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How to haggle for the best broadband deal

By Jon Barrow

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How to haggle for the best broadband deal

Many of us are reluctant to haggle. But we shouldn't be – it really can get you a better deal. Follow these top tips to save money.

Broadband isn't cheap. Despite the low, low headline prices plastered across ads, the true monthly cost can be significant once any introductory offers have expired..

Sign up for a Virgin's cheapest package broadband bundle for example and your bank account will be around £25 lighter each month. And that's on top of an initial activation fee.

Throw in some TV to your package – and Virgin will certainly suggest you do – and you could easily end up paying double that every month. Certainly not pocket change.

Best broadband providers - ensure you're happy with your broadband supplier by choosing a Which? Recommended Provider.

Save money - haggle!

But whether you're looking for a new deal, or are an existing customer, you can still save money. How? By haggling with your provider to get the best deal.

You may be nervous about trying it but our latest survey of over 4,000 Which? members found most people have given it a go. And it really can make a difference - the hagglers we spoke to had saved an average of £156 a year on their annual telecoms bills.

Our research did show that some providers are more open to haggling than others. More than three quarters of hagglers with Plusnet said that the process was easy, while TalkTalk customers faced a tougher challenge. But even so, most TalkTalk hagglers still found it straightforward to do.

How to haggle

Preparation is the key to getting the best deal. Spend a few minutes on the internet comparing rival deals - price comparison sites make this easy to do - before calling your provider and asking them for a better deal.

You may have to convince the provider that you're willing to quit and may need to speak to a special cancellation or termination department before you'll be offered a better deal. But don't give up - and don't lose your cool.

To start with you could be offered a something other than a discount to stop you from leaving, such as a free router or a larger data allowance (see our graphic below).

But, if you're determined to get a discount, hold out for one and don't be blinded by incentives. The vast majority of people we spoke to were offered a discount in the end.

Switching

We know from our survey that haggling will usually go to plan, but there can be times when the deals just aren't forthcoming. If that happens then we suggest waiting a few days and trying again, but if you still can't get what you want, then it's time to switch.

Our guide, How to switch broadband provider, explains all you need to know about the switching process.

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