Gibtelecom scraps roaming charges within Europe
Gibtelecom yesterday announced it has abolished all roaming surcharges for calls, data and SMS messages within Europe.
The change came into effect yesterday, two weeks ahead of an EU measure that will remove all roaming surcharges across Europe.
Gibtel customers will be able to now use their phones in Europe just as they would in Gibraltar, at no extra cost.
This comes just two weeks before the European Commission’s had targeted to abolish roaming surcharges across Europe.
Gibtelecom also unveiled their new website, which allows customers to purchase mobile phones, landlines, and routers online and have them delivered.
“When travelling to the UK or Spain, or within any European Economic Area [EEA] country there will be no roaming surcharges anymore,” said Gibtelecom CEO Tim Bristow.
“What you pay in Gibraltar for roaming whether it is data or text will be the same as if you were in Spain or the UK.”
He added: “This all comes at a time when we are launching our new website, which means you can virtually do all your business with Gibtelecom online.”
Mr Bristow addressed whether Brexit would affect the roaming agreements agreed under EU rules.
“Like all things to do with Brexit we don’t know how it is going to play out,” Mr Bristow said.
“On the one side it could be that operators across Europe decide to increase tariffs for Britain and Gibraltar included, or it could be that they won’t.”
“We have excellent relationships with mobile operators and my best guess is we would continue those long-standing relationships.”
“In other countries where we do less traffic it would be down to those operators.”
“It would be in their advantage as well to keep the agreements.”
Previously there had been an automatic ban on roaming in countries with high surcharges such as Morocco, Switzerland and the USA.
Gibtelecom has now released this ban as the surcharges have been reduced.
Customers can set their own financial data roaming limit to cap spending at their choosing by contacting the Gibtelecom Customer Services team.
The default data limit is the sterling equivalent of €50, which is £42 at the current exchange rates.
“Typically reload customers will also contract either an SMS bundle or data allowances and it is exactly the same as they will be able to carry those bundles when roaming,” said Head of Business, Development and Marketing Adrian Ochello.
“We have opened up the bill barring that we introduced in October 2015 to prevent customers from ‘bill shock’ when they were roaming away from the EEA. There have been several developments in the past year in particular and we feel now customers have enough measures in place to be able to prevent high roaming charges.”
“We have been negotiating with our roaming partners some rate discounts and we have been tackling these in order of priority based on the most popular destinations.”
The revamped Gibtelecom website has a full explanation of the new services and the roaming surcharge change.
“The website has been engineered to improve customer experience and to make sure that they can get all the information they want online without having to come into our shop or call our call centre,” said Marketing and Business Development Executive Lianne Azzopardi.
“You should be able to, if you wish to do all our business with us online.”