Roaming with Vodafone UK: All You Need to Know

As of 2017, roaming is free within the European Union, which is fantastic. Some providers add additional destinations to your free-roaming list. Does Vodafone do the same? Where can you roam for free with Vodafone? What around roaming in non-EU destinations? What are the roaming rates, and where can you roam? Can you data roam overseas too? We will find out today.

Can I roam with Vodafone UK?

Vodafone Pay Monthly subscribers can roam in 48 destinations for free with Vodafone Roam Free, which includes many European destinations. Those on select Red Entertainment and Unlimited Max can roam in 77 destinations for free. For £6.00, you can use your plan’s allowance in 104 destinations with Roam Further. Those on Vodafone Basic plans can roam in Pay As You Go Roaming rates.

No idea how roaming works? I made this comprehensive guide about what roaming is and how it works. It is worth the read – promised!

What do I need to know about roaming with Vodafone UK?

Vodafone Pay Monthly customers can take advantage of several roaming options, which include:

  • Vodafone Roam Free
  • Vodafone Roam Further
  • Vodafone Global Roaming Plus

Those who are interested in the roaming options for Vodafone Basic Plans should jump to What about roaming with Vodafone Basic Plans?

What is Vodafone Global Roaming?

Global Roaming allows you to use your plan’s data, minutes, and texts in 152 destinations around the world. There are 3 tiers for Global Roaming:

  • Roam Free, which allows you to use your plan’s allowance at no extra cost in 48 European destinations
  • Roam Further, where you can use your home plan in an additional 104 destinations for £6 per day
  • Global Roaming Plus, which is included in select Vodafone Unlimited Max and Red Entertainment Plans and allows you to roam in 77 destinations.

Let’s analyze each option.

Canal in Venic

Vodafone Roam Free

As of June 2017, the European Union (EU) passed new regulations that ended roaming charges within the EU. In response, Vodafone created Roam Free, which allows Pay Monthly customers to use their plan’s allowance in all the 28 EU countries plus 20 other destinations without additional charges.

Pay As You Go customers can also roam in 48 destinations without paying roaming premiums. Instead, standard Pay As You Go rates apply when roaming in Roam Free destinations.

Those on Vodafone Basic cannot take advantage of Roam Free.

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Where can I use Vodafone Roam Free?

You can use Roam Free in the following 48 destinations:

  • Austria
  • Azores
  • Belgium
  • Bulgaria
  • Canary Islands
  • Croatia
  • Cyprus
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark 1
  • Estonia
  • Finland
  • France 2
  • French Guiana
  • Germany
  • Gibraltar
  • Greece
  • Guadeloupe
  • Guernsey
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • Ireland
  • Isle of Man
  • Italy
  • Jersey
  • Latvia
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Madeira
  • Malta
  • Martinique
  • Mayotte
  • Monaco
  • Netherlands
  • Norway
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Reunion
  • Romania
  • San Marino
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • Spain 3
  • St. Martin
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Turkey
  • Vatican City

1. Includes the Faroe Islands
2. Includes Corsica
3. Includes the Balearic Islands

Vodafone Roam Further

Roam Further allows Vodafone Pay Monthly subscribers to use their plan’s allowance in 104 destinations for £6 per day. With Roam Further, you can roam in many North American, Latin American, Caribean, Asian, Middle Eastern, and Oceanian destinations. You can roam in select destinations in Africa as well.

You can use your UK data packs, international add-ons, or other international bundles when in a Roam Further destination. You, however, cannot use any entertainment service you have (Amazon Prime Video, Sky Sports Mobile TV, NOW TV Entertainment Pass, or other extras), except for Spotify Premium.

Do note that Roam Further will automatically activate when you make a phone call, send a text, or use data in a Roam Further destination. If you decide to send one text message and not call nor data roam, you will still be charged £6 for that one SMS.

With data roaming, you have a grace allowance of 50 KB before the Roam Further charge applies.

Those on Vodafone Basic cannot take advantage of Roam Further.

Where can I use Vodafone Roam Further?

You can use Roam Further in the following 104 destinations:

  • Afghanistan 
  • Albania
  • Andorra
  • Anguilla
  • Antigua & Barbuda
  • Argentina
  • Armenia 
  • Aruba
  • Australia
  • Bahrain 
  • Bangladesh 
  • Barbados
  • Bermuda
  • Bonaire
  • Bosnia & Herzegovina
  • Brazil
  • British Virgin Islands
  • Cambodia
  • Canada
  • Cayman Islands
  • Chile
  • China
  • Colombia
  • Costa Rica
  • Curacao
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) 
  • Dominica
  • Dominican Republic
  • Ecuador
  • Egypt
  • El Salvador
  • Fiji
  • Georgia 
  • Ghana
  • Grenada
  • Guatemala
  • Guyana
  • Haiti
  • Honduras 
  • Hong Kong
  • India
  • Indonesia
  • Israel
  • Jamaica
  • Japan
  • Jordan 
  • Kazakhstan 
  • Kenya
  • Kuwait 
  • Laos
  • Lesotho
  • Macau (Macao)
  • Malaysia
  • Mexico
  • Moldova 
  • Mongolia
  • Montenegro
  • Montserrat
  • Morocco 
  • Mozambique
  • Myanmar 
  • New Zealand
  • Nicaragua 
  • North Macedonia
  • Oman 
  • Pakistan 
  • Panama
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Paraguay
  • Peru
  • Philippines
  • Puerto Rico
  • Qatar
  • Russia 
  • Saba
  • Saint Kitts & Nevis
  • Saint Lucia
  • Saint Vincent & the Grenadines
  • Samoa
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Serbia
  • Singapore
  • Sint Eustatius
  • Sint Martin
  • South Africa
  • South Korea
  • South Sudan
  • Sri Lanka
  • Suriname
  • Swaziland (Eswatini)
  • Taiwan
  • Tanzania
  • Thailand
  • Tonga
  • Trinidad & Tobago
  • Turks & Caicos Islands
  • Ukraine 
  • United Arab Emirates (UAE)
  • United States
  • Uruguay
  • US Virgin Islands
  • Uzbekistan 
  • Vanuatu
  • Vietnam

Vodafone Global Roaming Plus

Those who bought a Red Entertainment plan between 4 September 2017 and 9 July 2019 or an Unlimited Max plan from 10 July 2017 can roam on Global Roaming Plus at no additional charge. Global Roaming Plus allows you to roam in 77, which includes 48 Roam Free and 29 Roam Further destinations.

You can use up to 25 GB when data roaming in Global Roaming Plus destinations.

You can roam in an additional 73 Roam Further destinations for £6 per day, meaning that those on Red Entertainment or Unlimited Max can roam in 150 destinations.

Do note that Roam Further rates will automatically activate when you make a phone call, send a text, or use data in a Roam Further destination. If you decide to send one text message and not call nor data roam, you will still be charged £6 for that one SMS. With data roaming, you have a grace allowance of 50 KB before the Roam Further charge applies.

Where can I use Vodafone Global Roaming Plus?

Global Roam can be used in the following 77 destinations:

  • Albania
  • Anguilla
  • Antigua & Barbuda
  • Aruba
  • Australia
  • Austria
  • Azores
  • Barbados
  • Belgium
  • Bermuda
  • Bosnia & Herzegovina
  • British Virgin Islands
  • Bulgaria
  • Canada
  • Canary Islands
  • Cayman Islands
  • Croatia
  • Cyprus
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark 1
  • Dominica
  • Estonia
  • Finland
  • France 2
  • French Guiana
  • Germany
  • Ghana
  • Gibraltar
  • Greece
  • Grenada
  • Guadeloupe
  • Guernsey
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • Ireland
  • Isle of Man
  • Italy 3
  • Jamaica
  • Jersey
  • Kenya
  • Latvia
  • Lesotho
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Madeira
  • Malta
  • Martinique
  • Mayotte
  • Mexico
  • Monaco
  • Montserrat
  • Mozambique
  • Netherlands
  • Netherlands Antilles 4
  • New Zealand
  • Norway
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Reunion
  • Romania
  • Saint Kitts & Nevis
  • Saint Lucia
  • Saint Maarten
  • Saint Vincent & the Grenadines
  • San Marino
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • South Africa
  • Spain 5
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Trinidad & Tobago
  • Turkey
  • Turks & Caicos Islands
  • United States
  • Vatican City

1. Including the Faroe Islands
2. Includes Corsica
3. Includes Sicily & Sardinia
4. Saba, St. Eustatius & St. Maarten
5. Includes the Balearic Islands

Where can I use Vodafone Roam Further as an Unlimited or Max subscriber?

You can use Roam Further for £6 per day in the following 73 destinations:

  • Afghanistan 
  • Andorra
  • Argentina
  • Armenia 
  • Bahrain 
  • Bangladesh 
  • Bonaire
  • Brazil
  • Cambodia
  • Chile
  • China
  • Colombia
  • Costa Rica
  • Curacao
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) 
  • Dominican Republic
  • Ecuador
  • Egypt
  • El Salvador
  • Eswatini (Swaziland)
  • Fiji
  • Georgia 
  • Guatemala
  • Guyana
  • Haiti
  • Honduras 
  • Hong Kong
  • India
  • Indonesia
  • Israel
  • Japan
  • Jordan 
  • Kazakhstan 
  • Kuwait 
  • Laos
  • Macau (Macao)
  • Malaysia
  • Moldova 
  • Mongolia
  • Montenegro
  • Morocco 
  • Myanmar 
  • Nicaragua 
  • North Macedonia
  • Oman 
  • Pakistan 
  • Panama
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Paraguay
  • Peru
  • Philippines
  • Puerto Rico
  • Qatar
  • Russia 
  • Samoa
  • Saudi Arabia (KSA)
  • Serbia
  • Singapore
  • South Korea
  • South Sudan
  • Sri Lanka
  • Suriname
  • Taiwan
  • Tanzania
  • Thailand
  • Tonga
  • Ukraine 
  • United Arab Emirates (UAE)
  • Uruguay
  • US Virgin Islands
  • Uzbekistan 
  • Vanuatu
  • Vietnam

Set up FREE flight alerts and get notified when ticket prices drop via Airfarewatchdog!

Can I roam on 5G when abroad?

As of the 26th of July 2019, those on a 5G-ready plan and have a 5G device can roam on 5G in select cities in Spain, Germany, and Italy. Below you can find an overview of which cities and towns are capable of 5G roaming.

Italy 5G Roaming

In Italy, you can roam on 5G in the following 5 cities:

  • Milan
  • Rome
  • Turin
  • Naples
  • Bologna
Naples, Italy

Spain 5G Roaming

In Spain, you can roam on 5G in the following 15 cities:

  • Madrid
  • Barcelona
  • Valencia
  • Seville
  • Malaga
  • Zaragoza
  • Pamplona
  • Bilbao
  • La Coruña
  • Vigo
  • Vitoria
  • San Sebastián
  • Gijón
  • Logroño
  • Santander

Germany 5G Roaming

In Germany, you can roam on 5G in the following 27 cities and towns:

  • Aldenhoven
  • Altenberge
  • Berlin
  • Birgland
  • Bremen
  • Darmstadt
  • Dortmund
  • Dresden
  • Duisburg

  • Düsseldorf
  • Frankfurt
  • Hamburg
  • Hattstedt
  • Hesel
  • Karlsruhe
  • Köln
  • Leipzig
  • Lohmar
  • Mellenthin
  • München
  • Seehausen
  • Ratingen
  • Rielasingen
  • Worblingen
  • Roth
  • Wedemark
  • Westhausen
  • Würselen
Castle in Munich

What about roaming with Vodafone Basic Plans?

Those on Vodafone Basic Plans are not eligible for any of the Vodafone Global options, except for the Roam Free option. Instead, you get charged on standard Pay As You Go roaming rates. This means that you pay for making calls, receiving calls, sending texts, and data roaming.

Vodafone has set up 4 roaming zones with different rates, which are shown below:

Notes:

1. Out Call stands for Outgoing Call and is priced per minute
2. Inc. Call stands for Incoming Call
3. Data is measured per MB
4. All calls are charged per minute and rounded to the next minute
5. Receiving SMS is free
6. The table may be best viewed in landscape or desktop mode (when on mobile)

Out. CallInc. CallTextData
Zone 1 £       0.60  £       0.36  £       0.08  £       0.12
Zone 2 £       1.20  £       0.72  £       0.30  £       0.60
Zone 3 £       2.40  £       1.56  £       0.60  £       1.80
Zone 4 £       2.40  £       1.80  £       0.60  £       7.20

Vodafone Rest of the World Zone 1

The following 133 destinations are charged per Rest of the World Zone 1 roaming rates:

  • Afghanistan
  • Albania
  • Anguilla
  • Antigua and Barbuda
  • Argentina
  • Armenia
  • Aruba
  • Australia
  • Azerbaijan
  • Bahamas
  • Bahrain
  • Bangladesh
  • Barbados
  • Benin
  • Bermuda
  • Bhutan
  • Bonaire
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • Botswana
  • Brazil
  • British Virgin Islands
  • Brunei
  • Burkina Faso
  • Cameroon
  • Cambodia
  • Canada
  • Cayman Islands
  • Central African Republic
  • Chad
  • Chile
  • China
  • Colombia
  • Congo (Democratic Republic of)
  • Congo (People’s Republic of)
  • Costa Rica
  • Curacao
  • Dominica
  • Dominican Republic
  • Ecuador
  • Egypt
  • El Salvador
  • Fiji
  • French Polynesia
  • Gabon
  • Georgia
  • Ghana
  • Grenada
  • Guam
  • Guatemala
  • Guyana
  • Haiti
  • Honduras
  • Hong Kong
  • India
  • Indonesia
  • Iran
  • Iraq
  • Israel
  • Ivory Coast
  • Jamaica
  • Japan
  • Jordan
  • Kazakhstan
  • Kenya
  • Korea (South)
  • Kuwait
  • Laos
  • Lesotho
  • Macau
  • Macedonia
  • Madagascar
  • Malaysia
  • Mexico
  • Moldova
  • Mongolia
  • Montenegro
  • Montserrat
  • Morocco
  • Mozambique
  • Myanmar
  • New Zealand
  • Nicaragua
  • Niger
  • Nigeria
  • Oman
  • Pakistan
  • Palestine
  • Panama
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Paraguay
  • Peru
  • Philippines
  • Puerto Rico
  • Qatar
  • Russia
  • Rwanda
  • Saba (Netherland Antilles)
  • Samoa Western
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Serbia
  • Seychelles
  • Singapore
  • Sint Eustatius (Netherland Antilles)
  • Sint Maarten
  • Solomon Islands
  • South Africa
  • Sudan (South)
  • Sri Lanka
  • St Kitts And Nevis
  • St Lucia
  • St Vincent
  • Suriname
  • Swaziland
  • Taiwan 
  • Tajikistan
  • Tanzania
  • Thailand
  • Togo
  • Tonga
  • Trinidad & Tobago
  • Turks & Caicos
  • Uganda
  • Ukraine
  • United Arab Emirates
  • United States of America
  • Uruguay
  • Us Virgin Islands
  • Uzbekistan
  • Vanuatu
  • Venezuela
  • Vietnam
  • Yemen
  • Zambia

Rest of the World Zone 1 Rates

Out. CallInc. CallTextData
Zone 1 £       0.60  £       0.36  £       0.08  £       0.12

Vodafone Rest of the World Zone 2

The following 16 destinations are charged per Rest of the World Zone 2 roaming rates:

  • Algeria
  • American Samoa
  • Belarus
  • Bolivia
  • Cape Verde
  • Gambia
  • Guinea
  • Guinea-Bissau
  • Kyrgyzstan
  • Liberia
  • Malawi
  • Mauritania
  • Mauritius
  • Senegal
  • Sierra Leone
  • Zimbabwe
Mountains in Bolivia

Rest of the World Zone 2 Rates

Out. CallInc. CallTextData
Zone 2 £       1.20  £       0.72  £       0.30  £       0.60

Vodafone Rest of the World Zone 3

The following 8 destinations are charged per Rest of the World Zone 3 roaming rates:

  • Andorra
  • Burundi
  • Libya
  • Mali
  • Namibia
  • Nepal
  • Sao Tome And Principe
  • Tunisia

Rest of the World Zone 3 Rates

Out. CallInc. CallTextData
Zone 3 £       2.40  £       1.56  £       0.60  £       1.80

Vodafone Rest of the World Zone 4

The following 19 destinations are charged per Rest of the World Zone 4 roaming rates:

  • Ascension Islands
  • Angola
  • Belize
  • Comoros
  • Cook Islands
  • Cuba
  • Djibouti
  • Equatorial Guinea
  • Ethiopia
  • Falkland Islands
  • Greenland
  • Lebanon
  • Maldives
  • New Caledonia
  • Saint Helena
  • Somalia
  • Syria
  • Timor (East)
  • Turkmenistan

Rest of the World Zone 4 Rates

Out. CallInc. CallTextData
Zone 4 £       2.40  £       1.80  £       0.60  £       7.20

Can I roam on planes with Vodafone UK?

Both Vodafone Pay Monthly and Pay As You Go customers can roam on select airlines and airplanes. The following in-flight roaming rates apply:

  • £2.40 a minute for making phone calls
  • £1.80 a minute for receiving phone calls
  • £0.60 per text (receiving texts is free)
  • £7.20 per MB

Can I roam on cruise ships with Vodafone UK?

Maritime roaming is available to both Vodafone Pay Monthly and Pay As You Go customers. The following maritime roaming rates apply:

  • £2.40 a minute for making phone calls
  • £1.80 a minute for receiving phone calls
  • £0.60 per text (receiving texts is free)

Data roaming on cruise ships, ferries, or ships is not possible.

Is roaming with Vodafone UK worth it?

Now that we have analyzed all the roaming options you have with Vodafone, we have to determine whether roaming is worth it or not.

As Vodafone is not allowed to charge you more for roaming within the EU, you do not have to worry about roaming charges in 27 European destinations. I like the fact that you can roam in 20 “non-EU” destinations for free such as St. Martin, French Guinea, and Mayotte.

I also think that the Roam Further option is appealing. For £6, you can use your plan’s allowance in 104 destinations across the world, including Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, Singapore, and the US.

Lake in New Zraland

What I dislike of Roam Further is that you cannot opt-out from it. If you forget that you are in a Roam Further destination and reply to a text message, you will be charged £6 for that day, even though you were not intending to use service. It would be great if you could opt-out from Roam Further and pay standard roaming rates for incidental phone usage. Perhaps Vodafone will let you do so in the future, but we will have to see.

Global Roaming Plus sounds a bit like a premium service. Only select Red Entertainment and Unlimited Max subscribers can take advantage of it. With Global Roaming Plus, you can roam in 77 destinations, including 48 Roam Free and 29 Roam Further destinations without paying extra. Those on a Max plan will have their data roaming allowance capped at 25 GB, which is a generous allowance.

I was worried that Red Entertainment and Unlimited Max subscribers could only roam in those 77 destinations but was happy to learn that they can roam in an additional 73 destinations if they are willing to pay £6 per day. Once they do so, they can roam in places like Hong Kong, the Philippines, Indonesia, India. Not a bad deal, I would say.

I would, however, take caution with Vodafone Roam Further. £6 per day is not a lot of money for the privilege of using your plan’s allowance when abroad. However, it can add up if you are traveling for an extended period. If you are visiting Thailand for a week, you would pay £42 for that week. You can undoubtedly get a local sim for much cheaper that will give you a generous allowance as well. That is why I would not recommend using Roam Further for more than 4 or 5 days when traveling, as you can save money by purchasing a local sim.

You could also decide not to roam at all and use WIFI hotspots to stay in touch with your friends and family when abroad. I would recommend using internet-based apps like Facebook Messenger, Whatsapp, or Skype, which are all free services with texting and video-call capabilities.

Those who are on a Vodafone Basic plan are a bit unlucky. You cannot take advantage of most of the Global Roam options, except for the Roam Free one, meaning that you will have to pay standard roaming rates per action. Calls range from £0.36 to £2.40 per minute depending on the roaming zone. Data roaming in a zone 4 destination will cost you a whopping £7.20 per MB – certainly not worth it!

In short, roaming with Vodafone UK is worth it when done in moderation (which counts for Roam Further and those roaming on standard roaming rates). I would certainly recommend taking advantage of Roam Free or Global Roam Plus, but you should keep an eye out on your usage to prevent out-of-bundle fees.

What is next?

Looking for the best companies and gadgets to enhance your travel experience? Check out my resource page for the best companies to use when you travel! Save money on plane tickets, bus rides, cruises, and accommodation. Besides that, I also list services and items I use to make my life easier – and I believe they will help you too!


Sources:

https://www.vodafone.co.uk/mobile/global-roaming
https://www.vodafone.co.uk/network/5g
https://www.vodafone.co.uk/explore/costs/travelling-abroad/index.htm

Disclaimer: Information and prices are current as at the date of publication and are subject to change. Please refer to our Terms & Conditions for our Content Disclaimer.

Ernest Adu

Ernest Adu, going by just Adu, is the founder and editor at Phone Travel Wiz. He has been a traveler for 6 years. Although from Europe, the Netherlands, Adu's favorite region in Asia, in particular, East and Southeast Asia. He currently lives in Tainan, Taiwan due to the current pandemic and does not have any travel plans for after his stay in Taiwan.

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