Commenting on the changes to BT Basic, which is available to qualifying low-income users, Richard Neudegg, Head of Regulation at uSwitch.com, says:
“BT’s updated Basic package is a welcome change as – with capped call costs – vulnerable, elderly and low-income households on the tariff will now be protected from landline bill shock, provided premium rate numbers are avoided.
“Ofcom requires BT to provide BT Basic – the telecoms equivalent of the Warm Home Discount for energy – as a condition of its historic monopoly. Previously, customers would only have to use their landlines for 148 minutes a month for a standard landline tariff to be more affordable than BT Basic*. Capping standard calls at £10 a month, alongside a discounted line rental of £5.10, means vulnerable landline-only users will not have to fear using their home phone to keep in touch with people.
“This is a welcome move for qualifying landline-only users. For those customers that also want to take up broadband, BT Basic’s £4.85 broadband add-on remains capped at 12GB. If they need more than this capped download allowance, there could still be a better deal elsewhere.”
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Launched in September 2000, uSwitch is an online and telephone price comparison and switching service, helping consumers get a better deal on gas, electricity, broadband, TV services, mobiles and personal finance products including mortgages, credit cards, car and home insurance. Last year we saved UK consumers over £278 million on their energy bills alone.
Customers can sign up to an account that automatically monitors the energy market and notifies them when they can move to a cheaper tariff, while broadband customers can conduct a speed test to find out how fast their broadband is and identify the best deal for their postcode.
The multi award-winning 'Switching Made Simple' app allows customers to compare energy, broadband, credit card, mobile and SIM-only deals – and uSwitch also has a UK contact centre manned by energy and broadband experts. Customers can post their latest energy bills to FREEPOST USWITCH to receive a free call back and be guided through the comparison process, or they can email firstname.lastname@example.org with their postcode and usage details.
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