Broadband and mobile customers can switch to cheaper offers free of charge

New rules agreed on by the biggest broadband and mobile operators will enable customers struggling with their bills to switch to a cheaper offer without paying a fee

Telecom giants have agreed new rules on the cost of living
Telecom giants have agreed new rules on the cost of living

Thousands of households can switch to cheaper broadband and mobile without paying a fee as part of new cost-of-living plans.

Right now, you could end up paying hundreds of dollars to leave your current provider if you’re still on contract.

But under new rules agreed by the biggest network operators, customers struggling with their bills can switch to a cheaper offer without facing a penalty.

Customers should also be given manageable payment plans as part of the proposals.

Those who need assistance should contact their broadband or cellphone provider to see what’s available.

As well as supporting customers, telecom providers have been told they should do more to promote their cheapest deals and social plans.

Social tariffs are cheaper tariffs for beneficiaries or people with low incomes. It is estimated that they could save people around £180 a year.

Ofcom data shows that less than 2% of eligible people take advantage of these discounted offers.

Bosses representing the vast majority of the UK telecoms market – including BT Group, Openreach, Virgin Media O2, Vodafone, Three, TalkTalk and Sky – signed the pledges at an event chaired by Digital Secretary Nadine Dorries and Cost of Living Business Tsar David Pier.

The new measures come into effect immediately and those in need of assistance are urged to contact their supplier as soon as possible.

Nadine Dorries, Digital Secretary, said: “Families across the country are increasingly concerned about having to keep up with bills. That’s why today I agreed with the leaders of the broadband and mobile industry what else can be done to support people during this difficult time.

“I’m pleased to report that the industry is listening and new commitments have been made to help customers struggling with the cost of living stay connected.”

Andrew Glover, Chair of the Internet Service Providers’ Association, said: “The telecoms sector knows that the cost of living crisis is a real challenge for people.

“Our members are committed to doing everything in their power to help their customers at this time and together with the Government we will work to raise awareness of the support available.

“These pledges, along with the social rates being offered by many members, hopefully help those in need during this challenging time. We encourage customers struggling with their bills to contact their broadband provider for help.”

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Fry Electronics Team

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