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Fido Roam Charges when Roaming Data is OFF!

hk13456
I'm a Participant Level 3
I'm a Participant Level 3

Hi guys,

I am another victim of these Fido Roam Charges while I was in Mexico from Jan 10 to Jan 18. I was conscious about turning off my Cellular Data as well as ensuring the Roaming Data is also off on my phone prior to boarding the flight to Mexico.

When I return and saw the Fido bill, I was surprised by these roaming charges. So I start googling and calling up Fido customer support.

From googling, I found out that this is a very common issue for iPhone users where there are still "leakage" of data usage when the phone has Cellular Data turned off.

The data usage was as follows (the 5M data usage on Jan 10 was prior to boarding the flight):

hk13456_0-1581472038093.png

 

And I was charged with the following:

hk13456_1-1581472134501.png

So I called customer support and tried to dispute these charges but end up unsuccessful.

 

My argument is as follows:
1. My Cellular Data as well as Roaming Data was switched off.
2. From the small data usage, it prove that I have no intention to use data at all during my trip and these are somehow glitches in the phone or system that I am not aware about.
3. I have not consented that I wish to use Fido Roam or activate Fido Roam
4. I was not informed that I have activated Fido Roam for each of the days I was charged

Below is their argument saying the charges are valid:
1. There was roaming data usage, it doesn't matter how much so I was charged for the full day
2. They have sent a text message explaining the charges and that Fido Roam was available if I were to use
3. I should have switch on airplane mode or pull out my sim card instead of just turning off cellular data and roaming data

The best they could do is to refund one day worth of charges ($12) and offer me extra data and free long distance call in the next cycle.

I just find this to be ridiculous how they can charge a full day for a 15kb usage (Jan 14th). Also by them sending you a text saying Fido Roam is available you automatically opted-in on the service and they can charge you the moment they detect any usage. They don't even tell you Fido Roam is activated for the full day.

After calling them and speaking to multiple reps with the same result, I now decided to switch to a different carrier and I will be filing a complaint to the Business Bureau and CRTC.

24 REPLIES 24

Sean_mcnair
I'm a Participant Level 3
I'm a Participant Level 3

Happened to me too.  Adding salt to the wound, I did not get the roaming notice when I crossed the border until TWELVE DAYS and TWELVE CHARGES after.   Thought I was safe with using signal, wifi calling and other steps I took.  I would have been fine with a charge or 2 so I could adjust settings I missed.  When the notifications came, I did adjust and eventually disabled the sim and wasn't charged after.    

 

Adding a salt truck to the wound, I had chatted with Fido to check if I'm getting billed roaming, I knew a few days I must have used roaming (turned on for 2 step verifications) but still didn't get the roaming notification.  I was told IN WRITING that they couldn't tell me (convienient) if I had roamed but if no roaming notification then I won't be billed for it.  Then I got billed a fortune.

 

I called, they blamed me and said I should have called earlier about not getting the notifications.  All this is in writing and going to CRTC and my credit card fraud dept.

 

I'm fine getting hit with a few days roaming as I work out how to avoid the fees.  It's the misleading lack of notifications and the lies.   A decade of loyalty and bringing new members will now be the opposite.  Cancelling now.

 

Just incase more misleading info is needed, I'll copy from the FAQ below:

 

How will I know if I am in an eligible destination for Fido Roam?

You will receive a text message as soon as your device connects to a partner network confirming the rate you will be charged. If you are in a destination that is not covered by Fido Roam, we will send you a text message with information about our standard Pay-Per-Use roaming rates.

Sean_mcnair
I'm a Participant Level 3
I'm a Participant Level 3

 For other victims, here is the link I used to report this: 

http://www.ccts-cprst.ca/

I will update when this is resolved.

Hello Sean_mcnair,

 

  Welcome to the community!

 

  Sorry to hear you've incurred unexpected roaming charges.

 


@Sean_mcnair wrote:

...Thought I was safe with using signal, wifi calling and other steps I took....


  Did you use Wifi-calling to make calls or send messages to non-Canadian phone numbers? If you did, you should note that type of usage would also be considered roaming (see here). Only Wifi-calling calls and messages to Canadian phone numbers would not incur roaming charges.

 

  If your roaming charges are for Wifi-calling usage to non-Canadian phone numbers, that could explain why you didn't receive any Fido Roam notifications. Those would only be received when connected to a foreign cellular network. Wifi-calling does not connect to a cellular network.

 

Hope this helps 😀

 

Cheers

 


Sean_mcnair
I'm a Participant Level 3
I'm a Participant Level 3

Thanks for your reply.  I don't remember all my calls but very few were non-canadian.  I made a few but not everyday and got charged everyday until I disabled the SIM, there was something else.  Either way if wifi calling charges but doesn't trigger the roam message, how would anyone know that without finding this forum? The FAQ clearly states we will be informed when triggering roaming.

 

Biggest problem here is the lack of clarity about roam, the info contradicts itself and agents contradict the contradicting info.  One place on the site says you can receive txt but not send (implies data off , roam on is ok), elsewhere it suggests pulling the SIM.  Customers shouldn't need to do so much research, chatting, investigation and study to understand when roaming is triggered.  If I send an international txt or go over minutes, I can check that easily and then think oops my fault if I use.  Roam use is unclear and kept secret until it racks up. Do I really believe that fido can't see roam usage until end of month? absolutely not, does anyone? seriously?? they can see every kb and call but can't see roaming? 

 

Considering data leakage noted by the thread starter, and other issues, roam should be even clearer than other features/charges and easy to check. Just seems too convieniently profitable the way it is.  Bottom line, Fido profits from being unclear and not providing repeatedly requested info, this is why I went to 

Hello Sean_mcnair,

 

  Thank you for the additional information.

 


@Sean_mcnair wrote:

....Either way if wifi calling charges but doesn't trigger the roam message, how would anyone know that without finding this forum? The FAQ clearly states we will be informed when triggering roaming...


  I'm not sure where you saw that information stating we will be informed when triggering roaming. The part of the FAQ you included in your first post even states the text will be received when your device connects to a partner network. As previously mentioned, Wifi-calling does not connect to the local networks.

 

  If people choose to use a service, they should know what that service entails and any limitations etc. That's why they also have the Wifi-calling information page. It does clearly state that outgoing Wifi-calling messages and calls to non-Canadian number will incur the Fido Roam daily charge.

 


@Sean_mcnair wrote:

...Biggest problem here is the lack of clarity about roam, the info contradicts itself and agents contradict the contradicting info.  ..


  I understand it's fashionable these days to blame the mobile providers. However, they are clear about the Fido Roam charges. The fee for Fido Roam is charged when your device uses your Fido services. That is, when your device is used to make or receive a call, send a text message or use data while abroad with your Fido SIM (taken from FAQ) -- even is said usage is unintentional.

 

  Contrary to popular belief, the mobile providers will only transmit what their phones transmit or request (except for incoming text messages, see below). In order to prevent roaming charges, customers need to do what is necessary on their devices to prevent that usage. What is necessary, depends on the device, not the mobile providers.

 


@Sean_mcnair wrote:

... One place on the site says you can receive txt but not send (implies data off , roam on is ok)...


  To clarify, modern phones do not have a setting to disable roaming entirely. They do have settings to disable roaming data. However, disabling roaming data does not prevent roaming for voice and messaging. So incoming SMS messages do not incur the charge but does not imply enabling roaming data is okay. Note that receiving MMS (incoming or outgoing) would incur the charge because it includes data. You should note that MMS are not solely restricted to pictures or video messages. Messages with subject headers or group messages etc are also considered MMS.

 

  You might consider disabling any MMS auto-retrieve settings on your phone. You would then receive a SMS notifying of a MMS (no charge) but the data contained would not download automatically. You could then choose whether or not to download the associated data contents. You should also note that, with the exception of Wifi-calling, MMS does not generally get transmitted via Wifi. Downloading MMS while connected to Wifi would likely incur roaming charges. As previously mentioned, some types of usage would be considered roaming.


  You noted the data leakage mentioned by the OP. I understand some people have also had their data and/or roaming data disabled. However, people need to know how their devices behave with those settings disabled. As mentioned in some of my previous posts, some phone manufacturers might consider system data differently from user data and allow the former usage despite those settings. Mobile providers have no access over a device's settings. They can't know whether a device had those settings enabled or disabled. They only know usage.

 

  In order to prevent roaming charges, it is usually recommended to disable data and roaming data. However, as mentioned, disabling roaming data does not prevent roaming for voice or text messaging. It would also be recommended to keep Airplane or Flight modes enabled for the duration of trips. You could manually enable Wifi when required. I understand doing so would also prevent incoming SMS or emergency calls. However, people need to know how their devices behave if they intend on keeping their devices available for those services.

 


@Sean_mcnair wrote:

... Do I really believe that fido can't see roam usage until end of month? absolutely not, does anyone? seriously?? they can see every kb and call but can't see roaming? ..


  While it might not take a month for Fido to receive your usage, it does not happen in real-time.

 

       For post-paid roaming, when the user first switches their phone on, the visited network checks in real time whether the home network authenticates the customer and authorises its use abroad...  ~ taken from here.

 

  That would result in the Welcoming text message we receive when our phones connect to a foreign network.

 

       ...But the data records (CDRs) with the details on each SMS and data session are sent to the home operator with some delay (up to several days).. ~ also taken from link above.

 

  If home networks don't receive usage information in real-time, it's not possible for them to provide customers with notification that a roaming session has begun without a delay.

 

  The situation is different with pre-paid services where a real-time exchange is required to prevent the balance of the roaming customers' accounts from becoming overdrawn. That's likely the reason why pre-paid roaming often costs more than post-paid roaming.

 

  I don't know what usage triggered your roaming charges. If your device did connect to a foreign network, it should have received the Welcome message. You should be able to view the roaming usage in your detailed billing. You should be able to view your bill via your My Account --> Billings & Payments. From there, you should be able to Save or Print a PDF copy of your bill. Alternatively, you should also be able to view those details online.

 

Hope this helps 😀

 

Cheers

 

 


hk13456
I'm a Participant Level 3
I'm a Participant Level 3

Hey Fido and Fido reps, this is not cool and the way to blame customer for not knowing how their phone works is not good customer support. 

Instead of blaming the customer and their device, why don't Fido take a look and review the Fido Roam feature as this is something Fido can do to help customers. 

Here are my suggestion for Fido:

1.  Consider charging roaming by the kb or minute first instead of charging a full day the moment roaming is used.

2.  When Fido Roam is actived for that day, consider informing the user each day Fido Roam is activated. 
3.  Condider asking your overseas network partners why roaming data is used when celluar data is switched off. As I have spoken to tech suppoort from Apple (iPhone) that the data leak is likely due to the SIM carrier trying to ping and find the most optimal network to connect to.  They say likey the SIM is bypassing the cellular data settings on IOS devices as there is no data usage logged on any of the apps or system app. 

Also, expecting the common user to know how roaming works or know how their phone works to the level you described is just unrealistic.  We just turn off celluar data and expects no data will be used and no roaming charges.

Hello HK13456,

 

  Firstly, I don't work for Fido. I understand you feel like it's blaming customers, but they do need to know how their devices behave. I'm not suggesting a full detailed knowledge about the nitty-gritty of how things work. However, turning off data and verifying there is no data usage is helpful. Also, perhaps ensuring background data is not being used unnecessarily by apps. etc.

 

  I also understand customers expect those settings to work as they are intended. However, if they do not, that's an issue with the manufacturer, not the mobile providers.

 


@hk13456 wrote:

...3.  Condider asking your overseas network partners why roaming data is used when celluar data is switched off...


  As mentioned previously, the mobile providers only know usage. If a device is using data when cellular data setting is disabled, that's an issue with the device. The mobile providers have no access to a device's settings to know what settings are enabled/disabled.

 

  I understand your version of what Apple has stated regarding data leakage.

 


@hk13456 wrote:H...They say likey the SIM is bypassing the cellular data settings on IOS devices as there is no data usage logged on any of the apps or system app.

  The mobile providers cannot bypass the device's settings. If that setting allows that type of data to transmit/receive despite it being disabled, that is the way Apple designed their device.


  That said, they have also noted elsewhere that their devices might connect to their servers for what they deem to be necessary for proper usage of the devices. Apple might deem it necessary, but it's still data usage.

 

  In order to prevent roaming charges, it is usually recommended to disable data and roaming data. However, it should be noted that disabling roaming data does not prevent roaming for voice or text messaging. It would also be recommended to keep Airplane or Flight modes enabled for the duration of trips. You could manually enable Wifi when required. I understand doing so would also prevent incoming SMS or emergency calls. However, people need to know how their devices behave if they intend on keeping their devices available for those services.

 

Cheers

 


hk13456
I'm a Participant Level 3
I'm a Participant Level 3

Hey look, if you choose to defend for Fido, then you are representing them in their defense.  I don't care if you get paid by Fido or not or who promote you to MVP. 

Second, the point is not about why data leaked (in my case).  I already accepted that the fact that data can leak even with the cellular data setting turned off.  So no point in blaming or arguing who fault it is that caused the data leak.  Note that at no point did I blame Fido for the data leakage. 

What I am asking here is for Fido to review thier Fido Roam policy so that in future case where there is unexpected data leakage (esp in these small amounts) that Fido customers do not end up getting a hefty bill after their travel.   And I have provided good suggestion for Fido to consider.  I sincerely hope they will consider these suggestions. 

Now, I also thank you for your tech explaination.  But your expectation that every phone user knows how their phone works technically underneath the settings, this I cannot agree with.  We did what we can to the best of our knowledge to disable cellular data and roaming data.  So please don't blame us for not knowing how our phone works and causing the data leakage.  And no, pulling out the sim or airplane mode is not an option as we still want to use roaming in case of emergency. 

Also, I simply relay what the tech at Apple informed me regarding the cause of the data leak.  The way Apple put it is that those settings only prevent iOS and Apps from using data. It doesnt stop / disable the sim from using data or roaming data in this case.   If you wish to continue the argument with Apple Tech, please go ahead and call Apple tech support.

Hello again,

 


@hk13456 wrote:

... The way Apple put it is that those settings only prevent iOS and Apps from using data. It doesnt stop / disable the sim from using data or roaming data in this case.   If you wish to continue the argument with Apple Tech, please go ahead and call Apple tech support.


  As mentioned previously, a mobile provider can only note usage. If a device uses data when it is not supposed to, that's an issue with the manufacturer. If you choose to use a device from that manufacturer, it would be up to you to ensure the device does not use data. You would need to contact Apple so they can place measures preventing that usage.  It is not a mobile provider's responsibility to know how your device works.

 

  If you choose to not remove the SIM or enable Airplane mode for the duration of your trips, that is certainly up to you. However, that could allow unexpected roaming to occur. It would be your responsibility to ensure your device does not use services when you do not intend for them to be used.

 

**edit** If you wish, you could opt-out of Fido Roam. Once opted-out, any usage would be on a pay-per-use basis. You would need to contact customer service in order to opt-out. In addition, they can also be contacted via Live Chat, Facebook, or Twitter. Those methods can be accessed via the contact page posted above.**

 

Cheers

 

 


hk13456
I'm a Participant Level 3
I'm a Participant Level 3

Please go and take your technnical argument with Apple.   I am not here to argue with you on why there is leakage or who fault it is that caused the leak.

 

This is about how Fido Roam charges a full day when there is no intended data use.  And how Fido does not inform user that there is a roaming data that cused Fido Roam to be charged.  And what Fido can do to help thir valuable customers. 

And yes, I am now aware I can opt out of Fido Roam or even ask Fido to disable all data (they said they cannot disable just roaming data, they have to disable all data on that sim).  Which will allow me to take roaming call in case of emergency but shield me from the data leak that I don't have a solution for.   And I can alway call them to re-enable data after my trip.

 

I agree with you, it is not the mobile provider's resppnibility to know how each device works.  But it is also not our responsibilty to figure out why there is data leak.  So please stop accusing us of not using the device properly.   So let's just accept there is some sort of possible data leak that we cant prevent.  So what can Fido do to help customer not face a hefty bill in this case for data leaks that they do not know or intend to use.

 

Most user will not know they need to call Fido to disable Fido Roam or Data on their sim the first time. 

Hello again,

 

  I never said it was a customer's responsibility to figure out why there was a data leak (or unintended usage). I only noted that it is possible devices are using services without customers' knowledge and they need to be aware of that possibility. I said customers need to know how their devices behave (know unintended usage might be happening); not why it's happening. For yourself, now that you are aware, you are able to take measures to prevent that usage.

 

**edit** To be clear, I didn't bring it up to blame customers. You are the one who noted:

 

@hk13456 wrote:

...3.  Condider asking your overseas network partners why roaming data is used when celluar data is switched off...

  For whatever reason, Apple allows some data to be used despite those settings disabled.**

 

Cheers

 

 


hk13456
I'm a Participant Level 3
I'm a Participant Level 3

You said it is our responsibility to know how our device behaves and it is our responsibility to ensure our device do not use the uninteded service (caused the data leak). 

So you are implying we need to figure out why there is a data leak and is our responsibility to prevent it.  If your attitude is not putting the blame on customers not using the device properly, I don't know what is. 

Again, that was Apple's suggestion when I inquire about the cause of the leak.  If you disagree, then please go talk to Apple.  I only relay what they suggest. 

Sean_mcnair
I'm a Participant Level 3
I'm a Participant Level 3
Waste of time but what the heck... 
 
How could I interpret the FAQ I copied to mean that I'd be informed if I trigger roaming? The wikipedia definition of mobile roaming is connecting to another network, the FAQ states that I receive a txt when connecting to another network.  Seriously???? I'm supposed read some wifi exception into that FAQ line??? it isn't in any way even hinted at, no *, no small print...  And as I stated, I rarely or never called non-canadian # anyways, the wifi mumbojumbo isn't even relevent its just a distraction from how misleading the FAQ line I copied is. 

 

Your response was like a tech white paper, even referencing very long GSM publications outside Fido info.  Was I supposed to know all that tech before crossing the border? I am tech - dumb, I do not have a bachelor of Roaming degree, I am not a network engineer.  Does this justify blaming me or my phone for: Fido's misleading info, a false WRITTEN commitment from a Fido employee, failure to notify me of roaming in reasonable time? 

 

During your blaming, you mention a new fashion of blaming mobile providers.  If you are really concerned about this (clearly not), let me give you a tip:  #1: look at customer issues and ask if Fido could have done more to avoid this? Less time dismissing/blaming/accusing/justifying. more time improving the system and clarifying things for dummies like me #2: law/ethics 101:  A company is responsible for its employees.  Even if they make a mistake or damage, you can't charge the customer for it.  I don't think my written commitment was wrong but Fido should have honored not weaseled out.  It's a total lose-lose when companies don't follow basic law/ethics.  

 

Sad thing about all this is that when I cancelled the first 2 accounts, the cancelling agent was the first (of 5) who actually bothered to look at the info I gave without jumping to blaming/justifying and confirmed that yes I wasn't notified when I should have been and yes I was directly and clearly told I wouldn't be charged.  They forwarded to back office who will probably just blame me but anyways, this is just sad and disgraceful.  No more wasted time, lets see what how CCTS interprets this.

Hello again,

 

  Firstly, I didn't make comment regarding your previous interaction with customer service because I cannot speak to what was or was not discussed.

 

  Thank you for the one definition of roaming. Other definitions include:

 

    Roaming refers to the service provided by a mobile phone company which makes it possible for you to use your mobile phone when you travel abroad. ~taken from here.

 

and from the CRTC:

 

  When your phone is roaming, it means you’re able to use your mobile phone outside of your provider’s coverage area. ~taken from here.

 

 That said, the only definition which matters is the one outlined by your service provider. If you choose to use a service, it is your responsibility to know its terms of service and limitations. You chose to use Wifi-calling, you should be familiar with the details in that Wifi-calling page.

 

  I only provided the link to GSM roaming because you claimed you did not believe roaming usage was not in real-time. No one expects customers to have technical degrees in roaming. however, when you claim you don't believe what had been told to you, that warranted the reference.

 

Cheers

 


Lisa36
I'm a Participant Level 2
I'm a Participant Level 2

Help me understand this: I turn off my Data Roam....Put my phone on airplane mode....do not agree to Roam yet when I use the WiFi ONLY in my rental in Mexico, if a SPAM PHONE CALL comes in to my voicemail I get charged $14?! I have 2 phones on my account and have just gotten a HUGE bill.

 

Blueevy123
I'm a Participant Level 2
I'm a Participant Level 2

I am glad to know that I am not the only one who felt that Fido is a scam when it comes to roaming charges. I got $210 new my bill for NO SERVICE. They don't even ask for your authorization. They charge you based on Cellular roaming turned on on your phone. PLEASE BEWARE this company. I am going to file a complaint to consume affair to get back to them. I am highly disappointed and am switching the service. Hope someone will read this and get benefits out of it. 

Hello Blueevy123,

 

  I replied to your other post here.

 

  I understand you feel the issue is with Fido, however, you should note that if your device used services (even without your intention), you would have incurred roaming charges with the other cellular providers as well.

 

  As mentioned in my other post, in order to prevent roaming charges, it is usually recommended to disable data and roaming data. However, it should be noted that disabling roaming data does not prevent roaming for voice or text messaging. It would also be recommended to keep Airplane or Flight modes enabled for the duration of trips. You could manually enable Wifi when required. I understand doing so would also prevent incoming SMS or emergency calls. However, people need to know how their devices behave if they intend on keeping their devices available for those services.

 

Hope this helps 😀

 

Cheers

 


khouya
I'm Qualified Level 1
I'm Qualified Level 1

Hi @Blueevy123 

Fido is a great company, i think fido can resolve your billing issues. 

Have a nice one Smiley 

Hey @Lisa36,

 

Please reach out to our customer care team so an agent can review this with you !



Laly1990
I'm a Participant Level 1
I'm a Participant Level 1

This is absolutely ridiculous!

 

I am in the exact same situation today and will be disputing the charges as well. I'm also ready to drop this carrier should they refuse to waive the extra $75 in roaming fees they charged me without my consent. Like you, I have turned off my cellular data on the plane to my destination and ensured that it stayed OFF for the whole trip (I would check multiple times a day every day and especially after receiving their notification that I was roaming and it was always off).

 

From my research online, there have been many customers complaining about this recurring issue in the past but the reps I talked to pretended they were unaware of it all so that they can keep stealing your money and never actually get down to work to fix what really is a TECHNICAL ISSUE on their end that needs to be addressed ASAP. Way to go Fido! 

 

I also find it frankly insulting that they had the nerve to suggest removing the sim card from your phone as a solution: "No Fido, you fix YOUR technical problem and I get to use my phone and FREE WIFI with cellular data/roaming off and I don't get wrongfully charged for roaming after my trip. That's the REAL solution. I'll be getting a call from their head office this week. They better not use the same argument with me. It ain't gonna fly.