X-Series: the catch :-(

OK, I’ve been thrilled with my new X-Series tariff from 3 UK. Mostly because I spend most of my time travelling between the UK and Ireland: which means that, in addition to great voice & text bundles (not to mention flat rate data!) I am essentially roaming for free.

It all seemed to good to be true.

And unfortunately for me, it was.

For this week I am in the USA 🙁

I am so used to being able to get a service-like-home when I go abroad that I was completely shocked to see my phone failing to get a data bearer in Los Angeles airport.

(My N73 admirably flashed up an ‘E’ for a few seconds as it tried – and failed – to establish what would have been my first experience of EGDE)

But a few calls to Three later revealed an ugly truth. No data roaming in the US. Cue world-falling-apart music.

Apparently, the friendly chap told me, “there is no mobile data in the US”. What he meant of course, was “for roaming 3 subscribers”: I’ve always been well served by GPRS on Cingular in the past.

So for the last few days I’ve spent more time than usual hunting WiFi spots to fire up the laptop to get email and web connectivity. And plenty of voice calls to make up for it.

Until that is, just now. Another surprise. “You are reaching your credit limit” chirps an SMS arriving from some automated accountant back in Maidenhead. Hmmm… turns out that I’ve been paying either £1.20 or £2.40 per minute for my calls!

So here’s my advice. If you’re going to move to 3, think carefully if you go to the US a lot… or at least read the roaming tariff charts more carefully than I did.  🙂