Australians face some of the most expensive prices in the world for mobile global roaming, according to a survey of 34 countries conducted by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).
The organisation has released a paper on International Mobile Data Roaming, confirming customer concerns that Australians are being ripped off.
The paper summarises data roaming prices across the OECD area, providing an overview of the average cost for each OECD country to roam to another.
The paper looked at various amounts of data used, with Australia ranking as the most expensive for most cases. The highest usage that the paper examined was 20MB over a period of 30 days. It looked at three scenarios: 20 1MB sessions with each on a different day; 20 1MB sessions with each on a different day and only using laptops; and a single 20MB session on one day.
In all scenarios, roaming charges for Australians remained typically the same, with the average cost for roaming coming in at around US$219 for 30 days. The cheapest that the traveller could hope for was US$153 for the 30 day period.
In the first scenario, Australians faced the fourth most expensive charges after Poland, Japan and Chile.
In the second scenario, Australians were hit with the sixth most expensive charges of the 34 countries.
In the third scenario, Australia ranked as the third most expensive. Of the 68 operators from which data was collected, Telstra was one of two that charged a per-session fee. However, it also bills by the amount of traffic used in that session.
The average price per MB for roaming across OECD countries was between US$6 and US$10. Australia's average price per MB for 20MB was US$10.95.
If the least expensive destination for a given country was considered, the average price per MB drops to US$2.50. Australia's average price per MB for 20MB is US$7.65.