New regulations in Europe starting Monday will put a halt to out-of-control bills for mobile Internet use while roaming.
The new rules require mobile operators to offer customers a cut-off limit. When customers roam, the operator must send them a warning message when they hit 80 percent of the limit. Once they hit the limit, customers won’t be able to use mobile Internet services on their phones or laptops.
The cut-off limit can be for any amount the customer chooses. Customers who do not choose a limit by July 1 will get a default €50 (US$68) limit.
Exorbitant roaming bills have been an issue in Europe for years. The European Commission cited an example of a German traveler who in 2009 received a bill for €46,000 after downloading a TV show while roaming in France.
The commission has limited the fees that operators charge each other for roaming customers who use data to €1 per megabyte, a fee that will fall over the next two years. That falling fee is expected to reduce charges to end-users for roaming Internet use as well, the commission said.