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English football fans might be bankrupted

by on20 May 2012

Ukraine not part of the EU

English football fans could come back from Euro 2012 in Ukraine with £5,000 phone bills as well as the normal hang overs and videos of them behaving badly.

Ernest Doku, technology expert at, has warned that watching England might be priceless, but using your mobile phone abroad isn’t and many Brits will not have thought that their phone will cost them an arm and a leg. He said that football fans risk running up a £35 a day mobile phone bill just for calls, voicemail retrieval and texts while in Ukraine. Phone companies have terrible global roaming charges in the Ukraine because they have not been forced to keep the prices low by the EU.

A MB of mobile internet data in Ukraine costs an average of just over £6 across the five main mobile networks. Daily data bills could hit £228 if mobile users don’t use free local Wi-Fi and keep their phone’s data roaming switched off. If England reached the final, fans could be hit with a staggering bill of over £5,500 by the time they have to go home. Of course it is normal for England to do very badly so they will probably not have to spend that much.

Mobile phone networks have been forced to cap roaming charges within Eurozone countries at 35p per minute to make calls, 11p per minute to receive calls and 11p to send a standard text message as well as a €50 cap on data, with these caps set to fall further from 1st July. But this is not the case for destinations outside the EU. As a result, footie fans heading from the UK to Ukraine to watch England this summer will be vulnerable to high charges. [Also, STDs. Ed.]

Last modified on 20 May 2012
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