NUMERICAL MOBILE OPERATOR Three will soon expand the firm's Feel at Home service to an additional 24 countries, ahead of the scrapping of EU roaming charges in 2017.
Three's Feel at Home roaming perk allows customers to use minutes, text and data allowances abroad at no extra cost. The firm already offers this in 18 countries, but will increase this to 42 from September.
This means that around 80 per cent of trips made by its customers will be covered, according to Three.
The full list of new Feel at Home destinations is Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Germany, Gibraltar, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Isle of Man, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia and the Channel Islands of Guernsey and Jersey.
This means that Three customers can make use of free roaming across most of Europe, but so will, er, everyone from next summer.
Members of the European Parliament voted in October to scrap roaming charges by June 2017 in a bid to end shock mobile bills and boost business across the region.
The move, set to come into force on 15 June next year, means that EU citizens will pay the same price to make calls, send text messages and use data as they do at home, wherever they are in Europe.
The European Commission has applauded the move, and has said it will create a "better environment for business and innovation".
"The new rules will notably promote the cross-border use of connected devices and services (e.g. connected cars) and boost the evolution of mobile apps on which one million Europeans now work," the EC said.
"Roaming charges currently teach users to switch off their mobile phone when abroad. If they are not afraid of their bills anymore, they will use their devices more regularly when they are travelling.
"This means more opportunities for online businesses and startups to provide services to consumers when they travel in the EU."
Countries already supported by Three's Feel at Home are Australia, Austria, Denmark, Finland, France, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Macau, New Zealand, Norway, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Switzerland and the US. µ
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