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Going Abroad? Here’s Some Roaming Tips

Going Abroad? Here’s Some Roaming Tips
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  • iD Mobile Employee
  • 251 replies

So, you’ve finally managed to book a holiday this summer. Nice! It’s been a long time since we’ve been able to escape to foreign climates without the global pandemic and resulting travel restrictions scuppering plans. Why not make the most of it and soak up some sunshine and culture?

While you’re away on your trip, the chances are you’ll still want to stay connected. Whether it’s to share your holiday snaps, use your phone as a satnav, or even just to phone home and check in on your loved ones, it’s worth knowing where you stand with mobile phone charges.

Remember, iD Mobile’s Inclusive Roaming lets you roam like at home in 50 destinations (including a number of countries currently on the UK’s green list). What that means is that you can use all the minutes, texts and data in your allowance in any of these destinations at no extra cost. Totally free. How good is that!

However, while you’re taking a much-earned break from the stresses of daily life (and the UK), it’s still important that you’re fully up-to-date with your phone allowances, what’s included and what’s not, to avoid any nasty bill shocks when you return home.


Here’s our list of top tips for using your phone abroad:


Turn Roaming on:

When you touch down on holiday and get through the airport, you’ll want to get connected asap. You’ll most likely need data to access any reservation emails, like your accommodation and airport transfers. To keep using your data like normal, you’ll need your Roaming switched on in the iD Mobile app and in your phone’s settings. Here’s how to do it:

• Log in to the app or My Account.
• Select ‘Services’.
• Toggle ‘Roaming’ on.

Easy as that!


Checking your usage doesn’t use any data:

That’s right! Both in the UK and in our Inclusive Roaming destinations, logging into the iD Mobile app and checking to see how much data you’ve used doesn’t consume any more data.

So, even if you think you’re mere megabytes away from reaching your limit, double-check to know for certain. That leads us nicely to the next point…


Think you’ll run out of minutes or data while away? Buy an Add-on:

Just like your allowances, Add-ons also work just fine in Inclusive destinations. You’re welcome to buy a data or voice Add-on if you don’t think you have enough minutes or data to last the trip. It works out a lot cheaper than simply leaving it down to out-of-plan charges.


Worried about out-of-plan charges? Change your bill cap:

As we mentioned before, if you run out of data or minutes while you’re away in one of our Inclusive Roaming destinations, and you don’t purchase an Add-on, you’ll be charged standard out-of-plan charges. To avoid this from happening, you can set your bill cap to £0. Here’s how:

  • Log in to the iD Mobile app 
  • Select ‘Services’  
  • Select ‘Edit my capped limit’ in the ‘Cap My Extra Usage Charges’ section 
  • Manually enter the amount as £0, then select ‘Set Cap’ and confirm

Now, you can fully relax and know that your bill won’t get out of hand.


Away at sea? Switch your phone to flight mode:

When you use your phone at sea, the ferry and cruise operators use their own phone network that’s connected via satellite - and it’s not cheap:

* Price per minute

** Price per message/text

Prices shown include VAT where applicable

An hour scrolling through Facebook uses roughly 100MB data. That means, if there were no limits whatsoever, that’d cost £960 at sea! If you’re on a cruise, or taking a ferry to reach your holiday destination, we strongly recommend that you either switch your phone to flight mode, stick to Wi-Fi to get online or chat, or don’t use it. Better to be safe than sorry.


Travelling outside Inclusive Roaming destinations:

If you’re going away on holiday, but not to an iD Mobile Inclusive Roaming destination, you won’t be able to use your data, minutes or text allowances. Instead, you’ll be charged per megabyte of data, per call minute and per text. To find out exactly how much it’ll cost to use your phone where you’re going, you can check our International Calling & Roaming Charges page. It’s good to plan ahead!


Those are a few handy tips on using your phone abroad. Got a question about Roaming? We’ve got plenty of helpful content on our Roaming & international page right here on the Community.

Happy and safe travels!

11 replies

All good relevant tips and or remi ders. Very good. However, it's worth everyone being aware they may experience a problem whils in Portugal. Portugal Vodaphone currently have an issue with the 3 network that I'd Mobile use. Resultantly I have not been able to receive texts calls etc from  anyone using vodaphone Portugal. I am unable to do Internet banking etc as I can't receive  authorisation codes from my bank, who use Vodaphone Portugal. I am advised they have an issue with the 3 network. Been going on for 3 or more months. Very little assistance from ID  and their network provider which is 3, to try and resolve the issue to try and resolve the issue with 3 and Vodaphone Portugal. My Bank are suggesting I change network to another provider as they have no problem with any other network only 3. (ID mobile). Having no human contact at customer services is a major major nightmare, when you have a problem and need  help. It used to work perfectly but seemingly 3 have made some changes, which has stopped Vodaphone being able to deliver SMS messages and calls etc to anyone on the 3 network. Driving me Crazy. Little or no assistance or ownership by either ID customer Services, technical or the 3 network. Banging my head against a brick wall. 

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Hello @pdove,

Sorry to hear that there are issues with the network partner abroad. Unfortunately, if there’s a confirmed issue, there won’t be much troubleshooting can solve since the issue is with the network partner. We hope that 3UK are able to work with the roaming partner to resolve the issue.




The issue lies with 3. Vodaphone Portugal have no issue with any other network only 3 customers as 3 have made some protocol changes. However, 3 will not take any responsibility or try and collabote with Vodaphone to resolve their customers network problem. Not very good at all, zero customer service focus) .  I can't do my Internet banking, pay bills etc, absolute nightmare. Seemingly Vodaphone have now reached now managed to reach some sort of agreement with 3, but can't say how long to resolve the problem with delivering SMS texts and calls to 3 customers as it depends also on 3? and 3 aren't that interested? 


Poor customer service.


Userlevel 8
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Hello @pdove,

I am sorry you feel that way.

3UK are the network’s infrastructure on which our network is run off, however, we are still separate companies.

Whilst issues like this lie with 3UK, the customer service, support is always from iD.

I’m sorry on this occasion we haven’t been able to help more favourable.


Why am I charged for calls to Greece even when I have turned on my international calling.

I am worried because I spend a lot of time in Greece in the Dummer, will I have to pay extra while out there?

Userlevel 8
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Hey @Ginevra,

Calls to Greece from the UK is not included in your allowances. This is International usage and is out of plan usage that’s charged.

Using your service when in Greece is known as Roaming and this is included in your plan as per our Inclusive EU Roaming.

Turn off international usage and set the cap to £0.00 to prevent this.

Keep Roaming on and when you go abroad, you’ll have no issues with charges since using it in Greece is fine. 



@pdove May not help you but for other people in this situation, I’m guessing porting the number to another network won’t help (can’t port a UK number to non UK provider, and usually can’t port to a UK provider unless you’re in the UK to activate the sim), however…. possibly porting it to a virtual service like Swytch might help. Never used them, but they seem reliableish, at least it should allow you to receive texts/OTPs to the number again.

I’ve just come back from Lanzarote and could not get any internet no matter what I did. Had free Wi-Fi at the hotel which worked but no roaming data at all. Followed all the tips and turned phone on and off many times but still nothing what was I doing wrong? 

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Hi @Bfbbuggy, are you sure you enabled Roaming in both your phone’s settings and your iD Mobile account? They’re in two separate places. If so, the only reasons that you wouldn’t be able to connect is if the signal was poor, there was a network disruption, or your APN settings are incorrect, which you can check here.


Thank you,


Thank you but yes both were enabled my husband has the same phone and package as myself but his worked ok. We checked all settings were the same but my just wouldn’t work. I have not had any problems before

Userlevel 6
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Hi @Bfbbuggy, sounds like it must be a fault with your handset or SIM in that case, if you’re absolutely positive both settings were identical? In either case, I’d recommend contacting the FacebookTwitter or Live Chat teams so they can provide further assistance.


Thank you,



Why iD Mobile?