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Will my mobile phone work in the UK?

Hi all,
This Ofcom mobile phone coverage predictor (http://maps.ofcom.org.uk/check-coverage) is useful as a pre planning tool to know if UK spots can be sent and or if licence conditions met whilst on the hill. In my limited experience. It seems to be quite accurate.

Ofcom mobile phone coverage

David G0EVV

1 Like

Thanks David, a useful site.

EE is what used to be the BT network I think? They appear to have overall the most coverage but when you zoom in there are areas where their coverage is not good and one of the others is better.

Since my first Smart Phone, I have always bought a dual-SIM phone, and put the two major networks into the phone, for exactly the reason that coverage varies from location to location. When I travel over to the UK I can roam to more than one of these networks on each of the SIMs I have installed here in Germany, so except in areas where NO network has coverage, I’m usually OK for spotting myself from a summit. This map will enable me to know which network I should roam-to to ensure I have coverage from a specific summit, thanks.

73 Ed DD5LP/G8GLM.

Actually I believe EE is made up of what was the combined Orange and T Mobile networks. However BT acquired EE recently.

73 Marc G0AZS

This is correct. Also, it’s worth noting that the Virgin Mobile and Asda Mobile services use the EE network. Tesco Mobile and GiffGaff both use the O2 network.

In EI-land, “Three Ireland” offers superb coverage, even in the remotest areas. If you have a UK “Three” SIM, it works in EI for voice and text modes just as if you were still in the UK. However, data use can be expensive.

Walt (G3NYY)

“Feel at Home” is what you want Walt. Maybe only for people on Three contracts but I get to use all my minutes/text/data in 28 countries with Three as if I was in the UK. Last year I used in Ireland, France, Lanzarote, Switzerland and it was wonderful. It was also nice and fast. No 4G, just 3G but hey, it didn’t cost extra.

It works on my monthly SIM-only deal (not that I ever go anywhere I can make much use of it, though it did welcome me to EI when in GI near the border).

Yes, that’s it Andy. However, there are quite a lot of strings attached, and the terms and conditions have changed recently. The most significant change is that on Pay-as-you-Go SIMs you MUST convert your cash credit into an “Add-On” package to enable you to use it under the “Feel at Home” scheme.

Details here:



Ah, I’ve been on a SIM only contract for years after “negotiating” a splendiferous deal by telling their retentions people to make me an offer I couldn’t refuse. They did and I’ve been paying peanuts for more minutes and data than I can use! One the magic components is that I buy an add-on for £5 which gives me the add-on (extra data) and a £10 rebate. So I get the extra data and £5 off the bill for nothing.

Feel at home is great and I wish they could offer it in Holland and Germany as well.

With the revised regulations in Germany (and I think all other continental Western Europe countries), roaming rates have been reduced so much, that while it is still a little more expensive to use your phone abroad than at home, it is only a small amount. So much so that it’s no longer worth buying add-on roaming packages if travelling elsewhere within the EU. Travelling to the US or Australia, the best option remains to buy a PAYG SIM card in the foreign country, but for phone, SMS and ESPECIALLY data rates one can travel the EU without the worry of a big bill any more.


But the UK is not going to be in the EU for much longer.


Well in my case one day’s unlimited data is £5 and roaming is 3.9pMb which makes the break even point 128Mb. 128Mb is a trivial amount to blow through when away from home. YMMV.

The advantage of inclusive roaming is you no longer worry or do the desperate dance of trying to find a cafe/bar with free Wifi that is safe and actually works. You don’t worry about the cost, you just use the phone to do what you bought a smartphone to do. And as Walt points out, for reasons of national insanity, we wont be in the EU much longer in which case all bets are off on whether roaming charges will be capped/abolished.

Hi Andy, Hi Walt,
Of course I know about BREXIT. There is a chance I guess that this arrangement (of reduced roaming rates) may stay through market competition. In several cases, the same companies are involved in the different countries and hence if they have cell networks in most or all (Geographical) Western European countries it costs them little to offer a good roaming rate when you are simply using a different part of their network.

As always time will tell but at the moment at least, even the PAYG SIMs here in Germany have roaming included at a very reasonable cost, compared to what it used to be.