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Don't let European price cap make you complacent about the cost of calling while on holiday warns AwayPhone

Brits heading abroad due to the UK's dismal summer may be cheered by the sunshine but could be brought down to earth by their post-holiday mobile phone bill. This warning comes from international mobile phone operator AwayPhone (, as one of the wettest UK summers on record saw a 150 percent increase in 2007 summer holiday bookings1 and a quarter of Brits being more likely to go abroad next year2.

Despite this month seeing the introduction of the European Commission's ruling to cap mobile roaming costs, holiday-makers heading for the sun in Europe will still pay considerably more than they do at home to use their mobile phone. In addition, there is no restriction to call costs when travelling outside the EU.

“There is no denying that this summer's poor weather has encouraged many more people than usual to travel abroad to seek the sunshine – and it seems likely that a lot will take last minute autumn breaks,” says AwayPhone CEO, Sherry Madera. “However, their enjoyment of their holiday could be severely compromised by the unpleasant shock of their phone bill when they arrive home.”

AwayPhone is advising people to check their existing tariff with their home operator before travelling, and changing to a better value option if necessary. In particular, it highlights the costs of making calls in the following popular sunny European destinations:

Holiday makers seeking the sun in Spain and Portugal can reduce their call costs by an average of 52 percent when calling home using AwayPhone's international roaming service, while those heading to the south of France can make savings of 50 percent. People preferring to take a break in Italy will benefit from 48 percent lower charges when ringing a UK landline.

AwayPhone also draws attention to roaming charges levied in holiday hotspots outside Europe. Turkey, for example, although geographically close to its EU neighbours does not share their mobile price reductions. A ten minute call home will cost on average £14.74. Using AwayPhone's service can reduce that to under £3 – a saving of more than 80 percent.

Likewise Morocco, only four hours by plane from the UK, and eight miles across the water from Spain has very high roaming rates. Ten minutes on a mobile to the UK costs on average £15.94, compared to just over £3 with AwayPhone, another saving of more than 80 percent.

Madera concludes: “Although the EU ruling is moving mobile phone costs in the right direction, making phone calls when overseas can be very expensive. Not only that but operators can still charge what they want for any country outside Europe. We are advising people not to be complacent – it is worth checking how much it will cost to use a mobile while they are away before getting on the plane, rather than having a huge bill on their return.”


1 – at the end of July, online travel agent reports a year-on-year increase of 150 percent for summer holiday bookings in 2007

2 – at the end of August 2007, a survey commissioned by the Daily Telegraph found that one in four people people say they are more likely to take a foreign holiday next year, mostly on account of the weather in this country.

Notes to editors:

AwayPhone is a new international mobile phone operator. It provides low cost incoming and outgoing calls wherever customers are in the world and seamless use of their regular mobile number AND a local phone number to their AwayPhone handset when they are abroad.

AwayPhone focuses on making it easy to do business globally. When customers leave their home country, they use their AwayPhone to keep in touch. They can make as many calls as they want without worrying about excessive cost, and they are always confident that they will never miss a call. AwayPhone is based in London, UK and offers services in 78 countries worldwide.

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AwayPhone's monthly international roaming comparison index is available here:

For more information, please contact:

Kate Alexander, ICONIC / 07788 584413
Mark Charmer, ICONIC / 07976 960739

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