Three offers inclusive roaming in 71 destinations including most of Europe, the USA, Australia, Brazil, Singapore and more.

In the UK, Three offers international roaming at no extra cost in 71 destinations on all of their price plans. Known as Go Roam (or Go Roam Around The World), it allows you to use your normal allowances when abroad including your minutes, texts and data.

You can get a SIM card from just £5/month with access to the Go Roam offer. This also includes personal hotspot and 5G at no extra cost inside the UK. It’s also possible to get unlimited data from just £16/month (subject to a 12GB per month fair usage policy when roaming).

In this article, we’ll review the Go Roam offer including the countries it’s available in and the best Go Roam SIM cards. We’ll also look at Three’s international coverage and the limitations of the Go Roam offer including fair use limits when abroad.

Go Roam Countries: 71 destinations including most European countries & the USA
See all Go Roam countries
International Coverage: Location dependent
(check your destination)
Go Roam SIM Cards:
Fair Usage:
  • 12GB per month roaming data limit
  • Tethering & personal hotspot are chargeable outside Europe

Go Roam Countries

In the UK, Three now offers Go Roam Around The World as an inclusive feature on all of their plans. This allows you to use your normal plan allowances at no extra cost when travelling to the following 71 destinations:

Europe (Go Roam in Europe):

  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Bulgaria
  • Croatia
  • Cyprus
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Estonia
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Gibraltar
  • Greece
  • Guernsey
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • Isle of Man
  • Italy
  • Jersey
  • Latvia
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Malta
  • Netherlands
  • Norway
  • Poland
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • Spain†
  • Portugal
  • Republic of Ireland
  • Romania
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland

† Includes the Canary Islands (Tenerife, Fuerteventura, Gran Canaria, Lanzarote) and the Balearic Islands (Majorca, Minorca, Ibiza, Formentera).

Asia & Middle East:

  • Hong Kong
  • Indonesia
  • Israel
  • Macau
  • Singapore
  • Sri Lanka
  • Vietnam

North America:

  • United States of America

Central & South America:

  • Brazil
  • Chile
  • Colombia
  • Costa Rica
  • El Salvador
  • Guatemala
  • Nicaragua
  • Panama
  • Peru
  • Uruguay


  • Australia
  • New Zealand

If you previously signed up to an Essential Pay Monthly plan between July 2016 and September 2018, you’ll only have the Go Roam in Europe offer included on your plan. All new plans taken out since September 2018 will give you access to the full Go Roam Around The World with all of the countries listed above.

You can access the Go Roam Around The World offer on Three’s SIM-only deals, Pay Monthly contracts and Pay As You Go plans.

Plans with Go Roam

The easiest way to get access to the Go Roam offer is by getting a SIM-only deal from Three.

You’ll get access to the complete Go Roam Around The World offer on all of the following SIM cards from £5/month:

12 months
12 months
12 months
12 months
12 months
12 months
12 months

If you’re looking for a shorter one-month contract, you can get a one-month rolling SIM card from £16/month. Alternatively, there is also a selection of 24-month SIM cards with the first 6 months half price.

See all Three SIM-only deals →

All of Three’s SIM-only deals include 5G at no extra cost, along with personal hotspot usage in Europe.

In our opinion, the inclusion of Go Roam on all of Three’s SIM-only plans is a significant benefit compared to other UK mobile networks. Other major networks like EE and Vodafone have announced that they’ll start charging for international roaming in Europe during 2022 (except from on their most expensive plans).

International Coverage

In most Go Roam countries, Three now offers 3G and 4G coverage when roaming. This is provided by a number of local partner mobile networks. Three does not offer any 5G roaming at present.

Unfortunately, Three stopped publishing the full list of their partner mobile networks during 2020. The following table shows their international coverage as published in 2020, but things may have changed since then:

Country Roaming Partners Speed Check Coverage
Australia Optus
Vodafone Hutchison Australia
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Australia
Austria Hutchison Drei Austria 2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Austria
Belgium Proximus 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Belgium
Brazil Vivo 2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Brazil
Bulgaria Globul
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Bulgaria
Chile Claro
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Chile
Colombia Movistar
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Colombia
Costa Rica Claro
Kolbi ICE
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Costa Rica
Croatia A1 Croatia
Hrvatski Telekom
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Croatia
Cyprus Cyta Vodafone
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Cyprus
Czech Republic T-Mobile CZ
Telefonica O2
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Czech Republic
Denmark 3 Denmark
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Denmark
Estonia Elisa
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Estonia
El Salvador Claro
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in El Salvador
Finland Ålands Mobiltelefon
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Finland
France Bouygues
Free Mobile
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in France
Germany O2 Germany
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Germany
Gibraltar GIBTEL 2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Gibraltar
Greece Cosmote
Wind Hellas
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Greece
Guatemala Tigo
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Guatemala
Guernsey Sure 2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Guernsey
Hong Kong 3 Hong Kong 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Hong Kong
Hungary T-Mobile (Westel)
2G & 3G Check Coverage in Hungary
Iceland Nova
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Iceland
Indonesia 3 Indonesia
XL Axiata
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Indonesia
Ireland 3 Ireland
O2 Ireland
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Ireland
Isle of Man Manx Telecom
2G & 3G Check Coverage in Isle of Man
Israel Orange
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Israel
Italy 3 Italy
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Italy
Jersey Airtel Jersey
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Jersey
Latvia Bite
2G & 3G Check Coverage in Latvia
Liechtenstein Salt 2G & 3G Check Coverage in Liechtenstein
Lithuania Tele2
2G & 3G Check Coverage in Lithuania
Luxembourg Orange
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Luxembourg
Macau 3 Macau 2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Macau
Malta GO Mobile
Vodafone Malta
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Malta
Netherlands KPN Mobile
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Netherlands
New Zealand 2degrees
2G & 3G Check Coverage in New Zealand
Norway Telia
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Norway
Norway Telia
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Norway
Panama Claro
2G & 3G Check Coverage in Panama
Peru Claro
2G & 3G Check Coverage in Peru
Poland Play
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Poland
Portugal MEO
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Portugal
Puerto Rico AT&T
T-Mobile USA
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Puerto Rico
Romania Cosmote 2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Romania
Singapore M1
Singtel Mobile
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Singapore
Slovakia O2 Slovakia
Slovak Telecom
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Slovakia
Slovenia Mobitel
Tusmobil Slovenia
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Slovenia
Spain Movistar
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Spain
Sri Lanka Etisalat
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Sri Lanka
Sweden 3 Sweden 2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Sweden
Switzerland Salt
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Switzerland
United States AT&T
T-Mobile USA
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in United States
Uruguay Telefonica 2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Uruguay
US Virgin Islands AT&T (Cingular) 2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in US Virgin Islands
Vietnam Vietnamobile Vietnam
Viettel Mobile
2G, 3G & 4G Check Coverage in Vietnam

For more information, you can enter the name of the country you’re visiting on Three’s website.

Limitations & Restrictions

With the Go Roam offer on Three, there are five key limitations worth being aware:

  1. Tethering and personal hotspot are chargeable when you’re travelling to a Go Roam country outside Europe.
  2. Data usage is limited to 12GB per month in Go Roam countries.
  3. Inclusive minutes and texts can only be used for contacting UK-based numbers, as well as EU-based numbers when travelling in Europe.
  4. There are restrictions in place so you can’t use the service exclusively abroad.
  5. Although 4G coverage is now available in most Go Roam countries, download speeds might be slower when you’re abroad.

In the following section, we’ll discuss each of these limitations in more detail.

Tethering Is Chargeable Outside Europe

Inside the UK, you’ll normally be able to use tethering or personal hotspot to share your data allowance with other devices (e.g. with your laptop or tablet).

If you’re travelling to a Go Roam country in Europe, tethering can be used as normal when you’re abroad. You can tether from your normal plan allowance, or at a rate of 1p/MB or 5p/MB when your allowances run out (the out-of-allowance charge will depend on your plan).

If you’re travelling outside Europe, tethering is prohibited unless you buy a £5 per day Data Passport add-on. There’s more information about this on Three’s website:

You can’t use your phone as a Personal Hotspot in our Go Roam Around the World destinations.

If you want to use your device as a Personal Hotspot [in a Go Roam Around The World destination] or to stream or connect to Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) at faster speeds, you can choose to purchase our Data Passport, which gives you unlimited, unrestricted data to use until midnight (UK time) on the day of purchase for just £5. You can use this unlimited data allowance to tether or stream to your heart’s content and connect to VPNs.

Fair Usage Policy

When using the Go Roam service, there’s a fair usage limit of 12GB per month.

If you use more than 12GB of data in Europe during one month, you’ll be surcharged for further usage at the rate of 0.3p/MB. You’ll never lose access to your mobile phone service for exceeding the fair usage policy in Europe.

When using Go Roam outside Europe, there’s a fair usage policy of 3000 minutes, 5000 texts and 12GB of data. Outside Europe, this is a hard limit. If you exceed it, your data usage abroad will be blocked for the rest of the monthly billing period. If you exceed the fair usage limit outside Europe twice in a rolling 12-month period, Three says they reserve the right to suspend international roaming on your account.

International Calls Are Not Included

When you’re abroad, your allowance of UK minutes and texts can only be used for contacting other UK-based phone numbers (phone numbers beginning with +44). This means you can call and text your friends and family back home in the UK, as well as fellow holidaymakers who are also using a UK-based SIM card.

If you’re using Go Roam in Europe, Three will also allow you to call and text other phone numbers based in the EU using your allowance. This might include phone calls to your hotel, a local taxi firm or more.

If you’re using the Go Roam offer outside Europe, you’ll only be able to call and text other UK-based phone numbers with your allowance. This doesn’t include phone numbers in the country you’re travelling in. For instance, if you’re travelling in the US, you won’t be able to call US-based phone numbers with your allowance. Instead, you’ll need to pay up to £1.40 per minute when you make these calls.

Living Abroad

The Go Roam offer is designed for UK residents who are making a trip abroad. It isn’t designed for people who live abroad for an extended amount of time.

When using Go Roam in Europe, Three will look at the balance of your usage over a rolling 4-month period. If over the 4-month period, you spend the majority of your time abroad in Europe and if you also use more of your allowances there than you do in the UK, Three reserves the right to add a surcharge to your plan. The surcharge is up to 3p/minute, 1p/text and 0.3p/MB (or 10p/minute, 10p/text and 5p/MB for New Pay As You Go customers). You’ll be given at least two weeks notice before a surcharge is applied to your account.

When using Go Roam outside of Europe, a different limit applies to your usage there. Here, Three will look at the number of “complete months” you spend abroad in a Go Roam Around The World country. By complete months, this means you’ve spent the entire month abroad in a Go Roam country. If you’ve also used your phone inside the UK or in a non-Go Roam country, it will not count as a complete month towards your limit. Customers mustn’t spend more than two complete months abroad per year in a Go Roam Around The World country:

Go Roam is intended for our UK customers who are UK residents or have stable links with the UK (e.g. full-time employment or study in the UK) who are visiting one of the destinations for short periods, like holidays or business trips. It isn’t designed for people who live abroad or stay for extended periods.

If you roam exclusively in a Go Roam Around the World destination for any two complete months in a rolling 12-month period, we may suspend International Roaming on your account, meaning you will no longer be able to use your phone or device abroad. Of course, we will let you know in advance if this is likely to happen. If you spend a full month abroad but some of that time is spent in a destination that isn’t included in Go Roam, the restriction won’t apply.

These restrictions are listed in Three’s price guide.

Data Speeds

Historically, Three has only provided 2G and 3G coverage to customers who are roaming abroad. However, this has recently changed and 4G coverage is now available in the majority of Go Roam destinations.

Despite the ability to access 4G coverage, download speeds may still be slower when you’re abroad in a Go Roam country. For instance, while streaming and Virtual Private Network (VPN) services should work when abroad, the experience may be “slower” than it is in the UK:

You’ll be able to stream and connect to Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) while in a Feel At Home destination, but both of these may be slower than they are in the UK.

If you’d like to access faster download speeds when abroad, you can buy Three’s £5/day Data Passport add-on. This gives you unrestricted speeds for streaming and VPN, along with the ability to use your phone as a Personal Hotspot outside Europe.

Data Passport

If you have a Three Pay Monthly plan, you can buy a £5 per day Data Passport add-on. This gives you unlimited data for use in 89 destinations without any restrictions on download speed or tethering.

There are three reasons why you might want to buy a Data Passport add-on:

  1. Data Passport can be used in 89 destinations, including a number of countries that are not included in Go Roam. The £5 per day Data Passport add-on gives you unlimited data for use in the following countries, in addition to the Go Roam countries:

    Data Passport Countries (£5 per day):

    • Azerbaijan
    • Canada
    • Malaysia
    • Mexico
    • Moldova
    • Myanmar
    • Pakistan
    • Russia
    • Saudi Arabia
    • South Korea
    • Taiwan
    • Thailand
    • Tunisia
    • Turkey
    • United Arab Emirates

    plus all Go Roam countries and the UK

  2. Data Passport gives you unrestricted usage in Go Roam destinations. If you add the £5/day Data Passport add-on, you’ll get unrestricted speeds for streaming video and music when abroad. You’ll also be able to use your phone as a hotspot and will be able to connect to Virtual Private Networks (VPNs).
  3. Data Passport can be used when you run out of data on your plan. You can buy a Data Passport for additional data if you run out of your core data allowances when abroad.

For more information about Data Passport, see Three’s official website.

Keeping Your Phone Number

If you’re switching to Three so you can take advantage of their Go Roam offer, it’s a straightforward process to keep your current phone number.

Start by asking your current mobile network to provide you with a PAC Code. You can get one through your mobile network’s website or app, or by texting PAC to 65075. Once you have it, you can order your new phone or SIM card from Three’s website.

Once your new phone or SIM card arrives, fill out this form on Three’s website. After you submit your PAC Code, Three will schedule the transfer of your phone number (normally for the next working day). In the meantime, you’ll continue receiving a service from your old mobile network.

For step-by-step instructions on transferring a phone number to Three, please select your current mobile network:

PAC Code Finder: Transfer Your Phone Number to Three

Select your current mobile network:

  More Options

If you’re only using Three on a temporary basis, it’s best to set up call forwarding from your current mobile network instead. If you transfer your phone number using a PAC Code, the account on your old mobile network will be closed automatically.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which countries are included in Three’s Go Roam offer?
The Go Roam offer covers 71 destinations including most European countries along with the USA, Australia, Brazil, New Zealand, Singapore and more. You can check the international roaming rates for the country you’re visiting.
Can I use Go Roam on Three Pay As You Go?
Yes. The Go Roam offer is available to customers on Three Pay As You Go. This means, for instance, you can pick up a £15 Pay As You Go SIM card with unlimited minutes, unlimited texts and 10GB of data included. You’ll be able to use the allowances, both in the UK and abroad in any Go Roam destination.
What are the fair usage limits on Go Roam from Three?
When travelling to a Go Roam country, there’s a fair usage limit of 12GB per month. After this, you’ll be surcharged at 0.3p/MB in Europe. When travelling to a Go Roam country outside Europe, your data connection will be suspended if you use more than 12GB of data.
Will I get 4G speeds when travelling abroad?
It’s now possible to access 4G coverage in most Go Roam countries. However, download speeds may still be slower than they are in the UK (for instance, when streaming or using VPN).
What is the Data Passport offer?
The £5/day Data Passport offer gives you unrestricted speeds for streaming and VPN. It also allows you to use personal hotspot outside of Europe and covers some additional destinations such as Canada, Mexico, Russia, Thailand and Turkey.
What’s the coverage like when abroad in other countries?
Three provides an online coverage checker for every country that’s included in the Go Roam offer. Simply choose the country you’re visiting to see the coverage map for where you’re going.
Can I benefit from Go Roam if I’m not a Three customer?
Yes. Simply order a Three Pay As You Go SIM card and you’ll be able to use the Go Roam offer. We’d normally recommend the £15 Pay As You Go SIM card which gives you unlimited minutes, unlimited texts and 10GB of data. Alternatively, you can get a SIM-only deal for as little as £5/month.

More Information

For more information about the Go Roam offer, please see Three’s official website. You may also find it useful to consult their international roaming price guide.

Your Comments 568 so far

We'd love to hear your thoughts and any questions you may have. So far, we've received 568 comments from readers. You can add your own comment here.

  • Three roaming speeds are awful. You will get super slow data connection and throttled data service to a barely usable level on all three Go Roam partner networks.
    For example Yoigo in spain, or Wind italy – can just about use whatsapp for chats, no chance to stream or even load most websites – it just sits spinning. Same on most roaming networks that are advertised as ‘free’ but in reality are unusable.
    When I complain to three they said – ‘we are unable to control roaming networks’ which is just nonsense. They have setup a throttled and barely usable service level in the interconnect agreements with these networks, so customers think you have a roaming service but its worthless..

  • Hi Ken, I wonder how a “complete” month is counted. If I don’t stay exclusively in a Go Roam country for a complete month, then I am not caught by the restriction of “over-staying” abroad. For example, staying in the US for 3 weeks, visiting Canada (a non-Go Roam country) for 1 week, and then visiting the US again for 10 days before returning to the UK. Is this not considered as a “complete month”, even though I have been in the US for 31 days, and in fact outside the UK for more than 5 weeks in total?

    • Hi Lewis,
      Thanks for your comment. Sadly, as far as I know, Three have never fully defined what they mean by a ‘complete month’ (i.e. whether it’s based on 30 consecutive days, or based on calendar months instead). However, spending some time in a non-Go Roam country mean you’re not spending the ‘complete month’ in a Go Roam country, with either definition. Therefore, based on what you’re saying about spending 3 weeks in the USA, followed by 10 days in Canada, this shouldn’t count as a complete month under either definition (even if you were to later return to the USA).
      Hope this helps,

  • Hi Ken, when staying abroad for too long and the Go Roam service is suspended, do I still RECEIVE calls and texts from the UK for free? By then, should my friend making the calls or sending the texts to me replace the first 0 in my mobile number with +44?

    • Hi Lewis,
      Thanks for your comment. Unfortunately, your international roaming service will be suspended entirely so you won’t be able to make or receive any phone calls or text messages.

      • hi Ken, I am in the same situation and got the text regarding suspension a few days ago from Three.

        Due to covid19, I dont plan to return to the UK in next few months. If I only need a sim to receive text, which supplier would you recommend? I have a giffgaff sim card here. Do you think I can shift from Three to giffgaff when I am outside UK?

        • Hi KK,
          Thanks for your comment. I’d recommend getting in touch with Three and explaining your situation with regards to Covid-19. They might be able to take account of this. If not, you could possibly switch to another provider. However, you should typically be inside the UK when you go through a PAC Code transfer. Unfortunately, I haven’t tried it whe abroad so I wouldn’t be able to advise whether this is technically feasible, though most providers do say you’ll need to be inside the UK.

  • Hi Ken, so if I exceed the 4months abroad period and a surcharge is applied; does it apply to the entire year or when would it be resolved so I could go abroad again for longer? A week only? Thanks

    • Hi there,
      Three will notify you by text message in advance of a surcharge being applied for European roaming. You should then be able to get the surcharged removed as soon as you meet the requirements for spending more time in the UK (i.e. no need to wait for an entire year).

  • Cant believe Turkey is not included in Go Roam list of countries given how many UK families with kids etc holiday there every year

  • i bought a three sim with recharge of 35 i m in go roam destination Denmark and my 20 GB of go roam plan has now i want to topup the data unlimited data pack of go roam .so what are the plans to topup the data pack.

    • Hi there,
      Thanks for your comment. Unfortunately, I’m not aware of the yearly prepaid plan – do you have any more information about this? The normal way to check your account balance and expiration would be through the My3 website or app, so I presume it’s probably the same for this plan?

  • Eric Gore-Browne said:

    I have a newish Moto G7 on a ‘3’ monthly payment package.
    When landing in the States, the phone switched to AT&T.
    I tried to ring the hotel only to be told, ‘Sorry, you have not been given access to this service.’
    Then tried to ring the house where we are staying and again, told ‘Number called not recognised.’ I have stayed at this location and the number i dialled was correct.
    I contacted 3 and spent almost an hour on a Chat line without getting to the bottom of this issue. I was then transferred to another where I was 9th in line – when I got to number 6 I was cut off.
    My calls to the UK were connected.
    When back in the UK, will have to visit the 3 shop and get this issue sorted.

    • Hi Eric,
      Thanks for your comment. Regarding the phone calls you made to a US phone number:
      1) Did you dial them with the +1 international prefix? I believe a Three SIM card that is roaming in the USA will require you to dial an international prefix for US numbers.
      2) Do you have bill capping on your plan? If so, this may prevent you from calling a US-based phone number, as those calls will cost an additional £1.40/minute. You can use something like Google Voice to sidestep these charges.

  • Current feedback from early 2020. While I appreciate that the information and subsequent recommendations on this page may have been relevant a few years ago, my experience of buying a 3 Sim here in the UK to use for data roaming in the United States a few weeks ago, was abysmal.

    I purchased their 12gb package and found upon arrival in the U.S that the signal even at JFK airport in New York was virtually non existent, and was on / off for service moving a few metres to a few metres.

    Even factoring in that sometimes it can take hours to align with local networks and deliver proper service when appearing on the other side of the world, I tried my best while at the airport for ages finding there was not even enough strength in JFK to order an Uber to get from the airport without standing in such a precarious position so that the entire signal would not cut off entirely with no service.

    I then tried in Chicago the next day, Phoenix later that day and for the next three weeks when relatively static in one area of state to allow for increased depth of localisation, found that the limit of signal strength this package provided was still only ‘E’ on the phone over 3 weeks, which according to web research is the weakest possible signal you can get nowadays, being something akin to barely 2.5g.

    I had in advance accepted that due to my phone (Moto G3 2015) I would only get 3g over there on roaming, and accepted that, but this never reached 3g the entire time of stay in Arizona, and even in the big cities like New York, Chicago, Phoenix and L.A where there is no excuse for topography issues.

    All it was good for was text app incoming / outgoing message on apps like Line, barely. Beyond that, no chance even in population centres for things like YouTube and low signal webcasts. I took screenshots to prove this and also to prove that despite purchasing a 12gb package, all I ended up using over three weeks was less than 812mb of data of that 12gb paid for, because there was no chance of a signal good enough to employ such data allowance. It just wasn’t strong enough of a signal to provide for more.

    Occasional reports here in the past reported similar, one regarding the U.S in particular was noticed, but being an optimist overall I took the gamble that this may have been down to something else, but it failed spectacularly beneath my expectations. I highly do NOT recommend paying for this SIM to use in the U.S, based on my experience. If it was 3g in the past, it certainly is not now. I was in contact with the 3 sim techs based in India (I believe) through the 3 chat support via free airport WiFi in Chicago from day two, spending over an hour or so with them while waiting for my next flight, and while happy to help, they were in denial of the reality I was actually finding on the ground. It only ever linked up with T-Mobile despite their claims that on network settings I had the means with this SIM to choose between that or AT&T for different signal strengths. I was in major centres at the time, but these people refused to acknowledge the reality I was finding, instead offering solutions I kept informing them I had already tried within the phone settings, something familiar to me after having to set up SIMs in areas like Japan.

    It was escalated to floor manager level just before my flight left, but there was no resolution. I was told a case number could be referenced so that all this would not have to start from scratch, but in reality on a later day the whole thing resumed from the beginning and eventually I gave up, and ultimately the frustrating solution was to a buy a local unlocked smartphone there, AT&T sim and data package to deliver the services that I required during travel. If the recommendation about using 3 for data roaming in the U.S was relevant once, it is no longer the case now, either because of technical changes on the U.S side or because (as some believe), 3 has throttled this because it was too damn popular.

    What I will say is this, maybe with a phone brought out in the last year or so you may have a different experience but that gamble is entirely up to you. I offer my feedback in the hope that nobody else will be ripped off (as I see it) paying for 12gb of data when there is no chance you will get that service.

    • It’s a shame to hear that! My experience was the opposite (refer to my previous comments posted last year). I (as well as my fiance) had no reception issues (4g most of the time, but did drop to 3g when driving through the Mojave desert to Vegas) in Philadelphia, San Francisco, Vegas and LA. I used an iPhone SE, she used a Samsung J5 2017.

      The only thing I wasn’t too pleased about (but I think all companies do it) was that all internet traffic was routed back to the UK, so speeds weren’t the fastest (even on 4g), but good enough for google maps/post photos of your trip/general web browsing (think I was around the 10mbps mark according to speedtest). Certainly better than my experience in 2017 with 3 and Australia (abysmally wouldn’t do that experience justice!).

  • Hello Ken, excellent work you provide here. Much appreciated!
    I am curious to know: how did you know the roaming partners for each of the countries? For example, for Norway you list Telenor and Telia as roaming partners for Three.
    The reason I’m curious is because in Norway I want to be able to roam on the Telenor network due to their superior coverage in the remote arctic regions.
    I believe your roaming partner list is verified and reliable, but just wanted to make sure.
    Keep up the great work!

    • Hi Moonhwa,
      Thanks for your comment. Three used to publish the full list of roaming partners on their website. Alas, the official list of roaming partners has now disappeared from their website. Our list is partly taken from the list they used to share and partly from the international coverage checker on their website. Do be warned that roaming partners can change from time to time, so be prepared to buy a Telenor SIM card if you find it isn’t working when you arrive in Norway!

  • Fiona Sommerville said:

    Can I just check that if I am on a pay monthly sim advanced contract whether I will be able to use the go roam in a trip to Israel. Thanks

    • Hi Fiona,
      Thanks for your comment. Yes, a Pay Monthly Advanced SIM card will give you access to the Go Roam offer in Israel. The only plans excluded from this are the Essential price plans which they’ve now stopped selling.
      Hope this helps,

  • Joseph Sanderson said:

    Can you advise why you have not add any new destinations since Oct 2018. Is the plan to make more money from customers by selling passport at 5 pounds a day instead. ??

    • Hi Joseph,
      Great question! I’ve asked this question myself to Three many times. The only explanation I’ve had is that they want to cover the countries people visit most frequently, which they argue Go Roam already does. I do, however, agree with you and would love to see additional destinations added to Go Roam.

  • Hi Ken, a challenge for you!!!

    We are off on a cruise in February/March taking in the following countries, Jamaica, Columbia*, Costa Rica*, Panama*, Honduras, Guatemala*, Belize and Mexico.

    I can see that 3 cover the starred destinations so might be a good shout for those, but I’m struggling to find anyone who covers the others (who I’ve heard of!). Any ideas on a reliable “global sim” card to cover the remaining destinations (or even just Jamaica as we are there for 4 days)?

    Secondly, Three have two PAYG SIM offerings a phone version and a mobile broadband version. The latter is MUCH more expensive yet gives less data (and no minutes/texts)… I though net neutrality prevented this and therefore am wondering is the phone SIM will work in my Mifi device and they are just keeping it quiet?!

    P.S. I’m only talking about in port connections I realise that I’m limited to the ships Wifi when at sea.

    • Hi Steve,
      Thanks for your comment. To answer your questions in turn:
      1. Sadly, there are no mobile networks covering all of those countries at no extra charge. The closest you’re able to get is probably Vodafone’s Global Roaming service where you’ll pay £6/day to use your phone in all of those countries with the exception of Belize. Note, this is only available on a Pay Monthly contract (though you can, of course, combine it with a Three SIM card so it’s only necessary to pay the £6/day charge in countries that Three doesn’t cover). You can get a Vodafone Pay Monthly SIM card from £11/month.
      2. You’re right. In the UK, it’s now possible to use a smartphone SIM card in a mobile broadband device. I think the separate data-only plans are a hangover from before this rule was introduced. They’re obviously still available, but if you’re “in the know”, you’ll normally choose the cheaper mobile phone version. One thing to note, however, when using Go Roam outside of Europe is that tethering and personal hotspot usage is not permitted. This rule definitely applies to the mobile phone SIM cards (though presumably not to the mobile broadband plans, as they’re designed in the first place to be used in a MiFi).
      Hope this helps,

      • Thanks Ken, not sure I understand your last point, would a MiFi with a single phone attached to it class as tethering (I’m guessing it would as the phone would be attached to the MiFi Wifi cloud).

        • Hi Steve,
          Thanks for your comment. I believe having a mobile phone connected to a MiFi would class as “tethering”, so it technically wouldn’t be permitted on a smartphone plan when you’re travelling outside Europe. You could argue the same is true when using a mobile broadband plan, albeit, the Go Roam offer is supposed to work with Mi-Fi plans so it’d be more difficult for them to argue that this isn’t permitted…

  • Hi
    Off to the Caribbean on Sunday two week cruise and Three have nothing to offer me. Going to buy a Transatel data sim.
    Thanks Three, for nothing.

  • Please can you confirm if a Three Pay As You Go Mobile Broadband dongle would work in Almeria Spain, and what is the connection quality like. Or if you can recommend any better/cheaper option for a 2 month stay.

    Thank You in advance.

  • Good day, I bought sim card with 36 gb data of internet, which is available for 2 years, but if I spend let say in 1 year all internet, how can I charge my account for same data ? Tks in advance.

    • Hi Polly,
      Thanks for your comment. Sadly, I don’t think there are very many good roaming deals for Bahamas and the Caribbean. You’re probably going to be best off getting a local SIM card from one of the mobile networks there and placing it inside an unlocked smartphone.

  • So if Im in the USA and want to for example ring restaurants/theaters etc what do i need to keep costs down because my understanding is that that this is an extra charge as its not a uk based number

    • Hi Dan,
      That’s correct – if you’re using a SIM card from Three, it won’t include phone calls to a US-based phone number. You can side-step the charges they make by using something like Skype or the Google Voice app (the latter offers free phone calls to US phone numbers, over your mobile data connection).
      Hope this helps,

  • Hi Ken
    I’ve just bought a PAYG 20 from Three as I shall be in the US for a couple of weeks. A couple of queries
    1. I see from previous comments that travelling close to the border either with Mexico or Canada risks the phone connecting up with these non go roam country networks. I understand I can avoid this by stopping auto connect and choosing the provider manually. Is it possible to tell from the list of available providers which is US and which Mexican for example as I believe A&T operate in both countries
    2. How would Three charge me anyway as I’m on a 30 day PAYG and haven’t (Yet!) registered my credit card with My Three for top up purposes
    3. Also, do you still have to use just the +44 prefix for UK calls? I saw someone else suggesting you also add 011?

    • Hi Caro,
      Thanks for your comment. To answer each of your questions in turn:
      1. You’re right – there could be accidental roaming in Mexico or Canada if you go very close to the border. Normally, however, you will need to go very close to the border so it’s probably nothing to worry about unless you’re actually planning to do this! With regards to AT&T, the network name will appear differently on your phone if you’re connected to the Mexican network.
      2. As you’re a Pay As You Go customer, Three can only charge you for additional services through your credit. If you’re topping up by £20 and buying a £20 bundle, there will be no Pay As You Go credit remaining on your account and you therefore won’t be able to incur accidental charges.
      3. You can simply use the +44 prefix when you’re calling the UK – there’s no need to add 011 at the start.
      Hope this helps!

      • Hi Ken
        I really appreciate your help and have learned so much from reading the guidance on your site. I would never have known about the Three Go Roam to the US had I not read about it on your website so many thanks

  • Hi guys,
    Has the 4G coverage in Europe with three mobile go roam increased yet or is it still only about a couple of countries?

    • Hi Clive,
      That’s a very good question. I can’t see Kosovo listed as a roaming destination on Three’s website so I assume the answer to this is probably not. It might, however, be worth double-checking directly with Three on 333.

  • Are the 3 mobile PAYG sim 4G compatible? So I would get 4G in the USA? Also, do you know if there’s a way of finding out what network you would use as I assume you just roam onto T-Mobile or AT&T.

    • Hi Oli,
      Thanks for your comment. Until recently, Three didn’t offer any 4G roaming in the USA. However, I believe this is now available. With regards to the network your phone will connect to, this will be chosen automatically based on signal strength. You should be able to see the name of the network you’re connected to on your phone.

    • Although in the USA Three will often display 4G or H (3G HSDPA), be aware the actual speeds you will experience are more akin to 2G. This has been a recurrent issue for years and sadly has shown no signs of changing.

      • Indeed, exactly my experience recently (Jan 2020), though what it only ever showed was E wherever I was, including major population centres / cities, E being the symbol for the weakest signal you can get nowadays, akin to something like 2-2.5g. It was a waste of money buying a 12gb package.

    • Hi Dalerine,
      Thanks for your comment. It’s possible to use your mobile phone at no extra charge in Sri Lanka as part of Three’s Go Roam offer.
      Hope this helps,

    • Hi Steven,
      Thanks for your comment. It might be worth contacting Three to get clarification on their fair use limit of 2 complete months per year. At 75 days, you’re definitely pushing close to that limit (if not exceeding it).

  • About the meaning of “2 complete months”: I will be on a 6-month secondment to Hong Kong, and I am considering using GoRoam rather than getting a local contract so that people can reach me by my current number. Is there anyway I can get around the “complete month” problem such as turning off the roaming on weekends (when I am not expecting calls) or using them when I travel to Taiwan (which is part of my job)?

    • Hi Alex,
      Thanks for your comment. Sadly, I don’t think turning your phone off at the weekend will allow you to get around this limit. What they’re really looking at is the countries in which you use the mobile phone in a given month (switching it off at the weekend makes no difference to this). However, I think using your mobile phone in Taiwan should be fine and should mean that wouldn’t count as a complete month towards your limit. This is something worth verifying directly with Three, however.
      Hope this helps,

  • Hi i already reach my limit of 15 gb of data last month but now that is spetember it seems it still not resets plus i still have 21gb of data that can be used
    How am i suppose to consume it all if it also allows me only to used 15gb
    I subscribe to 36gb of data….
    Im using payg

    • Hi Migs,
      Thanks for your comment. Unfortunately, it’s only possible to use up to 15GB of your data allowance abroad through the Go Roam offer on Pay As You Go (the full 36GB allowance is only for use in the UK).

    • Hi Sam,
      Thanks for your comment. The limit applies per SIM card per month, so doesn’t reset when you go to another country.
      Hope this helps,

  • Hello

    So thinking of getting a couple of Go Roam PAYG sims for when we go to US in a big group. Would we be charged if we called each other while in the US if we are all using Go Roaming?



    • Hi Ryan,
      Thanks for your comment. Nope! So long as you’re all using SIM cards from Three, you’ll be able to call and text each other using your normal inclusive allowances 🙂
      Hope this helps,

  • Hi all,

    I posted a comment on this page on 6th October 2015, when I was having trouble making outgoing calls in SF.

    After much back and forth with 3 support, I was told that in order to make outgoing calls to uk based numbers, we had to prefix all our numbers with 011

    So this looked like the following when calling the UK


    It worked immediately, but I cannot find any reference to it anywhere.

    I returned to the US in May 2018, and found that the prefix was still required, and still worked.

    So if you’re in the US, stick 011 in front of your numbers and enjoy!!

  • Hi,

    When I checked Three’s website in January 2019 Bolivia and Ecuador were on Three’s Go Roam list but checking today and they’re not :(. I even found an old Whatsapp confirming they were on the list then.

    I’m guessing the Date Stamp of October 2018 was when this article was originally written but you’ve since updated it. It would be useful to note this.

    Any idea why these countries are now missing?

    I was going to use Three PAYG in these countries but now of the five Latin American countries I’m visiting only Peru is still on the list :(.


    • Hi Bradavon,
      Thanks for your comment. Exactly, the date stamp is when the article was written. However, the list of countries hasn’t been updated since that date. Based on a quick search around, I don’t think I can find any record of Bolivia and Ecuador being included in the Go Roam offer. Was the WhatsApp message that you found sent by Three, or did it contain information from a different provider?

  • I am on the advanced plan and living in Chile. Can my friends and family call me without being charged on their side or will it still cost them to call me?

    • Hi Reeva,
      Yes – if you’re using a UK-based phone number, they’ll just pay the normal rates for calling a UK number. Normally, all of the additional costs are incurred by the person who goes abroad (in this case, there are no additional fees if you’re using the Go Roam offer).

    • Hi Roshan,
      Thanks for your comment. Unfortunately, Three’s Go Roam offer doesn’t cover usage in Canada. Instead, you’ll need to pay £6/MB (£6,000 per gigabyte). Therefore, I probably wouldn’t recommend using the Three network whilst you’re in Canada unless you pay an absolute fortune!

  • Hi ,can I use my pay as you go 20 plus 12gb plus unlimited texts and minutes in Qatar for a couple of day days stop over on way to Australia from uk

    • Hi John,
      Thanks for your comment. Sadly, Qatar isn’t included within Three’s Go Roam offer. If you’d like to use your mobile phone when you’re there, you’ll pay a mammoth £6/MB (that’s £6,000 per gigabyte). I’d say it’s therefore best to have your phone switched off (or at least data roaming switched off) until you arrive in Australia.

  • Hi I am going to usa for 2 weeks I have a vodaphone pay monthly deal if I divert my vodaphone number to my three pay as you go sim will vodaphone charge me a roaming fee for answering calls from other uk based phone numbers

    • Hi Stuart,
      Thanks for your comment. Vodafone shouldn’t charge you a roaming fee, providing your Vodafone SIM card remains in the UK. If you must bring the SIM card with you to the US, you’ll need to make sure it doesn’t connect to a US network. As soon as the Vodafone SIM card connects to a US mobile network, you’ll be charged international roaming rates for the call forwarding service. This fee doesn’t apply as long as the SIM card was “last seen” in the UK.
      Hope this helps,

  • Hi. I’m currently working in a cruiseship based in Europe. I want to purchase the one that’s worth 35 Euros for unlimited internet but I don’t quite get the 19gb/month fair usage policy. Does this mean that once I used up all 19gb, I will not have access to internet? So it is not unlimited use then?

    • Hi Lolita,
      Thanks for your comment. Firstly, I’d recommend double checking Three’s policy for usage on cruise ships. As cruise ships operate non-terrestrial networks, usage of your mobile phone on a cruise ship isn’t included in Three’s Go Roam offer (but absolutely fine as soon as you arrive on land).
      With regards to the fair usage policy, you’ll only be able to use a certain amount of your allowance abroad (outside the UK). In Europe, you’ll be surcharged once you go over the fair usage limit but will never lose access to your data connection. Outside of Europe, you’ll lose access to your data connection.
      Hope this helps,

  • Hi,
    I have just arrived in USA and had received the standard “Yass, you’ve arrived in the United States. It’s a Go Roam Around the World destination!”. I’ve been using my phone as normal like I do throughout the countries in Europe that are the same, but last night I received multiple messages saying I have been charged for using internet. Saying “Just to let you know you have spent £ 2.5 on Internet Services since 22:56 on 30/07”

    Am I safe to keep using my phone here in the States?

    • Hi Braydon,
      Thanks for your comment. It’s odd that you were charged for using data in the USA, as it should be included as part of the Go Roam offer. Is it possible you were close to an international border (e.g. with Canada or Mexico, where Go Roam doesn’t apply)? If not, it might be worth giving Three a quick call to see why they’ve charge you £2.50.

  • Am currently traveling in Europe can I receive incoming uk calls from uk for free on a GoRoam package in Spain and Portugal

  • Arthur Wright said:

    14/07/2019 My daughter has just landed at LAX and conscribes To 3Mobile in London and signed up fo Go Roaming before she left but is finding she is unable to connect to DATA on the Go Roam Network even though her phone is is indicating that “International roaming is enabled for your plan” anyone be able to help her out on this

  • I am a bit confused about the Three PAYG Sim offers. Are there two offers they have? One is paid and one is free?

    Can I get the benfits of ‘Go Roaming’ on the free Sim? Or do I have to go for one of the bundles?

    I am off to the US later this week and would like interent access (data).

    Do you have a link on your website that shows how to best use/configure a dual sim phone? I am new to the dual sim side of things.

    • Hi Leonard,
      Thanks for your comment. Three has a traditional Pay As You Go service where you pay 3p/minute, 2p/text and 1p/MB. They also have 30 day Pay As You Go bundles where you convert a certain amount of credit into a one-month allowance. See the article here for more background on the two. You can benefit from Go Roam whichever option you go for, but I normally recommend going for a bundle as you’ll get a lot more data for your money (though the traditional Pay As You Go option is also good if you’re a very light user).
      With regards to dual-SIM, there isn’t that much different you need to do. However, there are some complications using Three on some dual-SIM handsets if the second SIM card slot doesn’t support 3G coverage.
      Hope this helps,

  • About that “can’t use the service exclusively abroad” restriction – is anyone aware of some workaround (other than coming to the UK every 2 months…)?
    Maybe some other mobile operator with reasonable roaming costs that definitely allows you to just stay abroad for long periods of time?
    Thanks in advance for any ideas.

  • So having complained to Three about poor roaming data service in Chile, they have given me a £40 bill credit.
    This is appreciated, but does mask the real issue. There seems to be no connection between customer service staff and the network / technical departments. CS admitted they are unable to pass on reports of service issues to anyone who can actually fix it.
    Does anyone have a contact at Three with more direct influence?

  • My needs are slightly different. Although I only visit USA for about six weeks once every year to 18 months I need a US cellphone number that I can use when there. Currently I am using a Cubot Rainbow 3G dual sim phone. One Sim slot is 3UK which I use here in the UK (should work for roaming but failed completely during my last trip). The other slot is a Toggle which was supposed to switch automatically between a number of countries and I pay to keep a US number. This worked great twice but does not work at all now. So far as I can tell the Toggle Sim has become corrupted. Toggle have been aware of this problem for 3 years but won’t do anything about it. Any thoughts on a replacement SIM that I could use when in the USA (Zip 95350) for making and receiving local calls there please?

  • Hi, go roam works seamlessly in Chile and Peru. But the speeds are hopelessly slow.
    It seems that Three limit the bandwidth to less than 0.1mbps – on full 3G signal.. So thats just about enough to load a webpage after 1-2 minutes, or connect to whatsapp but nothing will work fast. no chance of streaming.

    With the £5 a day add on, 4G not available. On 3g the speed improves to 5mb download and 1mb upload, but the ping time is over 500ms (due to data routing thru the UK)
    Not good performance and other networks offer much better roaming data speeds & 4G – three should resolve this urgently especially for £5 /day customers

  • Keith Alston said:

    Vodaphone do not charge extra for Turkey, why can’t 3 do the same? It’s the 2nd most popular tourist resort so your going to lose in the end. I have just bought a voxi card for £10 for 6gb data and unlimited calls, texts and social media access.

    Vodaphone claim to have 72 countries (Inc Turkey…..a holiday hotspot) so 3 are starting to lag behind which is a shame

    • Hi Keith,
      Many thanks for your comment. You’re right: it definitely feels like Three have slowed down on this front. A few years ago, they were really leading the pack in terms of the number of destinations where you could use your phone at no extra cost. Since then, other networks like Vodafone have slowly been catching up in terms of roaming destinations. It’s definitely nice to see Turkey included as a roam-free destination on Vodafone, despite the fact they’re only legally obliged to offer free roaming in EU countries. I suspect the free roaming in Turkey is partly because Vodafone have their own network there so it’ll probably be a lot cheaper for them to offer this compared to other networks!

  • I read with interest your comment about adding Data Passport if you are a Three customer going outside one of their 70 odd roaming countries(currently the highest number of all the networks) BUT IMPORTANT that customers know, they do not allow you to use your data via hotspot when roaming. You can sometimes get around this by using a dedicated hot spot device but if course that then means you can not use you phone for calls or texts..!!! So.. check it out first.

  • John Robinson said:

    What are the APN’s that I need for my hotspot in Germany and Italy. These never seem to be listed in any document I have found so far.

    • Hi John,
      Thanks for your comment. Which mobile network are using? As far as I know, it shouldn’t normally be necessary to change your APN settings when travelling abroad to another country.

    • John Robinson replied:

      I using the three network and as the APN is I ask if the is a problem in Germany and Italy. I think when I was in Italy 2 years ago I had problems connecting.

      • Hi John,
        Thanks for your comment. As far as I know, that should be the correct APN if you’re using a Three UK SIM card. There is no need to change the APN settings when you go abroad 🙂

  • Hi I’ve just purchased the pay as you go unlimited SIM card. We are traveling to the US and want to be able to have data. Even though we have unlimited I believe we only get 12GB do you know if we have to pay for local calls while in America? Thanks

    • Hi Kate,
      Many thanks for your comment. Yes, a fair usage policy of 12GB per month applies when you’re travelling outside Europe (e.g. in the USA). The charges for calling locally are described here (essentially £1.40/minute for calling phone numbers in the USA). You can side-step these charges however by using something like Google Voice or Skype through your data connection.
      Hope this helps,

      • Michael Blake replied:

        I’ve been using Three’s Go Roam for trips to USA for the past few years and it works fine. One tip, my iPhone always seems to like to connect T-Mobile which I’ve found to be a bit hit and miss sometimes; the solution I’ve found is to manually search for and connect to AT&T.

        If you’re still not happy with the performance then T-Mobile USA off a Visitors SIM for $30 to $40 and lasts 30 days, just pop in to any retail shop in a mall etc.

  • Three has really become stingy with their data recently which includes the plans and prices they offer. I’ve been using their go roam data in the US on and off since 2014. Ive always been on an unlimited data plan, I was able to use more than 12GB before, but yet they brag about you being able to use your plan as normal, what made three decide to do this? I can see them further shrinking this usage. The moment another network hops on board with this go roam, I’ll be looking into cancelling my network with three.

    • spanner replied:

      But Three probably offer the largest inclusive data when roaming in the US so I’m not sure what other options you have?

    • Hi CJ,
      Thanks for your comment. Is there a specific part of this service you’re referring to for the HTC U11? The Go Roam service should work on any handset that supports 3G coverage, so the HTC U11 should be fine for this.
      Hope this helps,

  • Hi,I’m going to Germany next week.i got 100GB of data and every thing else unlimited.Do I need to call three services to open Go Roam on my account or is it automatically done.thnx

  • Hi ken

    My daughter will be in the USA for 3 months & wants to use her Three contract there.

    Her month renews on the 18th, she arrives in the USA on the 17th June & will depart on 13th September. If I understand the fair usage rules correctly,17th June won’t count, as she will have used in the uk, 18th June to July is one month, July to August is two months & 18th August to leaving the USA won’t count either, as she will use in uk on return.

    Is this correct? Or is the two complete months enough to have roaming blocked?
    Many thanks

    • Hi Lynn,
      Thanks for your comment. Unfortunately, I’m not 100% sure how Three will calculate usage in this situation! It might be worth contacting their customer services team if you’d like an official answer on this, or making sure a backup SIM card is also available should it be needed.

      • Believe me I’ve tried! Every person gives conflicting information, I don’t think the Three staff have a clue! Thanks for the reply

  • When using Go Roam in Europe, am I allowed to use 19 GB of data per calendar month or per my monthly billing period (ie. if I start my new billing period tomorrow, will my Go Roam usage restart to 19GB)?
    Thank you!

    • Hi Matilda,
      Thanks for your comment and that’s a very good question! Unfortunately, I don’t know exactly how Three measures this. My assumption has always been that it’s 19GB per billing period, but it’s worth double checking this directly with Three if you’d like to find out the finer details of how they calculate the limit.

  • Adil Ramzan said:

    Hi wat the situation with Turkey I am on a sim only deal with everything unlimited

    Wat are the charges for roaming and everything else or can I use my data


    • Hi Adil,
      Sadly, Turkey is not included in the Go Roam offer – check the page here for details about Three’s international roaming rates in Turkey. Data Passport may work out to the best option in Turkey as it gives you unlimited data for £5/day (v.s. Three’s standard roaming rates of £3/MB).

  • hi, has anyone on the PAYG all in one 20 plan (12GB) tried to use the hotspot/tethering function within the EU? Does it work automatically or am I supposed to pay an additional charge to enable the hotspot function? It looks like there are different information posted all over the internet.


    Three has also confirmed that, from December 2018 (or earlier), it will:

    remove any specific tethering or hotspot allowance for new or upgrading customers, to allow for unrestricted tethering (within the UK or EU);
    remove any requirements for customers to purchase a Data Passport to tether when roaming in the EU;
    allow customers on all Advanced Plans to tether without restriction; and

    • Hi Davis,
      Thanks for your comment. You’re right: it’s now possible to tether whilst you’re in Europe using your data allowance at no extra cost. There shouldn’t be any need to pay for a Data Passport. In the past, this policy was different and you’d need to pay extra (and this is still in the case when using your mobile phone in Go Roam countries outside of Europe).
      Hope this helps,

  • Chris Ormonde said:

    While that is a vast list of countries, be aware. You are paying to use the service in the USA however they will charge you 40 quid if you go within 30 miles of Canada, so that rules a lot of US states and cities out. Try and claim it back from them, they will claim you were in Canada.

    Indonesia is another country they allegedly cover. I had signal in Jakarta and Bali, anywhere east of there they laughed and rubbed their hands.

    3 mobile are a bunch of crooks, do not drink the koolaid.

    • Hi Chris,
      Sorry to hear about the problems you’ve encountered using the Go Roam service. You make a really important point that mobile phone signals can sometimes straddle across international borders. This can lead to accidental roaming charges when your phone connects to a network in a different country. Sadly, I don’t think there is a very good workaround for it – the closest one would be changing your phone from automatic to manual network selection. If you were to do this (e.g. manually selecting either AT&T or T-Mobile USA in your phone’s menu), it should prevent it from connecting to any Canadian networks. However, you’ll lose the ability to roam on both networks and you’ll also need to remember to change it back when you return to the UK.

  • Jocelyn McMahon said:

    Hi Ken, we are spending a month in the UK and then three months in Europe. I was planning on getting a Three sim with the £20 all in one bundle for the first month, and purchasing 3 x $20 top up vouchers, before we leave the UK, for our time in Europe to keep it going for the time we will be there. Can you see any problems with this plan with regards to fair use policies etc?

    • Hi Jocelyn,
      Thanks for your comment. I think you should definitely be fine for your first 4-6 weeks travelling in Europe. After this, it will really depend on how Three interprets the restrictions listed here (you’ll also get 2 weeks notice before any surcharges are applied to your account). So unfortunately I don’t have a very clear answer here but you could always try it (and worse case, if they apply a surcharge, you can downgrade to something like the £15 bundle).

  • Hi Ken,

    Just as a heads up Three have changed their roaming partner in pretty much all of South America.
    They now use Movistar, you can no longer connect with either Tigo or Telefonica.
    My most recent visit was this month so it is pretty recent.

    Thanks for the great info

  • GoRoam hopeless in Switzerland.
    I have been GoRoaming for a month in Switzerland Thats unlimited calls and metered data. So far my service has been suspended 5 times each time for making a call for less than 90 mins.
    Each time my service is suspended my phone signal goes to ‘no service’ so i am required to seek another internet source to contact three to reconnect my service. the chat takes an hour as i go through their system.
    Hopeless service. If you wish for a inconvenient and frustrating experience, here it is.

  • Hi there Ken… there is no 4G LTE roaming available in quite a few countries, here is a list I saw recently (this includes USA with at&t) and one of your comments on this page confirms that there was 4G LTE available in US, please verify & publish as this is quite a good development:

    This is the most up to date list I’ve seen (date shown is the date that LTE roaming started):
    Sweden 3 05-09-18
    ROI 3 05-09-18
    Austria 3 05-09-18
    Denmark 3 05-09-18
    Italy WIND/Tre (date unknown, has access to WIND could be due to the merge with access through Tre network)
    UAE Du 26-09-18
    Canada Bell & Telus 04-10-18
    Kuwait Zain 04-10-18
    Thailand AIS 08-10-18
    Seychelles Cable & Wireless 09-10-18
    India – New Delhi Vodafone 09-10-18
    South Africa MTN 12-10-18
    Macau 3 15-10-18
    Anguilla Cable & Wireless 16-10-18
    Cayman Islands Cable & Wireless 16-10-18
    Jamaica Cable & Wireless 16-10-18
    Pakistan Telenor 17-10-18
    Dominica Cable & Wireless 18-10-18
    St Kitts Cable & Wireless 18-10-18
    St Lucia Cable & Wireless 18-10-18
    Russia Vimpelcom 18-10-18
    Russia MTS 22-10-18
    India Bharti 23-10-18
    Turkey Turkcell 18-10-18
    Belize Belize telecom 24-10-18
    Mauritius Orange 29-10-18
    Cyprus MTN 29-10-18
    Azerbaijan Bakcell 30-10-18
    Egypt Etisalat 31-10-18
    Uzbekistan Unitel 01-11-18
    South Korea KT 02-11-18
    Argentina Telefonica 05-11-18
    Saudi Arabia Zain 06-11-18
    Hong Kong Hutch 07-11-18
    Montenegro MTEL 07-11-18
    Bahrain Balteco 07-11-18
    Mauritius Emtel 08-11-18
    Thailand True Move 08-11-18
    Mongolia Unitel 09-11-18
    Mexico Telefonica 09-11-18
    Finland DNA 09-11-18
    Cambodia Smart 12-11-18
    India Vodafone Idea 13-11-18
    Dominican Republic Altice Dominicana 14-11-18
    USA AT&T 16-11-18
    China Unicom 16-11-18
    Morocco Wana 14-11-18
    Saudi Arabia STC 19-11-18
    Bolivia Nuevatel 20-11-18
    India- -Maharashtra & Goa Vodafone 29-11-18
    China China Mobile 30-11-18
    Mexico AT&T 04-12-18
    Malaysia Digi 12-12-18
    Egypt Orange 12-12-18
    Canada Videotron 14-12-18
    Faroe Islands Faroese Telecom 14-12-18
    Japan NTT Docomo INC 21-12-18
    Indonesia Hutchison 03-01-19
    Myanmar MPT 07-01-19
    Morocco Orange 07-01-19

    • Hi Cordy,
      Thanks for your comment, and for sharing this really useful list! Is this a crowdsourced list, or does Three maintain an official list somewhere of their 4G roaming partners? I agree this is exceptionally useful and I’d love to add a link to the list if there is one being maintained 🙂

    • Not surprised to see Singapore and Australia not in those lists – roaming speeds on H+ have been glacially slow, more like 2G EDGE speeds at times!

    • I live in the U.S. and am visiting the UK (naturally, getting 4G speeds with this sim here in the UK). I tested it before my departure from the U.S. and I never got more than 3G (it roamed seamlessly between T-Mobile and AT&T networks depending on which had better reception at my exact location). I live in a large U.S. city.

      • Hi! Just to let you know, you can get 4G coverage in the U.S.A using AT&T’s network. I’m using the £10 payg plan.

        Tested in Philadelphia and in San Francisco. I’ll test in other parts as well (when I get there over the course of my holiday!)

      • Hi!

        You can get 4G in the US using AT&T’s network. I’m using a £10 payg sim; tested and working in Philadelphia and San Francisco.

        Speeds are ok (fast enough to quickly load YouTube, Facebook, Insta etc). Though it does appear traffic is routed back to the UK.

  • Christine Burnham said:

    Hi I’m not quite understanding! Can I call my Mother in the UK for free. I pay £17 per month for my plan with three, and I now live in Spain permanently.
    And what about sending a text, photo and message?
    I am grateful for any advice.

    • Hi Christine,
      Thanks for your comment. Yes, you can use your SIM card in Spain, and you can use your inclusive minutes to call back home to the UK. One thing worth watching out however is the fair usage limit, which may lead to a surcharge being applied to your plan if you spend the majority of your time in Spain. For this reason, it might be better to choose a SIM card from a local Spanish provider assuming you can find one that includes calls back to the UK.

  • Thanks for a useful and well presented site.

    Whilst in the USA (November 2018) I did see 4G access in the Las Vegas area. I was surprised since coverage is only shown as 2G or 3G. Perhaps they are in the process of rolling out 4G?


    • Hi Chris,
      That’s very interesting! I’ve heard that Three are in the process of rolling out 4G roaming, but this hasn’t officially been announced yet. In September 2018, I believe they only had 4G coverage in four countries (Sweden, Denmark, Austria & the Republic of Ireland) but it’s possible they have indeed also been testing it out in the US.
      Out of interest, how did you find the 4G coverage out there and were you able to get reasonable data speeds on it?

      • Christopher Dawson replied:

        Unfortunately I was not there long enough to do any coverage or speed tests.

        Now that I am primed I will check speeds when I find 4G.

        Thanks, Chris.

  • In australia or the us what really kills feel like home is the ridiculous charges for making a call to a local number. This was the reason i quit 3 for ee. They just dont get it .

  • The flagship of extremely poor data roaming…
    I recently changed from Three to EE because of the 4g roaming issues and the difference is incredible!
    I travel a lot in the EU and had been using a Three mobile broadband SIM which is fine in the UK, but as soon as you’re roaming it’s useless.
    At first I just believed it to be normal, which ever network I choose. After a year of struggling every time I went abroad my sister who is with EE came to visit me in Germany and had a super fast connection, which made me look into it a bit more. After finding out that Three is the only UK mobile provider that doesn’t offer 4g roaming it explained it all.
    Germany for example quit expanding there poor 3g network and went straight to expanding the 4G network.
    This means that in rural areas the only choice is 2g or 4g. The 2g network hardly works and if it does it takes ages to load. The 4g network coverage in Germany is excellent, but Three won’t allow it! The same counts in the Czech republic and probably most EU countries.
    I recently ordered an EE SIM card for my last travels and now I can finally “feel at home” with my mobile broadband.
    A friend who came along is with Vodafone and also had an extremely fast connection.
    I’ve started advising people that Three is very good in the UK, but if you ever want to go abroad and have a mobile internet connection forget about them and choose any of the other networks.
    If Three ever allows 4g roaming I would consider using them again, but until then, bye bye Three! Your feel at home is a big false advertising lie!

  • Simon Fellerman said:

    Great article Ken.
    One comment;
    Have their tethering rules in the EU changed? I have never been able to use personal hotspot in Spain and in March 2018 3 told me they don’t allow it.

    • Hi Simon,
      Thanks for your comment. I don’t believe there have been any changes to the tethering rules this year. EU legislation is fairly clear that it’s supposed to be a “roam like at home” service (so if you can tether whilst you’re in the UK, it’s also fine to tether whilst you’re in Europe). Outside the EU (e.g. if you’re travelling to the USA), this regulation doesn’t apply and Three do impose restrictions on tethering.

      • Simon Fellerman replied:

        I’ve spoken to Three today.
        They confirm that roaming in their Feel at Home destinations, which include the EU countries, does not allow any tethering unless you have All You Can Ear Data, in which case you can tether 15GB.

  • Raphael Pouani said:

    Hi I am in France and I am currently being charged for using my data within my allowance.
    I have an advanced plan and have not been usin 4G (and have activated the data roaming setting)
    After being in France for three days I received a text confirming I was in France etc
    however as I continue to use my data I am getting repeated texts from 3alerts on how much I have spent on data.
    Why is this? And how do I stop getting charged

  • Hi Ken,

    Thanks for the great article!

    Would just like to check – I’m currently on a 14 days Three sim package in EU with 10GB but I need to extend & top up. Is there anyway it will work (pass the 14th day) if I top up via Three website?

    Thank you!


    • Hi Kristyn,
      Many thanks for your comment. I’m not aware specifically of Three’s 14-day package, but I believe this should probably be fine. Using your SIM card in Europe for more than 14 days is definitely fine with regards to Three’s terms and conditions for roaming (the only thing that might prevent this would be if the 14-day tariff had a restriction on you being able to top-up again).
      Hope this helps,

  • Hi Ken,

    Thanks for the great article. My wife and I are about to go to the US and have got a Three SIM card each so we can take advantage of this offer.

    You mention call forwarding briefly, but can you confirm how this works please?

    If we set it up, will calls and texts to our normal UK-based O2 numbers be diverted to our Mobiles containing our new Three SIM cards in the US without incurring any charges from O2? Obviously that’s what we’re hoping is the case.

    Lastly, is call forwarding on an iPhone in this case simply activated through the Phone/Call forwarding setting, or is anything further required with O2?

    Thanks in advance for your help,


    • Hi Tim,
      Many thanks for your comment. Regarding call forwarding, there are two important things you should remember:
      1. You should leave your O2 SIM card in the UK (or if you want to bring it with you to the US, then you should keep it switched off). If, for some reason, the O2 SIM card were to connect to a US mobile network, you’ll be charged international roaming rates for using the call forwarding feature. The reason for this is because phone calls will automatically connect to the last known network, and then they’ll be forwarded from there. If your O2 SIM is “last seen” on a US network, you’ll pay international rates for receiving and forwarding the phone call.
      2. You should double check in advance with O2 to make sure call forwarding is included in your plan. Not all mobile networks/tariffs support it. If your mobile network or tariff doesn’t support it, you could alternatively decide to record a message on your voicemail with your temporary phone number so people can get in touch with you.
      With regards to setting up call forwarding, you can follow the instructions listed on this page.
      Hope this helps,

      • Tim Perry replied:

        Hi Ken,
        Thanks for your reply – that’s really helpful.
        Would you suggest using the O2 call forwarding instructions you sent, or just initiating call forwarding in my iPhone’s settings?

        • Hi Tim,
          Great question! To be honest, I’m not totally sure how it works within the iPhone settings. I presume it’s all set up just to configure call forwarding for you in the background, but I haven’t tested out the two methods to make sure they do the same thing. I’d probably go with O2’s instructions myself, but I *think* they should both do pretty much the same thing.

      • Hi Ken – I don’t think #1 is necessary as long as you ensure ‘forward all calls’ (aka unconditional divert) is enabled before leaving the UK. This will mean that you can still receive text messages (which are never diverted) whilst travelling. You wouldn’t be charged international call rate as the divert is unconditional therefore it never needs to try your number abroad.

        Agree re #2 – with EE it appears to be included in the free minutes, but as you say some networks charge even if you have plenty of minutes.

        • Hi Alan,
          Thanks for the tip – that’s incredibly helpful! I’ve never tried the unconditional divert myself. It feels a little bit risky to me as I’d prefer not to take the risk of inadvertently paying more than £1/minute for these calls!

  • glad i found this great and informative page, my question is , I’m going to Australia for 3 weeks in August, i am with virgin sim only £6.00 month, wont be taking phone as charges are too high, sent away and got a three sim, can i get all you can use data phone and text bundle for this before i leave, getting confusing answers from people,also how do you set up call forwarding from the virgin sim to the three sim,

  • Hi

    Great artcile – so thanks.

    My partner and I are both on Three essentials pay monthly plan.

    If we are both on holiday in France, can we call each other on our Three mobiles for free?

    Also, whilst in France could I call her work (Vodaphone) mobile for free also?

    Appreciate your help.


    • Hi Pete,
      Indeed – you can call and text each other at no extra charge, using your normal tariff allowances. It’s also fine to call and text UK-based numbers on other networks (e.g. so fine to call her work number on Vodafone).

  • Went to Lisbon in June for a week and my experience with Feel at Home was good. Recognised NOS as the network and roamed onto it as soon as I landed.

  • From my experience in and around Alicante, Three throttle the connection heavily. From the strong signal strength and “H+” it should have been a good 3G connection but was more like 100kbps and unusable on Movistar. I imagine popular holiday destinations will see worse speeds than places off the beyond track. It’s nothing like “at home”.

    Outside Europe, I hear that Three allow roaming onto a 4G signal. I imagine they still throttle though. Here’s hoping roaming is actually useable during my next long haul trip.

  • You might want to correct the European tethering comment. My experience is it is blocked full stop in Europe of otherwise. Ask 2 different cya services people at three you will get 2 different answers. Reality is, it’s blocked.

    • Totally agree with Giorgio here. I have a
      had blackout blocked coverage twice. Having gone down the rabbit hole with customer services from Delhi to Glasgow it turned out nobody internally new the exact technical reasoning for this.
      Its a great service but be very careful with hoping on WIFI where possible!

  • I am in Sri Lanka at the moment which is a feel at home destination. I decided to just check the 3 mobile app and see that I have been charged £11.50 for data and £2.50 for calls. Called 3 to find out why and they said that if you use the phone while on the beach, it latches on to the maritime network and that is considered international roaming not included in the feel at home deatination. So just be careful about that guys.

  • Hi Ken,

    Thanks for all the info. A key feature for me is being able to tether my computer which, as you say , is not allowed in Europe unless you buy a hotspot add on for it. I can’t find this Add on so it’s confusing. Perhaps you could clarify and link to the hotspot add on in your article. thanks

    • Hi Ian,
      Many thanks for your comment. I do believe you can now tether in Europe, providing your plan allows you to do so in the UK. Therefore, if you have an Advanced PAYM price plan this should be absolutely fine (if you have an Essential PAYM plan you’ll need to buy a portable hotspot add-on). To tether outside of Europe, you’ll need Three’s Data Passport (£5/day extra).
      Hope this helps,

      • I have been in Italy and Holland this year so far and was able to create but not connect to a personal hotspot. In contacting three mixed messages and inconsistencies in their answers. But essentially my experience is that tethering is blocked in any feel at home destination. It works perfectly in UK on same device. I’ve now got my PAC code…

  • Hello,
    I used Three Pay as you go card with montlhy on Data abroad for last 3 months.But then suddenly after i top up,they disabled roaming on my card 🙁 I know that there is period 120 days,but they even try to send me warning SMS 🙁 so i lost 10 GBP now.
    But i can still send this SIM card to UK for somebody and can use 1 month for free 🙂

  • Hi Ken,
    Thanks for this! – such a LIFESAVER!!
    I spent the past (April- July) 3 months in Spain and was able to use the PAYG sim to roam.
    I’ll be heading back again but for longer, so i’m glad i’ve got an extra few weeks left from the 120days!
    Just wanted to say thanks really! There’s so much information out there, and you’ve really made things a lot easier with this post/and blog.
    Cheers and have a great weekend!

  • Do I get 9 GB per month abroad?
    How to check how much GB left in Feel At Home bundle?
    If I cross UK line in 120 day period do I get 120 days abroad more?

    • Hi Dima,
      Yes – as a Pay As You Go customer, you can use up to 9GB of your allowance abroad in a Feel At Home country. You can check your remaining data allowance by logging in to the My3 app or website. With regards to the fair usage policy on how much time you can spend abroad, my guide to European roaming should hopefully help to clarify this!

  • Hi Ken,

    in France Orange network is missing in your listing.

    There is no roaming deal with orange france ??

    But in Denmark Telenor is new?



    • Hi Mike,
      Thanks for your comment. The list of international roaming partners comes from the Three website. So at the time we researched that section, it wasn’t possible to roam on Orange in France. Do you believe some of the information listed here has changed? If so, more than happy to try and investigate!

  • You assured and guaranteed me my wifi dongle issue was resolved and would operate on Cote d ‘Azur -promised FAITHFULLY by one of your management. Well suprise suprise IT DOESN’T. Thank you so much.

    • Hi Robinson,
      I’m sorry to hear about the problems you’ve encountered using Three abroad. Unfortunately, you’ve posted on a third-party blog so your message hasn’t reached Three as intended. If you’d like to contact Three, you can do it through this page or by calling +44 333 338 1001.
      Hope this helps,

  • Hey Ken

    I’m travelling to Europe for 16 days in a week from Canada. I am making a short stop in London and was hoping to get one of these Pay-As-You-Go SIM cards for data as I make my way to Italy, Slovenia, and Croatia before heading back to the UK. How do I go about getting one of these SIM cards? What do I need in order to get one? Will I be able to get one if I’m underage (17 y.o)? I’m seeing these “top-ups” and unfortunately, I have no idea what it is! Would I be able to walk into a Three store and just get one of their prepaid SIM cards that come with the data already? I’m quite clueless on this topic. Any advice will be appreciated!

    • Hi Chris,
      Many thanks for your comment, and hope you’re looking forward to your trip to the UK & Europe!
      I’ve just put together a guide here about getting a SIM card when you’re travelling to the UK. Hopefully it should help to answer some of your questions but in short:
      1. Yes, the SIM card will work anywhere in Europe at no extra cost (the same goes for any UK-based SIM card with roaming)
      2. There’s no need to provide any ID in order to get a SIM card, so no problem at all if you’re under 18
      3. The SIM card is pre-paid so you’ll need to add some money to it before you can use it (“top-up”). In some places like North America, this is called “recharge”.
      Take a look at my full article for more information but you may find it worthwhile to order a SIM card from giffgaff in advance which would save you the hassle of having to get a SIM card from Three when you arrive in the UK.
      Hope this helps and let me know if you have any questions!

  • Hi Ken
    My daughter is using a 3uk 12gb sim, pay as you go, in NYC. She just arrived today and can’t make outgoing calls but can receive. An error message comes up saying “Your value allowance needs topping up. Buy a 3 voucher and call 444 from another phone”
    The sim is new with a full allowance, used for the first time today. Appreciate any advice you can provide, thanks.

    • Hi Kevin,
      Thanks for your email. Is she calling a UK phone number (+44) or US phone number (+1)? If it’s a UK number, this should work without any problems as she can use the 300 inclusive UK minutes on the tariff. If she’s trying to call a US-based phone number, this will unfortunately require some additional credit (Three charges £1.40/minute for calling a US-based number). Alternatively, she could consider using something like Google Voice or Skype to bypass this charge and to call US phone numbers for much less.
      Hope this helps,

    • Hi Kong,
      Many thanks for your comment. Officially, you can only get a Three UK SIM card sent out to a UK address when ordering through the Three website. Some third-party websites will send the SIM card abroad, but this is unofficial and isn’t supported by Three.
      I’m not sure whether Three currently requires you to use your SIM card in the UK first before you can use it abroad in France. You should certainly expect it to work in such a way, as the deal is really designed for UK-based customers who are travelling abroad. Also, it’s worth noting that this deal will only work in smartphones (you won’t be able to place the SIM card in a mobile wi-fi router or tablet).
      Hope this helps,

  • No one (including 3 sales personnell) seems to mention that Three’s European roaming only lasts for 2 months even if you buy a PAYG 12 month sim.

    So useless for longer stays or multitrips.

    • Hi Jeff,
      Yes – it’s certainly something the Sales staff conveniently miss out in their pitch! It’s worth noting however, this shouldn’t affect holidaymakers or people going on fairly short trips. This is because the limit is defined as 2 “complete months” abroad in a 12-month period. So if you were to spend half of a given month in the UK and half of it abroad, that month wouldn’t count towards your limit of 2 complete months.
      The limit of 2 complete months is definitely significant for people who spend an extended amount of time abroad. On PAYG, you can kind of side-step things by using a different SIM card but of course, this will have a different phone number on it.

      • Jeff Owen replied:

        Hi Ken

        Thanks for your response – I agree it’s fine for short breaks. But when you specifically ask for something that will only be used abroad, one expects a truthful & helpful response from Three & its agents. This did not happen – so I will not use three again.


  • Hi Ken,
    Just asking if you have any news (or even opinions) on what THREE are going to do with their Feel at Home service after June 15th this year. EU laws now SEEM to say that the service should be at no extra cost (within “Fair Usage Limits”) and the smae service as on your home network but are THREE going to lift their restrictions on 4G connections (currently only 3G at best) and tethering?

    I know that they are making announcements about adding extra countries but by comparison to other networks (for EU use) they are going to slide quickly down the attractiveness scale if they don’t allow 4G connections and make some concessions towards tethering.

    Vodafone are currently looking like the best bet if data is high on the list especially with their 50Gb for £30 12 month OR 30 day contracts.

    Thanks for the excellent webpages and information – really useful.


    • Hi Frank,
      Many thanks for your comment. Yes, it will be very interesting to see what Three does with their Feel At Home service in the EU next month. Obviously, they’ll need to up their game as the other major networks are now offering this as well (and in many cases, with fewer restrictions than Three currently has on their Feel At Home service). Personally, I’d really like them to introduce 4G roaming along with tethering and the relaxation of their current fair usage policy. I suspect decisions in this area will be guided by what rival networks do and also what they’re allowed to get away with in the EU legislation.
      I think this is definitely an area to watch very closely over the next few months, as I wouldn’t want to speculate on what changes Three might decide to make!
      Thanks again and have a great weekend,

      • Ken,

        Thanks for your thoughts – very similar to mine. I am currently on a contract with THREE until December but if they don’t up their game then they will lose a customer who has been with them for about 8 years.

        I have never had any problems with the network in the UK (no more than other networks I believe) and the Feel at Home service has been very useful to me over the last couple of years but times change. After this first few months of excitement we then wait 18 months until Brexit kicks in to see what the networks will then do about ‘free roaming’ which we happy customers are going to get courtesy of the EU.

        Being somewhat cynical, I suspect their prices will rise in the short term to cover lost revenue from lack of roaming revenue but if they revert to the ‘old’ system in 18 months I bet the prices don’t go down – we will simply be expected to pay for roaming again on top of the increased prices!!

        Thank again, Frank

  • Hi Ken, I live in Canada and visiting London and other EU cities this May. I’m interested in this Three Feel at Home Pay As You Go sim so that I just have to buy the one sim for all the countries I’m visiting. Will this sim work for non-UK phones? Will it work on my unlocked phone from Canada? Also do you know where I can buy it in London or do they ship internationally (doesn’t appear to be the case)?
    Many thanks.

    • Hi Lisa,
      Many thanks for your comment. Indeed, it will work in non-UK handsets: you just need to make sure your handset is unlocked and compatible with the GSM networks used here in the EU. You can buy a Three Pay As You Go SIM card fairly easily upon arrival: it’s about 99p, and you can get it in most good supermarkets, newsagents and mobile phone stores. You’ll then just need to add your top-up to the SIM card and also the ‘All in One’ bundle.
      Hope this helps,

      • Hi Ken,
        I’m coming over the pond from Canada. I’ll spend three weeks in Spain and then a week in UK. Is it possible to purchase the “Three Feel at Home Pay As You Go” sim in Spain for use there and then also use it in UK?
        Thanks for your advice.

        • Hi Luke,
          Many thanks for your comment. Unfortunately, you won’t be able to get a Three PAYG SIM card in Spain (you’ll need to be in the UK to get one). My recommendation would be to instead pick up a SIM card in your country of arrival (i.e. to get a SIM card in Spain that gives you low-cost roaming in the UK). From mid-June, new EU legislation comes into play so all mobile networks in Spain should offer you free roaming in the UK from then.

  • Hi Ken,

    Very informative, thank you.

    Are you aware of any plans for Three to add further countries later this year?



    • Hi Dom,
      Thanks for your comment. At the moment, I’m not aware of any future plans to add more countries to the Feel At Home service. However, if Three do go ahead and add further countries to the service, I will of course update the list on this page!

  • Hi Ken

    Thanks for such an informative blog, really great!

    I visit Italy regularly but outside the cities 3 italia is very poor. Both the call centre and shop I visited both seem to think the only network that works in Italy for Feel at Home is 3 Italia, however you also list WIND in the coverage section as a Feel at Home network.

    Is this info still valid, if so do you have a source/reference.


    • Hi Darren,
      Thanks for your comment. I took this information from the Three website in September 2016 (previously, they used to provide a list of all the networks you could roam on in each country). It’s possible that things have changed in the last 6 months… you can check by asking your phone to manually connect to the WIND Italia network. If it doesn’t work, then the roaming agreement may have changed between September and today.
      Thanks and do please let me know what you find out!

      • Ken
        Thanks for your reply
        I am not a 3 customer but was considering joining them.
        I eventually found someone who said you can only roam (on feel like home) on 3 Italia

  • I had a question I was hoping you (or someone) could answer.

    In your detailed review (thanks so much for that) you write:

    “Thirdly, there are restrictions in place so you can’t use the service exclusively abroad. Also, there’s no 4G when you’re travelling abroad and the Feel At Home offer is excluded from ‘Essential’ plans on Pay Monthly.”

    What measures are in place so that you can’t use the service exclusively abroad?

    I’m asking because I was considering getting a SIM to use for my upcoming travel. The PAYG with Feel At Home Roaming seemed like the best option for me but I am wondering if it will work as my travel plans are as follows:

    USA (where I reside and was hoping to activate) to Australia, then off to Germany, then Italy, and then London.

    Would it be possible for me to do this or do they somehow restrict usage so that I wouldn’t be able to activate and use elsewhere prior to heading to London?

    Also, you mention that there isn’t 4G while traveling abroad. Any idea how slow the speeds are while roaming?

    Any information would be great. Thank you so much for your blog. I’ve learned a lot!

    • Hi James,
      Thanks for your comment. There’s more information here on the restrictions on using your smartphone exclusively abroad (in short: you can’t use the service exclusively abroad for more than 2 complete months each year).
      With regards to your plan on using the SIM card in those countries, this should in theory be possible. Whether you can activate the SIM card in the USA, I’m not really sure (perhaps someone else will be able to help, but otherwise I strongly recommend activating it in the UK if possible).
      Finally, data speeds can be a little bit variable when you’re abroad in other countries. I think it really does depend on where you’re going and what you’re using your phone for (I believe there are a couple of comments lower down this page regarding data speeds abroad).

  • Hi Ken brilliant information on your site. Thank you. Can you clarify something for me relating to using UK based mobiles in the USA please?. I have a ‘3’ contract and can use my ‘3’ contract in the US. My daughter is going to the USA at the same time as me later in the year. If she purchases a ‘3’ PAYG sim, when in the USA, will our mobile to mobile calls be classed as being within our call allowance?

    • Hi David,
      Thanks for your comment. Yes, if you both have SIM cards from Three, you’ll be able to call and text each other when abroad in the US at no extra charge. The key thing is you’ll be calling a UK-based phone number beginning with +44 (these are included in the Feel At Home offer).
      Hope this helps!

      • David Barr replied:

        Hi Ken. Thank you for getting back to me so quickly. And of course you have answered my question. Very much appreciated. David

  • Hello,

    I find the information on the Three site slightly confusing. I’m hoping you can clarify a point for me.

    I live in the UK but I travel to France 1-2 weeks per month for work. Because of my connections I must make calls and send text messages to French numbers (mostly mobile) whilst in France and from the UK. I cannot, however, quite sort out whether calls/messages to French numbers are included in the bundle or not?

    This is the page confusing me:

    For example:
    Calling a UK number: Comes out of your allowance
    Calling a French number: 3.9p per minute

    Is it that calling the UK from abroad is included, but calling international numbers is an extra charge?


    • Hi Carolina,
      Thanks for your comment. Indeed, calls to a UK-based phone number are included as part of the offer. However, phone calls to a French-based phone number are not included (they’ll cost you an extra 3.9p/minute when you’re abroad in France). If you’re calling a French phone number whilst in the UK, Three’s international calling rates will apply for this instead (46p/minute on Pay Monthly, or from 3p/minute on Pay As You Go).
      Hope this helps,

  • Hi Ken

    I will visit London for a few days then go to Spain, Italy and France for 1 month, as we travel in a group and data is our prime concern, would appreciate if you can advise whether Feel At Home on Pay As You Go can work, if I want to tether while in other countries, which plan should I take,
    also would appreciate if you can advise whether the card can last for one month

    thanks for your advise

    • Hi Eric,
      Thanks for your comment. Yes, a Pay As You Go SIM card from Three will work with the Feel At Home offer. You’ll need to buy an All-in-One bundle to qualify: you can choose from either 1GB of data for £10 or 12GB of data for £20. Your allowances will last for up to 30 days, so should be fine for one months usage providing the data allowance lasts!
      Unfortunately, however, tethering is not permitted on Three Pay As You Go or on the Feel At Home offer. For this reason, if tethering is an important feature for you, an alternative deal elsewhere may be more suitable for your usage.

  • Hi Ken,

    I am Canadian and will be visiting London, Rome, and Paris in May. If I purchase this sim card and put it in my unlocked phone will it work? Will my number be the same or will a new number be ported over?


  • Can I activate my feel at home card in Italy or do I need to do it in the UK before I leave? I have two cards and want to use one after the other.
    Want reply but don’t subscribe as travelling thanks

    • Hi Katie,
      Unfortunately, I’m not sure whether this will work (though perhaps someone else on this thread might be able to help out). Personally, I’d strongly recommend activating the SIM card in the UK before you go if that’s possible (this will minimise any complications and you’ll already know the SIM card works before you travel abroad).

  • Hi Ken,

    I’m currently a PAYG customer with O2. I am going to New York, USA in November and wish to use data whilst I am there. £6 per MB seems very expensive to me. Would I be better off buying a sim card from Three?

    Kind Regards.

  • Ken, this is a fantastic blog and I’m so glad I found it. Although I was searching for this info as it wasn’t clear on the 3 website this is by far the most informative page I found.
    I’d like to ask about forwarding if that’s ok..
    Me and my son are on Tesco but at £8/mb the USA roaming charges are horrendous. So, we will both take 3 PAYG sims loaded with £20 each.

    Can you tell me if I need to have the Tesco sims working in a phone left in the UK or is this a service I might be able to turn on at network level so its not depended on the phone? I’m guessing its the former but thought I’d ask.

    Thanks for any help, and keep up the good work.

    • Hi Dave,
      Thanks for your comment and really glad you found the website useful!
      With regards to call forwarding, you should make sure your Tesco SIM card is left in the UK. This way, you won’t be charged for roaming by Tesco Mobile. If your Tesco Mobile SIM card connects to a mobile network in the US, you’ll be charged the international roaming rates for forwarded calls.
      Hope this helps,

      • Hi Ken

        Thanks for the reply. Thats not quite what i was asking. What i meant was does the sim that stays here have to be in a phone so it can forward the calls, or can i set this service up with my provider so i dont need to use a second phone.

        Having done some searching it seems like it does need to be in a phone, which is a shame as i dont have another two spares.

        • Hi Dave,
          Sorry, I misunderstood! For the SIM card that stays here, there’s no need for you to leave it inside a handset. Call forwarding is done at the network level, just like your phone calls are forwarded to voicemail when your phone is switched off.

          • Hi Ken.

            Sorry for the late reply. Thanks, that answers my question perfectly.
            So i put call forwarding on to the new number via the phone, then swap sims?


          • Hi Dave,
            Yes – I think that should do the job. Obviously, it’s worth testing the call forwarding after you’ve set it up (ideally whilst you’re in the UK so you can amend the set-up as necessary).
            Thanks and good luck!

  • Matías Pizarro said:


    I’m from Argentina

    I bought my three pay as you go sim with £20 on eBay.

    My first destination was Spain and the sim works perfect, so you don’t need to visit first a U.K. Destination.

  • hi, im viewing three website and on its pay as you go – all in one £20, it says it needed an add on for Feel at home, the website says:

    Get 3000 texts and 300 minutes plus 12GB data for just £20.
    Feel At Home (Add-on needed)

    so my question is, do i need to activate the feel at home separately with an add on or it just automatically activated so i do not need to do anything? if need to get additional add on, how much it cost to activate the Feel at home features?

    thank you

  • Hi ken.
    I ask if where i can buy top up while im outside in uk i a seaman usually our voyage only around europe.for now on we have no voyage in uk.but i want to continious use 3network uk because the service and promo was verygood special for all seaman.. i hope that also we can buy a top up any where…thank you very much more power 3 network uk…

  • Hi Ken,

    I’ve just subscribed to a three advance plan. I have 2 questions regarding the feel at home usage restriction:

    1) 2 months limit:
    Can you confirm that Three will restrict my data usage in feel at home countries, if I spend more than 2 consecutive months abroad?
    How should 2 consecutive months abroad be understood? If I use my phone in a feel at home country during a given month and if during this given month I use my phone in the UK (or a non feel at home country) at least once, the 2 months restriction won’t apply?
    To summarize, if I use my phone in a feel at home country every month but that I use at least once in the UK (or non feel at home country) during this month, I should be fine?
    By ‘Use’ do they mean, turning your phone on?

    2) Tethering restriction:
    Three’s website says ‘You can’t use your phone as a Personal Hotspot, also called tethering, in a Feel At Home destination. This applies even if you normally tether in the UK using your data allowance, or have a Personal Hotspot allowance or Add-on.’
    How does it work? If I try to use my phone as a personal hotspot, I will not be able to do it? Are there other consequences ?

    I called Three a few times, popped in three shops, nobody was able to answer.
    Thank you in advance for your help,

    • Hi Elie,
      Thanks for your comment and some very good questions! To answer them in order:
      1) If you break their 2-month limit, Three will actually suspend international roaming altogether on your account (this will affect both Feel At Home and non-Feel At Home countries). With regards to interpreting the limit, a month will only count towards your two-month limit if you “roam exclusively in a Feel At Home destination” for the entirety of that month. So as long as you use your phone in the UK or in a non-Feel At Home country, that month will not count towards your two month limit. What you said, should therefore in theory by absolutely fine!
      2) I believe they’ll detect and block the use of tethering when you’re abroad and will show you a message saying that tethering isn’t permitted.
      Hope this helps,

      • Yes, that’s what happens re #2

        Recently used in USA on two occasions – same as before, slow speeds (EDGE rather than 3G+), high battery usage. Still very handy for calls/texts but data really not great.

  • Hi Ken, great site.
    I am going on a cruise next year, is this a good priced sim only deal for a cruise or is there a better one. Price wise.

    • Hi Steve,
      Thanks for your comment. Unfortunately, as far as I’m aware, there are no reasonably priced SIM cards for usage on a cruise. This is because the network operators onboard a cruise ship typically charge for it as a premium service (the only alternative I can think of would be to compare this against the price of using any wi-fi facilities).

    • Hi Rog,
      Thanks for the kind feedback! Unfortunately, the only offer I know for St Vincent is Vodafone’s £5/day WorldTraveller offer. This requires you to be a Vodafone Pay Monthly customer, so I wouldn’t really bother unless you already had a contract with them.
      To be honest, the best thing to do in this situation would probably be to bring an unlocked smartphone and to buy a SIM card locally. The costs of using a UK-based SIM card are likely to be prohibitive so you’ll almost certainly be better off buying a SIM card when you’re there.
      Hope this helps,

  • Hi Ken
    First of all brilliant website. I was looking at various options that would suit my needs. So I am travelling to Europe with 3 days in London and 9 days in Mainland Europe which include the feel at home countries. I need to make extensive use of Google maps for information mostly by foot. Questions
    1. Will the feel at home with All in one bundle suit my requirements? And
    2. Dumb question but other than “3” stores and mobile phone retailers, where else can I purchase “3” SIM cards in person?

    • Hi Ray,
      Thanks for your comment and hope you’re looking forward to your trip! To answer your two questions:
      1. Absolutely, it should suit your requirements! This is assuming of course you’re visiting the UK first (as you’re only able to buy the SIM card when you’re present in the UK).
      2. You can also get one from most major supermarkets, also some convenience stores, service and petrol stations. Be aware there might be a small additional charge for getting the SIM card from a non-Three retail store (typically about £1 to £2).
      Hope this helps,

  • Hi Ken. If I activate the all in one 10 will I understand that I will not be able to place local calls in another country. But will I still be able to use the 1gb data? The chart on 3 website isn’t clear. We will be visiting from Canada. We plan to use the sim for uk, sweden and iceland. We just aren’t sure if that 1gb data will be usable outside of uk. Thanks

    • Hi Edmond,
      Thanks for your comment. With the Feel At Home offer, you’ll be able to use the 1GB download allowance abroad in other countries (so you can use it in Sweden & Iceland as well as in the UK).
      You’ll also be able to use the 100 minutes & 3000 texts, but this only covers phone calls & texts to a UK-based phone number (so phone numbers beginning with +44). It will not cover phone calls to Swedish or Icelandish phone numbers (i.e. so anything beginning with +46 or +354). If other members of your party also have a UK-based SIM card (e.g. another SIM card from Three), you’ll be able to call & text them at no extra charge using the allowances.
      Hope this helps,

  • Hi Ken,

    Fantastic article! Thanks for the detailed information.

    I’m just wondering if you can help me out. I’m from Australia and will be travelling to Europe in December. My first destination is France and a friend from the UK that is meeting me there has offered to purchase a Three Pay As You Go SIM for me.

    Question… Does my friend have to “activate” it for me while in the UK? Or I can activate it when I meet her in France?


    • Hi Cindy,
      Thanks for your comment. To avoid complication and to make life a lot easier, I strongly recommend your UK friend orders a SIM card online, topping it up and switching on the SIM card before departing to France. This is much easier than trying to do everything in France (also, I believe Three has some automated systems which may prevent the SIM card from being activated when outside the UK).

  • Hi, i’m getting a few mixed answers regarding this issue and i’m hoping to be able to clarify once and for all.
    I go to the States a lot for work and so far this year i’ve spent a total of 59 days there, divided into 4 trips-the shortest being 6 days, the longest 28.
    I’m going back tomorrow for 3 weeks and i’m terrified that my phone will be blocked (which would be beyond disastrous); the customer service people told me that every day counts towards the two month limit, but i see from some of the comments above that maybe that’s not the case, as in i would have to be in the country for 2 months continuously in order to be blocked. Which one is correct??

  • Hi- Feel at Home feature sounds great. Hopefully more countries get added. I am going away on a Caribbean cruise later this year. It seems that I will not be able to benefit from the FAH contract when I visit different islands in the caribbean. I can not see any of them in the list. Perhaps the only option is to use free WiFi whenever possible ? Any other suggestions ?

    • Hi Raj,
      You’re right: unfortunately, Caribbean countries are not currently included in the Feel At Home offer. Your best bet would probably be to use free wi-fi, or alternatively, to pick up a SIM card locally in the country you’re visiting. Alternatively, you could also use Vodafone WorldTraveller but that’s £5/day and requires you to have a Vodafone Pay Monthly contract (a number of Caribbean countries are a part of that offer).

  • Potentially a very dim question, but what does the * mean next to most of the countries on the list? I cannot seem to find the answer in the article.


    • Hi Ian,
      Thanks for your comment and a very good question! The asterisk denoted countries that were being added to the Feel At Home offer from the 8th September 2016 (since I wrote the article on September 1st). It isn’t really meaningful to continue showing these asterisks so I’ve now removed it from the article above.
      Sorry for the confusion and hope this helps,

  • Very useful article.

    I see Greece and Cyprus are on the list of F@H countries but Turkey isn’t.

    My question, as a stand alone country is the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus on the list?

  • Great summary article. The concept of the service is fantastic (esp with the expanded number of countries), unfortunately the execution from a data perspective is truly appalling. I’ve used my SGS6 and latterly SGS7 in France and the USA – in both cases despite having 3G or H reception of 3+ bars, I got absolutely atrocious data speeds – pretty much 2G level. My phone got hot, battery life was dreadful and it kept on having major issues. By comparison it works fine at home or if I put a local SIM in the phone. The degree of throttling makes the service unusable, Three support were hopeless, and given my poor experience I’m almost certain I’m going to switch network when my contract is up.

  • Do you have a date in September for the Feel at Home coverage for Germany as we leave for Germany on the 2nd september.

  • Great article and well explained. I used this last year for 2 trips – one to Australia and one to the USA and it worked well and was certainly great value. I was looking again just now as I’m planning another trip to the US later this year. It seems that the £10 add-on now allows 1GB of data rather than 500MB as stated – maybe this is a temporary offer, but I thought I’d just point this out.

    • Hi Joe,
      Thanks for the comment and for bringing this to my attention! It does indeed look like the £10 plan has had the data increased from 500MB to 1GB per month. I’ve just updated this in the article above and will also begin updating this across the rest of the website.
      Thanks again!

  • I’m going abroad for two weeks and I’m quite disappointed because my country (Poland) is not on the feel at home is that mean I will pay a fortune?

    • Hi Marta,
      As you say, Poland unfortunately isn’t included in the Feel At Home offer. This means you’ll need to pay Three’s EU roaming charges of 3.9p/minute, 1.6p/text and 3.9p/MB. The good news is this isn’t a fortune, but of course it’s not as good as totally free roaming!

      • Hi. I am a bit confused as Marta is saying that Poland is not on the list, you are confirming that and I can see Poland withing other countries. Please explain.
        Thank you

        • Hi Ilona,
          Thanks for your comment – this is a very good question! Poland was only added to the Feel At Home offer on the 8th September 2016. This is why the comment here may be a little confusing (it was posted in August just before Poland was added to the offer!).

          • Hi Ken.
            This is a very good news 🙂 Next time when I go to Poland i can use my UK phone.
            Many thanks

  • Sorry a quick question not sure if its been answered:

    If i used my phone for say 1 week in a calendar month abroad (switched it off for the rest of the time) could i avoid the 2 month limit? Or would i have to have used it in the UK for them to know that i am not still abroad?

    Secondly, if i used my phone within that month in a non feel at home country (but not the UK) as you said for example one weekend every month, would that work in terms of me never meeting the 2 month cut off?

    If that makes sense

    thanks in advance.

    • Hi Stu,
      Thanks for your comment. Unfortunately, for that month to not count towards your fair usage limit, you’ll need to have used your phone either in the UK or in a non-Feel At Home country. Otherwise, if you only use your phone in a Feel At Home country (even if it was switched off for the rest of the month), it will count towards your 2 month limit.
      And yes, spending a weekend away each month in a non-Feel At Home country should be fine for keeping you within the fair usage limit!

      • Thanks Ken, really useful! Great website.

        I will try out registering in a non feel at home location once a month, luckily there is a ‘non feel at home country’ only 20 or so mins from where i will be so should hopefully be easy.

        Thanks again

  • My husband and I (we live in the US) will be in England and Wales for 1 month (and 4 days in Spain). We have a 5S IPhone (unlocked). We don’t use the phone often but would like to be able to call and receive calls and have data for the internet. Which SIM card would you recommend and should we order it here in the US or purchase it in Cardiff, Wales? If in Wales, will we find a shop at the Central train station to buy a SIM?

    • Hi Patti,
      I’d probably recommend your SIM card when you arrive in the UK. It will be very easy to find a SIM card – you just need to pop in to any phone store, supermarket or newsagent! There may well be a retailer in the train station as well depending on the station and the facilities they’re offering.

  • Torin Johansen said:

    Hi Ken, sorry for tagging on to another’s comment but I struggled to find the proper way to leave a comment, anyway my one query with this which I can’t find an answer to anywhere is – will it cost my friends and family in the UK who are not on three to text my phone whilst I’m in a feel at home country?

    • Hi Torin,
      Thanks and no problem at all! The comment form is at the bottom of this article but it’s a little bit hard to find as this page is so long!
      In response to your question: your friends and family in the UK will just pay their normal rate for calling or texting a UK number. So assuming they have text messages included in their plan, it will be free for them to send you a text message.

      • Torin Johansen replied:

        That’s perfect! Thank you very much, it’s been a question no one could answer so very grateful for your help!

  • Hi Ken,

    Great article. I will be visiting the UK from the US and will also be visiting Spain, Italy, and France. Sounds like Three “Pay as you go All in One 20 Add on” is the way to go.

    You mention that this plan is intended for UK residents. Will I have any problems purchasing this plan if I am from the US? Do they require proof of UK residency?

    I would appreciate any info.


    • Hi Lester,
      Thanks for your comment. Yes – it does sound like this plan could be suitable for your usage! You won’t have any problems purchasing this plan in the UK – there’s no need to provide any proof of residency or ID – the only caveat is you’ll need to be visiting the UK first in order to get one of the SIM cards from Three.
      My comment about this plan being intended for UK residents is mainly referring to people who only want this SIM card for usage outside of the UK, and who will not be visiting the UK at any time during their trip.
      Hope this helps,

  • Hi Ken,

    Good article on Three feel at home but I wonder if you could have a look at something on this. Now that the EU phone cost rules have kicked in, I think I can use a PAYG Three phone in (for example) France and it costs 3.9p per minute to make calls and zero to receive if I do not have an Add On (See this link:

    So, if I was using Feel at home (with the compulsory add on to get the rates of 3p per minute to make calls) I would need to spend £10 minimum. If I only want to make 60 minutes of calls in a week it would cost 60 X 3.9p = £2.34, a saving of £7.66. I know that I am assuming no data or other stuff.

    My main query is “Is it MANDATORY to buy an Add On to use a Three PAYG phone in France?”. I don’t think I need to spend the £10 if all I want to do is make (and receive) a few calls. I know I would NOT get the Feel at Home benefits but in truth, for calls, these aren’t worth much now with the call cost having dropped so much recently.

    Thanks, Frank

    • Hi Frank,
      Thanks for your comment. There is no need to buy an All-in-One add-on – it isn’t compulsory and as you say, you could simply use your phone abroad at standard EU roaming rates without buying a bundle. For your usage, which is mainly a small amount of phone calls and no data, the chances are you’ll be better off on standard EU roaming rates.

  • Dear Ken,
    Great article, I’ve learned so much!

    I live in Japan and bought a Pay as you go SIM from Amazon for my trip to Swiss in August.

    My trip is about 2weeks holiday in Swiss.

    I plan to fly from Tokyo to Zurich via Hongkong. One day transit in Hongkong.
    I understand that 3UK sim is preactivated and the sim will work right away
    in foreign country. Am i right ? Will my SIM work in Hongkong and Swiss?
    Thank you.

    • Hi Toshi,
      Thanks for your comment. This deal is really designed for UK residents, so if possible it’s best to use the SIM card first in the UK. Unfortunately, I don’t know what will happen if you’re using it for the first time when you’re abroad.

      • Hi, just saw this and thought I’d respond for the OP and others with same question. I’m a Three UK employee and can confirm that pay and go sims need to be activated UK side initially whilst on 3 UK. They will not activate internationally. Hope that helps.

  • Hi,

    I’m going on a year abroad from August, just as my current phone contract expires.
    Ideally, I’d like to use a UK SIM, but don’t want to be charged ridiculous roaming fees.
    At first I was considering the 3 Feel at Home deal, but as they seem to be capping people left, right and centre even if they haven’t yet hit their roaming limit of being abroad for however many months without using the phone back in the UK, that option no longer seems viable. However, if I were to return to the UK approximately once a month for a weekend, would it keep the Feel at Home deal uncapped, or is that not sufficient?
    As an alternative I have been looking into Vodafone’s inclusive roaming with the Red and Red Value bundles. These seem ideal, as on top of a monthly UK allowance of unlimited texts etc. it also gives a monthly abroad allowance (suggesting you can use it very frequently within the allowance limits) but unlike with 3, I haven’t been able to find any limitations or fair usage policies, which makes me somewhat suspicious – surely there’s a catch? Will it be capped after heavy use abroad rather than light usage such as holidaying?
    Any information on this would be very much appreciated.

    • Hi Meg,
      Thanks for your message. In theory, you should be fine on Three if you’re visiting the UK for one weekend every month (they’ll only count whole calendar months exclusively spent abroad towards your limit of two months per year). In reality, I’d probably avoid choosing this option – the data speeds might not be the best when you’re abroad and you might later decide not to come home in a given month (it would be annoying to have to a book a flight just to keep your SIM card active!).
      Vodafone’s inclusive international roaming deals could certainly be worth a look at. I’ve not heard of any restrictions or people being cut off for using it too much (but it is a fairly new deal so the feedback might take a little time to fully filter through).

    • I imagine that if you were using it every month, regardless of whether you used it in the UK or non-Feel at Home destination at any point, they would suspend roaming on your account.

  • Hi Ken, I am a Vodafone customer and I plan on living abroad in Switzerland for 6 months. Am I able to use the Feel at Home offer from 3?

    • Hi Iain,
      Thanks for your comment. Unfortunately, Feel At Home is only designed for short trips – you can’t use it if you’re living abroad for extended amount of time. To that extent, Three will cut you off if you use your handset exclusively abroad for more than 2 months per year. For a 6-month stay, you’ll almost certainly be better served by one of the local Swiss networks!
      Hope this helps,

  • Gerry Jackson said:

    Hi Ken. Just got back from Barcelona where I was unable to connect to the 4g network in the city. I use the Sensorly app which maps coverage and as expected for a major city, 4g in Barcelona is very good.

    I called 3 to ask why I couldn’t connect, and was informed that 4g cannot be guaranteed. When I asked if Movistar (3’s Spanish partner) were blocking UK sims from the 4g network, I got the same ‘4g cannot be guaranteed’ answer.

    Are you aware of any blocking policy?

    • Hi Gerry,
      Thanks for your comment. As far as I know, Three doesn’t yet have any 4G roaming agreements. This means you’ll only have access to 2G and 3G when you’re abroad in other countries. You can see this, for example, by going to the Three website. On the coverage map at the bottom of the page, you’ll only see 2G and 3G.
      Hope this helps,

      • Jtwoodfield replied:

        I join others in applauding your article. If only others were so clear whilst at the same time being detailed.

        I also applaud Three for having unilaterally attacked the ripoff which is mobile roaming. As I do the EU for their similar stance.

        However, there really are two gaping holes in the Three deal which need to be stressed: –

        1. “Home” really does mean home. If you want to book the local restaurant then you will be hammered. The SMS from Three on an arrival in a locality is what might be termed deliberately opaque on the point.

        2. Any reference to 3G is misleading. Forget it. I have recently been using my Three SIM as the data SIM in my dual SIM Lumia 950xl. The primary SIM remaining with Tesco. So, to explain for those unfamiliar with dual SIM phones, calls and messages come through to either number but one opts which SIM to use for data.

        I have now used Three in Europe, Australia, New Zealand and Sri Lanka. I have never seen a data speed of more than H+. As a cross check I have tried with another, a Sony Android z3, with the same miserable results.

        I thought that I would do a bit of digging about why this should be the case. The answer appears to be that Three have not signed up to the available faster network speeds. I would stress: this means not getting 3G. Forget 4G.

        The following may arise from this:

        A. Three appear to read what you have written and respond. Good on them. I wish more companies took the same consumer orientated stance. Therefore you might like to put some pressure on them by highlighting the reality of real world data speeds.

        B. Which is also pressure but of the market type, your readers should carefully consider whether Three is really for them. Anyone who wants fast data, needs to communicate locally and wants to tether might be well advised to recognise that “free” could in fact, to use thei.e. advertising term, suck.

        C. If the user is an EU resident and only travels in the EU then thanks to the Competition Commissioner this will be irrelevant. Perhaps if more people had looked at this as an example of EU reality we would not be in the mess we are politically. Sorry. Could not resist that.

  • I’ve just had a long chat with 3 about this. It appears you can’t use the All in one bundle on a mobile dongle (not sure how they’d know) but I was advised I’d have to use the standard Pay as you go topups which are a bit more restrictive (30 days not 12 months) and a bit more expensive (£30 for 12Gb as opposed to £20 on the All in one 20 Add on). I actually have a dongle which has 1Gb on it but registered it so I could look at the top ups offered and none of the above were shown it offered £25 for 7Gb, £15 for 3Gb and £10 for 1Gb)… can’t really work out why!

    So if I’m reading it right, for a dongle I need a normal PAYG sim and a standard mobile broadband top up which will cost more and last less.

    For a phone I can buy and all in one 20 sim for £20 with 12Gb + 300 minutes and 3000 texts!.

    You have to wonder whether the phone sim in the mobile dongle is not possible!?

    One final comment, if I can get an All in One 20 SIM from Three for £20 delivered why are people selling them for £25 on Ebay ??!!!

    • Hi Steve,
      Thanks for your comment. As you say, the All in One bundle is only for use on a smartphone. For mobile broadband e.g. in a dongle, you’ll need to use one of their mobile broadband tariffs. There are some good reasons why the two things are priced a little bit differently e.g. it’s very difficult to actually use 12GB on your smartphone whereas it’s really easy to do this on your PC and on other devices. As Three doesn’t allow you to tether on their PAYG smartphone tariffs, the data allowance from your smartphone cannot be shared to other devices (at least, this is something prohibited by the T&C).
      With regards to your other question, I have no idea why the £20 SIM cards are selling for £25 on eBay! I suspect people are buying them in for £20 each, and then they obviously need to add a bit of margin to make it worth their while. I would strongly recommend always ordering directly from the Three website as you’ll then only be paying the £20 sticker price.
      Hope this helps!

      • Thanks Ken, follow up question for you 😉

        I’ve got an EE contract which will cost me an arm and a leg in the USA where I’ll be for 3 weeks in the Summer, I’ll need a decent amount of data and ideally access to my home texts and voicemails. So looking for alternatives to get my calls and a data allowance over there. I’m intending on getting an all in one 20 SIM and using it for the trip. I was hoping to forward my number to the three number though so I can pick up calls and texts… My idea is to leave my EE sim in a cheap smartphone on charge at home and forward to my phone (which has the UK three SIM in it). I can send and receive texts using an APP (mysms) and pick up voicemails using Hullomail, but it would be great to receive calls “live”. Anyone any idea if this will work and not incur hidden EE stealth charges to scare me when I return and if not are there any alternative solutions?

        • Hi Steve,
          That sounds like a feasible plan! The key thing is to make sure you leave your EE handset here in the UK. As far as EE is concerned, you’re simply forwarding your calls to another UK number (so it’s just the standard rate for UK-to-UK call forwarding). You need to be careful not to bring your EE handset over to the US or you’ll end up paying for US-to-UK forwarding.

          • Thanks Ken, I intend to leave the EE SIM (not the phone) but that’s all EE would check. I’ll let you know how it goes. Thanks again.

  • As a general point, could be worth considering Tesco Mobile now seem to provide a similar service, if only currently from 23 May to 3 September 2016. Their “Home from Home” means that calls, texts and data in the following countries are treated as normal usage -EU countries plus Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Switzerland, the Channel Islands (Jersey & Guernsey) and the Isle of Man.
    That’s what it seems to be, though I am, sure Ken or somebody else will confirm any pitfalls, challenges etc 🙂

      • Thanks for your reply, do you know why it is that cruises are excluded? Tesco Mobile have a similar offer on which also excludes cruises.

        • Hi Simon,
          The price charged will partly depend on the roaming agreement between Three UK and the cruise ship’s mobile network operator. I suspect the cruise ship operator is probably charging a fair bit (similar to airlines where you need to pay an arm and a leg to use the in-flight phones). It’s probable that Three is probably adding a bit of margin on the top to the price, but I suspect it’s largely the wholesale costs that prevent them from including this in the Feel At Home offer.

  • Has anyone using FAH been cut off after less than 60 days.
    last year I was cut off after 18, this year 14.
    Three can’t seem to sort it.

    • Hi Mark,

      I have been cut of on FAH in Ireland but the cannot somehow tell me how long I was on or when it started. They also cant tell me when the 12 months ends.
      Did you find out the days by trawling bills?


  • I’m going to the Algarve this summer (2016) and I notice that Portugal are not on 3’s Feel at home scheme. I have two questions,
    1. Why are Portugal not included on the list ?
    2. What do you advise I do with my mobile phone when in Portugal (call wise).

    • Hi Hamish,
      Thanks for your comment and sorry for the delay in replying. I’m not able to speak on behalf on Three about why Portugal isn’t included in the Feel At Home offer. I would however recommend reading my guide to the best value SIM cards for usage in Europe. For instance, Tesco Mobile now has a similar deal that also works in Portugal.
      Hope this helps!

  • How do you monitor your usage. I’m off to Florida in August and this seems the best solution for me, but I’m worried I’ll go over the allowance?

  • I am still searching for the cheapest way to make calls within the US using a Uk payg SIM card. Looks as if the standard charge is about £1.30 per minute

    • Hi Jan,
      There’s more info here, but as far as I’m aware Three is probably going to be the cheapest for calling a US number. I believe they’ll charge you 15.6p/minute on a Pay As You Go SIM card.

      • Thanks for this. I have searched through their website and it is not very informative about making local calls within USA. The only price I could see was £1.30

          • I telephoned a number of 3 stores this afternoon. Most did not answer, 2 cut me off, 1 said £1.40 and 2 said 56p.
            I will keep searching!

  • Hi Ken,

    I am trying to find out if I can tether my phone to my laptop on Three’s network when I am in Canada? I can only find information about Feel at Home countries, which says tethering is not allowed. Do you know if it is allowed in other countries outside of Feel at Home and how much I will be charged?

    Many Thanks!

    • Hi Sarah,
      Thanks for your comment. I believe it should be possible to tether in non-Feel At Home countries such as Canada, but I would strongly recommend against doing this due to the incredibly high costs. In Canada, Three currently charges a whopping £6/MB. If, for example, you were to use 100MB of data, you’d pay £600 for the privilege of doing this! You’ll probably be much better off getting a local SIM card from one of the Canadian mobile networks.
      Hope this helps,

      • Hi Ken I am wondering if you can help with the best option for travelling to europe for 9 months . Is there any plan like the feel at home plan that is available for longer than 2 months ? Thanks

    • Hi Steve,
      Unfortunately I don’t have any information about future countries for the Feel At Home offer. The good news, however, is that lower EU roaming charges will be offered on all networks from the 30th April 2016. From this date onwards, we should see lower roaming costs on all UK networks. Lots of changes are likely to happen around this time so watch this space in case Three makes some changes to the Feel At Home offer!

    • Hi James,
      Thanks for your comment. Unfortunately, I don’t have any information about which countries will be added to ‘Feel At Home’ in the future. As per forthcoming EU legislation, roaming charges within Europe will need to be scrapped by June 2017. For this reason, it’s highly likely we’ll see Portugal being added to the service next year (Three might decide, however, to add it before then).

      • Can we top anywhere around the 18countries? Its a big helped for a seaman like us we are traveled all over the world specialy those 18countries but we need to top up. Like now we are now in the Norway how ca we top up coz we dont have credit card or debbit card. Wa have only cash from our salary. Can u help us to top up easily and accessibly.

        • Hi Joel,
          Thanks for your comment. You can read all about the possible ways of topping your Three UK SIM card on this page. To give you a quick summary: unfortunately, I think this will be much easier if you a UK-registered credit card or debit card (that way, you could top-up at any time using the internet). Unfortunately, if you want to top-up with cash, you’ll need to do this in the UK anywhere you see a green top-up logo.

  • HI Ken.

    Will they ship the sims to the US? I’m having problems on their site trying to fill out US shippin info in the shipping prompts. I’m from the US and will be traveling to Italy and France for 2 weeks and this sounds like the best deal available… just wanted to get it before my trip since I’m not sure if milan malpensa airport will have three sims. Advice? thanks.


    • Hi Brian,
      Thanks for your comment. Unfortunately, the SIM card discussed in this article is only available within the UK. Three will not ship their SIM cards to an address in another country. Your best bet would probably be to research the SIM cards available from an Italian network (hopefully, you can find a SIM card which won’t charge you too much to use your handset in France).
      Hope this helps,

  • Hi Ken.

    I’m currently living in Australia and will return to the UK in a few weeks. It would benefit me to have a UK mobile number here for a while before I return. If apply for a pay-monthly sim and have this sent over to Australia, by a third party, will I be able to activate the service from here?

    Thank you!

    • Hi Steve,
      Thanks for your comment. In the UK, SIM cards are normally pre-activated so I think this should probably be fine. However, to be safe, I would always try to use the SIM card in the UK first if you’re able.

      • Thanks Ken.

        I’ll try to get someone to pop the sim into their mobile to make a call (and activate, if need be) before they send it over to me in Australia.


  • Hi Ken.

    I’ve just had a look on Three’s website and it states that tethering is not available on a pre-paid service and only on pay-monthly. I presume that this has been recent change, disappointing…

    • Hi Steve,
      Thanks for your comment. Unfortunately, Three has never allowed tethering on their Pay As You Go service (this applies both in the UK and abroad). This means you’ll need a separate SIM card for every device you want to get connected to the internet. With Pay Monthly, you can tether but only if you’re in the UK (tethering isn’t permitted in a Feel At Home country).
      Hope this helps,

      • Hi Ken,
        does the tethering restriction apply to a PAYG SIM for a MI-FI device, eg the “Broadband – Pay As You Go + 12” ? I was planning on buying one of these to use in my MI-FI so that the family can use the internet on various tablets when on holiday in Spain.


        • Hi Dave,
          Great question! Three has never been totally clear about this. What we do know is you are able to use a mobile broadband SIM card in Feel At Home countries, and I’ve not seen anything that restricts this to a certain type of device (e.g. only to tablets, USB dongles, Mi-Fis, etc). My personal interpretation is that this should be OK, as the MiFi is designed to be used in such a way (also, ‘tethering’ normally only means sharing the internet from your smartphone). This isn’t an official answer however, so I recommend double-checking directly with Three before spending any money.

  • Hi, I know Three stipulate that you cannot tether with Feel At Home. I have a Three mobile broadband sim card, could this be used in a MiFi device in a Feel At Home destination?

    • Hi Dave,
      Thanks for your comment and a very good question! I don’t believe using a MiFi on your mobile broadband plan will count as tethering – it might however be worth double-checking with Three to get an official answer on this question.

  • Hi Ken.

    Will it be possible for two ‘3’ phones to call/text/email each other in a feel at home country while on holiday(Spain) without receiving any extra costs?

    • Hi Tim,
      Yes – you’ll be able to call and text each other without extra charges in a Feel At Home country. The important thing is you’re calling or texting a UK-based phone number (and with Feel At Home, you’re getting exactly that!).
      Hope this helps,

    • Thanks Ken as when I asked the same question in a ‘3’ store they did not really understand what I was trying to say. He ended up drawing a picture of maps and imaginary telephone lines creating links between the UK and Spain. Really confusing. Maybe I just spoke to someone who’s working there on their first day.

      • Hi Tim,
        Haha – that’s a very imaginative way to answer a question! 🙂 Hope you have a lovely time over in Spain – I’m super jealous you’ll be going there soon 🙂

  • Hi Ken

    I know that gibraltar is not covered by the feel at home plan but here is my question.

    Being so close to Spain the possibility of coverage by Telefonica Movistar or Yoigo looks highly likely on the Three feel at home coverage maps.

    Do you think i would be able to manually set one of these providers and use tge network as if I was in Spain which is a feel at home country?

    • Hi Steve,
      Thanks for your comment. If you’re connected to a Spanish mobile network, then you’ll pay the rates that apply to roaming in Spain. So yes, if you manually select a Spanish network on your handset, it should be possible to benefit from the Feel At Home rates. The caveat of course, is whether you’re actually able to get a signal from the Spanish networks (this might be a little hit and miss).
      Hope this helps,

  • Hi Ken,
    great article, thank you. I wonder if you can answer my query please.

    If I buy a 3 PAYG SIM for my wife for when we go on holiday to Tenerife (which I believe is covered by Spain) and whilst we are on holiday she calls (or texts) me (not on the 3 network), will my network provider charge me as if I have received a call whilst roaming?

    I assume that it would, unless I get a 3 sim as well.

    The main reason I would prefer not to is that I have a work mobile and get some calls and data included.


    • Hi Dave,
      Thanks for your comment. Yes, you’ll be charged as normal by your network to receive an incoming phone calls when you’re abroad in Tenerife. This is charged regardless of who is calling you.

  • Ken,

    Would just to bring a 3 UK issue to your attention. I have a dual sim 3 UK and French sim running simultaneously on an Asus mobile phone.

    I have been using my 3 UK sim card in France (Feel at Home) for the last 3 or 4 months where it works very well.

    Since I arrived back in the UK for Xmas, the 3 UK sim has stopped working. For info, it always has to be in the main sim slot in the UK on a dual sim phone.
    The issue is that I had my French sim as the preferred data account sim. When I changed that to 3 UK and restarted my phone, order was restored to the kingdom of dual sim existence.

    I hope that can be useful to any other users having the same problem.

    All the best,

    • Hi Antony,

      I have a Wiko phone, which is the second phone make the most sold in France and which works under Android. I bought this phone in France being French but live in Belfast. I subbed to Three and went to Paris, and Dublin recently. Everytime I was trying to remove the airplane mode to use the network there, data or not, my phone was bugging and resetting the background image to the factory on. I’m quite lost as I phone the customer service after setting on my phone and internet the roaming option to ON, where they haven’t been able to help me… My phone is named exactly Wike HighWay Pure, android version 5.0.2.

      Have you set up something on your phone to be able to use the feel at home in France ?



  • Hi Ken
    I am a 3 network user , can I use internet and make calls in northern Ireland for same datap lan in UK ?
    Please reply

    • Hi Jaz,
      Thanks for your comment. There are no extra charges when using your phone in Northern Ireland – you can use the Three UK network as normal when there.
      Hope this helps,

  • Dear Ken..
    I bought a Sim Three in the UK and applied all you can eat feel like home plan.
    It works Ok in the UK, Norway, Sweden, Denmark.
    But the Data connection doesnt work in the USA, only cellular function does work.
    Is it about my phone( which I bought from Thailand)having no LTE frequency to support the signal?

    • Hi Kenny,
      Thanks for your comment. It is possible that this is due to a problem with the LTE band support. Most EU countries use LTE at bands 3, 7 and 20. However, the US mobile networks tend to use bands 2, 4, 12 and 17. If your phone doesn’t support the required bands for the USA, it won’t be able to access the 4G service there.

  • Hi Ken,

    Is there any chances to add India in feel at home list, I can see some countries from the subcontinent
    – cheers

    • Hi Kishi,
      Unfortunately, I don’t have any information about the countries where Feel At Home might launch in the future 🙁 I will keep this page up-to-date however, so you’ll find out here if Feel At Home ever launches in India!

  • Hi Ken,

    A party of four of us are crossing the US this month, starting in LA and ending up in New York. This is day 6 and we are about to leave San Francisco for the Yosemite area.

    All four of us bought Three PAYG sim cards which we topped up in Heathrow airport a few hours before our flight, using the credits to buy all in one add-ons. 2 of us bought all in one 10’s, and 2 bought all-in-one 20’s

    All our phones were unlocked. Unfortunately, while we tested that the phones worked after buying the all in one packages, by each calling one another, (They did) since we have arrived in the USA none of the phones will allow us to make a voice call, either to one another or to a UK land line. Data works from time to time (and only on AT&T) but when any of us attempt to make a voice call, we get a message telling us we have no credit. When we check our allowances online, we can see our remaining credit is in line with having add-ons, but we still have no voice service. Three are not being very helpful, we are constantly being told it is a problem with our phones, the signal, 3G/4G issues, but despite us restarting our phones daily, checking T-Mobile and AT&T, setting the standard for connection to 3G, 4G, even 2G, we still cannot make a call, and we have 24 days of this trip to go, with practically no way to talk to our families, bar whatsapp and hangouts…no voice working with those effectively either as the data connection is so bad.

    Any suggestions you have would be helpful



    • Hi Colin,
      Thanks for your comment. Unfortunately, I don’t have a concrete answer for why the calls might be failing when you’re abroad on Three. One thing worth checking (if you haven’t already): make sure there’s a +44 prefix on all of the UK-based numbers. For instance, if you’ve saved a phone number as 07555 123 456, you will need to change this to +44 7555 123 456. You can get the + symbol on your phone by long-pressing the zero button. The reason I suggest this is because the message you get suggests the number isn’t being recognised as a UK-based number (if it was, it would use your All-in-One allowances rather than the Pay As You Go credit).
      Best wishes and do let me know if you find a solution,

  • I think I’ve made a mistake. I bought the 1 month rolling contract sim to use in Florida in 2 weeks time. Should I have bought the payg sim? Will I be able to turn on data roaming straight away or do I have to wait 30 days.
    Maybe a trip back to the 3 shop tomorrow to cancel the contract.
    I haven’t put the sim in my phone yet x

  • Hi all,
    Just to let you know: I’ve updated the article above with the new 12GB limit on data usage in Feel At Home countries. I’ve also updated it with the new restriction of no more than 2 months exclusively abroad every year. Previously, the limits were 25GB and 3 months. I’m not quite sure when they changed the terms of the offer (the earliest reference I could find was posted sometime last month). Thanks a lot to Charbax below for the heads up about this!

    • lee davies replied:

      Hi Ken I’m in Tenerife which is Spanish territory, I have all you can eat everything, can I use my phone without extra charges.

      • Hi Lee,
        Indeed you can! Do note, however, there’s a fair usage policy of 3000 minutes, 5000 texts and 12GB per month for all-you-can-eat tariffs in a Feel At Home countries.
        Hope this helps,

  • John Thomson said:


    If I buy the £20 PAYG with its benefits, do i need to add anymore cash to the PAYG sim in order to use it or does the £20 up front suffice?



    • Hi John,
      As long as the bundle includes everything you want, there’s no need to top up any additional money to the SIM card. In other words, I would only top up with extra money if you wanted to use more than 300 minutes or if you wanted to make a phone call to a non-UK number.
      Hope this helps,

  • Do they provide LTE speeds in all those Feel like home countries?

    Any way to find out which speeds they can support in each of these countries?

    I see that Three in Denmark also offers Feel like home, but that Three Denmark does it with different countries, they include for example Germany and Portugal (but they seem to exclude the USA!) with a 10GB monthly limit on Feel like home countries which is a bit lower than the 12GB per month that I understand the limit is at for Three UK Feel like home (and not 25GB/month, correct?). So basically since Three Denmark is the same company as Three UK, I wonder if it might be likely that Three UK will also include those countries soon, cause not having Germany is kind of a big gap.

    • This user says that Three Feel like home uses only 3G speeds in the Feel like home countries, I can’t see if Three Denmark talks about speed limits for roaming countries but they say it can go down to 0.5mbit/s when roaming on a carrier that is not part of the Three corporation internationally.

      Google Project Fi says all their 120+ countries data roaming is limited at 256kbit/s, and Project Fi’s price is $10/GB but where they refund you what you don’t use at the end of the month, which is why I am wondering if Three Feel at home might be a better deal because we get 12GB for 17GBP/month (in 12 month contract) or 20GBP/month (when only subscribed to monthly).

      • Hi Charbax,
        Thanks for your comment. Unfortunately, Three UK and Three Denmark are separate companies (they are however both a part of the Hutchinson Group). While there are some similarities between the two offers, you shouldn’t really assume they’re both the same thing. Great feedback on the 12GB monthly limit (this used to be 25GB/month when I first wrote the article… will update this info very shortly). With regards to checking the coverage available in each country, you can do this here on the Three website. Enter the country you’re visiting and you’re shown a map of available coverage (split by 2G and 3G). I’ve not yet found any countries with roaming on 4G so I think this is probably excluded from roaming agreements at the moment.
        With regards to the countries in the offer, I think this is normally set by the most popular destinations for people in that country. In the UK, lots of people visit the US, Spain and Italy so they’re some of the top destinations available in the offer.
        Hope this helps,

  • Hi – I have a Three 321 SIM and am off to the US of A and have a couple of questions please based on the fact that I will buy an ‘All in One’ add-on.

    1) Although you mention “ET phone home” calls, you make no mention (or I’ve missed it) of calls made within the country you are visiting; in my case the USA. Are calls within the US charged in the same way as ones back to the UK?

    2) You also mention that tethering is not allowed and I’m cool with that but does using the SIM in a 3 dongle count as tethering?

    Many thanks for the articles and for any further clarification you can offer.


    • Hi Jon,
      Thanks for your comment.
      1) The Feel At Home offer will only include phone calls made back to the UK. If you’d like to call a US-based phone number, it’s 13.8p/minute extra (you’ll need extra credit on your SIM card to pay for these calls). As an alternative, you can use a voice-over-IP application (e.g. Google Hangouts or Skype). I believe Google Hangouts currently has free calling to US & Canadian numbers.
      2) Unfortunately, it’s not possible to use a normal Pay As You Go SIM card in a dongle. If you like, you can buy a mobile broadband SIM card (e.g. £10.49 for 1GB of data) which can be used in a dongle and also with the Feel At Home offer.

      • Hi Ken and thanks for getting back to me and confirming what I expected to be the case with calls to the US whilst there. Bit disappointing to discover that a dongle need a data only SIM.

        Suspect that my solution to all of this will be to top-up before I go and rely on spending less than £10s worth of 13.8p/minute calls and relying on wifi in the places that I will stay as, all in all, it seems that 3 is still the way to go and I do already have a 3 account. Anyone who calls me from the UK will only do so in an emergency as they will use WhatsApp for anything else and, of course, as long as I have a decent wifi connection, we can use the App as a telephone.

        Thanks again for the clarification – Jon

  • Ken,

    Silly question perhaps. If I order a couple of £20 PAYG SIMS, are they activated from day I buy or from when I first put them into my phone. Just trying to be organised & not leave everything until last minute but don’t want 30 days to run out if activated from date of purchase. Thanks

      • Gary Colclough replied:

        I ordered a PAYG SIM to use abroad, it said something like a discount for direct debit, will this auto renew after the 30 days or just lapse??


        • Hi Gary,
          Thanks for your comment. Three shouldn’t be showing a message about a Direct Debit discount – this only applies for Pay Monthly contracts. I suspect it’s a bug on their website – nothing to worry about as money won’t be taken from your bank account automatically.

  • Hi Ken,
    In November I’ll be travelling around Australia, and my husband will be on a short break in Lanzarote. We are both on 3, unlimited. Will we be able to FaceTime and call each other using Feel at Home? Reading 3’s website it is unclear whether it applies to UK numbers, or geographical UK!

    • Hi Maggie,
      Indeed, you can! For FaceTime, you’re only using the mobile internet connection on your phone. Hence, you’ll be able to FaceTime someone who’s anywhere in the world. For voice calls, you’re able to call a UK-based phone number at no extra charge. This includes calling a UK-based mobile (even if the other mobile is roaming outside the UK).
      Hope this helps,

  • Ken
    Hi, am travelling from Australia to Europe end of the year (mainly UK but also France and Austria) for 2 months. I would also like to be able to call home to Australia (land line but possibly mobiles). What plan would you suggest and what will it cost me?


    • Hi Tony,
      Thanks for your comment. I recommend having a look at my article on international phone calls. There’s a section there comparing call rates from the UK to Australia. For calling landlines in Australia, it looks as if Lycamobile currently has the best deal (1p/minute when calling landlines in Australia).
      Hope this helps,

      • Hi Ken, thanks for the reply. We probably wont call Australia (unless its an Emergency) so really more interested in something that covers for calls within UK, France, Austria and has a generous data portion BUT will also not kill us should we need to call Oz


        • Hi Tony,
          In that case, you’re probably best off on the Feel At Home offer from Three. For the UK, France and Austria, you’ll have an allowance of data that can be used in all three countries. Phone calls are included in your allowance to a UK-based phone number but you’ll need to pay 16.6p/minute when calling French and Austrian numbers (see the Three pages on France and Austria for more information). For calling home to Australia from the UK, it’s 3p/minute if you use the 405 dialling prefix (choose the PAYG tab for more information). When you’re in France & Austria, it’s 18.8p/minute to call an Australian number.
          Hope this helps,

          • Ken, would you suggest an ‘Add-On’ as well? am confused to the difference between the base package and Add-ons


          • Hi Tony,
            Do apologise as I neglected to mention this in my original reply! If you’d like to use your SIM card abroad at no extra cost in France and Austria, you’ll need to buy an All-in-One add-on (e.g. you’ll get 100 minutes, 3000 texts and 500MB of data for a £10 top-up). The allowances will last for up to 30 days and can be used in any Feel At Home country. With the basic 321 package, you pay 3p/minute, 2p/text and 1p/MB (however, these rates only apply when you’re in the UK). For more information, you can also see the article I’ve posted here.
            Hope this helps,

  • Hi, I bought a 3 sim card in Italy, which covers most of EU countries.
    They gave me 1GB data for 30 days.
    But in the second day I came back from Italy, internet data suddenly didn’t work.
    When I checked my data used on 3 website, I found I only used 1/10 of I have.
    Is this because of traffic limit in outside of Italy? If so how can I fix it?
    and does 3 mobile UK also have traffic limitation?

    • Hi J,
      Unfortunately, 3 in Italy is a totally different network to 3 in the UK. For this reason, I really couldn’t tell you anything about the 3 service in Italy. “Feel At Home” is only available on the Three UK network.
      With regards to your final question, “Feel At Home” on Three UK allows you to use your allowances abroad at no extra charge. The only limitation I’m aware of is a 25GB/month limit when using a tariff with all-you-can-eat data.
      Hope this helps,

    • Hi Leigh,
      Thanks for your comment and a very good question! Take a look at the comment here for more information. In short: all UK networks will need to offer EU roaming at no extra cost by the 15th June 2017. Unfortunately, that’s still another two years away – so fingers crossed that Three decides to add them to the offer before then.

  • OK just back from two weeks in France and Spain. It was a motorcycling holiday, so I was moving around a lot. Started in Nice, ended in Malaga.

    This service is absolutely fantastic.

    It worked perfectly everywhere, even in the remotes places. I was astounded.

    I’m an EE customer, and got really annoyed last year with there poor service when abroad and very high charges. I felt like I was being ripped off by them.

    What can I say other than: for a week in Provence, I was hiking, and the service seemed to work everywhere, even in the Verdon park on top of some of the highest peaks or remotest places. Voice quality was excellent, and data speeds were great. All of the things I wanted to use – browsing, google maps, email – worked flawlessly. It was great not having to depend on hotel wifi.

    I loved the fact I could call my office when I needed to without worrying about the cost.

    As I moved into Spain towards Malaga, it continued to perform just was well. When my satnav packed up, google maps got me to where I needed to be. My data connection was solid almost everywhere, even in the Sierra Espuna.

    I makes the offers from the other providers, particularly EE, look like a joke. EE’s service when I used (2014) it was riddled with charging and metering bugs.

    I bought the one month £25 option. I’m now considering switching from EE here in the UK, I’ve not been happy with EE for some time due to poor voice quality in London and my home in Edinburgh.

    Don’t hesitate, do it.

  • Hi Ken,
    I live in UK and spend 4 separate months in France each year. The ‘feel at home’ sim looks suitable but does it include calls and texts to French phones when I’m in France. I can’t see anything on the site which mentions this. (or am I just being dumb?)

    • Hi Mo,
      Thanks for your comment. Unfortunately, the Feel At Home SIM card only includes calls to a UK number. If you’re calling a number in France, it’s 16.6p/minute (you’d probably be much better off using a local SIM card for calls with France). It’s also worth being aware of the 3-month limitation (if you’re abroad in France for 4 months per year, it’s possible you may run in to this limitation).
      Hope this helps,

      • Thanks Ken, I suspected that was the case. Do you know of any company who provides for calling and texting 07 and 06 numbers within the monthly package, otherwise I guess I need two phones as swapping sim cards all the time will drive me nuts

        • Hi Mo,
          Are you willing to possibly sign up for a Pay Monthly contract? If so, a 4GEE Extra plan will have inclusive calls & texts to a EU number (you can call and text either a UK or French mobile at no extra charge when travelling in France). The caveat is you’ll need to use your phone once in the UK every 30 days. Also, unfortunately, data roaming isn’t included (that’s £4/day if you want to add it to your plan).
          Unfortunately, it might be the case that you’re better off using two separate SIM cards (it might be worth picking up another handset like the Moto G or Moto E).

          • Thanks Ken. That gives me a few possibilities to choose from. It’s a minefield out there!
            Best wishes,

  • Hi Ken,

    Thanks for putting this article together…very informative. I am a Canadian traveling to London for 5 days before embarking on a cruise that leaves from Southampton, England. The ports of call include Vigo/Spain, Lisbon/Portugal, Cadiz/Spain, Gilbraltar/UK, and finally disembarking at Barcelona/Spain. We plan to stay at Barcelona for three days after our seven day cruise. All together, we will be in Europe for 15 days.

    Based on my understanding, I can pick up a Pay Go (All in One £20 Add on) SIM card and leverage the “Feel at Home” feature while we travel to all the ports except for Lisbon/Portugal. While traveling in the “feel at home” territory, the all you can eat data will be limited to 25GB outside of UK.

    This sounds like a really good deal as I was initially thinking that I will have to purchase Pay Go SIMs in each country to stay connected.

    Please confirm that I have the correct understanding as to how this “Feel at Home” work with Three’s Pay As You Go SIM plans.

    • Hi Ted,
      Yep – spot on! Only one small thing: Gibraltar has different phone networks from the rest of the UK so you won’t be able to use Feel At Home there. For all the ports of Spain, it should be fine to use Feel At Home there 🙂 If you wanted to use your phone in Portugal or Gibraltar, it might be worth adding a bit of extra credit to the account.
      Hope this helps,

      • thanks Ken. Is it safe to assume that the out of bundle fees you mentioned in this article will apply to Portugal and Gibraltar? In another words, the phone would still work but not classified under the “feel at home” territory?

        • Hi Ted,
          Yep – your phone should work without a problem. For out-of-bundle rates, see their pages on Portugal and Gibraltar. As I mentioned before, you’ll need to top-up your phone with extra credit to account for these charges (otherwise, you’ll simply be told there’s insufficient credit on your account).
          Hope this helps!

          • Thank you very much for your assistance…telecom is a very confusing topic for most and you and your article have been very helpful.


    • Hi Roger,
      Thanks for your question! Unfortunately, Liechtenstein isn’t a part of the Feel At Home offer. Furthermore, you won’t be able to use a Pay As You Go SIM card on the networks in that country. More information here on the Three website.
      Note: The ‘Feel at Home’ offer actually relates to the country of your roaming network operator. Hence, if you’re able to pick up a Swiss mobile network (e.g. close to the border), then you can use this as part of the Feel At Home offer.
      Hope this helps,

  • Good evening, thanks for info on using 3 sim in Spain but the link provided suggests that a sim is not available for an iphone 6. Yes or no?



  • Hi Ken,

    Do you know if Three are going to extend this to other EU countries, such as Belgium, Holland or Germany? or even further afield such as Taiwan, China or Korea all places i travel to – short week trips.

    • Hi Ivor,
      Following the recently announced EU regulations, Three will need to make this available to all countries in the EU by the 15th June 2017. In fact, all UK networks will need to do this as roaming charges are being scrapped through Europe. It’s possible Three will continue to add EU countries before the 2017 deadline (though nothing has yet been announced).
      For non-EU countries (e.g. China, Taiwan and Korea), roaming charges will continue to be in place even after 2017. I’m really hoping they continue to add new countries to the service but again: nothing has been announced so far.

  • I’ve just bought a 3 SIM + £10 top-up voucher for roaming in USA and discovered that it doesn’t work on my non-3G phone. OK, so I should have read the small print! I don’t want 3G features, just calls and texts.

    Lucky I’ve also got an iPhone, but I wanted to use that with my existing number for receiving business calls.

  • Hi
    Following your very useful advice I’ve spent a lot of time researching the Three Feel at Home PAYG £15 SIM bundle that I’m hoping to use for three weeks on my unlocked phone whilst on holiday in the USA. Thereafter I will return to using my SIM only contract with Vodafone.
    My understanding is that with the Three bundle I will be able to make calls to local US numbers up to a total value of £5. Is that correct?
    Secondly, I was a bit flummoxed when I paid for the SIM card to get a message saying the £15 included “a £5 monthly discount for paying by a recurring method such as direct debit.” I paid by credit card and am now unsure as to whether this means Three will automatically take another £15 off my credit card once my initial 30 days of use expires? As I probably won’t use the card again once I return from my holiday, I don’t want to continue paying on a monthly basis. Please advise.
    Thank you

    • Hi Jay,
      Sorry for the delay in replying to your message (I was myself away on holiday for the past two weeks). In response to your questions:
      1. Unfortunately, phone calls to a US-based number are not included in the Feel At Home offer. They’ll instead cost you 13.8p/minute. This charge will paid for from your credit (so you might want to add an extra £5 or £10 credit to your SIM card). To avoid paying this, consider using something like WhatsApp or Skype (you can use this for free on your mobile data connection). If you’re calling friends & family who have a UK-based SIM card (including if the other person is using Feel At Home), this is free as it’s taken from your allowance.
      2. The £5 monthly discount actually refers to Pay Monthly SIM cards (I’m not quite sure why they’re showing this on the Pay As You Go order page – I believe it’s a bug in the system). They shouldn’t be taking any more money from your credit card later on.

      • Thank you for this Ken. I’m totally appreciate you taking the time to respond. I’m pleased to know the message I received about the £5 monthly discount is probably a glitch in the system. I’ve definitely got a Pay As You Go sim, which I’m hoping to use to keep in touch with others who are travelling with me and with family back in the UK.

        Appreciate the tip about Skype and What’s App. I use these all the time so will just need to check if my American friends have them too!

        BTW: great blog!

  • Great article, and thanks for taking the time to respond to comments! I’ve learned so much!

    I live in the US and bought a Pay as you go SIM for my trip to the UK in October. I plan to get an all in one plan right before I leave (I heard the £15 is going up to £20?).

    My hope is to be able to use the same SIM for future trips to the UK (who knows when those will be). But I know I have to use it at least every six months to keep it active, and not more than 3 months exclusively abroad. My question is, can I leave it sitting in a drawer most months and be fine, even though I’m not using it in the UK?

    Maybe an example would be less confusing. I use the SIM in October, partly US, partly UK. I take it out of my phone before November. I use the SIM only in the US in April to keep it active. I also use the SIM only in the US the next October. Could I keep going like this, only using the SIM two months out of the year and exclusively abroad? Or does it need to be used in the UK at some point ten months every year? Thanks!

    • Hi Katie,
      Thanks for your comment! (sorry, I was away on holiday for the past two weeks). You’re right: unfortunately, the All in One bundle has now gone up in price to £20 for 30 days usage. The £10 bundle is still priced as before so could be a better value option depending on how much data you actually require.
      Great research with regards to the inactivity period! You’re right: the SIM card will need to be used at least once every 180 days. As a separate requirement, the Feel At Home offer dictates that you can’t use the SIM card exclusively abroad in a Feel At Home country for more than 3 months in a year. If you’re leaving the phone in a drawer and not using it for the whole month, I don’t believe this will count towards your limit.
      With regards to the example you’ve given, I think this should probably be OK in keeping your SIM card active. The only thing also worth mentioning is you’ll need a All in One bundle to use the Feel At Home offer. Hence, you’ll need to buy a £10 bundle in April and October. Alternatively, if the bundles won’t actually be useful, you could just go with normal Pay As You Go credit outside of Feel At Home. That way, you add some credit to your account (e.g. £5 without any bundles). You would then send a text message every 6 months to keep the SIM card active (from the US, it’ll be 4.3p/message to a UK or US number).
      Hope this helps,

  • Hello, I live in Canada and will be travelling to the UK and on to Paris. I have had my Samsung unlocked so I may purchase SIM cards abroad. I am not clear whether I am able to use the Pay As You Go plans you describe, or are they only available to UK residents travelling abroad? Thanks

  • I have just bought a payg sim and the feel at home all you can eat data/500mins and texts, I plan to use it in my phone before I go (in the Channel Islands) is this classed as the UK or France or not included as there is no mention. Also when we go to France (within the 30days) as I cannot use my phone for tethering can I put the sim in my iPad to use the data allowance? Thanks for your help.

    • Hi there,
      Thanks for your question! Unfortunately, the Channel Islands is treated as a separate country (it’s neither the UK or France). For this reason, you need to pay EU roaming rates when using your handset in Jersey. This is 13.8p/minute to make an outgoing phone call, 3.6p/minute to receive an incoming call, 4.3p to send a text message and 14.5p/MB when browsing the internet. There’s more information here on the Three website. If you choose to use the SIM card in Jersey, you’ll need to top up extra money alongside the All-in-One bundle.
      Hope this helps,

  • For Three subscribers on holiday in the USA wishing to call a USA/Canada mobile or landline, this can be done completely free of chage using the Google hangouts dialler app.

    Simply connect to a data connection via mobile data or a Wifi access point and dial away for free.

    From Google info:

    Almost all calls to the U.S. and Canada are free from all countries where Hangouts calling is available. A few U.S. and Canadian destinations will cost USD 1 cent per minute depending on the specific phone number. The 1-cent rate may vary depending on the local currency. You can look up the cost through the calling credit page for your Google Account. You also can make calls to destinations outside of the U.S. and Canada with low international rates.


  • I am unsure where my comment (4th Aug) has gone too, but I will try again.

    I am currently a 02 customer and interested in transferring to the 3 package for my hols in oz in September. Following my return can I return to my 02 network (without cost) followign my return as 3 network is very weak in the area I live

    I would appreciate a reply for this

    Many thanks Geraldine

    • Hi Geraldine,
      Sorry about your previous comment: I’m also a little unsure about where it has gone to!
      With regards to your question, it would be possible for you to do this. Essentially, you need to use a PAC Code twice: once to move your number to Three and then once again to move your number back to O2. Despite it being possible to do this, I would probably recommend against do so. Your old account on O2 will be closed (there might be a fee for ending your contract early or you may lose unused Pay As You Go credit).
      A better thing to do would probably be to just keep the Three SIM card on a temporary number. If you want to continue receiving calls on your O2 number, you can always set up a call divert to the new number.
      Hope this helps,

      • Geraldine replied:

        Hi Ken

        Many thanks for the reply and it is very informative. In regards to retaining my 02 number and setting up the divert from my current mobile number to a 3 sim card – does this divert/transfer also apply when receiving texts/


        • Hi Geraldine,
          Unfortunately, the diversion only applies to incoming phone calls (text messages will not be forwarded). You can, however, stick the O2 SIM card back in your phone to receive the text messages abroad at no charge (just make sure you put the Three SIM card back in before replying to the message to avoid the extra charges).

          • If you are on O2 check out the TuGo app (not sure if it works on PAYG) but this should allow you to send/receive texts and make calls using your O2 number when abroad using a three SIM. You will probably need to be on Wifi though to make a decent quality call using the app.

  • I am travelling to the Dominican Republic soon and wondered if this is included as US? Also can I purchase a data only Sim on PAYG that includes the Feel at Home, and use it in my MiFi device? Advise appreciated. Thanks.

    • Hi Kellie,
      Thanks for your comment. Unfortunately, the Dominican Republic is not included in the Feel At Home offer. The roaming charges when using your phone there are £2/minute, 35p/text and £6/MB. You’ll also pay £1.25/minute when receiving a phone call. For more information, see this page on Three’s website.

      • Hi Ken, thanks for your reply. However I did check on Threes website and entered the Dominican Tepublic into the search bar to see if it was covered by their Feel at Home programme and it said that the Dominican Republic was covered Ms their art we there was Orange. Can you verify this please? thank you.

        • Hi Kellie,
          As the information on this page shows, I don’t believe the Dominican Republic is included. Could I kindly ask where you saw the information about it being included in the Feel At Home offer? I suspect a quick phone call to Three Customer Services (call 333) should clarify this once and for all 🙂

  • Hi Ken,
    I’ve just received my sim PAYG with Feel at Home 15 bundle. I intend to use it when I go to Rome on August 9 for 2 weeks.
    Excuse my ignorance, but should I register and start to use it a few days before I leave the UK in order to benefit from the 30 day allowance? Or can I register it now but be assured that the 30 day clock starts ticking from the moment I first make use of it?
    Yours confusedly,

    • Hi Russell,
      Thanks for your comment. The All-in-One bundle will last 30 days from the activation of your SIM card. For this reason, if you’d like it to cover the duration of your trip you should probably wait to activate it sometime in August.
      Hope this helps!

  • Hi, sorry for the stupid question, as you seem to have answered this before, but you mention that to call a local number in USA on the three sim, 3 would charge, where is that charge taken from if not your allowance, reason I ask is I have just bought a PAYG sim with cash, so no way of charge being deducted from a card or account

    • Hi David,
      Not at all – there’s no such thing as a silly question! On the Pay As You Go SIM card from Three, out-of-bundle usage is taken from your Pay As You Go balance. In your case, when making a US-to-US call, it’ll cost you 13.8p/minute. If you actually want to call US phone numbers, you should put extra credit on to your SIM card. For instance, you could top-up £15 (£10 for the All-in-One bundle with £5 remaining on your balance for out-of-allowance calls).
      As a further cost-saving measure, consider using voice-over-IP apps such as Skype. They’ll normally charge you only about 1p/minute to call a US number.
      Hope this helps,

  • Hi Ken,

    I am going to the USA shortly and I am looking to purchase a data only Three sim. If I do this can I put it in my iPad and use my iPad as a hotspot? I know this is tethering, however isnt it just the same as putting your data sim in a Mifi.

    If the above is not possible, will most MiFi’s work in the USA if I buy one off eBay?



    • Hi Darren,
      Thanks for your comment. According to the information on Three’s website, you can use a mobile broadband SIM card in Feel At Home countries (e.g. the USA). My interpretation, therefore, is it shouldn’t be a problem using your iPad over in the USA.
      Hope this helps,

      • Hi Ken,

        Thanks for your reply.

        Will I be able to tether other devises to my ipad though, such as my phone, laptop etc?

        Will three allow this, this will save me the expense of purchasing a MiFi.



        • Hi Darren,
          My understanding is you won’t be able to tether the data onto other devices (e.g. a laptop). This is because the data is only for use on the device where you actually have the SIM card. With regards to MiFi usage, it might be worth clarifying the policy directly with Three (unfortunately, I’m not quite sure how “tethering” is defined when it comes to MiFi).

  • Peter Pedal said:

    “Three has also added that streaming and accessing VPNs may be slower than if you were in the UK. The speed limitation is unlikely to affect users under normal day-to-day smartphone usage (e.g. web browsing, e-mail, messaging and apps). However, if you’re watching videos online or attempting to access a secure corporate network, you may notice the effect of the speed reductions.”

    This statement is absurd and a direct lie.
    Streaming is so slow that it is completely utterly non-functional. As in wait 15 minutes and you get 4 seconds of audio until it buffers again. Video will load 15 minutes and you only get the first still frame. No, I’m not exaggerating.

    No, spotify, no radio, no youtube, no streaming what so ever.
    No VPN (also functionally disabled, although not blocked so they can propagate the marketing lie that service MIGHT be ‘a bit slower than UK’ at round 1 kbps)

    iOS App store extremely slow, download 10mb app (tiny app), wait 20 minutes.
    You quickly want to load an app to check the metro lines in France? yup, go get a coffee and wait and wait and wait and you might get it downloaded.

    Web sites sometimes load, sometimes don’t. In general are decent. is also a scam with clear priotitized traffic for the ‘speed test’.
    It’s not a speed test, it’s a marketing tool that has no bearing in reality for an end users experience. Speed test will show 9 Mbps looking great, but use it and it’ll take you 1 minute to send an imessage. Or try to load your my3 page to check your available minutes and it will literally take +3 minutes and multiple ‘page failed to load’ because of time-outs.

    I tried all 4 supported roaming partners, service is identically poor from all 4. All traffic is tunnelled back to UK where Three clearly is crippling the roaming service.
    This is from central Paris. If you look you’ll find users reporting the same all over Europe.
    Pity no-one actually reports on ACTUAL USAGE experiences but I guess it’s easier to blog an Echo of the marketing lies. Oh well.

    • Hi Peter,
      Thanks for your comment. I’ve occasionally heard this from some other people too, though we tried it recently in Italy and in Spain and the service worked without any problems (it was fast enough even for making voice-over-IP calls, though I didn’t try streaming videos from YouTube). It would definitely be good to get some more clarity from Three (expected speeds when travelling abroad and whether there are any known situations that can cause your connection to be throttled.

    • Sam Harrington replied:

      Having the exact same problem I am currently in Italy but in April when I was in Spain for a week I was getting 7mb/s on app and I could actually watch videos in 1080p, now that I’m in Italy unfortunately I am getting 5kb/s actual speed. I also seem to have found sorta a work around, simply go to the three website on your phone start watching the makeitright video (which plays perfectly even though it’s on YouTube) then just stop the video and go back to YouTube on the web browser and you can watch YouTube videos fine for the next 10 mins or so. At first I was very pleased with FAH service from three but the piss take speeds of Max download 10kb/s is just bs and should not be classed as usable internet.

  • Hi there,
    Hope you are doing good!
    My “pay as you go” will expire on Jul 4, and I will go to Italy on Jul 1, besides upgrading” pay as you go” to “Feel at home all in one 15 bundle”, can my card extend more days?
    And I also like to confirm if I can share the hotspot of “feel at home” with my other devices in Italy?
    Thank you for your help in advance.
    Have a good day.


    • Hi Maggie,
      Thanks for your comment. Unfortunately, I believe it’s only possible to buy an add-on that lasts for 30 days. For this reason, you’ll need to buy another All In One bundle to last you for the final three days. As an alternative, you could pay the out-of-bundle rates (they might be marginally cheaper if you’re only using it for 3 days and if you’re a fairly light user).
      With regards to tethering/personal wi-fi hotspot, unfortunately this isn’t allowed on the Feel At Home service.

  • Hello Ken

    We have a team of people travelling to America once a year, usually for approx 3 weeks at a time.

    Sounds like the PAYG Three “Feel At Home” scheme would be perfect!

    Do you know if I am able to delay activation of the tariff? Eg order early, then activate 3 days before the trip?

    Also, once the initial 30 days coverage has expired, can the card lay “empty” for several months, and then be reactivated for journeys to other countries? Is it just a simple “top up” before you go?


    • Hi Paul,
      Thanks for your comment 🙂 As far as I understand, if you order your SIM card from Three’s website, it only activates when you first use the SIM card (this is always how it has worked for me in the past). Hence, you just need to activate the SIM card before you actually want to use it.
      Once your 30-day bundle has expired, the SIM card itself continues to stay active. The only condition is you need to use the SIM card at least once every 6 months. When you want to use the SIM card again, simply top it back up and buy another All in One bundle.
      Hope this helps,

  • Cameron Jones said:

    Wow, I just found this service and yours was the first third party review of it I have found. What an amazing deal…. I am traveling to the UK, then to Sweden and Norway for 10 days afterward, so it seems that 3 has found a customer in me. My only question is this – it is not clear whether mobile broadband is covered. On the 3 site, it does say that mobile broadband SIM plans are OK with this plan, but then I see elsewhere that tethering is not allowed. So I am hoping for confirmation that if I buy, say, the 25 gbp 7 GB mobile broadband plan for my mobile hotspot, I will be able to continue to use that hotspot when I am in Sweden without any changes. Can you (or anyone) confirm that is the case? Thanks! Worst case scenario, I can just use my cell phone, but then my girlfriend would feel very left out of the fun 🙂 Thanks for the writeup and any help!

    • Cameron Jones replied:

      I read through the rest of your comments below and it appears that this question has already been answered in the affirmative. No need to answer again unless I’m missing something. Thanks for a great write-up!

  • Hi

    I’m going to the U.S. later in life he year for a month. Wife and I will both have iPhone 5s on ee just for wifi and Skype use, but we need to be able to take incoming UK calls and texts. I will also have a spare iPhone 4 on the 3 “feel at home”, and some sort of throwaway Verizon package from Walmart when we arrive to actually be in contact (some British mobiles don’t work at all over vast swathes of the western U.S.)

    If I set up call forwarding on the iPhones from the ee numbers to the 3 number before I leave home, and the phones are ALL later located within the U.S. will we be charged international rates? Or should I set the forwarding up in advance direct with ee? Then in theory it should happen “at the exchange”. Or have I got that wrong! Or should I leave both ee phones on airplane mode (with a prerecorded message to call the other 3 number) until we get home?!



    • Hi Colin,
      Thanks for your comment. With call forwarding, EE has to “look” for your handset at the last known location or network. For this reason, if your handset connects to the network in the US, you’ll be charged the international calling rates. Worst of all, this also happens when using voicemail (which is why I normally recommend turning off voicemail when going abroad). If your EE phone never connects to the network in the US, it should be fine as you’ll only be charged the normal rates for UK call forwarding. You should double-check to see how much this costs on your plan (it’s not always free when using EE).
      Hope this helps,

      • Thanks Ken.

        Voicemail off and “Aircraft Mode” on both ee phones from check in at Heathrow for the duration of the trip it is then!

        Subsidiary question, should I set the call forwards up with ee first rather than just doing it on the iphone? It looks obvious that I’ll need to do it that way, as if the call ever has to go through the ee phone to be diverted it’ll need to be connected so I’ll be billed, but I thought I’d check.

        I think the forwarded calls to the 3 mobile will come out of my ee monthly minutes, which shouldn’t be an issue.

        Thanks again


        • Hi Colin,
          Thanks for your comment. This is probably something you should check directly with EE – I’m not sure exactly how phone calls are diverted. My understanding is that call divert should always happen at the network level (otherwise, it wouldn’t know what to do when your phone is turned off or in flight mode). I believe the call divert menus are simply plugged in to EE’s network (it probably does something clever like sending a text message to set it up on the network).

  • Hi Ken
    My wife and I will be travelling to the UK, France and Italy later this year.
    If we purchase two PAYG ‘feel at home’ sim cards will we be able to call and TXT each other without cost when in France and Italy or will these be charged calls and TXTs?

  • my son is going to Spain for 1 month and is currently on and tied into a EE contract … how can I benefit from buying a three sim for him … (as I pay his bill on EE I don’t want no stupid bills )

  • Peter Scargill said:

    How badly has the market economy failed us if this is the best we can do. Sharing phone data is very important to many of us who carry laptops or tablets for work and play and yet as soon as you move out of the UK, tethering is banned. This is attrocious – it is 2015 for heavens sake not the turn of the 20th century.

    We need some REAL competition for these sharks.

  • Hi Kenu
    Lots of great info here. Before Vodafone bought/merged with Three in Australia, we always used Three Like Home when we visited Italy. This appears to be on the same lines.

    I will be heading to Europe and the States from Australia in August for 3 months. We have a business in Italy and I have a local Sim card for our 40 day stay. Prior to arriving in Italy, we will be spending 4 days in transit in France. After leaving Italy, we will be in Austria for about 5 days, 5 days in Germany, back to France for a couple days and then doing a Rhine river cruise for 7 days in Germany, back to France 3 days and then down to Spain for 3 days.
    We then do a cruise from Spain to Florida – after which we will drive across to Dallas before flying back to Australia via HK.

    Sorry to lay out my whole itinerary. I am trying to figure out if I bought a Three Prepaid Sim via an Australian online merchant can I use it for my whole trip without being cut off. Would texting in Germany on our two visits plus from the ship be enough? Should I buy two Sims?

    Also if I buy a mobile data Sim, can I use it in my iphone 5S to run as a mobile hotspot?

    Thanks in advance for wading through this complicated itinerary and the issues it throws up.


    • Hi Julie,
      Thanks for your comment. You should indeed be able to use your SIM card in those countries without being cut off. Using your phone in a non-Feel At Home country (e.g. Germany) means that month won’t count towards your limit of 3 months. Anyhow, given you have a brand new SIM card, it shouldn’t affect you for the duration of your trip. When topping up your SIM card, you’ll need to add extra credit to cover the usage in non-Feel At Home countries.
      With regards to your question about mobile hotspot, unfortunately this isn’t possible when using Feel At Home. You can use one of Three’s mobile broadband SIM cards abroad with Feel At Home but this would obviously entail getting an extra device in which to use that SIM card.

  • Hi Ken

    I am going on holiday to Tenerife at the end of next week and was considering using the Three feel at home whilst I am there.

    I am currently in-between contracts and was going to sign on a sim only deal with Vodafone. I am currently with EE and also wanted to keep my phone number.

    However I also wanted to take my phone number over to three when I use the feel at home, which I was going too buy a PAYG sim card for one month to use on the trip.

    What I would like to know is whether I would be able to move my number over to three and then Vodafone one month later, or is there a limit on the number of times I could move my number between providers?

    Any help would be appreciated



    • Hi Callum,
      Thanks for your comment. There’s no limit on how many times or how often you can move your phone number. So it’s perfectly possible to transfer your phone number from Vodafone to Three, then from Three to EE. In reality, I would consider about the extra hassle involved (e.g. you’ll need to call up both Vodafone and Three when getting the PAC Codes to leave their network). If it sounds like it could be too much work, you can set up a call divert from Vodafone to Three which will allow you to receive incoming phone calls abroad. For more information about transferring a phone number, you can read the article I’ve written here.
      Hope this helps!

      • Hi Ken

        Thanks for your advice, got myself a PAYG sim with the £15 add-on and am leaving tomorrow.

        I have two more questions if you don’t mind.

        1. Does it cost my friends and family in the UK extra to call or text me?
        2. Are there any extra steps I have to take to allow my sim to work in Tenerife

        Thank you


        • Hi Callum,
          Thanks for your comment. To answer your questions:
          1. Nope, they’ll only pay their normal rates for calling a UK mobile number.
          2. Nope, a Pay As You Go SIM card from Three should work immediately and automatically in Spain. I’d double-check the SIM card works whilst you’re still in the UK (just to be sure your handset is unlocked and that it’ll accept the SIM card from Three).
          Have a lovely trip!

  • I’m based in the USA and will be traveling to the UK later this month. I ordered a Three Pay as you Go SIM on eBay and will be installing it in my unlocked iPhone 6 Plus. Do you know if I will be able to activate the SIM while in the US the morning before my trip? Will I be able to simply dial 444 or do I need the longer +44 number that ends in 444?

    • Hi Alex,
      Thanks for your comment. Unfortunately, I don’t know whether this is possible (I’ve never tried activating the SIM card abroad). Do please let me know how you get on (would be interesting to know this as lots of people have asked!). With regards to the 444 top-up line, there’s no need to add a prefix to this number (it’s always just 444 wherever you are).
      Hope this helps!

  • The network speed when using Feel At Home in the USA is actually very poor. The connection ranges from 100 or 200k download (most of the time) to a 1 meg if you’re lucky (when roaming on T-Mobile). Swap to a local T-Mobile SIM in the exact same location and you can get 10 to 12meg most of the time. I can repeat this test over and over again, so be warned, if you *NEED* a decent connection for using maps etc, don’t rely on Three Feel at Home.

  • Hi Ken

    I’m confused about the Feel at Home offer. If I’m traveling to one of the countries covered by the deal will I be able to use my UK allowance to call local numbers in the country I’m visiting, or just UK numbers?


    • Hi Annie,
      You’ll only be able to use your allowances to call a number in the UK. To call the local country, a small charge applies (starts from 15.6p/minute but it varies depending on the country). With regards to receiving incoming phone calls, this is free and can either be from the UK or the local country. For more information, please see the section on out of bundle charges.
      Hope this helps,