Laois mother warns nation after being hit with €5,600 data roaming charge from Eir

Lynda Kiernan

Reporter:

Lynda Kiernan

Email:

lynda.kiernan@leinsterexpress.ie

Laois mother warns nation after being hit with €5,600 data roaming charge from Eir

A Laois mother hit with a massive Eir phone bill went on Joe Duffy's Liveline today to warn others about using mobile data while visiting the US.

Denise Carroll took to the national airwaves on Thursday June 8 with the shocking tale of how she was charged a phenomonal bill for just 40 minutes of using data roaming in the US, by her mobile phone provider Eir.

The usage has cost her family €5,626.86 . Her small family business used several phones, all of which are now cut off until the bill is paid.

Denise's daughter inadvertently racked up the bill, while in the US for the summer on a J1 student visa.

"She turned on Google maps and Whats App, to arrange for a mattress to be delivered, she then switched them off straightaway," Denise explained to Joe Duffy on air.

When Denise contacted Eir to complain, she was told the charges were valid.

"Her usage was 1.5 gigabits and they charge €10.24 per megabit, and there was no negotiating," she said.

She is warning other customers to contact Eir and instruct them to reduce their credit limit to the minimum, to avoid getting hit with similar bills.

"I started with a credit limit of €500, but because I paid my bill on time, they increased my credit limit automatically. I found out on Tuesday that it was €2,600, and they still allowed it to go over €2,000 over that," she said.

Her only warning was a text from Eir to say "your usage appears to be quite high". 

"That wasn't an alarming text for me," Denise said.

She has asked ComReg (Commission for communications Regulation) to intervene, but they will only do so after ten days have lapsed, to allow issues to be sorted out.

Asked by Joe Duffy if she will pay the bill, Denise is waiting to hear ComReg's advice.

"If it not resolved they will have a look at the case, and I will take advice from them," the Laois mother said.

Eir had not responded to queries from RTE's Joe Duffy Show, submitted the day before the item aired.