EE has confirmed that it will reintroduce roaming charges for new customers and those upgrading to new plans from January next year.

The BT-owned mobile operator said that customers using smartphones in 47 European countries will soon have to pay a flat rate of £2 per day to access their calls, data and texts.

It will also offer a £10 pass that will allow customers to use home tariffs abroad for 30 days.

The announcement is a surprise considering that EE claimed at the start of the year that it had no desire to bring back roaming charges following Brexit.

In a statement, EE said that the move would generate revenue to “support investment” in its network and customer service in the UK.

However, Uswitch said that the return of roaming charges was “hugely disappointing” and a “backward step”.

The charges were previously a common cause of ‘bill shock’ and forced users to stump up around £350m collectively every year.

Roaming charges had been abolished four years ago following changes to European regulation.

However, with the UK’s exit from the EU, EE has now decided to bring them back and other networks could follow.

O2 and Three have already updated their ‘fair usage’ policies around data limits for customers using devices on the continent, but have stopped short of roaming changes thus far.

Uswitch mobile expert Ernest Doku said: “If you’re an existing EE customer, these charges won’t affect you yet, but make sure you check the small print if you’re due an upgrade in the coming months.”