European Union establishes caps to prices of international communications

The new EU provisions that establish caps to retail prices charged to consumers for regulated intra-EU communications took effect on 15 May 2019. These new rules apply to international communications (fixed and mobile voice and SMS) made from a Member State to a number of another Member State, billed in whole or in part on the basis of actual consumption.

Caps are as follows:


Caps (excluding VAT) paid by
the consumer who makes the communication

Calls made by the consumer in his country to a (fixed or mobile)
number of another EU country

€0.19 per minute


SMS sent by the consumer in his country to a (fixed or mobile)
number of another EU country

€0.06 per each SMS

However, operators are entitled to offer a tariff that does not meet the caps indicated above (alternative tariff). Consumers must expressly accept this tariff, but before they do, they must be informed by operators of the nature of advantages that will be lost.

Consumers who already benefit from an alternative tariff that exceeds the caps indicated, and do not confirm or express, within a period of two months from 15 May 2019, a choice for that tariff, will automatically be provided with the tariffs subject to the referred caps.

Consumers may switch from (or back to) a tariff according to the caps indicated, within one working day of receipt of the request by the provider, free of charge. The operator must ensure that such a switch does not entail any conditions or restrictions with regard to elements of the subscription other than regulated intra-EU communications.

These caps were introduced by Regulation (EU) 2015/2120, as amended by article 50 of Regulation (EU) 2018/1971, and aim to ensure that consumers are not charged excessive prices for the referred intra-EU communications.

Check BEREC’s explanatory video

BEREC Guidelines on intra-EU communications.

Source: BEREC