Your help required - will new T-Mobile call charges affect you?

11 September 2009

[UPDATE 16/9 - we've now published a full guide to help you cancel your T-Mobile contract. You'll find it here.]

As expected, other mobile providers are stepping up to make significant changes to their call charges. After Orange and Virgin Mobile, Bitterwallet reader Nirave has been in touch to tell us the news that T-Mobile are planning significant changes to their roaming charges.

This article at Mobile Magazine states that T-Mobile "sent text messages out to its customers to inform of the changes, which will affect all PAYG, contract and some business customers". However, the article states the service provider is "increasing charges for calls made and received outside the EU" which would presumably affect UK customers, but also that T-Mobile are "increasing roaming charges for all customers outside the EU" which might suggest the changes wouldn't affect UK customers. Regardless, the increases will see roaming charges almost double in some cases, and are due to come into effect from 26th October. If these changes are applicable to UK customers, it may be the case that they prove detrimental and so provide justification for cancelling a contract.

Bitterwallet - T-Mobile roaming charges to change - willt hey affect you?

If this is something you'd like us to look into, we'll need a little help from you, the dear reader. We're contacting Mobile Magazine to determine the details of the changes; in the meantime, let us know if you've received a text from T-Mobile - if so, what did it say? And if you are a T-Mobile customer, is there a direct link to your terms of service online? We've picked apart the T-Mobile site but are struggling to find any. You can contact us through the comments below or by emailing [email protected]

TOPICS:   Travel

76 comments

  • chri1143
    Text: "From 26 October we're changing some of roaming rates outside the EU, to find out how these changes affect you when you're abroad see t-mobile.co.uk/row"
  • Harry
    Here's my txt... From 26 October we're changing some of our roaming rates outside the EU, to find out how these changes affect you when you're abroad see t-mobile.co.uk/row I'm off to the USA in Jan, making a call will go up from 55p to £1.20 per minute!
  • Jeffrey A.
    I've been a T-Mobile contract customer for the last 3 months ish. Haven't had a text message from them (besides a text I got the other day asking me to download a 'free game or ringtone'). I'd be happy to look into this further though.
  • Paul S.
    Cool. Cheers for the details guys. Some of those charges are eye-watering. Does anybody have a link to the Terms of Service? I need to pick through them to see what the wording is. I imagine they're on the site somewhere but they deliberately don't provide a link to them.
  • Harry
    Not quite what u need but, interestingly ... FAQs Q. Why have you made changes to the cost of making and receiving calls from abroad? A. When customers use their mobile abroad, we pay the local provider a fee for the use of their network. With the weakening of the pound, these costs have gone up and for this reason we've had to look at changing some of our own prices. My phone was on the T-Mobile backbone the entire time I was in the USA last time. So, the exchange rate is affecting T-Mobile USA's charges to T-Mobile UK? They're having a laugh.
  • Jeffrey A.
    Nope, definately no text here. Maybe they're not upping the charges for anyone whos only fairly recently taken a contract out? My 18 month combi 20 + web contract was taken out in mid July. I've logged into my online account, and cannot find any links to my agreement, or terms etc. Also, you may find this interesting, but if you have a look at their abroad charges pages they still list the OLD charges (eg 55p a minute for USA). https://www.t-mobile.co.uk/services/going-abroad/details-by-country/united-states-of-america/
  • Nirave
    Just had it confirmed by customer services. It will affect me. On the phone to disconnections now trying to cancel. UPDATE: Apparently as it is Roaming charges that are increasing, they are saying it is not possible to cancel
  • Jeffrey A.
    Heres a link to what I believe are T-Mobiles latest T&Cs: (revision 55) https://www.t-mobile.co.uk/content/pdf/tcs_cvn_55.pdf
  • Jack
    I took my contract out on the 23rd and have had no messages from them - my GF who's SIM card is ~2 weeks old on PAYG did get a "free game or ringtone" text from T-Mobile, though.
  • Harry
    Not sure if this is correct but found this... https://www.t-mobile.co.uk/content/pdf/tcs_cvn_55.pdf I had to log-in to see it. If someone @ BW needs me to email it I can.
  • Nirave
    This can't be right... They said to me that roaming charges are NOT part of my contract hence the reason why I can't cancel...
  • Jeffrey A.
    2.11.2. If You are a Consumer and the change is of material detriment to You, We will send You Written Notice one calendar month before the terms and conditions are due to change. The new terms and conditions will apply to You once the calendar month’s notice has run out unless You terminate Your Agreement with Us within that notice period. If You do this You won’t have to pay any cancellation charge that would otherwise apply, see point 7.2.5.2. 7.2.5.2. You are a Consumer and the change that We gave You Written Notice of in point 2.11.2 or 7.1.4 above is of material detriment to You and You give Us notice to immediately cancel this Agreement before the change takes effect; or 7.2.5.3. The change that We gave You Written Notice of in point 7.1.4 is an increase in Your Price Plan Charge (as a percentage) higher than any increase in the Retail Price Index (also calculated as a percentage) for the 12 months before the month in which We send You Written Notice and You give Us notice to immediately cancel this Agreement before the change takes effect. 7.2.6. If You are terminating this Agreement and a cancellation charge doesn’t apply because the circumstances outlined in clause 7.2.5 have occurred, You can then ask for a refund of any unused pay as you go Account balance that You may have.
  • Paul S.
    Nirave - that's why we need to see some Terms of Service on this. If they are making significant changes to the call charges you agreed to when you signed the contract (which they appear to be doing) then you most likely have the right to cancel - that's why they send the text in the first place, because there's probably a clause that states they must give notice. As soon as I get the Terms of Service I'll take a look and see what we can do.
  • Jeffrey A.
    7.1. Changes to Services and Charges 7.1.1. We can lower any Charge at any time without telling You beforehand, although We will try to tell You if We can. 7.1.2. We can suspend, change, increase the price of or withdraw part or all of the Additional Services on giving active users of the Additional Service a reasonable period of Written Notice. The change will then apply to You once that notice has run out. 7.1.3. We can suspend, change or withdraw Your Price Plan or Price Plan Services. We will give You Written Notice one calendar month before We do so. The change will then apply to You once that notice has run out. 7.1.4. We can increase any Price Plan Charge. We will give You Written Notice one calendar month before We do so. The change will then apply to You once that notice has run out.
  • waplord
    Said the same to me, i said but surely when i signed up the price of calls was 55p a min yet you're increasing those prices, surely thats of detriment to me, they classed roaming a "Service" and said it doesnt form part of your contract so they can do what they want, whats to stop them saying right when you go abroad we'll charge you £100 a min, and you have no option but to accept that!
  • Jeffrey A.
    Paul, I've linked to the current T&C's in my post thats awaiting moderation (probably due to linking external content?) I've also C&P'd the relevant paragraphs as above
  • Jack
    In case this happened I saved the T&C's from when I took out my contract: http://Jakg.UKCT.net/T-Mobile.pdf
  • Jack
    I've also pasted a link to the T&C's I saved on the 23rd when I took my contract out (via BuyMobilePhones) - it's also awaiting moderation...!
  • Nirave
    @Paul Smith... Fair enough let's see what happens... If the terms & conditions written by Jeffrey Archer are correct, then we can cancel (from my understanding)...
  • Waplord
    i quoted those chunks of the T&C's to them and they werent having any of it
  • Jeffrey A.
    The thing is, I'm going away to the states for my birthday next year. 55p was roughly in line with everyone else. £1.20, an increase of around 120%, is not. My bill will go from 'extortionate', to 'oh my bloody god'
  • Paul S.
    How can they *possibly* class roaming as a service? You don't pay an additional amount to add it to your contract, do you? You can't request that roaming be switched off to receive a monthly rebate? Cheers for the Terms of Service, I'll get to work on this shortly.
  • Nirave
    Much much much appreciated paul... Could you do me a favour? I originally sent you the link in so you'll have it on file but I'm not going to have access to my computer all day - could you pop me a quick email along if you find a definite answer? thanks!
  • Paul S.
    Don't worry - if the text has only been sent to customers in the past couple of days, you've got 30 days grace to cancel, should this be something you use as a legitimate reason to cancel. A few people have already done so, but can everyone who has spoke to T-Mobile about this let us know what they said. No embellishing for a better story please - just what they said, whether you cancelled, and the reasons they gave if they refused to. Cheers!
  • Jeffrey A.
    @Paul: You know these companies though. They will argue black is white, white is red and the capital of italy is bognor regis. I'll try a couple of calls later when I've finished work. I sense a long time on hold though.
  • Rich
    One more reason to never use your mobile abroad. They woul dget so much more income if charges were fair. OT But for US use pick up either a NET10 handset - $30 with $30 credit and is 10c to US and only 15c to call a UK landline. Doesn't let you call or text UK mobiles though so just use it to call a US or UK based provider like voipcheap.com or First Telecom to get reasonable cals to mobiles. 10c charge to receive a call/text. T-Mobile US ToGo is also good but need a larger top up to get a decent call charge. However it DOES let you text UK numbers for around 15c. 5c to receive a text.
  • Nirave
    What they said: We pay the foreign network a charge and if they increase this, it is not just grounds for you to cancel your contract. Roaming charges are not considered part of the terms of your contract and we can make adjustments as and when we feel like. (that was pretty much the gist of it) I quoted the t&c and the manager guy said you are more than welcome to write to our customers services team highlighting the key points of your contract but more than likely you'll receive a letter back stating it's not grounds to cancel!
  • Jeffrey A.
    Heres a thought. Could this have something to do with the recent t-mobile - Orange merger? Just a quick look at the orange roaming costs shows they aren't far off the new T-mobile costs at £1.10 per minute to call the states.
  • Jeffrey A.
    Surely though, with T-Mobiles huge states based presense, there is no such 'foreign network' that are raising there costs...
  • waplord
    basically word for word what they said to Nirave
  • andy
    ooooh pleasepleaseplease let this let us cancel. i'm being absolutely r*ped on my current t-mobile contract (which i use abroad vaguely regularly so the changes will definitely affect me). have been on my current contract since maybe january... no text message yet tho!
  • Jeffrey A.
    Another thought, still looking for anything on T-Mobile, however Orange specify that they consider roaming an 'additional service' due to the fact it must be provisioned on the handset. "Roaming must be provisioned on your phone in order for the TRY bundle to be applied to Your account. Connection to roaming which is an additional service is subject to status."
  • Jeffrey A.
    Seems T-Mobile are trying the same. they consider roaming is an additional service, by allowing you to choose whether the "WorldClass International Roaming" service is enabled or disabled on the account. Not sure if or how that would hold up in court, as its generally expected when you buy a mobile, to be able to use it around the world not just in the UK.
  • Paul S.
    No, it wouldn't. Am currently finding holes and contradictions in their Terms of Service the size of Belgium.
  • Andy M.
    International Roaming is definitely not a Core Service so this will not be classed as a detrimental change. Several networks have increased roaming costs and as difficult as it may be to believe, the primary reason is not to make money, but to prevent losses arising as a result of currency fluctuations against a weak pound. i.e. still charging 50p a minute for a service which now costs them 70p a minute makes no commercial sense.
  • Jeffrey A.
    Andy Mein, great corporate line, tell your bosses they're doing a great job telling monkeys like you what to say. Cheers. In other news, the pound hasn't flucuated against the dollar by 120%. So kindly fuck off with your bullshit. Cheers!
  • Waplord
    i thought the contract looked a bit of a mess when i read it, i'd guess its because its been chopped and changed around so much by them. The current version appears to be V56
  • Gareth H.
    please please, i would love a reason to cancel t-mobile, using an iphone with no 3g in any of my top 3 areas, complete waste of money. total rip off!
  • Jeffrey A.
    Hmm, you may be right waplord. Version 56 of the T&C's are available here: http://support.t-mobile.co.uk/resources/sites/TMOBILE/content/live/DOCUMENTS/0/DO117/en_GB/MC25257%20Terms&Conditions56.pdf
  • Paul S.
    Andy - if International Roaming wasn't a core service, then T-Mobile would not go to considerable lengths to include it in their own Terms of Service, since that is the legally binding document between the customer and the provider. Except they do. Oh.
  • Jeffrey A.
    Awaiting moderation? sigh! http://support.t-mobile.co.uk/resources/sites/TMOBILE/content/live/DOCUMENTS/0/DO117/en_GB/MC25257%20Terms&Conditions56 [.pdf]
  • Paul S.
    Waplord - have you got a link to v56? I'm working off v55.
  • Jeffrey A.
    @paul - look at my awaiting moderation post!
  • Waplord
    http://support.t-mobile.co.uk/resources/sites/TMOBILE/content/live/DOCUMENTS/0/DO117/en_GB/MC25257%20Terms&Conditions56.pdf thats a link to the V56
  • Paul S.
    Thanks guys. Jeffery - apologies for the moderation; we've placed a couple of regular posters on moderation because they were getting out of hand and ruining the comments for everyone else. If we've mistakenly added you to that list, I'll take a look at it.
  • Jeffrey A.
    @Paul I only get moderated when posting external links. So I'm not on the list - but you guys sensibly moderate anything posted that includes an external list.
  • Jeffrey A.
    list / link :|
  • Annoyed
    I took out a contract with them for the new G2 touch (htc hero) in august. The coverage in all 3 of my top areas is atrocious despite the coverage checker on the website proclaiming otherwise. I have missed several important calls in the last few days only to be informed by text message up to an hour later. This in an area which is meant to have 3g coverage and a full signal. I had been on the network 3 for three years prior to this and despite what people may think of them I never once had issues with coverage. it is pointless having a phone with the capabilities of the g2 touch on such a poor network. I would welcome any opportunity to get out of this contract as i am becoming very frustrated with t-mobile.
  • Butterwallet
    @Jeffrey Archer - you're being moderated because you should "definatly" learn to fucking spell.
  • Jeffrey A.
    @Annoyed I get crap coverage with my HTC Diamond 2. No signal at home, poor signal at work, no signal at mums, no signal at my best mates. Despite the coverage checker saying otherwise. Never had a single issue with Voda/Orange in any place.
  • Pizza_D_Action
    Good skills Bitter Wallet, if I can get my girlfriend out of her t-mobile contract then she will be able to have a decent phone on a decent network. Result.
  • Mark
    @ Annoyed When it comes to signal strength not all phones are equal (i.e. some phones will lap up a poor signal while others will turn their noses up at it). So it could be the phone.
  • Jeffrey A.
    @'Butterwallet' Sorry, your post > fail due to the fact that should you actually possess a basic fucking skill known as 'reading' and 'comprehension', you would have figured out that 'I' am not being moderated. Better luck next time. Give my regards to your dad!
  • Nirave
    @annoyed. If you used the coverage checker you "might" be able to wiggle your way out of it. Worked for me a few months back with Orange and a known technical blackspot. Ring em up, give them hell and see what they say!
  • Harj
    They tried to do this earlier in the year too, see here: http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.html?t=1706673
  • Annoyed
    @ Mark I only went with t-mobile because i wanted a g2 touch so this would be pretty unacceptable if that were the case. How networks can get away with selling phones they know to have issues with signal strength is beyond me. I bought my dad a samsung on vodafone that had no signal whatsoever in his house, despite 2 other family members on vodafone on a full signal and after 2 replacements with the same problem they wouldn't refund my money. Mobile phone companies are all a shower of ****s if you ask me.
  • Nirave
    @Paul Smith Any news on this by any chance? I've tried again with another lady who said she'd need to check it out and put me on hold - cupla seconds later it disconnected!!
  • Nirave
    Also is anyone planning on taking them to court? As referred to in the moneysavingexpert link above by Harj.
  • Paul S.
    The piece will be up in a few minutes.
  • Nirave
    Thanks paul. All your help is much appreciated :)
  • Pizza_D_Action
    Basically, if you speak to a script reading idiot on the phone, they won't let you cancel. You'll need to take this all the way i.e. threaten them with small claims court and take it there if needed.
  • Paul S.
    The new article is up - it explains why roaming is not an additional service. We now need as many people to let us know what happens when they speak to T-Mobile. If nothing changes, then next week we'll take it further and look at what action - legal or otherwise - can be taken. Thanks for everyone's contributions today - it's been a real team effort. If you can now post comments on the new post, that'd be great. P
  • JohnK
    We've also found this about the new T-Mobile rates and a possible solution here http://globalsimcard.co.uk/blog/
  • Waplord
    @JohnK while the Geosim article is a great solution for some people for me its more a case of A: i shouldnt have to do that since i pay t-mobile every month for my service and B: How dare they just dictate like this to me, im all for being fair and i dont expect them to operate at a loss but this is just crazy 120% increase, you wouldnt accept other companies doing this, so why do they think we should take this lying down? i STRONGLY object to them holding me prisoner like this when they have changed their side of the contract!
  • Butterwallet
    @Idiotic twat Jeffrey Archer "I only get moderated when posting external links." That, my "friend", is being moderated. FAIL. SCORE 1 FOR ME!!!! Loser - Loser!!! lol BTW. My Dad's never heard of you, but he knows your mum intimately, and they BOTH think you should learn to fucking spell.
  • T-Mobile
    Just cancelled my T-Mobile account, after receiving the text message. I quoted the t&c from this site, and they immediately put me through to cancellations. Good times :)
  • lisa
    @T-mobile What exactly did you quote to them for you to get your contract cancelled?
  • lisa
    ive just rang and basically said there not changing the price of my price plan every month so they won't let me cancel
  • Sean
    @Retardedly idiot twat 'Butterwallet' For somebody with such high regard of their English and grammar, you really should learn the difference between 'Quotes' and 'Inverted Commas'. They aren't interchangeable. Oh, and you should also realise you should use two spaces after a full stop. Just like there. Finally, no, thats not 'me' being moderated, that is 'external links' being moderated. I make that, 3-0 to me, and game over. Now fuck off and play in the traffic, GG.
  • Shazzam-ass-master
    @ "Sean" Hahahaha - oh that really "showed me", didn't it! Nice comeback, the way you completely disregarded what I previously said, in favour of something that had nothing to do with it :) You're wonderfully amusing. Again - FAIL!!
  • Jeffrey A.
    Even more amusingly, exactly what you've just done. Self-fail ftw.
  • DD
    Just called TMobile and gave them all the details incl the T&C para reference - they refused to budge. transferred me 2-3 times from one person to another and all with the same story. Roaming not a part of Price Plan blah blah hence cannot cancel. So am stuck with this as of now - unless there is another way out.
  • Beryl
    Just received the following text:- From 26th October we're changing some of our roaming rates outside the EU, to find out how these changes affect you when you're abroad see t-mobile.co.uk/row... Since I am going to New York in October and not returning until after the 26th .. it will certainly affect me personally... I fortunately am not "tied in" to T-mobile for any length of time and can just give 1 month's notice to terminate... so guess I am now looking for a new server as of today!
  • Paul S.
    We've now published a full guide to help you cancel your T-Mobile contract. You'll find it here: http://www.bitterwallet.com/want-to-cancel-your-t-mobile-contract-heres-how-to-do-it/18286
  • PRAVIN
    Very nice story. thanks for good info~!!
  • tablet
    Thank you for sharing your thoughts. I truly appreciate your efforts and I am waiting for your further write ups thanks once again.

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