Mobile phone roaming charges abroad will be significantly reduced from today.

The cost of making a phone call in the EU will fall from the current maximum of 35 cent to 29 cent a minute.

Receiving a call while in the EU is eight cent a minute, down from 11 cent.

Text messages will also be cheaper with the price falling from 11 cent to nine cent per message and it will also cost less to use the internet while in Europe.

Roaming rates for accessing the internet on mobile phones will be set at a maximum of 86 cent, which is a reduction of more than 80% for some mobile phone customers in Ireland.

The rates will be further reduced in 2013 and 2014 as part of a phased process.

Compulsory maximum roaming rates were first imposed on mobile network operators five years ago to tackle what the European Commission called the "roaming rip-off.