NEWS: Virgin Media offers free services during lockdown

encaser

Member
They've also just revealed their substantial price hikes - like my broadband only service going up a whopping £48 a year.
Oh and their stating at the bottom of the letter that if you opt out within a month there'll then be no exit fees. Er, I'm out of contract, so I'm not being pressured into staying with such language, thanks.
 

RobMcM

Active Member
I'd actually much rather they focused their energy on giving me an upload speed that reliably exceeds 0.95 mbps during the day, when I'm trying to teach from home rather than watching Animal Planet HD.
 

Attachments

encaser

Member
I'd actually much rather they focused their energy on giving me an upload speed that reliably exceeds 0.95 mbps during the day, when I'm trying to teach from home rather than watching Animal Planet HD.
Upload has been a weakness ever since they were originally NTL around here 20 years ago.
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
Virgin Media are one of the few major BB service providers not currently complying with Ofcom's voluntary scheme that asks that service providers offer the same deals to exising customers as the deals being offered to new subscribers.

EE, Plusnet, BT, Sky and TalkTalk allow existing customers access to all new deals, the regulator said. With Virgin, you may need to switch to another company and then switch back to get the cheapest offers.

 

haltny

Active Member
Virgin should focus on improving its internet service before anything else. It is, quite frankly, the most atrocious service around where I live, and that I have ever had in my life of Internet service providers. I made the mistake of going with them once, it was a nightmare from start to end. I don't care how good their advertising campaigns are, or what their promises are (it's all lies), most who try Virgin Media never go back, and those that say it is good only say so because they've never experienced an issue. When you do, and you have to suffer the excuse of customer service, it is a wholly different matter.
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
Can't say I've ever had an issues with their BB provision and my speeds actually exceed what I pay for. I think you'll get mixed results regardless of whoever you rely upon for internet access.

Virgin Media's overall customer support is terrible though. You may as well be talking to yourself in some instances.
 

encaser

Member
The excuse of investing in their network is what they give for the price hikes. Cold comfort when you're an existing customer paying through the nose for others.
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
The last price increase was introduced to help VM pay off a tax bill VM incurred after HM Revenue and Customs decided that VM had used money to buy long term assets which would be taxable. VM should have theoretically purchased these "assets" with profits already made as opposed to passing their cost onto their customer base and continueing to pay the same dividends to their investors. Customers basically got taxed on VM's profits in order that those with shares didn't lose anything.

If they need to expand or maintain their "assets" then this should be coming from their profits and not being passed onto their customers.
 
Last edited:

AndyC_772

Active Member
The only offers visible on VM's web site for existing customers are all "upgrades" that involve paying a higher price for more services, never the opposite. Nevertheless I called them a few weeks ago to tell them I'd had enough of paying full price for my broadband (200M), Tivo and phone service.

I ended up on a new 18 month contract which includes the same TV channels and phone package, plus an upgrade to 500M broadband, for less than I was paying before and within £2/month of the same deal being offered to new subscribers. It's still undeniably costly, but the service has been fast and reliable - I really can't complain about the technical service.
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
Yeah, they play that game and gradually fool you into upgrading. You'll be expected to pay the full price after your 18 months is up so you'd either end up paying more for something you didn't actually need or find yourself having to leave and set up with another provider.

You should never cave in and upgrade and you should insist that you want a good deal relative to the service or services you already have.
 

leedebs

Well-known Member
Agreed, currently paying £28/month for 100mb BB & phone (dont use phone but deal was cheaper than BB onlyo_O) however contract finishes end of March. Question is can I negotiate for a better deal now or do I need to wait until end of Feb before going through this rigmarole I do each time?
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
Agreed, currently paying £28/month for 100mb BB & phone (dont use phone but deal was cheaper than BB onlyo_O) however contract finishes end of March. Question is can I negotiate for a better deal now or do I need to wait until end of Feb before going through this rigmarole I do each time?
Wait untill your current contract is about to expire. Virgin have no real reason to offer you a better deal as long as you are still contractually obligated to the existing deal. The most you'd get at this point in time is an attempt by the person you speak with to sell you additional services disguised as "bargains" and again tie you to another contract where you'd be paying more. Remember, it doesn't cost VM a penny more to give you more access to their service and increase the bandwidth. They are capping what you get. The people you converse with are for all intense purposes sale staff and this is still the case while talking to retentions.
 

leedebs

Well-known Member
Wait untill your current contract is about to exoire. Virgin have no real reason to offer you a better deal as long as you are still contractually obligated to the existing deal. The most you'd get at this point in time is an attempt by the person you speak with to sell you additional services and again tie you to anoyjer contract where you'd be paying more. Remember, it doesn't cost VM a penny more to give you more access to their service and increase the bandwidth. They are capping what you get. The people you converse with are for all intense purposes sale staff and this is still the case while talking to retentions.
ok thank you Dante01, my expiry for the current deal is March 25th so by 25th Feb I should be able to negotiate? Also not sure how the £3.50/month price increase will affect this as that is effective from 1st Feb I think
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
You can effectively leave your current contract early if VM have notified you of a price increase while you are still in an existing contract. You'd need to inform them of your intentions to leave within 30 days of them notifying you of the increase though. If you've received official notification of a price increase then you can renegotiate now as opposed to waiting for your current contract to expire. Use your right to leave now because of the price increase as your bargaining chip rather than waiting.

Remember to take the "Thinking of leaving us?" route when you call VM. You'll het to talk with somone who actuallyhas the authority to give you "real" discounts this way.
 
Last edited:

dante01

Distinguished Member


How you I leave Virgin Media penalty-free?
Rules set by the regulator Ofcom mean that customers can leave mobile, landline or broadband contracts penalty-free if a provider ups prices mid-term and the increase is bigger than the RPI rate. RPI currently stands at 0.9%.

If you face a bigger price increase than this, you can cancel your contract and switch to another provider, as long as you do so within 30 days of being told about the price increase.

Ofcom: Protection for consumers against unexpected mid-contract price rises
… consumers and small businesses taking out new landline, broadband or mobile contracts should be allowed to exit them without penalty if their provider increases the monthly subscription price agreed at the point of sale.

This follows an Ofcom review into the fairness of contract price terms. This found that many consumers, in particular, were caught unawares by price rises in what they believed to be fixed price contracts.



To put it into simpler terms, formal notification of such a price increase basically negates your current contractual obligations and you are free to renegotiate now while using the threat to leave VM as leverage. This is however only the case if VM have officially contacted you as a cutomer and informed you of the increase. You'd then be given 20 dats leewaty where you can inform them of your intentions to leave and not be obligated to paying any kind of penalty for doing so.
 
Last edited:

supermariojj

Standard Member
I was paying £45 a month for BB, tivo and landline. They sent me an e-mail of a price increase £3.50 a month and with my loyalty discounts coming to an end it would've cost me an extra £24.50 a month. I wasn't happy so i phoned them up (took me more than 3 hours to get through, blaming covid, but they were rubbish before that anyway) and got rid of the tivo and phone landline, a saving of only £3.50 with less of two services. So it's going to be £41.50 just for the broadband and they said that's discounted.
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
I was paying £45 a month for BB, tivo and landline. They sent me an e-mail of a price increase £3.50 a month and with my loyalty discounts coming to an end it would've cost me an extra £24.50 a month. I wasn't happy so i phoned them up (took me more than 3 hours to get through, blaming covid, but they were rubbish before that anyway) and got rid of the tivo and phone landline, a saving of only £3.50 with less of two services. So it's going to be £41.50 just for the broadband and they said that's discounted.
That's another dubious tactic of theirs. You try to reduce your bill by downscaling the services you subscribe to and Virgin systematically then remove the "supposed" discounts you were receiving relatinve to the bundle you had. You end up paying the same regardless of what services you've subscribed to. As I've inferred already, none of the additional services cost Virgin a single penny more to provide. It costs them as much to give you 100Mb or less than it would cost them to provide you with 350Mb. They could technically give you their TV service for nothing and still cover all their costs using just the profits made from the BB provision.
 

supermariojj

Standard Member
That's another dubious tactic of theirs. You try to reduce your bill by downscaling the services you subscribe to and Virgin systematically then remove the "supposed" discounts you were receiving relatinve to the bundle you had. You end up paying the same regardless of what services you've subscribed to. As I've inferred already, none of the additional services cost Virgin a single penny more to provide. It costs them as much to give you 100Mb or less than it would cost them to provide you with 350Mb. They could technically give you their TV service for nothing and still cover all their costs using just the profits made from the BB provision.
I asked if i could have the tivo box with just the freeview channels but they weren't obliging, just for a back up really. So much for the loyalty i was supposed to be to them, but i'm not too bothered, my tv does more than that on it's own anyway.
 
Last edited:

Snake79

Active Member
I left Virgin in December having been with them since 1999 (previously as ntl, and Cable & Wireless before that). The only reason I stuck with them for so long was the speed of their service was unmatched by any other provider in my area for years.

During that time I did renegotiate my contract to try to keep the cost down but the last few years have seen large price increases. I was prepared to pay a small premium for the higher speed however they got to a price point that was unacceptable for the speed they were offering. The upgrades for existing customers are tied to your current monthly fee so there is no incentive to upgrade as all you do is increase your monthly bill which is nothing like what they offer new customers.

I was paying £39.72 for 100Mb broadband only, this was about to go up another £3.50 to £43.22. To put that into perspective, that is about the same as new customers pay for their 500Mb service, 3 tiers up from mine.

Thankfully I received an email from 3 who I have a mobile contract with offering 5G home broadband for £22p/m. I called Virgin saying I wasn't happy and they did offer me a loyalty reduction to my current contract to £24p/m for 18 months but I didn't go for it. Had they offered me a faster tier I might have gone for it but I have found since working from home that upload speeds are just as important as download speeds. With Virgin it is typically 1/10th your download speeds so for me it topped out at 10Mb.

I have to upload tens of gigabytes of data each month which means many hours and days spent uploading files to an ftp. This was driving me mad especially as I was getting lots of drop outs and disconnections resulting in repeated upload attempts.

There is a cell network tower about half a mile from where I live with no large obstructions so I was confident I would get a good 5G signal. Once set up I was flawed at the speed increase. 890Mb down and 90Mb up is the most I have achieved with an average around 450-550Mb down and 50-75Mb up. It's made a huge difference, my uploads now just take a fraction of the time and no drop outs so far.

There are some drawbacks, I did purchase a 5G external antenna so I could move the hub away from the window and that wasn't cheap, along with a wi-fi 6 pci-e card for my PC. I also have an iMac that has wi-fi built in. I would have preferred a wired connection to my PC but the hub only has 2 ethernet ports so I had to use them for other devices that are in different parts of the house. The wi-fi signal can be very fast when near the hub but it becomes inconsistant for devices further away. I use 5GHz for most devices where possible as it is a less crowded band.

It's taken a while but there is now a competitor to Virgin on speed so hopefully this might force them to be more competitive on pricing but I can't see myself going back now.
 

leedebs

Well-known Member





Ofcom: Protection for consumers against unexpected mid-contract price rises




To put it into simpler terms, formal notification of such a price increase basically negates your current contractual obligations and you are free to renegotiate now while using the threat to leave VM as leverage. This is however only the case if VM have officially contacted you as a cutomer and informed you of the increase. You'd then be given 20 dats leewaty where you can inform them of your intentions to leave and not be obligated to paying any kind of penalty for doing so.
thanks for that. Thinking of not having the phone as we dont really use it (it was only kept as an option as both mums might call on that number) & we only seem to get scam or silent calls tbh
Is BB only cheaper, it wasnt the last time I negotiated as they bundled tv or phone for what appeared to be less money?

I received this email:

Your bill will go up by £3.50 a month from 1st March
Dear XXXXXXX,​
We know a price rise is never welcome, but we’re constantly investing in our network and to help us continue this work, the price of your package will go up by £3.50 a month from 1st March.​
We hope you’ll carry on enjoying your services with us. But if you want to, you can change or cancel your package at any time before 12/02/2021, without paying any cancellation fees. Visit virginmedia.com/pricechange1 to find out more.

Kind regards,​
Rachel Barrass
Director of Customer Service​

Then went to the link:

"We know a price rise is never welcome, but we’re constantly investing in our network and to help us continue this work, the price of your package will go up from 1st March.


Your price increase is outlined in the letter or email we sent you.

We hope you’ll carry on enjoying your services with us. But if you decide not to, you can change or cancel your package at any time before the date stated on your email or letter, without paying any cancellation fees.

Simply call 150 from your Virgin Media phone or mobile, or call 0345 454 1111 from any other phone."

I assume the "thinking of leaving us" option is via phone not online chat etc?
 
Last edited:

dante01

Distinguished Member
thanks for that. Thinking of not having the phone as we dont really use it (it was only kept as an option as both mums might call on that number) & we only seem to get scam or silent calls tbh
Is BB only cheaper, it wasnt the last time I negotiated as they bundled tv or phone for what appeared to be less money?
Be careful about removing services! You sometimes find that you end up paying more because you're no longer eligible for a bundle discount. Make sure you discuss what difference the removal of the phone line will make to your bill before removing it from your services.


I'd suggest using the phonr yo chat with retentions. Try to get a UK representative.
 
Last edited:

leedebs

Well-known Member
Be careful about removing services! You sometimes find that you end up paying more because you're no longer eligible for a bundle discount. Make sure you discuss what difference the removal of the phone line will make to your bill before removing it from your services.


I'd suggest using the phonr yo chat with retentions. Try to get a UK representative.
thank you much appreciated
 

The latest video from AVForums

Podcast: CES 2021 Special - Sony, LG, Panasonic, Samsung, TCL and Hisense TV news and more...

Latest News

NAD Launches CI 16-60 DSP Amplifier
  • By Andy Bassett
  • Published
Sky seals Studiocanal movie deal
  • By Andy Bassett
  • Published
iFi Audio launches iDSD Diablo DAC/Headphone amp
  • By Andy Bassett
  • Published
Samsung launches Galaxy Buds Pro
  • By Andy Bassett
  • Published
Samsung launches Galaxy S21, S21+ and S21 Ultra smart phones
  • By Andy Bassett
  • Published
Top Bottom