12 Jan 2009

Virgin Media to increase prices by up to 38% 

A small note on this months Virgin Media bill has been brought to my attention. This friendly little note points out that Virgin Media are"...changing the cost of calls to UK landlines and the standard call connection fee on the 15th January.[...] For details go to virginmeda.com/callingcosts" - it points out that this does not affect calls made as part of a talk-plan (a scheme whereby you pay a monthly subscription in return for certain calls being free - generally only calls to UK landlines).

Curious about these changes (could they be *reducing* call charges to help out Joe Public during these uncertain times?) I duly followed the instructions and visited the web site. I think I can summarise the changes as an exorbitant price rise :

what? old price new price increase BT price (for comparison) *
Evening and weekend calls 3.18p/min 4.4p/min 38% Free
Day time calls 3.91p/min 4.4p/min 13% 3.91p/min
Call connection charge 6.84p 7.82p 14% 6.85p

* comparing against BT Unlimited Evening & Weekend Plan, because it's free (£0/month) on a 12 month contract

I also noticed that the day after these changes come into effect on the 15th of January 2008, BT will start to include 0870 and 0845 non-geographical calls in your call plan. As a Virgin Media 'Anytime' customer you'd pay 6.84p/min for 0845 numbers and 9.79p/min for 0870 numbers. Anytime costs £7.95/month as compared to the equivalent BT tariff at £4.85/month.

Good to see some companies aren't going to let a mere global recession and close to 0% inflation stand in the way of increasing margins! What do you think? Going to remain with Virgin?

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