3 UK expands free roaming to 50 countries

By:
Alan Burkitt-Gray
Published on:

Ahead of EU ban on roaming charges, CK Hutchison's UK operation adds countries outside Europe to free roaming list

CK Hutchison’s Three UK has followed BT’s EE by announcing more countries where it has abolished roaming charges from 15 June.

The European Union (EU) is banning voice and data roaming charges within the 28-nation area from that date, but both Three and EE have added many more countries to their list.

Three added Brazil and Singapore to a list which already included 58 countries and territories that are free of voice and data roaming.

CEO Dave Dyson said: “We are committed to unlocking unfair roaming charges for British travellers, not just in the EU but across the world. Our announcement today is testament to this, as we extend our popular ‘Feel At Home’ service with two additional worldwide destinations, taking our total to 60 with 17 of those being outside of Europe.”

Many business and leisure travellers would be hard-pressed to find some of those destinations on a map – places such as the Åland Islands, Saint Barthélemy and Saint Martin.

Three UK’s move is not reflected by some of the other European operators in the CK Hutchison empire. Neither Three Ireland nor Drei Austria have made similar announcements. Tre Sweden will offer free roaming within the EU from 29 May, just 17 days before the EU law comes into effect, and it adds countries within the European Economic Area, a region that includes neighbouring Norway.

“We are doing this proactively for the benefit of our customers and not because regulators are forcing us to do it,” said Dyson. “That’s what sets us apart and this approach means we will always be ahead of our competitors when it comes to fair overseas roaming.”