Telecommunications company, Vodafone, has introduced new mobile plans that will enable its customers to limit global roaming bill shock.
The new plans, which will be available from August, will allow customers to use their existing call, text and data inclusions while travelling in the UK, US and NZ for $5 a day.
Vodafone currently sell data packs for customers to use overseas, but the packs don’t include calls or texts.
The news follows the announcement from the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) in July that an International Mobile Roaming (IMR) standard will be phased in from September 27.
Vodafone chief executive, Bill Morrow, said complaints to the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (TIO) about disputed roaming charges increased in 2011 and 2012 by almost 70 per cent on the previous year to more than 4100 issues.
“Australians’ love affair with smartphones is well known but an increasing number of customers have been getting caught out by unacceptably high bills when they’re overseas, particularly in relation to data usage,” he claimed.
“$5 a day to use your normal plan overseas is the cost of a coffee in New York, London or Auckland. But it’s hard to put a price on having your smartphone to keep in touch with friends and family, share your holiday snaps on Facebook and Instagram, or use Google Maps when you’re lost in a foreign city.”
Morrow mentioned that the new plans will give the company a strong advantage over its competitors through its relationship with Vodafone Group.
“We’ve begun our simplification of global roaming pricing with New Zealand, the UK and the US, which are the countries that 40 per cent of our customers visit most frequently, making up some 50 per cent of all data usage overseas,” he said.
Morrow added that the company’s plan is to extend the offering to as many countries across the globe as possible.
“Global roaming costs are a worldwide issue because of the prices various networks charge each other but the impact on our customers is too great. I am determined to end global roaming bill shock just as soon as I can and make sure Vodafone customers can simply enjoy their holidays,” he said.