Preparing for summer 2021: How not to get burned when calling and writing from / to EU countries and what are the changes?

Are you going on a European holiday outside the Czech Republic and do you already know that you will reach for the phone at least once to access mobile data transmissions, make regular calls or send SMS messages? Just for you, but also for people who may be on the other side of such a connection, we have a recapitulation and overview of how roaming and international calls will be, plus sending SMS to and from abroad within the EU in the summer of 2021. telecommunications office in its May monitoring report.

Roaming, international calls, and SMS in summer 2021

Let's start with the changes that occur and will occur. The so-called roaming at home (RLAH), which to the delight of many traveling users allows you to make calls, text, and date at home-made prices and conditions, is still valid for the EU. And until June 2022, when the planned period for this system ends. Don't worry, however, the European Commission considers this project a success. And he is already working on its extension for another ten years. However, Czechs should reckon with the fact that in two specific situations they will be slightly more expensive.

From 15 May 2021, there was a slight increase in the maximum prices for international calls and SMS to European countries covered by the RLAH. The increase in prices reflects the weakening of the Czech koruna against the euro in the first quarter of 2021 compared to the same period last year by 2.72%. The operators concerned may not charge a price higher than CZK 5,985 with VAT per minute of calls from the Czech Republic to the countries of the European Union, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Iceland. And for sending one SMS, an amount higher than CZK 1.89 with VAT. Every year, the maximum prices are always recalculated on 15 May from the price ceilings set in euros according to the average value of the reference exchange rates, explains the CTU.

What is roaming? And what about an international call?

The main thing is that you don't get lost in terms. The above amounts apply to international calling and sending SMS, which is the moment when you call or write from your country to another (European with RLAH). Otherwise, when you call or write, for example, from Croatia home to the Czech Republic, it is roaming. And that within RLAH remains unchanged. So you can count on the same billing terms as at home for you.

So it's mostly good news everywhere. Only in cases where you are calling or writing abroad, expect an increase in prices. However, the CTO also warns that RLAH or roaming at home is a principle intended for short-term use. For example, people on vacation or business trips. The operator should theoretically have the right to intervene and charge fees. For example, if, for a certain period, the services were used more abroad than in the home country. Therefore, for long-term study or work stays or for holidays lasting significantly longer than the standard, it is advisable to obtain a local telephone number, warns the CTU.

Watch out for the borders

Beware of border areas near the border between a Member State and a non-Member State. The phone connects to the strongest network, and it may not be your home network. Before each call or use of data, it is necessary to make sure that we are connected to the network of the member country. Also pay attention to water and air space, even if we are in the territory of a specific state. It may happen that the communication will be charged according to an international price list.

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