THOUSANDS of BT customers will have an up to £9 a month – or £108 a year – home phone package added to their bill next month unless they actively opt out.
The telecoms provider is automatically adding its “My Anytime Calls” bundle onto users’ bills on April 14.
Alamy BT is adding an up to £9 a month calls package onto bills
This will cost up to £9 a month depending on the customer.
The package reportedly gives users unlimited calls to numbers starting with 01, 02, 03, 055, 056, 0845 and 0870, and 1,000 minutes a month to BT mobiles.
BT reckons customers will save by having it compared to what they’re currently paying – it’s based these savings based on annual bills to November 2018.
But unhappy customers say they don’t want the package added to bills and consumer site MoneySavingExpert.com is urging users to watch out for the charge.
BT says customers can opt-out penalty free if they tell the provider within 30 days of being notified about the change.
If you decide to give the package a try and then later decide to cancel, MoneySavingExpert.com says it’s a 30-day monthly rolling contract meaning you can exit charge free at any time.
How to cut your phone billFIRSTLY, decide if you’re happy with your current deal.
If you’re outside the minimum term of your contract then you can leave penalty free – and you might be able to find a cheaper deal elsewhere.
The best way to find a new deal is by checking comparison websites, such as MoneySupermarket and uSwitch.
If you’re happy with your provider, then it might be worth using your research to haggle a better deal.
Providers will often cut prices or throw in extras if customers threaten to leave.
The provider won’t tell us how many customers are affected, but it has 26million fixed line users – which is what you need for home phone or broadband – so even 1 per cent of this would be 260,000 people.
Megan French, consumer expert at MoneySavingExpert.com said: “Some BT customers have voiced their anger over this change, so it’s clearly not welcomed by all.
“If you’re a BT landline customer, check if it’s sent you a warning about the calls package. If so, weigh up if it’s actually something you want, if it isn’t, opt out ASAP.
“The worry is that you could accidentally end up paying for something you don’t need if you’re making fewer calls, so it’s definitely worth checking.”
One unhappy customer tweeted: “Dear @bt_uk – wondering if it’s legal that you feel you can add packages to my contract that I haven’t asked for?
“I realise I can stop you. But surely you shouldn’t have the right to apply a monthly charge with me specifically agreeing? Very odd approach.”
Alamy Most BT customers are unhappy about the package being added to bills with permission
Another wrote: “Really irritated with @bt_uk! I’ve had an email saying they will change my package by adding anytime calls *unless* I take action to opt out.
“We barely use the landline and now I’m wasting my time to get in touch with someone to stop it happening.”
Someone else wrote: “@bt_uk one call last month and now you want to increase my bill. Nice try BT but no I pay enough already!
“(I wonder how many people don’t even read your email and don’t realise your planning to increase the monthly charge!)”
Another frustrated customer wrote: “@bt_uk are automatically opting #customers in, adding a “My Anytime Calls” bundle to their packages, for an additional charge.
“People who don’t want this have to opt out. Unnecessary time/effort. A very bad (annoying, frustrating, inconvenient…).”
BT customers are annoyed about the package being added to bills without consent
But not all customers are unhappy about the change – one reckons it will save him cash as he’s switching to BT Mobile.
He tweeted: “We are happy with the change especially as we plan on switching to BT Mobile ourselves later this year.”
Not all BT customers are unhappy about the change
A BT spokesperson told The Sun: “We wanted to make it as simple for customers as we could.
“So we have written to them a month in advance of the change telling them and if they don’t wish to benefit from the savings there is a simple opt out journey which they can simply click through which will stop this offer going live on 14th April, or they can of course call us on the number in the email.”
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