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Virgin Media announces new broadband and TV price rises: what are your options?

Find out how you can leave penalty-free or haggle for a better contract if affected

Virgin Media announces new broadband and TV price rises: what are your options?

Virgin Media has announced that its TV and broadband prices are set to rise by an average 4%. The price hike will affect customers with broadband, TV and fixed phone line contracts who joined Virgin Media before June 29 2020.

The telecoms giant has said the price rises will not affect customers who are considered ‘vulnerable’ – such as those on its ‘Essential’ broadband package for people receiving Universal Credit and ‘Talk Protected’ landline customers. Other customers will face increases costing between £30 and £54 per year. The price rises will apply from March 1, 2021.

See how real customers rate Virgin Media vs competitors like BT, Sky and TalkTalk in our survey of more than 4,000 broadband customers.

How are Virgin Media’s prices changing?

While Virgin Media hasn’t released a price-change list for affected bundles, it says the average price increase will be 4%, with most bills increasing by between £2.50 and £4.50 a month, depending on the package. It is currently writing to all affected customers.

Customers who are not on a fixed contract (i.e. those on a rolling monthly deal) will see their deal increase in price on March 1. Those who are on a fixed-price promotion will see their deal increase in price when the promotional period ends.

Unlike some other providers, Virgin Media doesn’t bake above-inflation price increases into its contracts and didn’t increase its prices in 2020, noting the difficulties faced by customers due to the covid-19 pandemic. It says it has since seen record-breaking demand for its services and so will be investing in its network to improve its performance and reliability.

Natalie Hitchins, Head of Home Products and Services at Which?, said: ‘While investment in infrastructure is a good thing, many people are looking for ways to save money and are also more reliant than ever on their home broadband connection, so this price hike will sting. However, Virgin Media customers can end their contract early if they are unhappy about this price increase.

‘Customers should do some research to see if there are better deals on the market and if there are, they should consider switching. Although, they will need to inform their current provider that they are ending their contract early within 30 days of being notified about the price hike.’

What are my options when my provider raises its prices?

If you’re affected by the Virgin Media price increases, there are two options for you: switch to a new provider or haggle on your current deal. If you are affected by the price rises, you can leave your contract without penalty.

Finding a new provider is simple – use Which? Switch Broadband to compare new broadband and TV deals that are available in your area.

If you find it tricky choosing between different deals, our broadband provider reviews reveal how satisfied customers of each provider are with different aspects of its service, including value for money, broadband speeds and the quality/variety of TV content.

Luckily, the process of switching broadband is a simple one – learn more in our guide on how to switch broadband provider.

How to haggle with Virgin Media

If you’re happy with the deal you’re getting from Virgin Media – but not your new price – it’s worth getting in touch to ask them to give you a better deal.

If you try this, you’re likely to be offered the opportunity to sign up to a new contract with a fixed monthly tariff. We’ve found that customers who haggle usually end up paying less and many also get an upgraded deal, too.

It might sound daunting, but the process is simple. To get started, follow our tips on how to haggle for the best broadband deal.

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