Roaming Tariff Market Size, Share & Trends Report

Roaming Tariff Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report By Roaming Type (National, International), By Distribution Channel (Retail Roaming, Wholesale Roaming), By Service (Voice, SMS, Data), By Region, And Segment Forecasts, 2019 - 2025

  • Published Date: Aug, 2019
  • Base Year for Estimate: 2018
  • Report ID: GVR-3-68038-711-7
  • Format: Electronic (PDF)
  • Historical Data: 2015 - 2017
  • Number of Pages: 160

Industry Insights

The global roaming tariff market size was valued at USD 69,770.0 million in 2018 and is expected to register a CAGR of 5.5% from 2019 to 2025. The rising number of mobile phone users coupled with increasing mobile internet penetration are some of the factors anticipated to drive the market growth over the forecast period. Additionally, the adoption of 3G- and 4G-enabled smartphones is rapidly increasing across the globe. For instance, according to the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), the recorded percentage of the global population with internet access in 2018 was 80.9%, while the recorded number of internet users globally was 3,896 million for the same year.

The growing number of unique mobile subscribers is also expected to contribute to the market growth for roaming tariff. For instance, according to GSM Association (GSMA), the total number of unique mobile subscribers was 5.0 billion in 2017. In addition, the emergence of 5G technologies offering low latency and high-speed internet connection is anticipated to drive the growth of the mobile industry, in turn contributing to the market growth.

Asia Pacific roaming tariff market

Worldwide, the tourism industry has experienced steady growth almost every year. High roaming tariff is the prime concern of users while traveling. Network service providers focus on offering special roaming packages to users, which provide them with cost-effective solutions. Generally, these packages are designed based on the subscriber’s calls and data usage patterns. Network service providers have also rolled out attractive and out-of-the-box offers that can be bundled into packages with an aim to draw more potential consumers toward the roaming tariff market.

Rising demand for enhanced network services, such as 4G and 5G, is expected to compel network service providers to offer seamless international connectivity along with high-speed data roaming services. However, advanced network services require heavy financial investments, which may be a challenging factor for service providers and small-sized operators. Moreover, increasing regulatory pressures and government intervention have resulted in a significant reduction in roaming tariff margins, thus hindering the market growth.

Roaming Type Insights

Based on roaming type, the market for roaming tariff has been segregated into national and international. The international segment accounted for the largest market share of over 70% in 2018. The segment is expected to witness further growth over the forecast period. Increasing international tourism coupled with key network operators introducing various tariff plans & international travel sim cards is driving the market growth. Key companies are highly focused on offering international roaming packages to their customers. For instance, in September 2016, Bharti Airtel Ltd. reduced the tariff of its international roaming packages by offering free incoming calls and discounts on outgoing calls.

Meanwhile, the national roaming type segment is estimated to register a CAGR of over 3% over the forecast period, owing to stringent government regulations. For instance, Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) imposed a special tariff plan in India, according to which all incoming voice calls for prepaid and post-paid subscribers will be free of charge for national roaming. Similarly, in 2018, China announced slashing the cost of data services and roaming tariff in an attempt to lower prices and improve internet connectivity.

Distribution Channel Insights

Based on distribution channel, the market for roaming tariff has been segregated into retail and wholesale. The retail roaming tariff segment is estimated to register a CAGR exceeding 4.0% over the forecast period. This can be attributed to the increasing number of smartphone users coupled with the growing penetration of 3G and 4G networks.

Meanwhile, the wholesale roaming tariff segment captured the largest market share in 2018 and is expected to register a CAGR exceeding 5.0% over the forecast period. International tourism is witnessing a rapid growth across the globe; however, this has also resulted in high wholesale roaming charges, wherein operators pay a roaming tariff in order to use each other’s networks. According to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), in 2016, inbound tourism in developed regions such as North America and Europe exceeded 87% and 60% respectively, thereby contributing to the market growth.

Service Insights

Based on service, the market has been segregated into voice, SMS, and data. The data service segment held the largest share of over 60% in 2018 and is expected to witness significant growth over the forecast period. The growth can be attributed to the growing use of mobile data services for browsing through social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. In addition, the rising demand for smartphones and feature phones is also contributing to the segment growth.

Global roaming tariff market

The voice service segment is also estimated to witness considerable growth over the forecast period. This can be attributed to the growing preference of majority users for voice services over text messages to stay connected, even while roaming. Meanwhile, the SMS service witnesses a high demand owing to its ease of use. SMS service is available on all phones and has no load on the mobile network.

Regional Insights

The European market accounted for more than 40% of the overall share in 2018. The regional market growth can be accredited to the rising disposable income of upper- & middle-class population. Additionally, the European Commission has introduced the ‘Roam like at Home’ policy to prevent additional tariff and reduce bill shock. According to this policy, individuals traveling across Europe can pay domestic tariff for SMS, data, and calling services.

In developing countries, the growing use of mobile services coupled with a rapid increase in LTE subscriptions is driving the overall market growth for roaming tariff. In countries such as India, users are charged a roaming tariff when traveling from one service area to another, even while using the same carrier. The steep roaming charges is a major contributing factor for the growth of the market in India.

Roaming Tariff Market Share Insights

The market is highly consolidated and characterized by high competition. Major global players operating in the market include America Movil, AT&T Inc., Bharti Airtel Ltd., China Mobile Ltd., and Deutsche Telekom AG. Companies are particularly focusing on mergers and acquisitions as part of their growth strategy to hold a competitive position in the market. Reduced tariffs have resulted in increased price competition among key operating players. For instance, in August 2018, Vodafone Group Plc. and Idea Cellular Ltd. merged to form a company called Vodafone Idea Limited. This merger enabled both the companies to utilize their market potential and vast resources as well as expand the subscriber base of the merged company.

Similarly, in January 2019, America Movil announced the acquisition of Telefonica Moviles Guatemala and Telefonica Moviles El Salvador (regulatory approval pending). These companies provide mobile and fixed telecommunication services that include voice, data, and pay TV in Guatemala and El Salvador. The company carried out these acquisitions with an aim to expand its operations in both the locations. Furthermore, in August 2018, Vodafone Group Plc. and Idea Cellular Ltd. merged into one company called Vodafone Idea Limited. This merger enabled both the companies to utilize their market potential and their vast resources as well as to expand the subscriber base of the merged company.

Roaming Tariff Report Scope



Base year for estimation


Actual estimates/Historical data

2015 - 2017

Forecast period

2019 - 2025

Market representation

Revenue in USD Million and CAGR from 2019 to 2025

Regional scope

North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, Middle East & Africa

Country scope

U.S., Canada, U.K., Germany, France, China, India, Japan, Brazil, Mexico

Report coverage

Revenue forecast, company share, competitive landscape, growth factors, and trends

15% free customization scope (equivalent to 5 analysts working days)

If you need specific information that is not currently within the scope of the report, we will provide it to you as a part of the customization.

Segments Covered in the Report

This report forecasts revenue growth at the global, regional, and country levels and provides an analysis of the latest industry trends from 2015 to 2025 in each of the sub-segments. For the purpose of this study, Grand View Research has segmented the global roaming tariff market report based on roaming type, distribution channel, service, and region:

  • Roaming Type Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2015 - 2025)

    • National

    • International

  • Distribution Channel Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2015 - 2025)

    • Retail Roaming

    • Wholesale Roaming

  • Service Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2015 - 2025)

    • Voice

    • SMS

    • Data

  • Regional Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2015 - 2025)

    • North America

      • U.S.

      • Canada

    • Europe

      • U.K.

      • France

      • Germany

    • Asia Pacific

      • China

      • India

      • Japan

    • Latin America

      • Brazil

      • Mexico

    • Middle East & Africa

Key questions answered by the report
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