As many of the latest phones – such as the Nokia N97 – are equipped with technology that can be useful abroad, expert advice has been given on how to avoid being charged too much for using them.

Richard Sharp, founder of the Gadgets and Gizmos blog site, said that when summer arrives the number of people who return home to horrendous mobile bills tends to escalate.

However, he explained that this was due to the fact many people are unaware that their 3G-enabled handset and its network tariff needs to be considered before leaving the country.

"Most manufacturers now allow users to switch data roaming off with one button, but if you are unsure on how to do this we would recommend you contact your service provider before you leave," Mr Sharp added.

Tom Newton, a spokesman for independent mobile news website Recombu, also offered his advice on the matter this week.

It was noted by the expert that buying a separate international sim card is a good idea – as this can allow "low cost calls to numbers back home" in addition to cheaper charges for receiving voice contact.

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