Roaming Data Charges

August 7th, 2007 at 3:24 am by David Farrar

Within NZ my Vodafone data card is invaluable.  Around $40 a month for 1 GB of data, it saves me a lot of money as without I’d be paying $35 a night to the hotel for Internet access.

But overseas it is a very different case.  Suddenly your cost per MB goes from 4c to $30.  Yes $30.  There is a story in Computerworld about Whale Oil being hit with a $7,000+ plus bill for roaming in Australia.  I’m quoted also.

Vodafone say that can put in a warning system as they only get informed of the overseas charges at the end of each billing month.  I don’t accept that.  Firstly they could set up a system where they do exchange data more often.  Secondly they could modify the software on their mobile connect package so the package itself alerts you.

Yes people should look up and be aware of the fine print about the cost when overseas.  But you know if whenever the mobile connect package connected to an overseas network, it flashed an alert box warning your data rate is now $30 a MB (or $10 if still Vodafone) then people wouldn’t be caught unawares.

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64 Responses to “Roaming Data Charges”

  1. Dead Duck Dux () says:

    It’s all dire. We got hit by the overseas charging ripoff when my wife was overseas on an extended trip in the US and Europe. I called her on her mobile using Skype. I thought I was being bloody clever. Our calls cost next to nothing and the quality of the VOIP was pretty good. Then we’re stunned when we get home and get hit with a bill of several thousand dollars – just for answering the mobile phone. I felt like a dope – having read all the nightmare stories and knowing people should research network connections etc. I was just surprised at the size of the bill.

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  2. TIM BARCLAY () says:

    It is pretty basic stuff to check this out BEFORE using the card overseas surely. I use a telecom card and yes it does save a lot of money on the excessive charges hotels make for broadband usage. A bit like mini bars really I never use them because of their excessive charges. Drop the prices and people like me will start using them.

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  3. sonic () says:

    “There is a story in Computerworld about Whale Oil being hit with a $7,000+ plus bill for roaming in Australia”

    Did he not have the wit to go and read the website to find out the charges?

    Typical leftist, refuses to take personal responsibilty and then blames a private business for his own inablity to check out the costs. I bet he wants a private business to bail him out now, bloody socialist scroungers.

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  4. freddy () says:

    DDD – you must feel like that all the time.

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  5. Danyl Mclauchlan () says:

    There is a story in Computerworld about Whale Oil being hit with a $7,000+ plus bill for roaming in Australia.

    That’s a lot of money for a couple of badly spelled ‘Helen Clark is worse than smallpox’ blog posts.

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  6. Danyl Mclauchlan () says:

    I bet he wants a private business to bail him out now, bloody socialist scroungers.

    Even better. From the article:

    “These charges are immoral, unconscionable and utterly unjustified by any measure you care to choose. This matter will most certainly be raised with the Commerce Commission with regards to predatory pricing,” continued [Slater's] email.

    Don’t worry Slater – the state will save you from the evil, price-gouging capitalists!

    What a happy way to start the day.

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  7. sonic () says:

    Personally Danyl I’ve had enough of smelly socialists expecting a free ride from the private sector.

    It’s time they paid it back! (with interest)

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  8. manu () says:

    Well put Sonic – I’m glad you’ve finally come to your senses.

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  9. insider () says:

    i have no sympathy sorry, and I would probably be considered a righty. It’s a pretty basic thing to check before you go, to even see if the system would work. I would rack up mobile bills three to four times normal when roaming in Aus. I’m unsure why anyone would think their datacard would be on different charging systems.

    The cheapest option would possibly be to buy a prepaid sim card over there and put that in the data card.

    I wonder what Paul Brislen would have said if he was back over on this sid eof the fence? THat said there sure was a capital ‘P’ in that premium service!

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  10. ben () says:

    This matter will most certainly be raised with the Commerce Commission with regards to predatory pricing

    The one thing these charges are not is predatory (usually taken to mean pricing too low to force out competitors).

    You can find free wireless access in the US and Australia, and probably many other places, in cafes. I was in Melbourne last month and could surf the net indefinitely for a cup of coffee. There are four spots on Elizabeth St alone.

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  11. Dave Mann () says:

    I also am on a 1 gig Vodafone data plan. Its great and a valuable backup as I need internet access for my business.

    When I went to Europe recently for 8 weeks, I had what I thought was a brilliant plan which I share with your readers who might fond themselves in a similar postion to poor Whale.

    Prior to departure I phoned Vodafone and asked them about the costs of data roaming. Upon recieving their answer, I said to myself “F***k me, thats expensive!” and I simply switched off my data roaming usage and went to internet cafes instead.

    It was a plan, so cunning that not many people would think of this, I know… but in the spirit of cooperation I offer this to your readers.

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  12. sonic () says:

    Last month I spent 72 hours on the phone to Azerbijan. Imagine my shock and horror when I recieved a large bill from Telecom!

    I’m off to the commerce commision, after all an electron is an electron!

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  13. C () says:

    “I don’t accept that.”

    You don’t? I’m afraid you don’t understand how roaming or real time billing really works then. When you make calls or use data connections you’re using the OpCo’s network as a guest – they add up everything you use and bill the NZ telco at the end of the month adding in their own cut for the privilege.

    Roaming CDR’s (Call detail records) do come in once a month. Post-pay (contract) customers CDR’s are tallied once a month for the bill. Also note that if you are not on a data plan data is charged at 1c/kb in NZ – is 3c/kb “extortion” for using someone elses network that you do not have a business relationship with? You’re paying Vodafone for the data plan, not the network your roaming on. Can you use your free minutes while roaming? No. Why should you be able to use bundled data?

    That’s why you need a credit card associated with your account if you roam on prepay, the calls don’t touch the NZ network unless it’s terminated there so it can’t traverse the RTBS.

    Roaming contracts between worldwide telco’s are expensive and inflated – yes. But is it something you can regulate in NZ? No.

    The cheapest option is to get a local prepaid SIM for making calls (or rent) or using data.

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  14. insider () says:

    C

    I thought one of the cost issues with voice calls was ‘tromboning’, in that a NZ phone in Aus calling anohter Aus number would connect to the local network, that call would then be routed into the NZ telco system and then routed back out to Australia, so effectively acquiring two sets of network charges. That may have changed with better telco agreements.

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  15. ZenTiger () says:

    To be fair to non-computer literate people, data roaming prices can shock when people think they are “just checking email” only to find their laptop automatically downloaded a 1MB virus update file and 5MB of Windows Service pack updates.

    It’s not just about watching what you use, but understanding what your computer might be doing automatically for you.

    Service oriented companies need to offer features like “email notification” when pre-set spend limits are reached and real time tools that monitor data volumes and calculate estimated costs.

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  16. Fairfacts Media () says:

    Yes, there are a couple of delicious ironies in this story.
    First, as noted by many here, a free-market right winger calling on government to save himself from extortion by a private corporation.
    But here we see supposed socialists taking the side of Vodafone because they cannot bear to be on the same side as Whale Oil.
    Had someone else been landed with such a bill, I bet they would be the first to scream blue murder, accusing vodafone of being greedy rapacious capitalists exploiting poor innocent consumers.
    There are a couple of issues here.
    While accepting Vodafone has a right to charge what it likes, does it do enough to inform consumers of what its charges are? Websites can be many pages long and perhaps the company does not do enough to publicise its charges and warn consumers.
    But can such a mark up of many thousands of percent be justified? If Vodafone Oz charges its own customers $50 a month for such data, but then passes on a bill of several thousand dollars to Vodafone NZ, then someone is making big bucks here.
    You obviously expect to pay more for a ‘premium service’ but this much more?
    Now, Whale oil could have sat back and idly took the issue on the chin, but here he has taken the risk of potential ridicule in making a stance on the issue- are consumers being ripped off? what can they do for Vodafone to offer a better and cheaper service to consumers.
    By all means take the piss out of Whale Oil but if you do, you are only doing the work of a large overseas corporate.
    The article notes that others often receive large roaming bills for their trips overseas and the story is obviously important enough for Computerworld to run it, for them to warn their readers not to fall into the same trap. And it is one of those things where people will say “bloody hell, $7000! what a pip off!”
    David Farrar and Internet NZ feel Vodafone charges too much for data roaming. What do people on this blog actually think. We practically all use mobile and data devices at some stage. How can we stop this happening again? How can we stop others making the same mistake. Does the consumer have any power? If so, what? What can we do?
    So put aside your predjudices over the victim in this affair and think constructively at what would be a better outcome for New Zealand- lower roaming data charges.
    Firing your bullets at the telcos would be far more productive than firing bullets at a blogger just because you disagree with his views.

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  17. C () says:

    insider: I’m fairly sure that’s not how voice calls work, at least these days.

    However, that is normally a problem with diverts and voicemail. If someone from NZ calls you while you are roaming in Australia, you would pay for the NZ-> Australia leg and then the divert from Aus to the VMS platform in NZ. I believe Vodafone block roaming calls via divert to the voice mail deposit number to avoid this.

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  18. Danyl Mclauchlan () says:

    <i>Firing your bullets at the telcos would be far more productive than firing bullets at a blogger just because you disagree with his views.</i>

    You are dead right, Fairfacts. However, Whaleoil is arguably the most conspicuously unpleasant asshole in the New Zealand blogosphere so there’s always going to be plenty of schadenfreude to go around whenever he comes a cropper.

    But your fundamental point is valid.

    And fortunately for Slater he has a very rich daddy is a successful businessman, so is probably in a better position to pay such a large bill than most.

    [DPF: Cameron himself is a successful businessman and you know he is in his 30s, married with kids, so snide comments about rich daddys really reflect more on you Danyl.]

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  19. David Farrar (1,899 comments) says:

    C – you ignore what I actually suggested about building a warning into the actual software. This would be a customer friendly thing to do and remarkably simple. One could also build in stuff such as credit control facility into the software where you ask to be alerted when your data usage reaches a pre defined limit.

    And I also regard the NZ casual data charges as outrageous. They operate on the same premise – sting the unaware customer in the first month before they work out they should have got a data plan.

    A rate which is 100,000% higher than normal is ridiculous.

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  20. Whaleoil () says:

    “Whaleoil is arguably the most conspicuously unpleasant asshole in the New Zealand blogosphere so there’s always going to be plenty of schadenfreude to go around whenever he comes a cropper.”

    Coming from you Dim oh washer of test tubes that is a laugh. Also it is hardly coming a cropper.

    You idiots make the mistake of assuming i can’t pay it, it is more a matter of won’t on principle. This is simply a case of price gouging. I do not expect the state to pick up my tabs, but I expect the state to investigate price gouging, much like all of your whining about telecom over the years.

    “And fortunately for Slater he has a very rich daddy is a successful businessman, so is probably in a better position to pay such a large bill than most.”

    Actually i am probably richer than my father so i fail to see your point, yet again no discussion of issue, but then i suppose you don’t get much opportunity to wash test tubes overseas, instead you sit closeted in your state funded job whining about the person instead of the issue. You don’t even have the gumption to post on my blog, you have to go all whiny assed on David’s.

    Back to the issue, which no one apart from Fairfacts Media has addressed, how come it costs so much more for the same data?

    You might say tough but Vodafone has also deliberately misled the author of the article in that recently Vodafone UK instituted flat rate roaming for its customers in Europe at 13 euro per day for 50Mb, based on my data usage in Australia this would have meant my bill would have been approximately $460, now that is a far more reasonable proposition for a premium service, 10 times the going rate rather than 12000%.

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  21. C () says:

    I don’t think that modifying the software is a very good solution… A lot of people do not buy their phones from the operator in a bundle but from places like parallel imported etc… where their phone is loaded with either another operators or the factory default firmware.

    Stop-gap solutions are never a good replacement for consumers understanding whats going on. Vodafone for instance have a very clear and very simple set of T&C’s which you have to have agreed to before roaming is enabled (I had mine read out to me over the phone by a CSR when I called about roaming)

    In the states it is absolutely common practice for operators to disable features in the phone to increase revenue (i.e. disabling bluetooth file transfer so they are forced to MMS) – you think that not warning the customer that they are roaming and liable for extra charges is in the same ballpark?

    I do use data on my phone (3G phone, tethered to my laptop and other things like gmail, maps and a little surfing from the phone) and I wasn’t on a data plan until Vodafone called me about it. Work takes care of my bill – I usually don’t even look at it but Vodafone called me and suggested I moved on to a data plan because the casual rate was costing a lot.

    Yes the casual data rate is steep IMO, but it’s only a matter of time before they come down. In the USA and parts of Europe it’s possible to get unlimited data plans but they have other restrictions like no tethering to your laptop. Mobile data is still expensive to provide, it uses a lot more bandwidth than calls so I assume it’s all a balancing act.

    [DPF: I am not suggesting software changes for phones - but for the datacard software]

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  22. sonic () says:

    “You idiots make the mistake of assuming i can’t pay it, it is more a matter of won’t on principle”

    1) Mr Whaleoil ran up a huge bill, through his own lack of effort in finding out what the charges were. A simple call or a check of the website would have got the information, I called Vodafone last time I went overseas and they went over the charges for me, I thought “I’m not using this much at that price. Let the buyer beware is the oldest adage in the book. You dont go out for a meal, not bother checking the prices, eat and then complain you did not know about the charges. You’d be laughed out of court frankly.

    2) There are many cheaper alternatives, this is no monopoly situation. If someone is dumb enough to use the most expensive option, more fool them.

    3) Mr Whaleoil loves to go about freeloaders, idiots and “morons” on his train wreck of a blog. It’s is rather ironic that in this case he ie exposed as all three.

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  23. pdq () says:

    A little consistency from the left round here would be too much to expect. Only a short while ago they were calling Mercury Energy all manner of nasty things over a $160 power bill, demanding regulation and frothing away on behalf of that consumer.

    Methinks their principles change according to who the characters are.

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  24. Spam (588 comments) says:

    I believe that another viable option is to purchase an australian SIM card whilst in australia. In fact, I think vodafone sell them at the airport.

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  25. sonic () says:

    ‘A little consistency from the left round here would be too much to expect. Only a short while ago they were calling Mercury Energy all manner of nasty things over a $160 power bill, demanding regulation and frothing away on behalf of that consumer”

    Interesting point, I’m sure we all recall the heartless and spiteful words of Whale oil and his ilk over that. I wonder what they would have said if the family claimed they had made no effort to find out how much electric power cost and, as it was higher than they expected, were refusing to pay as a “matter of principle”?

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  26. Danyl Mclauchlan () says:

    i suppose you don’t get much opportunity to wash test tubes overseas

    I generally spend my overseas vacations lying on the beach or going to tourist sites. I hope you didn’t ‘wash the test tube’ of any minors, and I hope you used protection.

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  27. Seamonkey Madness () says:

    I know its a little late, but…

    Dead Duck Dux said:
    “I was just surprised at the size of the bill.

    Thats what she said.

    Boom-boom!

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  28. GPT () says:

    Vodafone is hardly squeaky clean – on entering Australia you get a nice little text advising that if you use Vodafone the same pricing plan applies. Brilliant, you think and promptly unleash. Apparently one of the “terms and conditions” that applies is that they ping you a surcharge for each text and call… Real nice.

    Then there was the 3G phone for $100 – go in to collect it and have the local vodafone person delete the text to save me from ‘getting confused’ because the offer was no longer correct – despite having a couple of weeks to run.

    It seems that they rely on people to niave, busy or dumb to check the fine print and then sting them big time. Most would expect to pay more – but 4c to $30 is a disgrace and deserves to be labelled as such.

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  29. DavidW () says:

    Anyone travelling extensively should consider a service provider like Compuserve. You can dial in pretty well anywhere in the world on a local call and then break out into your NZ webmail etc or configure it to tap into your office network. It is still possible to get stung by hotels which charge heaps for local calls (as opposed to mountains for international).

    Just my 2 cents worth of constructive comment

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  30. DavidW () says:

    Seamonkey – it didn’t fall entirely flat.

    cheers

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  31. bob () says:

    > You dont go out for a meal, not bother checking the prices, eat and then complain you did not know about the charges.

    You probably don’t know this, but one of the nice things about being comfortably well off is that you simply don’t check every price. I can’t remember the last time I looked at a price on a restaurant menu. It simply doesn’t matter. You expect the price to be reasonable. So a dish might cost $10 or $30 or even $50

    But you would not expect it to cost 120 times the price (eg $4500) especially if you had eaten the very same dish from the same chain of restaurants before.

    Can’t you get it through your thick head that 120 times the regular price is something to complain about?

    Tell me, do you check every price of everything you buy. Suppose you picked up a Herald … did you look at the price? And what would you say if you were suddenly charged $192 for a newspaper, or $360 for a coke?

    To some people, data charges are as insignificant as the price of a coke.

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  32. gd () says:

    as a self confessed techno ignoramus and a pale stale and pale to boot what pisses me off with these modern communication devices is the lack of customer friendly info. If motor car companies applied the same thinking you would have to read thru a telephone book sized manual just to start the bloody thing. The telco and computer cos complicate and confuse in a deliberate manner. Now Im as far right as they come and thats why I want to see preferably lots more competetion to keep the bastards honest or and I say this thru gritted teeth aty least some controls on these rapacious bastards to stop them raping and pillaging. What I dont want to see is the smug blood sucking telcos. I mean $7K Old Whaleoil wasnt wanting to buy their bloody network Just use it.

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  33. Danyl Mclauchlan () says:

    You probably don’t know this, but one of the nice things about being comfortably well off is that you simply don’t check every price.

    Well that’s just nonsense. I used to work in the banking industry in London, most of my co-workers were multi-millionaires and they scrupulously checked every bill at the end of an evening even if they were too drunk to walk. Sensible people always check – if they don’t they don’t stay well off very long.

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  34. sonic () says:

    If I was abroad I’d know the exchange rate, if I was dumb enough not to and get ripped off I would not start crying about it. I’d put it down to experience.

    If I was dumb (or rich) enough not to know that telco’s charge you a lot more when you are overseas, I’d keep that quiet.

    If I was arrogant enough to try and weasel out of a contract, cos I was to lazy to check how much I’d be charged, I’d be Whaleoil.

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  35. bob () says:

    > Sensible people always check – if they don’t they don’t stay well off very long.

    Crap, utter crap. Just because you once met some rich people who checked their bills means nothing. Sure, there are some people like you describe, just as there are some red cars. But that doesn’t mean that all cars, or even a majority, are red.

    To suggest that well off people might become not-well-off if they failed to check their restaurant bills is, well, dumb. Often the reason some well off people do this sort of thing is that they have always been careful about money, and checking bills is a habit they have had for a long time, even though it would not matter a jot to them if there were to be overcharged.

    Sonic : this has nothing to do with exchange rates. It has to do with what is reasonable. As WO said, he would have been quite prepared for the data charges to be 10x the norm, but he feels that 120x the norm is too much. And I agree.

    But don’t let your hatred of people you disgree with get in the way of your bile.

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  36. sonic () says:

    I see whale oil is crying at his own blog, wondering why we are responding to this post rather than the one he has over there.

    Just a hint Mr Oil, your blog is horrible, I’m not sure what the opposite of eyer-candy is, whatever it is called that’s your site design

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  37. crikey () says:

    > I used to work in the banking industry in London, most of my co-workers were multi-millionaires and they scrupulously checked every bill at the end of an evening

    Yeah they were probly worried you had stuck your drinks on their bill

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  38. sonic () says:

    I dont hate anyone bob, however I find it laughable that Mr Oil is trying to cover for his mistake by blaming anyone but himself.

    All it would have took was one phone call, if he is to dumb to make it then more fool him.

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  39. Danyl Mclauchlan () says:

    Crap, utter crap. Just because you once met some rich people who checked their bills means nothing. Sure, there are some people like you describe, just as there are some red cars. But that doesn’t mean that all cars, or even a majority, are red.

    You’ve given no evidence that your own experience is anything other than anecdotal. I’m a member of our affluent middle class, most of my friends and workmates are the same and I don’t know anybody who’s stupid enough to go around buying things without finding out how much they cost.

    Other than Slater/Whaleoil, obviously.

    But if you want to move beyond the anecdotal then I suggest you go out and buy a copy of ‘The Millionaire Next Door’ by Stanley and Danko (don’t bother checking the price, just give the guy at Borders a wad of bills). They interviewed thousands of US based millionaires, they found the most consistent quality of the very wealthy in the US is extreme frugality.

    The rich are generally more careful with their money because they know the opportunity cost of using it to invest/pay down debt instead of spending it. Whaleoils just blown 7 grand, but if he saved that money for retirement it could have been worth several hundred thousand, (depending on how old he is).

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  40. Whaleoil () says:

    Frank/Sonic If my site is so horrible how come you seem to spend so much time there?

    Once again Sonic and DiM refuse to answer the question, and focus on personality.

    How is it justified that Vodafone charges 4c per MB for local customers and $30 per Mb for roaming customers? Data is data, the pipes and airwaves are exactly the same, the bits and bytes the same as well…..how does the data charge miraculously increase….is it a function of billing? Can’t be that is electronic….do they use Oompaloompa’s with gold wheel barrows to transport the data….no….so how come…

    I seem to remember Sonic et al railing endlessly about Telecom and local loop unbundling to reduce data charges….funny how they can’t see that now and use this as an excuse to attack me personally.

    And to further clarify, I am not blaming anyone, I can pay, it is not a case of money it is a case of highlighting egregious profiteering which i would have thought all you lefty pricks would have clapped and danced along with.

    Sorry I was mistaken, I’ll just pay my bill, keep quiet and let all those other people roaming take one in the chook like good little compliant citizens. A rort is a rort. Vodafone is having a lend of every Kiwi travelling overseas, this Kiwi is saying that that is outrageous and excessive.

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  41. sonic () says:

    I visit yout site what, once a week. I’ve not seen your stats but if that makes me one of your regular vistors your blog is in a worse state than I thought.

    Perhaps I am being over critical, and if so I apologise, however I do think that you could have made a quick check of the charges before you went, and getting on your high horse now is a little embarassing.

    “I’ll just pay my bill, keep quiet”

    The first you might, the second I think is unlikely.

    But thats why we love you!

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  42. Dave Mann () says:

    I like WhaleOil’s blog, his writing and (mainly) his political views, so I am not out to get him… however, I can’t for the life of me understand how he could be so naive as to go to another country without first checking out beforehand what the roaming charges might be.

    Australasian telcos aren’t particulary rapacious in this respect either. When I was using a UK phone in Europe, the roaming charges were largely on a par with this region and what’s more, country-to-country data rates in ancient Rome must have been pretty stiff 2000 years ago too; some bright consumer activist coined the phrase ‘caveat emptor’ just to warn his mates! Pity people have forgotten to pay attention sometimes.

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  43. Whaleoil () says:

    See now that is the thing Dave, I did check, I thought to myself if i limit myself to one or two posts a day and check my email it can’t be that bad. And in theory it wasn’t, I used 220Mb which when you compare my 10Gb per month in NZ is quite restrained on my part.

    However that 220Mb cost me $7000….that is serious in anyones book, and yet to answered by anyone, including Vodafone on how they can possibly justify those charges especially as they offer capped Roaming in the UK and Europe.

    The point remains, despite the personal attacks by the leftists, they wouldn’t accept differential charging by area inside NZ on broadband so why do they think it is ok overseas.

    There is no technical reason for data to be charged at 120 times the going rate just becasue of where you are geographically located. The pipe, tubes, fibre and airwaves are not discriminating, data is data, is data, therefore it must be a software and billing issue in which case I challenge anyone to justify how something is 4c per MB and then magically $30Mb……to put it in plain english, same hose, same tap same water, different prices…..go figure.

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  44. Whaleoil () says:

    BTW there is no way to measure the Mb usage when you are using the thing, so how do you know…..Vodafone admit this as they don’t know the usage until the end of the billing month, so if they don’t know how is a customer supposed to know.

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  45. Danyl Mclauchlan () says:

    The point remains, despite the personal attacks by the leftists, they wouldn’t accept differential charging by area inside NZ on broadband so why do they think it is ok overseas.

    I don’t think its okay overseas, and I’m not ‘taking Vodaphone’s side’, or claiming there are any flaws in your argument. I’m just laughing at your misfortune because you’re basically a horrible person. I don’t see why this is such a difficult concept for you to grasp.

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  46. Whaleoil () says:

    “I’m just laughing at your misfortune because you’re basically a horrible person. I don’t see why this is such a difficult concept for you to grasp.”

    You don’t even know me and have never met me. If that is the extent of your argument it is you who is the horrible person.

    If I am so horrible how come then I travel to Vanuatu at my own expense to assist a Mission in building a coconut oil plant, how come I sponsor two children in India, how come I give 10% of my not insubstantial income to charity, and if I am so horrible how come I help people in need if they ask for that help. I can name at least 5 bloggers whom I have helped out of the goodness of my heart with various issues from financial issues through to technical issues all for no charge other than my own satisfaction in seeing them through a particular hump.

    Danyl you are truly a sick individual, I think I will add you to my prayers as you are clearly in need of some help.

    God Bless

    Cameron

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  47. sonic () says:

    “they wouldn’t accept differential charging by area inside NZ”

    You were outside the country not inside it. 220Mb is a lot of data to be downloading on a mobile device abroad WO.

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  48. insider () says:

    All this crap about “how can they justify it…?” if you think data charges are outrageous compare the marginal cost of a text to the retail price. You are talking the difference between fractions of a cent and 20 cents. Far more than your measly 4500%.

    It’s a market. Markets charge what they can. No one forced you to buy their product and no one forced you to make use of it. Markets don’t have to justify prices – it is the survival of the price or product that provides any justification.

    Your bleating might have been better up front if you had told them to shove their service, because if they think enough people don’t use it then they might have to review pricing.

    And of course no-one has actually realistically considered what the cost of the service might be to Vodafone. What might seem a simple service to you may be quite expensive, given the relatively short shelf life of some of these products or services, so all the costs are loaded up early on on a few customers so that they are free to drop them later if more competition sinks in. That’s simple user pays. As a successful businessman I’m sure you are well acquainted with pricing models.

    PS how did you feel paying 500 to 1000 per cent mark up on the coke from the mini bar?

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  49. Whaleoil () says:

    Still no answer I see Sonic/Frank.

    Also insider as someone with extensive experience in the Telecommunications sector I know perfectly well how networks and in particular cell and mesh networks operate. There are no surprise hidden costs for Telco’s.

    The fact is they can and so they do have a lend of their customers. It is not bleating to say so, no more than most of you who bleated over Telecom’s charging for access to their infrastructure. Ultimately it came to a Commissioner to determine the price for access to Telecom’s local loop and legislation to force Telecom a) stop having a lend of their customers and b)stop having a lend of their competitors.

    having sold bandwidth both Wireless and terrestrial I know how much we bought it for and let me tell you it was significantly less than what Vodafone charges their customers even locally let alone internationally.

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  50. insider () says:

    WO

    I believe you re your experience with margins on telecomms. That makes it even more odd that you were surprised at the margin you paid…

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  51. John () says:

    Whale Oil, I understand your position and situation. It is profiteering, pure and simple. However, the prices are published and it’s user beware, and to blame Vodafone New Zealand is simplistic.

    NZ is a mole at the bottom of the South Pacific, and doesn’t set roaming prices. Vodafone NZ is a price taker, adds a margin, and passes on the charge. At worst they are complicit in this rort.

    Your complaint is with the international pricing of all roaming (data and voice), for which providers all point the finger and blame each other while charging extortionate amounts (and laugh all the way to the bank).

    It’s outside ComCom control because it’s cross boarder. The perfect crime.

    I wish you the best of luck with your complaint to the ComCom because I’d dearly love to see data roaming prices drop. However I suspect that this is a trans-national issue that cannot be resolved by one regulator. A pity, for once, that we don’t live in the EU where a central body is regulating these things cross boarder.

    You’re the architect of your own misfortune, in as much as Vodafone advertises the prices and a quick call to customer service would have reinforced the warning.

    What’s most amusing about this is the all the lefites like Sonic who abandon their socialist principles all too quickly when it’s a right winger complaining.

    That truly exposes their alignment.
    I can imagine their vitriol would have been unceasing if you were a technophobic single mother living in Otara on the DPB.

    Pity those fools can’t distinguish the issue for the opportunity, and have no principles to guide them, resembling the Labour government somewhat.

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  52. BigFella () says:

    Regarding the VMC Dashboard software:

    DPF – you can set a warning in the Dashboard based on the number of MB transferred during a period.

    Whaleoil – there is a usage meter in the Dashboard which shows the amount of data transferred during the current billing period, split between NZ and roaming.

    This is data collected on the laptop rather than from Vodafone or the roaming network.

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  53. Danyl Mclauchlan () says:

    You don’t even know me and have never met me. If that is the extent of your argument it is you who is the horrible person . . .

    Well gee Slater, that might even have been moving if it hadn’t been written by one of the most consistently vicious and abusive bloggers in the country. I find it amusing that after years of dishing out bile, threats and hate-fueled personal attacks you are shocked (shocked!) to find out people don’t like you. You really are as stupid as you look.

    As for your charity work, if its actually real then its very admirable (and, frankly, astonishing). It would more than make up for the loathsome wretched way you conduct yourself online.

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  54. Whaleoil () says:

    Big Fella, that must be on the PC software because it sure isn’t there on the Mac version.

    DiM, you are beneath my contempt, not only do you continue the personal insults you further question my integrity by lying about acts of charity.

    You of course do not conduct yourself in a loathsome and wretched way online do you?

    no of course you don’t it wasn’t you who typed;
    “I’m just laughing at your misfortune because you’re basically a horrible person. I don’t see why this is such a difficult concept for you to grasp.”

    If laughing at someone’s misfortune isn’t loathsome and wretched what is?

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  55. David Farrar (1,899 comments) says:

    Danyl: I can verify that charitable work is real.

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  56. BigFella () says:

    Whaileoil – don’t have a VMC/Vodem here to double check, but the manual says:

    “Display statistics
    When this option is selected, the Connection Statistics window will be displayed. The window shows the total time connected and the total data volume transferred. Totals are shown for the most recent connection, and for all connections made by Vodafone Mobile Connect since the Connection Statistics window was last reset.
    Clicking the “Reset” sets all statistics back to zero.”

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  57. pdq () says:

    Danyl said:

    “I’m just laughing at your misfortune because you’re basically a horrible person.”

    That sort of thing looses one’s tenure at Auckland University. Egg-shells there Danyl.

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  58. pedro () says:

    Slater: well done on your child zoo in India, well done on holidaying in Vanuatu and getting in the way of some islanders trying to get a job done, I would say well done on giving 10% of your bloated income to charity, but I suspect that by that you mean you are inflating the pockets of some bloated, bile spewing religious institution yes?

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  59. sonic () says:

    One of the most attractive things about Mr Oil’s charity work is that , no matter what, he never talks about it.

    Always hiding his light under a bushel thats Mr O!

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  60. Whaleoil () says:

    Sonic, why should I talk about it, it has nothing to do with any of you except when you call me horrible childish names without even knowing anything in the slightest about me.

    Pedro, join Danyl on my list of people who need praying for, I do wonder however what you and danyl do for the less fortunate, or is all your so called caring like most socialists, all talk and no do.

    The leftists on this blog are the saddest humans I have had the displeasure of listening to. in fact I don’t really listen anymore, it more like static an annoying noise that doesn’t seem to go away and contributes nothing.

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  61. sonic () says:

    Whale oil gets all cry-baby about people calling him names!

    Oh that is too funny.

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  62. Whaleoil () says:

    No I don’t Frank. Couldn’t care less about named.

    However accuse me of lying that is another story, bring my family into an unrelated matter and I get pissed.

    Still neither you nor DiM have even vaguely attempted to justify in anyway the argument, instead as usual you have resorted to ad hominem attacks completely unrealted to the original post. Tragic, socialist wastes of space.

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  63. pedro () says:

    Actually Cameron, I wasn’t serious: I was demonstrating what can be said, what sort of unspleasant things can be thrown around in partisan blog flamefests- but what does intrigue me is the way people like yourself would never acknowledge that a “leftist” is anything more than a “socialist waste of space” (correct me if I’m wrong). It is highly commendable that you are so charitable, and I apologise for offence from my previous post, but your charity doesn’t in itself disprove socialism and denounce those who entertain its philosophies as lying creeps.And yes this does have nothing to do with the post, the subtance of which being: Cameron went overseas, used a fancy privately provided service, got stung by extortionate bill: conclusion- renegotiate the terms of service with your current provider, or change providers, or use a different fancy service next time. Footnote: commerce commission generally has little ability, or priority to regulate niche markets such as mobile, overseas internet charges.

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  64. sonic () says:

    “accuse me of lying that is another story, bring my family into an unrelated matter and I get pissed.

    Are you sure you are not already pissed cos I’ve not done either of those things Cammy.

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