Millions of BT customers to be hit with price hikes, but you can cancel penalty free

Published by Helen Knapman on 20 January 2017.
Last updated on 29 April 2019

BT’s ten million customers will be hit with inflation busting price hikes from 2 April as the provider has today announced it’s upping a range of broadband, home phone and BT Sport prices, as well as certain call costs.

Notable increases, which you can read in full below, include infinity broadband packages rising by £2.50 per month – a 6% increase, copper broadband rising by £2 per month – a 5% to 6% increase depending on your package, and the anytime call plan rising by 49p per month – a 6% increase.

In contrast, inflation stood at 1.6% in the year to December 2016 – the according to the most recent figures available. 

 

BT TV customers who have benefited from free BT Sport will also be dismayed to learn that this will no longer be free from 1 August when the new football season starts. Prices will rise to £3.50 per month – although BT says TV customers can cancel the BT Sport element if they no longer want it from this date.

I’m unhappy about the change, can I leave penalty free?

Yes, BT says you cancel your contract penalty free within 30 days of receiving notification about the price hikes. You’ll need to contact its customer services team to do this.

In separate news, the telecoms provider is launching an automatic compensation service later in 2017, which will see customers compensated if BT fails to deliver one of its service promises. It wouldn’t tell us anymore than this, only saying that more information would be available later in the year.

What does BT say?

John Petter, chief executive of BT Consumer, says: “Customers will get a better package and improved service from us this year in exchange for paying a little more.”

The provider adds that it’s maintaining a number of products at the same price. These include:

  • Line rental, which remains at £18.99 per month.
  • Line rental saver, which remains at £205.08 for 12 months paid in advance.
  • Sky TV for BT Broadband customers who watch via the app, which will remain at £5 per month.
  • BT TV packages, which will remain at their current prices starting from £3 per month. New channels will also be added at no extra cost for certain TV customers depending on which package they have. 
  •  BT Privacy with free Caller Display remains free for customers who take out a 12-month line contract.
  • BT Basic, BT’s tariff for low-income customers on certain benefits, which remains at £5.10 per month for the next three years.
  • The provider has also this week launched a free cold call blocking service for its users.

 

What are prices changing to?

The table below details the key price changes:

Product New monthly price Old monthly price Monthly increase
Total broadband (copper) (i) £35.99 £33.99 £2
Unlimited broadband (copper) (i) £40.99 £38.99 £2
Infinity 1 broadband (i) £42.49 £39.99 £2.50
Unlimited Infinity 1 broadband (i) £47.49 £44.99 £2.50
Unlimited Infinity 2 broadband (i) £53.99 £51.49 £2.50
BT Sport for BT TV customers (ii) £3.50 Free £3.50
BT Sport for BT broadband customers who watch with Sky £7.50 £6 £1.50
BT Sport for non-BT broadband customers who watch with Sky £22.99 £21.99 £1
Anytime calling plans £8.99 £8.50 49p
Evening and weekend call plans £3.80 £3.50 30p

Prices take force from 2 April unless otherwise denoted. (i) Includes line rental at £18.99/mth (ii) Price change takes force from 1 August.

From 2 April, individual call costs are also increasing as follows:

  • Calls to landlines are going up from 11p per minute to 12p per minute.
  • Landline calls to mobiles will increase from 15p per minute to 16p per minute.
  • The call set up fee is going up from 19p per call to 21p per call.

 

Have other providers upped prices?

Broadband providers in the UK typically increase prices once a year. In 2016, Virgin Media increased the price of its line rental by £1.01 per month, BT raised its standard broadband prices by £1 per month, and TalkTalk upped line rental prices by £1.25 per month. 

Sky last raised its line rental fees in December 2015, upping them by £1 per month – but its customers have recently been warned that price hikes are likely to be imminent.

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