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Phoning home

Not content with sending a postcard of the Eiffel Tower and the words 'wish you were here,' many of us get out the cellphone to make a call, and pay extortionate an amount as a result.

But not anymore, as a ruling has put a cap on the price of making and receiving calls abroad. Using the internet on your phone is set to become cheaper too, as the European Commision ruled that the cost of making a call should be no more than 32p a minute and 10p a minute for receiving them.

The Commission plans to narrow the gap between domestic and overseas calls by 2015 to almost nothing at all. But what should you do in the meantime? Well, if you're a pay-as-you-go user, perhaps think about a 30-day SIM-only deal. Starting at 10 pounds a month for 100 minutes and 500 texts, you get to keep your handset and could end up with a free smartphone.

Otherwise, consider switching to flight mode to prevent a local network being registered and you getting surprise charges for using radio, bluetooth orWifi. Another good idea is to switch to a local SIM card, thus avoiding roaming charges altogether.

Finally, check your insurance and make sure you have mobile phone insurance in the event of theft!

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