Low cost roaming in Bangladesh & Sri Lanka for Indian Airtel customers, but not vice versa

Posted on April 19, 2012  /  0 Comments

It’s been several years since we publicized the Zain innovation that brought down roaming prices in East Africa. No one picked up the inelegant workaround. Until now, when Airtel has sort of started the process.

Indians traveling to Sri Lanka or Bangladesh will have one thing less to worry about. Airtel, which has operations in these two countries as well, has announced a new tariff for its customers in India, under which they will be able to make local calls in the country at Rs 1, while calling back home will cost them Rs 10. Incoming calls will be charged at Rs 10 only.


Not the whole hog of treating Airtel roamers in Bangladesh and Sri Lanka the same as domestic Airtel customers (so still on the lines of the preferential agreements signed between Dialog and Vodafone, for example). But worst, why asymmetrical?

But anyway, here’s hoping this will get something moving. The South Asian regulators are meeting in Kathmandu right now. They’ve been inactive on roaming for too long; not much value in hoping something useful will emerge from Kathmandu.

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