Vodafone’s iRoamFree International roaming postpaid plans have received a price hike that goes up to INR 499. The lowest among the four is now priced at INR 599, up from INR 500. The hike got effective for this plan from November 22. The other plans that were previously priced at INR 2,500, INR 3,500 and INR 5,500 are now priced at INR 2,999, INR 3,999 and INR 5,999, respectively. These plans got the price rise on November 15.
To recall, Vodafone revised the international roaming postpaid plans back in April. The company announced adding new destinations and benefits to its iRoamFree plans with flexible validity. This time around, the telecom operator quietly implements the updates. Well, this is not the first time Vodafone has enacted something without an official announcement. Anyway, let’s check out what users get with these plans.
iRoam Free International Roaming Plan Benefits
The basic INR 599 plan is valid for 24 hours and offers 50 minutes of free calling to other eligible countries. The INR 2,999 plan is valid for seven days and offers unlimited free calling service, data, and SMS benefits to select countries like the USA, Germany, Thailand, Singapore, Italy, and more. The same plan has limited offers for countries like China, Australia, Argentina, among the others. In these countries, the INR 2,999 plan offers free incoming, 200 minutes of the outgoing calling along with 2GB of data and 25 SMSes. Here, the INR 599 plan also offers 300MB data and 10 text messages for a day.
The remaining two plans also offer segmented benefits in these countries. The first set of countries get the same unlimited service for the entire validity period, while the other set of countries get limited benefits. In these countries, the INR 3,999 plan offers a total of 300 minutes of outgoing calls to the local country and India, 3GB of data, 50 SMSes, all valid for a total of ten days. And finally, the INR 5,999 plan offers 500 minutes of outgoing calls, 5GB of data along with 100 SMSes for a period of 28 days. Note that all the plans provide free incoming calls for the entire validity period.
Vodafone Asked to be Transparent on Minimum Recharge Plans
Like we mentioned earlier, Vodafone has previously implemented revisions and price hikes without revealing them to the users first. Vodafone was reportedly planning on increasing the minimum recharge value for its prepaid segment. The telco was not very clear about the prices or other details regarding this. However, some users received the message mentioning that the minimum recharge plan has been set to INR 35. Some users even complaint receiving ‘service discontinue’ alerts even when they had sufficient balance and validity. Controlling the magnitude of the entire issues, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) chimed in and has sought clarification from Vodafone (and Airtel).
Telcos have been trying to increase the average revenue per user (ARPU) and hence, the minimum recharge value comes into existence. However, the situation got out of proportion when users started receiving alert messages even after sufficient balance. So, now TRAI has asked both Airtel and Vodafone to be transparent about their prepaid recharge plans. This is a minor bump in the road for Vodafone when it’s planning to move forth with the other half of the recently merged unit. As of now, Vodafone Idea is working on entirely new strategies, tower rationalizations schemes, and keeping the best of both the telcos to offers enhanced benefits.