How T-Mobile's Domestic Wireless Roaming Policy Works

How can you have roaming limits without charging for roaming usage?

T-Mobile provides voice and data services for phones and other mobile devices in the U.S. and elsewhere. The company's Magenta plans offer unlimited talk, text, and data throughout North America, including Mexico and Canada.

T-Mobile partners with other wireless carriers in areas where T-Mobile does not offer service. When you use your phone in one of those areas, you are roaming. There are no roaming charges for calls or data usage in these areas, but the plan has a roaming limit. 

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How Domestic Data Roaming Works

If you subscribe to the basic T-Mobile plan, you have 50GB of allotted data, but your roaming limit is 200MB of domestic data per month. You pay no roaming fees, but when you reach your domestic data roaming limit, access to data while roaming is turned off until you return to an area with T-Mobile coverage or until the beginning of your next billing period.

T-Mobile sends an alert when you reach 80 percent of your monthly domestic data roaming allotment. You receive another alert when you reach 100 percent. You can also view your usage on the T-Mobile app on your device.

Wherever you are—roaming or not—you can always connect to data using a Wi-Fi signal.

T-Mobile offers many different plans. Before you switch from a grandfathered plan, check the details. Very old plans tended to offer more generous (or even un-metered) access than current plans provide.

Tips to Reduce Data Usage While Roaming

To reduce your data usage when you are roaming:

  • Use Wi-Fi whenever it is available, especially when you are streaming content or downloading.
  • Turn off automatic synchronization on your email and social networking apps.
  • Disable data roaming entirely on your device.
  • Monitor your data usage through the T-Mobile app.

T-Mobile Magenta

T-Mobile offers two add-on packages to its basic ("Essentials") plan: T-Mobile Magenta and Magenta MAX. The basic Magenta package includes: 

  • 100GB data with 2G international data speeds
  • Unlimited SD video streaming in the U.S.
  • 5GB of high-speed mobile hotspot data, then unlimited at 3G speeds
  • One hour of in-flight Wi-Fi for Gogo-enabled flights with unlimited texting
  • Free Netflix

T-Mobile Magenta MAX

T-Mobile offers its customers the optional T-Mobile Magenta MAX package for unlimited data on the company's 5G network. It includes all of the Magenta perks and then some:

  • Unlimited high-speed 5G data.
  • Netflix Standard: 2 Screen HD
  • 40GB of high-speed mobile hotspot data, then unlimited at 3G speeds
  • Up to 4K UHD streaming**
  • International data speeds 2x that of Magenta plan
  • Unlimited texting and Wi-Fi for Gogo-enabled flights
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