Beware of the Fido Roam

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I'm a Contributor Level 2 Fredyo
I'm a Contributor Level 2

Beware of the Fido Roam

If you have a Fido Pulse plan, Fido will have enabled (whether you wanted it or not) the Fido Roam plan. You might think you can just ignore it if you have no interest in using their roaming services but that is not the case. There are in fact a few sneaky little gotchas that may cost you upwards of $180 in extra charges on your next bill if you aren't fully informed. Read on.

 

It used to be that when you arrive in a destination country, you'd recieve a text message informing you that you were roaming and that pay-per-use roaming charges would apply. You would then even be given some roaming package you could choose to opt-in to. Cool!

Not the case anymore. Now with Fido Roam enabled, what happens it that once you arrive in your destination country, you'll recieve a text message that looks something like this:41945306_10155496318011734_1795333541324652544_n.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It would be very easy to think that by just not turning on your data (and data roaming) you'd be ok BUT that is not the case at all. There in lies the grand trap that cost me a small chunk of change! 

 

You will automatically enable Fido Roam services for a 24 hour period at whatever cost was specified in the initial text if you simply send a text message OR recieve an MMS message (a text with a picture) OR recieve a call and reject it (rather than letting it ring and go to voicemail). You won't have any idea that you activated it either until you get your bill at the end of your billing cycle. Further more, you can't even disable it from your customer account portal, you need to either get onto live chat or call a customer service representative to have them disable it!

 

I have a dual-SIM phone and in my case, it used to be that upon leaving, I'd disable Fido's data and enable my host countries data plan and I'd be free and clear. If I recieved a text or call on my Fido line, I could simply respond to it and pay the one time usage fee... turns out this year, that wasn't the case and rather than paying $10.50 for sending about 14 text messages I was dinged $84! Now that's one hell of a markup in price! 

 

I highly recommend you disable Fido Roam ASAP before travelling and instead, get a SIM chip for the country you are visiting. You will almost ALWAYS get a far superior deal to any roaming package Fido offers you! 

 

Going forward, here is what FIdo should do:

1) When the roaming plan has been activated for a 24 hour period, you should recieve a text message indicating it has been activated and should also give you the exact time it will be deactivated (as it lasts for a 24 hour period).

 

2) There should be a quick and easy way to opt out by text message.

 

3) It should NOT be automatically enabled on any plan, instead users should be able to opt-in to it like before.

 

4) It should be easily enabled/disabled via the customer service portal as opposed to having to actually have a customer service rep do it for you.

 

I don't forsee any of these happening though because there is money to be made as data overage and roaming charges bring HUGE dollars to telecom providers. 

 

Hope this helps someone from falling into this trap because if you think Fido will reimburse you, you are sorely mistaken. You will be told that their roaming policies are "clearly laid out" on some part of their site for anyone to read... sadly this is all after the fact that you've fallen into the trap!

 

Now cue the customer service reps and community mods to chime in with their copy-pasted responses indicating how sorry they are that I feel this way and that it's not for everyone and so on....

Accepted Solution

Re: Beware of the Fido Roam

Hey @Fredyo!

 

Thanks for your feedback! That's certainly a lot of points to cover and I promise not to copy/paste anything. Smiley

 

I just have a few points to clarify there:

 

1. We extended Fido Roam to everyone so all our customers can take advantage of it while traveling. In general, there's more value in using Fido Roam then pay-per-use. Hence why we went with the opt-out model rather than the opt-in one.

 

2. Although we extended this to everyone, you do have the options to opt-out anytime to use our pay-per-use rates. Those rates and Fido Roam information can be found here.

 

3. Usage that triggers Fido Roam includes making or receiving a phone call, retrieving voicemails, sending a text (receiving is free), sending/receiving a picture message or using data. Rejecting a call will not trigger Fido Roam.

 

That all being said, I completely understand if Fido Roam doesn't meet your particular needs. We will certainly take all your other suggestions in consideration.

 

If you would like to discuss you billing, I would be quite happy to send you a PM to discuss it further with you. Smiley

 

Let me know.

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Re: Beware of the Fido Roam

Hey @Fredyo!

 

Thanks for your feedback! That's certainly a lot of points to cover and I promise not to copy/paste anything. Smiley

 

I just have a few points to clarify there:

 

1. We extended Fido Roam to everyone so all our customers can take advantage of it while traveling. In general, there's more value in using Fido Roam then pay-per-use. Hence why we went with the opt-out model rather than the opt-in one.

 

2. Although we extended this to everyone, you do have the options to opt-out anytime to use our pay-per-use rates. Those rates and Fido Roam information can be found here.

 

3. Usage that triggers Fido Roam includes making or receiving a phone call, retrieving voicemails, sending a text (receiving is free), sending/receiving a picture message or using data. Rejecting a call will not trigger Fido Roam.

 

That all being said, I completely understand if Fido Roam doesn't meet your particular needs. We will certainly take all your other suggestions in consideration.

 

If you would like to discuss you billing, I would be quite happy to send you a PM to discuss it further with you. Smiley

 

Let me know.



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Re: Beware of the Fido Roam

Hello FidoPhilippe,

 


@FidoPhilippe wrote:.... Rejecting a call will not trigger Fido Roam..

  Is this new? Rejecting a call has, in the past, incurred roaming charges. Is that not the case anymore? Is it dependent on the Country travelled? It was my understanding that it was the foreign networks which considered rejected calls as the phone/device being reached on their network and therefore the calls were forwarded to voicemail via that network.

 

  Could we please get some verification that rejecting a call is no longer considered roaming at any destination?

 

Cheers



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I'm a Contributor Level 2 Fredyo
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Re: Beware of the Fido Roam



@FidoPhilippe wrote:

Hey @Fredyo!

 

Thanks for your feedback! That's certainly a lot of points to cover and I promise not to copy/paste anything. Smiley

 

I could hardly tell.....

 

 

1. We extended Fido Roam to everyone so all our customers can take advantage of it while traveling. In general, there's more value in using Fido Roam then pay-per-use. Hence why we went with the opt-out model rather than the opt-in one.

 

You people made an opt-in model that included everyone including those who didn't and wouldn't have wanted to be and if they didn't bother to check the fine print (because why would they if they had no intention of ever using it) they would have never known that even if you tried to avoid roaming charges by switching off their data roaming (which used to work just fine) they now had to put their phone into airplane mode to be completely safe! THIS alone tells you just how aggressive and utterly absurd this policy is!

 

2. Although we extended this to everyone, you do have the options to opt-out anytime to use our pay-per-use rates. Those rates and Fido Roam information can be found here.

 

Copy-Paste In Effect!

 

Oh sure you can opt-out anytime. Of course this would imply that you were fully aware of how many different ways it could be enabled! I'm sure there aren't many people who would think that just recieving a call OR sending a text message OR recieving a picture message would, despite their data roaming being disabled, still end up activating the service for a full 24 hours! They'd probably opt out when they'd return home from vacation, get their bill and blow a gasket when they've realized that despite their best efforts they've been taken to the cleaners!

 

And you can't even disable it from your customer account portal or a simple text message. No you need contact a customer service representative! Absolutely ridiculous!!

 

3. Usage that triggers Fido Roam includes making or receiving a phone call, retrieving voicemails, sending a text (receiving is free), sending/receiving a picture message or using data. Rejecting a call will not trigger Fido Roam.

 

Apparently it does according to other things I've read. Moot point ... unless you remove your SIM chip or disable it, you are getting pooched and you will have NO idea until you've recieved your bill at the end of the month! THIS IS MY POINT!

 

That all being said, I completely understand if Fido Roam doesn't meet your particular needs. We will certainly take all your other suggestions in consideration.

 

It doesn't. It never did. That's why I simple kept my data off so as to not enable it (as per what the initial text message inferred).

 

If you would like to discuss you billing, I would be quite happy to send you a PM to discuss it further with you. Smiley

 

Sure you can PM me all you want but unless you are willing to refund my $84 swindled dollars and instead charge me for just the texts I've sent (should be no more than 15) at the default pay-per-use rates, we have nothing to talk about. 

 

I've emailed the complaints department yesterday and if I don't hear from them by tomorrow I will escalate and go to the telecommunications ombudsman. I will also continue spreading the word to anyone that will listen... this includes CBC Go Public.

 

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Re: Beware of the Fido Roam

Hey @Fredyo

 

I'm sad to see there was any kind of confusion about how our FidoROAM services is billed. I can totally get how surprising a bill higher than expected can be like. 

 

I'll send you a PM so we can get to the bottom of this together. 

 

@Cawtau, I am going to get confirmation if Rejecting a call will trigger a FidoROAM charge at any of our eligible destinations and follow-up with this information for you and @Fredyo on this thread here as soon as possible. 



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Re: Beware of the Fido Roam

Hello Fredyo,

 


@Fredyo wrote:...

 they would have never known that even if you tried to avoid roaming charges by switching off their data roaming (which used to work just fine) they now had to put their phone into airplane mode to be completely safe! THIS alone tells you just how aggressive and utterly absurd this policy is!...

 

... I'm sure there aren't many people who would think that just recieving a call OR sending a text message OR recieving a picture message would, despite their data roaming being disabled, still end up activating the service for a full 24 hours!...


  It's unfortunate you misunderstood the term data roaming. However that is not a Fido issue. It is a fact of newer cellular phones. Older cellular phones used to have a roaming setting as well as a separate data roaming setting. Disabling roaming would prevent all roaming while disabling data roaming would only disable roaming data, but allow for voice and message roaming. However, that separate roaming setting was removed from Android a while back (I'm thinking circa Jelly bean or Kitkat...). I'm not sure if iOS ever had a separate roaming setting, but I'm pretty sure they currently only have a data roaming setting.

 

  That means, newer phones automatically roam. With data roaming disabled, it is still possible to roam with voice and messaging. The only way to prevent voice and messaging roaming is to enable a phone's Flight or Airplane mode. That's for all newer phones, regardless mobile provider.

 

  Fido was not trying to trap anyone with Fido Roam. Within that Fido Roam message you provided, it clearly states:

 

...use your data, talk and text from your plan in the U.S. for just $7/day.

 

  There's no ambiguity there -- data, talk and text -- for the stated amount (+ taxes, even!). The last statement to enable data roaming is to remind people it needs to be enabled to use data. Since phones now automatically roam, the use of talk and text is inherent because there is no other setting.

 

  I'll admit, perhaps Fido could provide better options to opt-out of Fido Roam. I personally preferred being able to purchase a Travel Pack (I have a non-Pulse plan).

 

Hope this helps :Smiley:

 

Cheers



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I'm a Contributor Level 2 Fredyo
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Re: Beware of the Fido Roam


@Cawtau wrote:

Hello Fredyo,

 


@Fredyo wrote:...

 they would have never known that even if you tried to avoid roaming charges by switching off their data roaming (which used to work just fine) they now had to put their phone into airplane mode to be completely safe! THIS alone tells you just how aggressive and utterly absurd this policy is!...

 

... I'm sure there aren't many people who would think that just recieving a call OR sending a text message OR recieving a picture message would, despite their data roaming being disabled, still end up activating the service for a full 24 hours!...


  It's unfortunate you misunderstood the term data roaming. However that is not a Fido issue. It is a fact of newer cellular phones. Older cellular phones used to have a roaming setting as well as a separate data roaming setting. Disabling roaming would prevent all roaming while disabling data roaming would only disable roaming data, but allow for voice and message roaming. However, that separate roaming setting was removed from Android a while back (I'm thinking circa Jelly bean or Kitkat...). I'm not sure if iOS ever had a separate roaming setting, but I'm pretty sure they currently only have a data roaming setting.

 

That means, newer phones automatically roam. With data roaming disabled, it is still possible to roam with voice and messaging. The only way to prevent voice and messaging roaming is to enable a phone's Flight or Airplane mode. That's for all newer phones, regardless mobile provider.

 

I do know the difference. That was a typo and meant to say data. As in the switch that toggles the data connection but leaves general radio services such as phone calls and texts working. 

 

  Fido was not trying to trap anyone with Fido Roam. Within that Fido Roam message you provided, it clearly states:

 

...use your data, talk and text from your plan in the U.S. for just $6/day.

 

  There's no ambiguity there -- data, talk and text -- for the stated amount (+ taxes, even!). The last statement to enable data roaming is to remind people it needs to be enabled to use data. Since phones now automatically roam, the use of talk and text is inherent because there is no other setting.

 

There is no ambiguity in the price for sure but that's not my issue.... my issue, once again for those in the back, is that there is plenty of ambiguity surrounding how exactly it is activated, especially for an unsuspecting user who believes that with their data (and DATA ROAMING) disabled, they should be free and clear as was the case in all the previous years I've been using your services... quite happily I might add.

Who the hell would think that recieving a picture message or even just rejecting a call and having it go to voice mail would result in you getting dinged for a day's worth of roaming when you had no intention of doing so ... THAT ... IS A TRAP!

And it seems I'm not the only person who has brought this up! You guys automatically enabled it on Fido Pulse plans and if people had no intention of using it, they wouldn't have read into it and would thus have no idea just what they were getting into. You guys can claim moral high ground and say "oh but look all the details are clearly laid out here" but that's a moot point if you don't have a reason to go looking for it. 

 

  I'll admit, perhaps Fido could provide better options to opt-out of Fido Roam. I personally preferred being able to purchase a Travel Pack (I have a non-Pulse plan).

 

Well if you personally prefer getting utterly ripped off for using an over-priced roaming plan, that's your business. Not only does this plan need better opt-out options but also a text message sent to the user each time they've activated the roaming option for the day, it should include the time frame they've got  to work with and IDEALLY what caused the roaming plan to kick in. You know... be informative and not underhanded. 

 

The European providers notify you about every little change on your account as it happens and they are held to a much higher standard than Canadian telecoms are..... don't worry. We'll slowly change this.

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Re: Beware of the Fido Roam

Hey @Fredyo,@Cawtau, 

 

I just wanted to provide a little update that we can confirm that simply rejecting a call without answering will not trigger a Fido Roam charge in any of the eligible destinations covered by Fido Roam. 

 

 



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I'm a Participant Level 1 oiwah
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Re: Beware of the Fido Roam

I thought i would post to warn others about FIDO ROAM as well.  I specifically turned off data roaming on my ANDROID phone before a trip overseas and then I just found out I was billed $12/day for a few kbs of data a day.   I was very careful to only use whatsapp after signing on to hotel wifi but still got dinged by FIDO.  I guess the only way to be safe is to turn on airplane mode or to opt-out of FIDO ROAM and turn off data roaming.  I would say FIDO ROAM is a pretty terrible option if you are leaving the phone on for emergency use.  Below is capture from my bill.    Opting out of FIDO ROAM shouldn't be too bad since the new CRTC rules require carriers to suspend roaming charges if they exceed $100 during international roaming.

 

Capture.JPG

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Moderator (inactive) FidoRachel
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Re: Beware of the Fido Roam

Hey @oiwah,

 

To avoid roaming charges altogether, your best option is always to switch to airplane mode. 

 

The only way this usage appears on your bill is because a connection was made. Even when you're in Canada, nothing that is used over Wifi appears on our end. What we see is the IMEI and the SIM card connecting to a network at a specific time and date. When on Wifi, a SIM card is not even required so that usage can't be captured on our end. 

 

We can look into this together @oiwah, but I can't guarantee what we'll be able to do regarding those charges. 

 

I'm sending you a PM. 



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I'm a Contributor Level 2 Fredyo
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Re: Beware of the Fido Roam

Yeeepp... even with data roaming off, you still can and will get dinged even if all your phone did was recieve an MMS text message (a text with a picture attached). You also get ZERO notifcations that Fido Roam has been activated for the day (and at what cost). I raised all these flags back in my original rant but cleary nothing has been done about because the dirty little insider secret amongst all telecom companies is just how much they make in overage charges of all sorts including roaming.

 

The only way you can disble this is to log into your account and disable Fido Roam... which of course requires data.... do you see the dilemma here? Oh and you can't manually disable it, you need to start a chat with a customer service rep and have them do it, further more, if you do this while abroad even with data roaming disabled and just WiFi, you will still get dinged as you did...... you see where I'm going with all this!?

This is the type of shady excrement one would expect from Bell.....

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Re: Beware of the Fido Roam

Hey there @Fredyo,

 

To clarify, we do send you a notification each time you cross a border when you're travelling overseas. As incoming SMS are free of charge, you don't get billed when receiving the welcome message. These texts simply aim to inform you of the applicable and coverage rates available at your location. No charges are in effect as long as there's no usage made on your device. How you decide to use your device is up to your discretion following that.

 

In regard to billed usage: Calls, sent texts and data will trigger roaming fees. All of these can be blocked by having your phone on airplane mode or by avoid sending texts, making calls and having the roaming data setting turned off on your phone.

 

To answer some of your previous concerns/questions:

  • To opt-out from FidoRoam you do need to reach out to us. We do offer you many options to do so, and one of them would be a free call from any international destination by dialing *611 from your device as seen here.
  • As we already notified you of the applicable rates upon your arrival, there would be no further notifications sent. Though you can keep track of your usage on your Fido My Account (web or app) 
  • Fido Roam provides you with a flat daily fee spanning on 24 hours from when you first begin your usage. The fee is not based on the volume of usage made but only of the number of days used. You can find more info here as well.

Hope this clarifies and let us know if you have any questions. We'd also be happy to take a  closer look at your account if you need any assistance.



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Re: Beware of the Fido Roam

Hello again,

 


@Fredyo wrote:... even with data roaming off, you still can and will get dinged even if all your phone did was recieve an MMS text message (a text with a picture attached)......

  Receiving the text portion of a MMS does not require data. However, downloading the associated picture does. Even in Canada, data needs to be enabled to send/receive the full MMS. If your phone downloaded the MMS with data and roaming data disabled, that's an issue with the phone or settings on the phone. This situation is different from the others who's phones have used small bits of data despite the those settings disabled and using no other services.

 


@Fredyo wrote:...

The only way you can disble this is to log into your account and disable Fido Roam...


  The only way to opt-out of Fido Roam is to contact Customer service. They provided the phone number in that first notification you received. If you note, that call would be free.

 

Hope this helps :Smiley:

 

Cheers



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I'm a Contributor Level 2 Fredyo
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Re: Beware of the Fido Roam

To clarify, we do send you a notifications each time you cross a border when you're travelling overseas. As incoming SMS are free of charge, you don't get billed when receiving the welcome message. These simply texts aim to inform you of the applicable rates and coverage available at your location. No charges are in effect as long as there's no usage made. How you decide to use your device is up to your discretion following that.

 

In regard to billed usage: Calls, sent texts and data will trigger roaming fees. All of these can be blocked by having your phone on airplane mode or by avoid sending texts, making calls and having the roaming data setting turned off on your phone.

Except what you may not know is that you may be automatically enrolled in Fido Roam and not aware of what triggers a Fido Roam period to begin. If you had no intention of using Fido Roam, you'd just ignore that message and just proceed to use the same rates you've been using for years before that (as was the case with me and many others who were caught off guard). A very simple courtesey would be to inform users that a Fido Roam cycle has begun via text message. This how the European carriers do it... of course they have way better

regulations over there for this sort of thing.

 

Putting aside the fact that you shouldn't be automatically enabling such services on people's accounts to begin with, what I'm saying (and what many others have said) is that when that message comes in, it should be clear what triggers a Fido Roam period and there should be a very simple way to opt-out of Fido Roam right there and then by replying with a text message. These are all VERY simple things to implement but you won't do it because you know MANY people would just opt-out right there and then..... 

 

To answer some of your previous concerns/questions:

  • To opt-out from FidoRoam you do need to reach out to us. We do offer you many options to do so, and one of them would be a free call from any international destination by dialing *611 from your device as seen here

Right, a free call.. to talk to a customer service rep in order to disable it. Other options: log into your account, start a chat with a customer service rep in order to disable it.... 

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I'm a Contributor Level 2 Fredyo
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Re: Beware of the Fido Roam

@Fredyo wrote:... even with data roaming off, you still can and will get dinged even if all your phone did was recieve an MMS text message (a text with a picture attached)......

 Receiving the text portion of a MMS does not require data. However, downloading the associated picture does. Even in Canada, data needs to be enabled to send/receive the full MMS. If your phone downloaded the MMS with data and roaming data disabled, that's an issue with the phone or settings on the phone. This situation is different from the others who's phones have used small bits of data despite the those settings disabled and using no other services.

Plenty of devices automatically download the picture content automatically and many people don't know that. You are expecting everyone to have advanced knowledge of these kind of things.  There is also the issue of other "small bits of data" being sent... basically, it's THAT easy to enable a Fido Roam cycle and you wouldn't have even known it..... hence why I said there should be a follow up SMS sent EACH TIME a Fido Roam cycle is initiated.

 


@Fredyo wrote:...

The only way you can disble this is to log into your account and disable Fido Roam...


  The only way to opt-out of Fido Roam is to contact Customer service. They provided the phone number in that first notification you received. If you note, that call would be free.

 

Hope this helps :Smiley:

 

Cheers


Why not inform the user each time a Fido Roam cycle has started and the cost? Why not just have an easy way to reply with a simple "opt-out"? 

Because you know many people would right there and then.

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