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Rates for 05 calls adjusted: new RTR ordinance enhances transparency

“We repeatedly received complaints about high rates and a lack of tariff transparency when making mobile calls to 05 numbers. In response we are today issuing an ordinance containing new regulations for calls to 05 numbers,” Georg Serentschy, Managing Director of RTR’s Telecommunications and Postal Services Division, announced, introducing an amendment to an RTR ordinance (KEM-V) which entered into force on 29 October 2010.

Two separate solutions: for new mobile phone contracts and for existing ones

The aim of the new ordinance is to achieve rate parity between mobile calls made to 05 numbers and those to “normal” fixed-link numbers. “This was not the case with A1 Telekom Austria and T-Mobile/tele.ring so far, so that we negotiated intensively with these two providers. We now have their pledge to offer customers with existing contracts a tariff option, as of 1 January 2011, that provides for the same rates for calls to 05 numbers as for “normal” fixed-link number calls. Customers can select this option for no more than 2 euros (pre-tax) monthly,” Serentschy explained.
Serentschy also welcomed the announcement by the two mobile network operators to include, with all new contracts as of 1 March 2011, tariff schemes featuring equal rates for 05 calls and calls to the same geographical region.

Mandatory rate message when 05 calls cost more than calls to fixed line-networks

For new mobile phone contracts beginning on or after 1 March 2011, an upper limit of 40 cents per minute will apply for calls to 05 numbers as of 1 March 2011. “Operators are nonetheless required to play a message advising of rates whenever more is charged for 05 calls than for fixed-link number calls,” Serentschy explained the requirements, then illustrating with an example: “If the charges for calls to 05 numbers are the same as for fixed-link numbers, or if both kinds of calls are included in one package, no rate message is required, since both phone number ranges are treated equally. If, however, calls to 05 numbers cost 10 cents and calls to the fixed-link network 2 cents, or if calls to the fixed-line network are included in a minutes package while 05 calls are not, a message advising of the higher rates is required.”

1455 – the new short number for pharmacy services

A new short number for pharmacy services was also established as part of the ordinance. Among the services that can be obtained through this number there are information about pharmacies open outside of normal business hours, information about pharmaceuticals („pharmaceutical hotline“, e.g. for the blind and visually impaired) and connection to a pharmacist on duty.
The second amendment to the Communications Parameters, Fees and Value-Added Services Ordinance (KEM-V) is available in German on the RTR website via this link: