Virgin Media hikes line rental by 3.4%

Rebecca Rutt
by Lovemoney Staff Rebecca Rutt on 20 November 2012  |  Comments 13 comments

Virgin Media has become the latest provider to push up line rental prices.

Virgin Media hikes line rental by 3.4%

Virgin Media is increasing the price of its line rental by 3.4% and pushing up the cost of a number of its TV, phone and broadband packages.

The price rise will come into effect on 1st February and follows in the footsteps of Sky, BT and TalkTalk, which have all announced hikes in the cost of line rental over the past few months.

Virgin Media price rise

From 1st February all of Virgin Media's customers will see a monthly rise of £1.09 in the cost of line rental.

Along with line rental, the price on several of the Virgin Media ‘collection’ bundles is also rising. Customers on the Classic, Essential, Premiere and VIP packages will all have to pay more.

Those on the Premiere Collection for example will see a rise of £4.09, or 6.9%, while customers on the Classic Collection will have to pay £1.09 more, a rise of 3.4%.

Those on the 'Starter Bundle' - which Virgin Media says is "no longer actively sold anymore' - will see the biggest rise of 9.1%. This is not officially part of the 'Collections' but many existing customers will be affected by this rise.

The reasons for the rise have not been confirmed but Virgin Media says individual customers will be contacted with these details.

Price changes to the 'Collection' packages

Package

Price before rise

Price after rise

Difference

Classic Collection

£31.90

£32.99

£1.09

Starter Bundle

£33.90

£36.99

£3.09

Essential Collection

£38.90

£40.99

£2.09

Premiere Collection

£58.90

£62.99

£4.09

VIP Collection

£107.15

£113.99

£6.84

Customers will have the option to cancel a contract if they’re not happy paying the new fees. This must be done in writing within 30 days of receiving the letter from Virgin Media.

A spokesperson said: "With new features being added to our products on a regular basis, including innovations such as Virgin TV Anywhere and SmartCall and proven technology delivering the fastest widely available broadband, our services remain exceptional value. We will continue to improve all of our services and bring customers new and exciting ways to enjoy even more entertainment."

Line rental rises                           

Sky, BT and TalkTalk have all announced rises recently. When these come into effect BT will have the most expensive line rental at £15.45 a month followed by Virgin Media and then Talk Talk.

In the past three years the average line rental cost has increased by 24%, according to BroadbandChoices, which is significantly higher than the rate of inflation, which has gone up by 13% in the same period.

The telecoms regulator, Ofcom, is currently investigating this industry to see if rises are allowed when customers are in the middle of a contract.

Recent line rental price rises

Provider* 

Price before increase 

Price after increase

Date of price increase

Plusnet

£12.99

£13.99

18th Nov 2012

AOL

£13.90

£14.35

1st Jan 2013

Sky

£12.25

£14.50

1st Sept 2012

Talk Talk

£14.50

£14.95

1st Jan 2013

Virgin Media

£13.90

£14.99

1st Feb 2013

BT

£14.60

£15.45

5th Jan 2013

*source: Broadbandchoices

How you can avoid paying more

The first option is to switch providers to a cheaper deal. Unfortunately there isn’t much difference between the major players, but there is still money to be saved. As you can see above the difference between the most expensive company, BT and the cheapest, Plusnet is £1.46 a month, so the saving works out at almost £20 a year.

Paying upfront for your line rental is also a way to save money. Some providers will give you a discount for doing so, such as BT which knocks £40 off the price for customers paying upfront, but you need to be able to pay the lump sum in one go to do this.

Switching to mobile broadband is another way to cut costs but this is only really suitable for light internet users.

Are you a Virgin Media customer? If so are you happy paying the higher fee or will you switch to another provider? Let us know in the comment box below.

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Comments (13)

  • fenemore
    Love rating 251
    fenemore said

    No real surprise is it? All the major suppliers of services and/or utilities act in unison. Competition is virtually non-existent. We the consumers, without whom there would be no businesses to run, are always at the very bottom of the "consideration" pecking order.

    All those high-cost executives need to maintain their lifestyles. Then there is the main-boards' pension funds that need obscene contributions every year. Don't forget the annual company car replacements - can't be seen driving last year's model.

    What else? Oh yes, the customers, "I knew we had forgotten something"!

    Report on 20 November 2012  |  Love thisLove  1 love
  • Nikgee
    Love rating 25
    Nikgee said

    I heard the excuse from one of the energy companies that the lines and cables have to be paid for... that's funny I thought they were already there, I can't see any difference!

    I am not happy, but if I want my internet I am stuck with Virgin, but they really should be looking at the rate people are not getting pay rises.

    So far I am disgusted at the way I have been treated by Virgin, I was promised a speed up in my internet back in June (24th), this was put back 6 weeks, and now put back to the middle of nest month yet they want to raise the bill? Perhaps should agree to this bill rise on the assumption that I pay it 6 months later... but I am sure that will not happen, this will come out of my bank account.

    Report on 20 November 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • environmentaljan
    Love rating 8
    environmentaljan said

    I feel very frustrated and cross about the virgin price rises. Frustrated as moving internet provider and email addresses etc seems to be untenable and cross because i can see no good reason for a price rise. I feel very torn iIwant to say"that's it I'm off" but Sky seem even worse. I wish cricket , England rugby and other prime sports were still on the|BBC. Virgin Sky and BT continually advertise deals for new customers but offer nothing to their existing ones - except even higher bills! The deals soon expire.

    I don't understand where Virgin is going , they used to be good. I seem to get a call, interrupting me working, from some intelligible woman from the far east every other day and have no idea why Virgin want to call - it's certainly not to tell me that as such a loyal customer they are reducing my bill.

    Report on 20 November 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • yerweepal
    Love rating 0
    yerweepal said

    I will be cancelling my line rental and TV packages as soon as practicable without incurring early cancellation charges

    Report on 20 November 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • billesleygriffo
    Love rating 0
    billesleygriffo said

    Why has it taken an update email from Lovemoney to find out about the Virgin price rises, when you would have thought through common courtesy to all its faithful and paying customers, that we would have been first to know by being mailshotted from the company itself? This from a company run by a person who we all "love". Hey ho, the masses shafted again! What can we do? EVERYONE cancelling their subscription would be the only meaningful action to take - but we all know this will not happen. So grit our teeth, and perhaps a threat of moving to another supplier to one of Virgin's overseas customer service operators may get you a discount for a few months.

    Report on 20 November 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • celticlass
    Love rating 9
    celticlass said

    agree Virgin should be contacting their customers before this is made public!!!!! Id like to switch but feel trapped and have no choice as there is no BT line into this property! No doubt this increase is to pay for the *up to 30mb* broad band they are boasting. Their day time charges for fone calls are swingeing. Last month I had to use it to call a friend - 11 mins cost me £1.04!!! I normally use 1899 for day time calls who charge me .01p per minute + connection fee. I dnt make enough day time calls to warrant spending the extra Virgin charge for Anytime calls. I dont have TV so my bundle is not the normal. I had a mail shot this week for new customers who can have their deal at half price for 6 months....how about a customer loyalty bonus Virgin --- give your regulars a better deal!!!

    Report on 20 November 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • electricblue
    Love rating 769
    electricblue said

    Primus is fantastic value and cheaper than any of the companies listed. As regards the general moaning about the costs and utility companies' executives, some of those commenting really need to get a life and stop moaning. In the UK our telecoms are some of the cheapest in the world and investment in new technology and infrastructure is ongoing and very expensive. In real terms I pay about 10% for my phone calls of what I did ten years ago and do none of you remember how much we used to pay for pathetic dial up internet? Who loves Richard Branson? He started his empire by defrauding taxes, so why would anyone assume that the grinning twit suddenly has some altustic agenda in any of the businesses he has a loose connection with?

    Report on 20 November 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • AndyP
    Love rating 26
    AndyP said

    So this would be a price rise very shortly after a "free" increase in broadband speed again, would it?

    Report on 20 November 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • cathycarmi
    Love rating 0
    cathycarmi said

    Worst provider I know is BT. Total rubbish. They cut my broadband off at Christmas without any reason. Tried to make out it was down to me. Then to mae matters worse they cut my phone line too! Then demanded I take out another contract to reinstate me. I hadn't cancelled thebrevious one! Myself and my partner spent hours on the (mobile) phone to their call centre in India. Total shambles and no customer service. After two months, I gave up and went to virgin. And then they sent me a final bill with menaces! I would never recommend them to anyone. They have no customer focus and no ability to solve a simple problem of their making!

    Report on 21 November 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • coloratura
    Love rating 81
    coloratura said

    My friend has recently changed from Virgin to Plusnet. The only downside so far is that if you download anything with much movement or music then you use a lot of the usage on offer but the usage is free between 12-01 a.m. and 8-00 a.m., so if you are a bit of a night person then you can happily listen to your music and play your games for free during that period. The usage allowance per month also appears to be reasonable and he has certainly saved quite a bit of money as he also went from Virgin TV to a freeview box. I personally prefer Virgin TV out of the two but then who says you can't mix and match. By the way, they all try the "menaces" when you want to leave - even Virgin tried this with my friend. As long as you give proper notice (in writing) then they haven't got a leg to stand on.

    Report on 21 November 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • gk141054
    Love rating 20
    gk141054 said

    Roll out the 4G quicker please mobile networks... then we can ditch traditional broadband providers for good and finally the landline will be assigned to history. That will teach the money grabbing idiots at BT and the like....

    Report on 21 November 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • GaryDean
    Love rating 76
    GaryDean said

    I used to have a lot of respect & admiration for Richard Branson. I read his book which I found inspiring. However, when push comes to shove it's clear that he's just as mercenary & dirty as the rest of the corrupt executives & government officials who are going to the nth degree, & as far beyond as they possibly can, to fleece & extort what they can from the British public. The difference between these people & common criminals is that criminals are honest about what they do.

    Report on 22 November 2012  |  Love thisLove  1 love
  • GaryDean
    Love rating 76
    GaryDean said

    Well said fenemore! Had to give you a 'love' for that one. I'm sure there is a lot of cooperation between these companies. Probably a lot of 'watchdogs' are in their pockets too.

    Report on 22 November 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves

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