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Beware of the Fido Roam

I'm helpful level 1
I'm helpful level 1

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....


Hello Wagui,


  Welcome to the community!


@Wagui wrote:.." Though you can keep track of your usage on your Fido My Account (web or app) ""

You cannot track roaming usage..need wait till next billing cycle

  I believe the reason we are unable to track roaming usage relates to an earlier post here. If home networks don't receive usage information in real-time, it's not possible for them to provide customers with their real-time roaming usage.

Hope this helps 😀







I'm a participant level 1
I'm a participant level 1

Hey Fido, 


you always catch client using new charge. I had been your customer for 8 years, every time you have new charge surprised us. We are learning didn’t new charge from your service.


i just back from Bahama, see the billing is 16 times Fido roam charge in 2 trip. ($192) your service are too powerful, even access to my phone changed roaming settings. I don’t know is it legally? Should we report to public media let every client knew it? 

Hey @Nancymani1,


That's definitely not the kind of experience we wish to provide! We want to be transparent with our service and how you are billed for your usage. 


You can reach out to us using these methods so we can take a closer look at your situation.

I'm helpful level 1
I'm helpful level 1

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.... 

Former Moderator
Former Moderator

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. To get started, you can reach out to us on these channels.

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. 


If you need any assistancw with your Fido account, please reach out to us using these methods and we'll be happy to look into it.


@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. 

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?