Optus has followed Vodafone in releasing a per-diem international roaming plan. The plan covers more destinations, but Optus charges more money than Vodafone for a more limited amount of data.
Optus has divided 182 countries into two zones for pricing. Cheaper rates are available in Zone 1, which covers New Zealand, the Pacific Islands, Europe, United Kingdom, United States, Canada and Asia. That's more than Vodafone, which announced a daily international roaming plan that so far only covers travel to New Zealand, the United States and the United Kingdom.
However, Optus charges $10 per day in Zone 1 countries for unlimited calls and text and a modest 30MB of data. By comparison, Vodafone charges $5 per day and the customer maintains the same calling and data limits they have in Australia.
If a customer does not pay $10 a day in Zone 1, Optus will charge 50 cents per text, $1 per minute and 50 cents per MB. For Zone 2 countries, including Latin America, Africa and the Middle East, Optus will charge double those amounts and will not offer a daily payment plan.
Optus said it will start selling the $10/day plan in November. The new pay-as-you-go rates begin in mid-September.
Optus managing director of customer Vicki Brady said the new rates are aimed at reducing bill shock. "We want our customers to feel confident in using their phones overseas and know that they don't have to worry about their phone bill when they return."
Sign up for Computerworld eNewsletters.