Vodafone's European data roaming deal is good value

Posted on by Mike Evans

Five days in Berlin over Christmas provided the first opportunity for an extended trial of Vodaphone UK’s European data roaming package. For a flat daily fee of £2¹ you get 25MB of data. Is it enough for emails, a few VOIP calls and a minimum of web browsing? If you go over the allowance, every extra megabyte costs £1, so unfettered roaming can be a costly business.

Before switching on data roaming it is a good thing to take some precautions to prevent background downloads which can cost a fortune. The first thing I did was turn off push email and set mail to manual. It is also wise to turn off Load Remote Images. There is then no danger of a single attachment blowing your entire daily allowance. During my time in Germany I left notifications switched on because I did not think this would make a significant difference.

Essentially, it is wise to think before attempting to download anything if you want to keep cost to a minimum. Certainly you would not wish to download app updates, and you should steer well away from YouTube and any streaming of videos or podcasts. Usually you can find a wifi hotspot where you can have a data feast before moving back to cellular only.

After my five days the iPhone was showing 101MB, an average of 20MB a day which is comfortably within Vodafone’s package.

With care and a few precautions, the Vodafone roaming service is worthwhile and offers much better value for money than some other providers. O2, for instance, charge £3 per MB, so the data used in Berlin would have cost £303 compared with the £10 I paid Vodafone. Frankly, this roaming package is the main reason I stay with Vodafone and it is something worth thinking about when signing up for a contract.


¹ Outside the European area the same package is available but costs £6 a day.

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