Beware of the Fido Roam

Beware of the Fido Roam

Beware of the Fido Roam

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I'm Helpful Level 1

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

Solved by Moderator

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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78 REPLIES 78
I'm a Participant Level 1

I am quite upset with this Fido Roam and no way to turn it off myself. since I travel on BC Ferries and yesterday in Victoria Automatically was charged the $8 when I was in fact in Canada. this is not satisfactory if I have to phone everytime to dispute these charges

Hey @davidfabbro,

 

We understand unwanted charges are never fun and we don't want you to have any such surprises on the bill either, especially being in Canada. We have measures in place to prevent any accidental roaming though. It's also good to know that connecting to an American tower will not incur he charge, but only if a usage is made while connected.

 

You can contact us through these channels if you wish to opt-out of 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.

 

I'm a Participant Level 2

exactly!! totally agree. soooo frustrating. !!!

should be able to UNTRAVEL at least (assuming you know)

Hey @kpreville

 

If you want to opt-out from Fido Roam, you just need to contact us using any of the options you'll find here.  Alternatively, we can send you a PM here on the community.

 

Keep in mind that, if you opt-out, pay per use rates will apply for your usage and you would need to contact us to opt back in if you change your mind.



I'm a Participant Level 3

If Fido really want to make this easier, the opt-out should be in the app or in "My Account". But clearly this is not happening.They want people to use the app and is ready to charge you $10 if you call to make an address change, but opt-out of Fido Roam has to be done by phone... go figure.

 

I got charged the same roam **bleep** 2 years ago while in Portugal, where I had a local sim card. I have a spare travel phone and use the local sim as hotspot. But 3 calls that lasted less than 45 seconds on 3 separate days were enough to trigger the full Fido Roam charge on 3 days. Fido Roam was supposed to be taken off since then from my account, but not sure anymore since my plan has changed. Talk about a real pain having to waste my time calling again.

 

And I'm sorry, I have a Telus phone at work and my gf is on Fizz. Telus has a cap on roaming charge and Fizz does not have this auto roam thing. And i've been to all 5 continents and I always buy a local sim card.

 

It's only logical for any company to look at usage to determine the charge. When you see a person using a mere few kbps on a single day while abroad, Fido should be smart enough to not charge the full $12/day roaming, or like in my case a 30 seconds call. Especially considering that most Android phones are known to have data "leakage". Putting your phone on airplane mode is not a practical solution in case you get an important call while abroad... like your home alarm company calling because your alarm got triggered.

Hey @rho88

 

Thank you for your feedback. While we totally understand that unexpected charges are no fun, we make sure to advise our customers about any chargers that may incur when they use Fido roam in a covered destination via a free incoming text message. When you receive the text message, you have the option to put your phone on airplane mode or just take out your sim card to avoid any such usage. You can also contact us to opt-out. 

 

The $10 fee only applies to a few specific transactions that are easily available through self-serve options. Opting-out of Fido roam in not included in that. We also offer many ways to contact us to accommodate our customers, calling in is not the only option. That said, if you use your Fido sim, you are billed a flat rate of either $7 in US or $12 internationally that  gives you access to what your plan offers for a full 24 hours. 

 

To clarify, if you have a spare phone with a local sim, there should be no fee. As you might have read in this thread, the roaming fee is only triggered when an outgoing usage is detected and validated through your Fido sim card. There's no way for us to see any usage made on any other sim, but our own.

 

You can check if you are currently enrolled to Fido Roam by simply texting ROAM to 222. 



I'm a Participant Level 3

wow talk about a copy/paste response... Repeating what I wrote. This is what frustrate your customers. Everything you wrote I already mentioned on my original post. Including what triggered the Fido Roam charge, why it makes no sense to not include the opt-out option in the app, and why I want to keep my Fido sim on when traveling although I have a spare phone.

 

And no, putting your phone on airplane mode does not completely solve the issue. That is misleading and is what a lot of people are saying on this thread.

 

I'll try to make it simple and to the point. Why is the opt-out option not in the app or in the My Account?

 

 

Hey @ rho88!

 

Rest assured that our replies are genuine and all the information we provided was accurate. Smiley

The last thing we want is to mislead anyone. 

 

You really have nothing to lose by keeping it active on your account. You're only charged if you use the service and if you do remove it, you’ll be charged full price for every minute, SMS/MMS and all of the data you use while roaming. 

 

It is still entirely possible by contacting us though. Please note that we have many channels available for customer service including calling from abroad, Live Chat, or Social Media on Facebook and Twitter. 

 

While it is not possible at the moment to do it from MyAccount, once again we definitely appreciate the feedback on the matter as we always wish to improve our app and self-serve tools. 

If you prefer to still use a non-Fido SIM, it's entirely up to you. 

 

If you still wish to use your SIM and avoid Fido Roam fees, you have to make sure that your mobile/roaming data is turned off, to not send texts and to not make/receive phone calls. 

 



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


I'm Helpful Level 1


@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.

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. 

 

 



I'm a Participant Level 1

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

I'm a Participant Level 3

Yes, this also just happened to me $120 in charges I have been billed for nothing.  I have been a long time customer also and basically was told to make sure I know how to use the features on my phome.  I don't expect to be billed for something I'm not aware of. Very poor customer service, it's enough for me to change provider's when my contract is up for my 3 phone lines with Fido.

Hey @SH75,

 

Thank you for sharing your feedback with the Community.

 

We understand that unwanted charges are never fun and we don't want our customers to have any such surprises on their bills either!

 

Keep in mind that only a usage made through the Fido sim card will trigger a charge. If you do not make any usage, there is no fee. We also make sure to send a text notification to our customers when they connect to a local tower in a covered destination about the charges they will incur if any services are used.

 

Did you receive the sms notification?

 

That said, Fido Roam is enabled on all our postpaid plans automatically. You can opt-out by contacting customer service and have pay-per-use rates going forward.

 



I'm a Participant Level 3

I hooked onto WIFI at the Hotel, unknowingly being charged anyways.

I'm a Participant Level 3

No I never recieved that message, I got a message saying I have Fido roam for 12 dollars a day well I already knew that.  What it should say is if you don't want to be charged turn the Data off because you will be charged whether you use the phone or not.

Hey @SH75,

 

The message we were referring to was the one Welcome one that we send when your device connects to a foreign network: "Hi, it’s Fido: Welcome to the U.S.! You’ve got Fido Roam with your plan, so go ahead and use your plan's existing data, talk and text like you do at home. As of February 6th, 2020 the rate is $8/day (+ taxes) in the U.S. Happy travels! Questions? Check out www.fido.ca/m/roam or call +1-514-933-3436 (free)."

 

In addition to the welcome text message which details the regular rates you would be charged, you can also check roaming rates from our website. We also have a useful article on the Community that you can check out to learn more. 

 

If the Data Roaming is left ON, your smartphone will connect to data in the background for various reasons, as many applications automatically search for online updates whenever the device is on.

 

I hope this helps clarify a bit. 



I'm a Participant Level 3

Yes I keep getting the run around same answer. Basically Fido counts on the fact that people who are not smart phone savvy would just assume we will not be charged if we DO NOT use the phone otherwise the message sent would say welcome abroad blah blah blah and at the end of the message in BOLD it should state if you do not TURN OFF DATA you will be charged whether you use the phone or not. I'm sure at few extra words could be added to our welcome abroad message so save us all hundreds of dollars. 

Hey @SH75 ,

 

The text message we send out is to inform of the applicable charges should usage take place. Within the same text message, we do provide a link to our web page about fido roam and also provide a phone number where the customer can reach us for any inquiries. Also, the call is free if you call the number mentioned from your fido device! 

 

It's important to always review our information before travelling to ensure you won't generate any unwanted roaming charges. You can always reach a live rep by calling in, via Live Chat or via Facebook or Twitter. We're here to help. 😊  



I'm a Participant Level 3

The website info and phone number should be replaced with a very simple message TURN OFF DATA OR YOU WILL BE CHARGED that simple. Please stop with all the long drawn out replies..its a money grab. FIDO HAS ALREADY RIPPED ME OFF FOR 120 DOLLARS AT LEAST LET ME HAVE THE LAST WORD. Its sickening.