaming between the UK and EU
By Connexion journalist

Reader question: Will it cost more to use my UK phone in France from next year? 

As a result of Brexit, there will be no guarantee of free mobile phone roaming for people with UK sims travelling to the EU or vice versa from January 1, 2021. 

An EU-wide law introduced in 2017 means that for anyone with a sim card from an EU country (currently including the UK), they can use their phone wherever they are in the EU at no extra cost. 

That law will stop applying to the UK from December 31 this year, and it will be up to individual operators to decide if they will charge additional costs. 

The British government is advising people to check with their phone company regarding their policy on this.

So far, Three, Vodafone, EE and O2 in the UK have stated that they will not introduce additional charges for their customers travelling around the EU from next year, the UK government states on its website. 

Of the French operators, Orange, Bouygues Telecom and SFR have stated that they will also not introduce additional charges for their customers travelling in the UK, BFMTV reported in January 2020. 

The UK government has also announced that it has carried over an EU law that protects against customers receiving excessive roaming bills from mobile operators. 

This means that for anyone with a UK phone travelling in the EU, their roaming services will stopped as soon as their monthly bill reaches £45 (currently €50 under EU law), and they will have to choose if wishing to continue using mobile data. 

This is a safeguard put in place should any mobile operators choose to charge Britons for using their mobiles in the EU from next year. 

Read more:

Costs to call Europe drop today in new EU law

Use your phone at no extra cost in EU

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