T-Mobile’s Mobile Without Borders promotion, which allows customers to use their data in Mexico and Canada in the same way they would use it at home, has now been set a limit for most users, depending on their plan packages. T-Mobile ONE users will be entitled to 5GB high-speed data, while those on legacy data plans will have a maximum of 5GB to use internationally within the constraints of their data plan. Those who go over those limits will find their speeds throttled to 128kbps for the remainder of their stay abroad if they do not have a T-Mobile ONE Plus plan, and 256kbps if they do. If a customer wants more data to use in Mexico and Canada, they can add on T-Mobile ONE Plus International to their plan. The change will be taking place on November 12, so anybody who’s going to be in Mexico or Canada before then will be using their data the same way that they do at home. It is worth noting that this change does not affect the many countries where T-Mobile offers free texting, and 2G data.
To make the transition as simple as possible, T-Mobile provided a few examples so that existing customers know what to expect. A customer on a legacy 10GB data plan, for example, could use 2GB of data in the US, then travel abroad and chew through their 5GB allotment. After that, they’ll be throttled until they’re back in America, where they can then use their remaining 3GB of high-speed data. Customers on unlimited plans still only get 5GB abroad, unless they use the T-Mobile ONE Plus International add-on. Even with that add-on, anybody whose usage in a month goes above 50GB cumulatively, no matter where they use it all, is deprioritized.
This change, according to T-Mobile’s help page for Mobile Without Borders, is to prevent people from using the product in ways that the company didn’t intend. To be clear, Mobile Without Borders is meant for short excursions out to Mexico or Canada, with the assumption that device usage will be predominantly light, and users will only do heavier network tasks when they’re around Wi-Fi. Essentially, this fits most travelers and people visiting family and friends; 5GB is plenty to use out on the town for a few days or a couple of weeks if you’re not constantly on your phone, and then when you get to your hotel or a guest room at somebody’s house, you’ll ideally have access to Wi-Fi for things like uploading HD photos or playing online games.