One of the best ways to begin getting an overview is to go to a telecommunications shop that offers more than one service provider. These are stand-alone shops in retail areas or shops inside other shops. For instance, big electronics stores will have a booth inside where you can order phone services from several providers. If you are willing to do without a subsidized cell phone, you can also purchase a pre-paid card either from one of the providers or from a discount supermarket such as Aldi and Lidl. They offer rock-bottom prices such as 1.5 GB data plus unlimited calls and texts in Germany for only € 8 euros a month. This is often the fastest and cheapest way to get mobile phone service in Germany.
Roaming Fees Within the EU
After a decade of price caps, the EU has finally required mobile phone providers to abolish extra roaming fees for intra-European calls as of June 2017. The “Roam Like at Home” rule eliminated roaming charges within the 28 countries of the European Union. There are, however, two exceptions. There is still a surcharge for data roaming. And if most of your telephone use occurs abroad rather than at home, your provider may impose roaming charges. All the EU member states are covered by this new rule, as well as Iceland, Norway and Liechtenstein. What happens after Brexit, no one knows.
You’ll find that an ever-increasing number of cafes, restaurants, and hotels offer free Wi-Fi. As does Frankfurt Airport. When traveling you’ll discover that many Lufthansa flights, and most of the high-speed trains also offer Internet hot spots, some of which are pay-as-you-use. There are also free hotspots at numerous different places in Frankfurt.
If you often call friends and family in a particular country, then look into getting a flat rate for that country, or failing that you can opt for a global flat rate such as Vodafone’s World. It’s always best to compare prices first, for example here.