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Roam Like at Home - what Plusnet don't want you to know!

roadsie
Newbie
Posts: 3
Registered: 05-07-2017

Roam Like at Home - what Plusnet don't want you to know!

A warning to 'Roam Like at Home' users. I holidayed in Kos, Greece last week and connected to WIND GR service immediately while still at the airport. All good and I used my phone data allowance throughout the holiday.

When I returned home and checked my bill there was an extra £8 charge for roaming!

It turns out that if your phone receives a stronger signal from an alternative mast then it will automatically connect. In this case to one in Turkey even though I was never in Turkey. I called Plusnet who tell me it's not their problem and I should have changed my phone settings to lock to a particular service. While this is technically true, it's not obvious and Plusnet are not highlighting the fact.

Fortunate that we have the cap but nevertheless I'm not a happy customer.

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9 REPLIES
Community Veteran
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Re: Roam Like at Home - what Plusnet don't want you to know!

Hi,

I commiserate with you about the extra charges. However, whilst I'm not reticent to criticise PlusNet when I think they're wrong, in this case I'm afraid I'd have to agree, it's not really their problem. The problem is going to affect all providers and I'd be surprised if any of them have highlighted it.  Switching between networks is not a new problem, it's always been an issue when say near to the south coast or the irish border. In those cases, of course, you're merely switching between roaming or not. I guess it takes on much more significance now with RLAH, as in your case, when switching between RLAH and non-RLAH networks unexpectedly.

Just a thought, did you not receive an SMS informing of the charges each time your phone switched networks ?

Community Veteran
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Re: Roam Like at Home - what Plusnet don't want you to know!

Yes, I doubt you'll be the only one affected by this in the future.

Trouble is when roaming, phones will suddenly change networks if they find another with a stronger signal. This becomes a problem where you're near another country, as @MisterW said North and Republic of Ireland. People will then assume they're on an EU network when they might not be. All you'll see is change of network on your phone, so you can't easily tell if it is a network within the same country or another. Sometimes it is in the network name, and there is the official GSM site which lists the networks per country (think it is called gsmworld).

You often get texts saying (welcome to country x) now.

There should be an option on your phone (not sure where, depends on your model), to put the network selection to manual not automatic which tells the phone to stay on that network and not sneakily change it to another one. Then you've always got the option to change it back to automatic or select a different network on manual selection if the reception is poor on that the old one.

Automatic will work fine within the EU, but if you're in borderline outside area you could be caught out. 

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Re: Roam Like at Home - what Plusnet don't want you to know!

Vodafone include Turkey in their Roam like home countries, I think some others do too.
Will Moderate For Thanks
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Re: Roam Like at Home - what Plusnet don't want you to know!

I assume PlusNet mobile being a virtual provider, uses the same physical provider as BT mobile which a quick search shows up as EE. I could be wrong.

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Re: Roam Like at Home - what Plusnet don't want you to know!

it is EE, definitely
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roadsie
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Registered: 05-07-2017

Re: Roam Like at Home - what Plusnet don't want you to know!

Thanks for the comments. There may not be direct fault here but I find it disappointing that the Plusnet fanfare over RLAH does not come with an appropriate health warning over this issue.

As Alex pointed out there is an option to lock to a specific network, which I would have done if I'd known it was needed. A further point, to be fair is, that I did indeed get a text message about roaming in a more expensive (unspecified) area but the meaning wasn't clear as I had already reconnected to the Greek network.

FAQ answers from Plusnet may help sort this out.

 

 

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Re: Roam Like at Home - what Plusnet don't want you to know!

TBH from the comments on this https://community.plus.net/t5/Mobile/Is-Roam-Like-at-Home-working/m-p/1454046#M4911 thread, I'm not sure that PN have really got to grips completely with RLAH.

@roadsie as an aside can you recall ( or do you still have ) the SMS you received from PN when roaming in Greece ?

roadsie
Newbie
Posts: 3
Registered: 05-07-2017

Re: Roam Like at Home - what Plusnet don't want you to know!

In reply to MisterW, the text message that I received was as follow

"Hello, youre now roaming in a country where you pay more for texts, calls & data. In case of emergency whilst abroad dial 112, for free"

(Note punctuation errors are theirs not mine)

My naive thought on reading it was "That's okay because I'm roaming like at home with Plusnet which won't cost me more if I'm within plan".

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Re: Roam Like at Home - what Plusnet don't want you to know!

Sorry, I think you might have misunderstood, I was asking about the SMS you got when in Greece i.e the RLAH message., Was that the SMS from the Greece network ?

The reason I ask is that from the other thread I linked it seems that this and was wrong but Plusnet were implying it was only a temporary problem. Seeing as you were roaming last week I was interested to see if it had been corrected.