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In 2014, there will be an end to roaming charges, as the EU decided to make an end to roaming charges. Consumers will be able to make calls through their mobile phones within Europe and pay the same price as in their home countries. This would mean a major reform in telecommunications and existing regulations that left many consumers with big roaming bills after using their mobile phones across Europe when on holiday or on business trips. This is now to change from mid 2014 onwards as the European Commission voted in Brussels to push through these long needed reforms before the next elections taking place in May 2014. First detailed proposals will be presented by the end of July (The Telegraph).

Implications for Tourism

This announcement is good news for tourism, as many consumers would complain about high roaming charges when making calls during a holiday or business trips. With these new developments, consumers will pay the same amount on holiday as at home for calls, texts and internet access, making it a lot cheaper than before to use their mobile phones on holiday. With technologies fastly developing, consumers want to use their phones while on holiday. Sometimes, the fear of high roaming charges, put an end to the use of a mobile phone when travelling abroad and made many consumers dependent on wifi to access the Internet.

Fully Connected Travellers

From mid 2014 onwards, consumers will be able to be connected throughout their holiday without paying additional charges, making it possible to share all holiday experiences in real time. For many tourism businesses and destinations it will also be a great opportunity as more consumers will actually be able to engage with them and share images from their holiday. At the moment, a lot of apps offered by destinations require an Internet connection to fully function, which was an issue for consumers on holiday as they have to pay for roaming. With these upcoming changes, this issue will be solved, making it easier for destinations to built apps and consumers to use them at all times in the destination.

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