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Tips for using data abroad

Here's how to minimise costs when you access the mobile internet or use mobile broadband while roaming.

What to do:

Disconnect when you're not online

Disconnect your modem or data card when you’re not using it – you’re still using data by keeping the connection open.

Choose a '3G only' profile

If your modem is switching between 3G and GPRS before you connect, go to:

  • Settings Menu > Connection > Network Type

...and choose a 3G only profile. This forces the modem or card to connect to 3G broadband in areas where both connection types are available.

Turn off automatic updates

Turn off automatic updates before you roam, as these just eat up your data. Go to:

  • Start > Control Panel > Security Centre > Automatic Updates
  • Select ‘Turn off automatic updates’
  • Press ‘OK’.

Turn off ‘Show Pictures’

Turn off 'Show Pictures' if you're using Internet Explorer. Go to

  • Tools > Internet Options > Advanced
  • Untick the ‘Show Pictures’ option

To show an individual picture, just right-click on where it should be in the page (you will see a box with a red 'x' in it where the picture should be) and click on ‘Show Picture’.

Download headers only

Set Outlook to only download headers.

  • Right-click on the ‘Connected’ icon on the bottom right hand side of the Outlook Window
  • Then tick 'Download Headers'

Work offline

Work offline. Draft your emails first, then connect and send them all together - and disconnect once you’re done.

Send emails as plain text

The formatting in HTML and rich text emails boosts the size of each message you send. Go to:

  • Tools > Options > Mail Format
  • Select ‘Plain Text’ and click ‘Apply’

Compress files

When sending files by email, always compress or zip them first – this reduces the size of the files and saves on data usage.


Find out more

  • Call us on 1907
  • Or speak with your Vodafone account manager