Data roaming report: Hungarians generate the highest mobile internet usage in Germany; surprising results from outside the EU

Telenor’s annual data roaming report gives an overview of changes in the international mobile usage habits of Hungarian users and identifies Hipernet network’s most active data roaming users by nation. Since the entry into force of more attractive EU roaming rules in 2017, Telenor users have generated a data traffic of 2.2 million GB in the EU in one year, and at the same time, they’ve also used more roaming data outside Europe.

Mobile users don’t have to pay a roaming fee in EU member states and zone 1 countries since June 2017. In these countries, Hungarian customers can use their subscriptions under the terms applicable to their tariffs in Hungary, that is, they have much better terms than before for data, voice and text services alike. In addition, they can fully use the data allowance of the most popular tariffs for roaming services. 

As a result of these changes, using mobile internet abroad became much more popular already in the first year: between 1 June 2017 and 31 May 2018. Since then, this growth trend has continued. In the period under survey (between 1 June 2018 and 31 May 2019), the roaming data volume of Telenor customers in the EU and zone 1 networks has nearly doubled over the first year which means a total usage of over 2.2 million GB in a single year. In EU and zone 1, roaming grew at an even faster rate than in the domestic network. 

Hungarians had the highest usage in Germany

Following the pattern between summer 2017 and 2018, Hungarian Telenor customers had the highest mobile internet usage in Germany, Austria, Italy and France also in the past 12 months. Croatia finished fifth on Telenor’s EU roaming top list followed by the United Kingdom. 

Summer and winter mobile data usage is much more evenly spread in Germany and in Austria, while Italy, France, the United Kingdom and Croatia show a much higher level of seasonality. In these countries, the data traffic of Telenor customer declines heavily during winter months. Of all EU countries, Telenor customers had the lowest usage in Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia which is not surprising given that these countries are less frequented by Hungarian tourists. 

Telenor roaming adatok


Surprising data from outside the EU

The roaming data usage of Telenor customers increased by about 40% in countries outside the European Union during the period under survey. The top list has changed since last year with the United States taking the lead followed by Iceland (last year’s top country). Switzerland retained its third place on the list. 

Turkey, a popular holiday destination with Hungarian tourists, finished fourth right before Serbia (that ranked fourth last year). The next countries of the top 10 list include China, Russia, Ukraine and Israel. The tenth place was occupied by Thailand where roaming data usage increased more than 1.5-fold in the space of a year.

Telenor roaming adatok


UK visitors had the highest roaming traffic in Hungary

The top list of foreign SIM card users accessing Telenor’s Hungarian Hipernet network shows an interesting pattern. Although Hungary has the highest number of visitors from Germany[1], Hipernet’s data roaming top list was dominated by users with UK and Romanian subscriptions over the past year – with a gap of only a few percentage points between them.  

German mobile internet users lagged about 25% behind the top two nations in terms of usage, while Austrians’ usage was about 50% lower than that of UK visitors. The fifth place of the top list was occupied by the Polish, followed by Swedish, Dutch, Italian, Norwegian and Danish visitors, respectively. Another interesting finding was that although the third largest number of tourists visiting Hungary come from the Czech Republic, Czech visitors ranked only 15th on the list of nations generating the Highest mobile internet traffic in Hungary. 

Telenor roaming adatok


Telenor analysed the usage data of 4 major Hungarian festivals to find out which nation was the roaming champion of Hipernet in festival areas. 

Telenor roaming adatok