Family’s racks up $13,470 cellphone bill for trip overseas

The following story from ABC news indicates the perils of traveling with your cellphone overseas. The family racked up a bill of $13,470! Me thinks the family didn’t have an eSIM (2108 so probably not) or knew about the dodgy practices of the big three carriers when it comes to international travel. If you just happen to fudge the settings on your phone they will happily charge you $2 per Mb – that’s $2000 a Gb!

The story was from 2018 and I’m not sure it’s possible to rack up a huge bill unless you travel to some esoteric country like Micronesia or Namibia. T-Mobile actually does have an option to block international roaming – see this page on the T-mobile website.

A family’s $13,470 data roaming bill from T-Mobile was cancelled after a lot of back and forth between the company and the family. They said their phones were on airplane mode during a trip to Vietnam. T-Mobile said customers traveling internationally should check roaming coverage before their trip. The charges were incurred because some mobile apps still use data even when offline. Apple says users must turn off cellular data in addition to airplane mode to avoid charges.

ABC news – 2018
American Samoa Ascension Island
Bhutan Cook Islands Cuba Djibouti Equatorial Guinea
Libya Micronesia Namibia
New CaledoniaSaint Helena
Saint Pierre and Miquelon Sao Tome and Principe South Sudan
Countries where you can’t Roam with T-Mobile!

So the moral of the story is do your research before you travel and of course we’re a little biased here – get an eSIM from AriAlo.