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Vodafone UK in Welcome U-Turn Over Turkey Roaming Hike

Thursday, April 2nd, 2020 (7:54 am) - Score 23,179
vodafone uk 2017 mobile sim logo

Mobile operator Vodafone UK has done a welcome U-turn over their planned price hike for roaming customers in Turkey, many of whom had been left stranded by the mass cancellation of flights and would soon have been hit by a new £6 per day charge (here). But that price change has now been delayed.

At present Turkey is still one of Vodafone’s free roaming destinations, which means customers can use their UK plan while abroad in associated countries at no extra cost. However the planned 6th May 2020 change meant that Turkey would have left this group to join c.60 other countries as “Roam-further” destinations (i.e. these attract the aforementioned daily fee, which is similar to how you’d be charged on other networks like O2).

When we first investigated this issue last week the operator seemed intent upon proceeding with their planned change, although we suspect that they may have had a rethink following the recent industry agreement to support and protect “vulnerable consumers” during the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) crisis (here).

Whatever the reason, customers in Turkey who contacted Vodafone about this issue have now been told the following (credits to David and others for keeping us informed).

Copy of Vodafone’s Message

“Appreciate current events could prevent you from returning to the UK as planned. Keeping you connected is our number one priority, so we’ll be giving you 30 days unlimited data at no extra cost. We’ll send you a text when your unlimited data is available.

We’re also delaying the change to the cost of roaming in Turkey until 07 July 2020 for all our customers currently in Turkey.”

The news will be most welcome to those still stranded in the country, whether due to a lack of flights, self-isolation or other reasons related to COVID-19.

Separately Vodafone has announced that it will be extending its 30-day free access to unlimited mobile data offer, by pro-actively upgrading customers who have personal Pay Monthly contracts and are registered in its systems as working for the NHS. These customers will receive a text informing them of this upgrade from April 6th.

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By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
Leave a Comment
40 Responses
  1. Matthew says:

    In fairness surely as Vodafone actually own a network in Turkey this is just about trying to charge more for something that doesn’t cost them more ?

    1. Spurple says:

      In capitalism, you’re generally free to charge what the market will bear. People vote with their feet if the pricing is wrong for them

    2. M. FISHER says:

      I agree with you totally.
      They will lose a lot of customers in UK Telsim in Turkey is a part of Vodaphone and they ate mote expensive than other providers there.

    3. Barry says:

      I’m inclined to agree Matthew.
      Only 5 months ago I migrated to VF purely because I normally spend 10-12 weeks pa in Turkey. I took an 18 month contract.
      Now VF have removed Turkey from free roaming AND upped the charge by 2.5%.
      I’m considering telling them I wish to migrate back to O2 in view of their unilateral actions.O2 charge only £4.99 pd for unlimited roaming in Turkey. Vf charge £5.99.

    4. Patricia says:

      I was contacted by Vodafone as my contract is due to run out this week. I’ve been with Vodafone three are four years now because of the roaming free in Turkey where I have an apartment. I’m disgusted with the fact that to get the roaming free I’ve got to pay you at £37 a month. I’m not prepared to do this therefore I am voting with my feet and going elsewhere. This will mean some inconvenience and messing about buying a Turkish Sim however I feel very strongly and will stick to my guns.

    5. Sol Sheikh says:

      Hi Matthew Vodafone have you turned the decision today Turkey is now a roam free country

  2. Joella says:

    Personally, I spend £120 per year minimum on a vodafone sim only bundle so I can use the vodafone network in Turkey, I travel there a lot but if they continue with their planned change for use outside EU, then I won’t bother with them. I’m sure a fair few people will be the same. Thanks for the head up Vodafone!

    1. Mati h says:

      surely Vodafone will take a big hit on losing your £10/ month, so we all need to start shorting their stock

    2. Ali Binar says:

      That’s not good news.i am with Vodafone becuase of i visit Turkey a lot.so I have to change my network,too.probably I will get Voxi becuase Turkey is roam free destination

  3. Kamb says:

    Someone please explain, if a customer breaks contract phone company charges and makes you bleed. But then they change the terms its not called breaking contract. I’ve made a contract under the terms offered but they changed it.

    1. karl says:

      If you’re actually impacted by this you can leave your contract free of charge (this would be if you’ve used your phone in Turkey since upgrading).

    2. STUART ADAM says:


  4. Pete says:

    We have 3 Vodafone contracts in our household , the only reason we over pay for Vodafone contracts is so we can all use our mobiles while on holiday in turkey , due to this change we will move all our business to ee 02 or three and save quite a large amount of money , the money I save will purchase a turkey local sim and use that while I’m there. Am I able to cancel my 3 Vodafone contracts due to change of t and c’s as when I purchased my contracts I would not be charged £18 per day while on holiday, cost will be 6 pound a day for 21 days x 3 contracts so will be a extra £372 due to this change. I’ve just checked on uswitch and get 3x contracts same as we already have and save £360 a year , I will use this on a turkey local sim when I go on my 3 week holiday.

  5. Terry Chamberlain says:

    Vodafone bought Telsim which operates in Turkey and TRNC (North Cyprus)they also own the largest network in the south of Cyprus.
    Bearing this in mind this is just a way of generating more money and nothing else as as they own the networks they have no additional costs as other networks do so a rip off.
    They were going to do this last year and backed down but the timing with people stranded in Turkey and the North of Cyprus is a PR disaster. Bearing this in mind after the transition period with the EEC they will almost certainly do the same for EEC roaming I have 3 contracts with them my friends company who I recommend him to Vodafone has 24 so they are going to loose a lot of customers what with the billing fiasco as well and better priced deals out there if you exclude Turkey we should all leave

    1. M. Fisher says:

      I pay £30 a month pay as you go to Vodaphone whether
      I am in UK or when on holiday in Turkey. I will not be using Vodaphone from May 2020.

      EE did the same several years ago and tried to charge their customers thousands of pounds on their return, changing their plans without notice and consent.
      Ofcom should revoke their licences to trade.

  6. Alasdair Adam says:


  7. Michael Bradburn says:

    It not a Uturn its don’t we look good helping people trapped.
    not we have a network in turkey that is Vodaphone let rip off all the holidaymakers.
    maybe when this virus is over the competition will look at the phone market and look at the mobile network and the price structure no real competition,
    but when politician leave don’t they become nonexecutive directors so not much chance of that then.
    virtually the same prices and the £6.00 per day rate the same do they phone each other up were putting our price up so should you?

    1. Michael Bradburn says:

      prices EE £6.00
      O2 £4.99
      SKY £6.00
      BT Mobile £6.00

      all per day Three don’t do turkey only 2.5 million UK visitor per year

      where is the competition?

  8. Rich says:

    Please can anyone confirm that Vodafone have officially announced that they are U turning on roaming charges for Turkey?. Is there any link to Vodafone which states so?. Thanks.

  9. pete says:

    This is wrong Vodafone have not done a uturn regarding free roaming in turkey , they have just delayed it , I think when the holiday market returns and ppl find out turkey is no longer included in there free roaming tariff Vodafone will see a lot leaving.

  10. Al Green says:

    Update from Turkey, where I am currently stuck.
    During a 2 hour “Chat” on the Vodafone chat line was eventually connected to Belfast who eventually found this.

    “we’re moving Turkey from a Roam Free to a Roam Further destination for new and existing customers from Wednesday 6 May.
    Due to the Covid19 Crisis, we will be delaying this change for an initial 30 days for any Vodafone customer that is already in Turkey.
    Our number 1 priority is to keep our customers connected and the unprecedented travel restrictions have severely affected people’s ability to return to the UK. We’ve reached out to these customers directly letting them know of the change and have set up a dedicated team to handle their calls. We will review this just before the 30 day grace period comes to an end.”

    They certainly did not “reach out” to me or even their own employees. One of whom only the day before had insisted I had to upgrade to Unlimited Max.

  11. Patricia says:

    I was contacted by Vodafone as my contract is due to run out this week. I’ve been with Vodafone three are four years now because of the roaming free in Turkey where I have an apartment. I’m disgusted with the fact that to get the roaming free I’ve got to pay you at £37 a month. I’m not prepared to do this therefore I am voting with my feet and going elsewhere. This will mean some inconvenience and messing about buying a Turkish Sim however I feel very strongly and will stick to my guns.

  12. Lorraine Johnson says:

    I also complained to Vodafone about this hike and, after a customer services assistant rang me and just told me what I already knew and said I could cancel my contract free of charge, he closed my complaint even though I said I didn’t want it closing. I have received no answer as to why they are stopping roam free and the delay is just that. Not a change of mind just a delay to help people already in Turkey.

  13. adem gulden says:

    i am leaving vodofone

  14. John says:

    Used Vodafone simply to get free data roaming in Turkey, I also have an apartment.
    But I’m switching provider to a cheaper tariff, Vodafone has shot themselves in the foot.

  15. Sheila says:

    Not happy that Vodaphone are taking Turkey off roaming it was the only reason I changed and upset as many friends also changed as we stay many months in Turkey every year, they will be loosing loads of customer’s as we are all going to leave to another provider out of principal.

  16. Dave says:

    Just leave – Vodafone constantly win the worst mobile and broadband provider. Their customer service is terrible.

    Smarty seem more reasonable or get a holiday sim when you are out there for about £10.

  17. Jason says:

    So with this change happening next month can someone recommend a sim card card that will allow free roaming in Turkey?

  18. SEJ says:

    Im about to leave Vodafone too. I mean Turkey is in Europe and millions of people are visiting it from the UK every year. I remember they tried to do it before too and backe up, i’m sure there is a better company who treats their custemers better!

  19. Kev S says:

    Vote with your feet – both Vodafone and Voxi (a VF subsidiary) have dropped Turkey from free roaming from 8/7 – better monthly / sim only deals out there and much better customer service

  20. pnr says:

    I have 24 months contract with Vodafone started in Dec 2019. How can I leave my contract. they will ask for remaining contract amount. Pls help

  21. Salih says:

    Its absolutely disgusting the way they are treating us. You are not allowed to change the terms and conditions yet they can. If you can just change anything in the t&c what the point of having them.
    We’re all being taken for morons, just leave them.

  22. Philip Gunnell says:

    I agree with everyone here. We have a place in Turkey so bought another contract last October to use solely when in Turkey. What with all the CV19 going on I haven’t had the chance to go there. Total waste of money now, and never even used the Sim Card. I Even changed my business number to Vodafone now, only to hear this news. Needless to say come October they have seen the last of me…

  23. Kemal says:

    What is the situation now ? Is it extended or not? And for how long ?
    I have been using the Vodafone in the last 25 days while in holiday without realising the 6 £ pd charge. Have been a VF customer for 4 years now.

    1. Orhan says:

      Unless you are on an unlimited data plan with 77 roam free destinations, you will be charged £6 a day. I would’ve expected this to be clear once you entered Turkey as you should have received a text from VF saying welcome to Turkey. That same text would either confirm roaming is included in your plan or would provide details on roam further.

  24. Tony smitj says:

    Contacted Vodafone today and they explained they have stopped us using any allowances on our phone plane unless you have the £33 or more monthly contract yet another joke goodbye Vodafone from 5 users in my family

  25. Tony says:

    Contacted Vodafone today and they explained they have stopped us using any allowances on our phone plane unless you have the £33 or more monthly contract yet another joke goodbye Vodafone from 5 users in my family

  26. Jez maude says:

    The email you get from Vodafone is actually misleading, I’ve just realised I’ve been charged for using my mobile phone. Hello. Just so you know, TURKEY is one of our Roam-further destinations – which means you can use the minutes, texts and data from your plan while here. It costs just £6 (inc. VAT) a day on top of your monthly plan – and you’ll only pay on the days you use your phone. Please note: some devices automatically use data to check emails and get updates – to avoid charges for this, simply switch off data roaming in your settings menu. For terms and info see: http://m.vodafone.co.uk/ga1 or call +441635691700. For emergency services call 112. Have a good trip.

  27. Brendan faherty says:

    I was in turkey on 5 July when change on 7 July I will leave in October when my contract ends

  28. khalid says:

    i have 4 contract with vodafone i have one my 2 brothers and wife we all have vodafone contract and home broadband just because it was free roaming in Turkey. Will terminate all the contracts. I came to UK without realising i cant use my phone anymore absolutely disgusting

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