Europe to Ban Roaming Charges in 2017

2017 is the year Pacific Rim—that jacked up giant-robots-versus-aliens blockbuster—will finally get a well-deserved sequel, all the remaining sealed files on JFK’s assassination will have seen the light of day and Europe will ban all roaming charges across the European Union. As much as we’d like to cover all of the upcoming events for that year, we’re gonna focus on the third one. Let’s hear it: hip hip hooray, in two years’ time we will no longer have to fret about kilometre-long phone bills while on vacation! At long last.

Travel Across Europe, Make Calls As If You’re Home

Girl using smartphone in London


Namely, the European Union has agreed to scrap roaming charges across the Old Continent altogether. While this agreement is still in its preliminary stages and waiting for the approval of other EU governments and the European Parliament, according to predictions the process should carry on without any hiccups.

What does this mean in a nutshell? Essentially, once the law’s passed, phone users who are travelling through any of the EU countries will be paying the same as they would at home. Phone calls, text messages, data—none of it would cost more than usual. Still, certain fair use policy clauses will need to be added, e.g. you most definitely won’t be able to register and pay for a phone in a country you don’t reside in just so you could save money back home. Fair’s fair.

Equal Net Rights for All

Using a smartphone in Paris

Additionally, the subject of net neutrality has cropped up and the European Parliament has agreed that networks need to treat all Internet traffic equally.

A “Digital Single Market” has been in the works for years and this is definitely not the first time the abolition of roaming charges has been in the spotlight. We might not be breaking out the champagne just yet, but, nevertheless, 2017 seems like it’ll be bringing some good news overall.