Last month the European Parliament passed new laws on the cost of using mobiles abroad which will in theory make using your mobile abroad around 70% cheaper than before this law was passed. Under the new law calling an EU country from any country with the EU should not cost more than 49 cents per minute (this includes the charge for establishing the call) and receiving calls from within the EU should cost no more than 24 cents per minute.
The new charges were supposed to come into effect on 30th June 2007. However, the EU gave mobile phone operators 2 months grace to adapt to the new charges and (surprise surprise) all of them with no exceptions have decided to take this time in full before applying the new tariffs. Clients of Movistar, Vodafone and Orange will all have to wait until the 1st September before they can begin to enjoy cheaper mobile calls while elsewhere in the EU.
Sending text messages while abroad is a good option when you are on holiday abroad, although you also need to be aware that they cost more to send, receiving texts costs you nothing.
For example the standard charge for sending a text message in Spain is 17 cents but this can rise to 52 cents if you are sending a text message to someone in Spain from another EU member state.
So it is still best to be cautious when using your mobile while on holiday abroad, at least until September when the phone operators will be forced to drop their prices dramatically in accordance with the new Eurotariff terms.