MSE News: Calls to 084, 087, 09 and 118 to be clearer, but prices vary wildly

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The price you'll pay to call banks, businesses and government departments from landlines and mobiles will become clearer ...
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Calls to 084, 087, 09 and 118 to be clearer, but prices vary wildly

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  • michaelsmichaels Forumite
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    Nope, still don't understand. Currently I can call 0844 form BT for 1-5 ppm (total) plus a 15p conneciton charge (see for example the MSE internaitonal call checker for examples). Does this mean in future they will cost a minimum of 9.58ppm+some other amount per minute?
    I think....
  • eskbankereskbanker Forumite
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    michaels wrote: »
    Nope, still don't understand. Currently I can call 0844 form BT for 1-5 ppm (total) plus a 15p conneciton charge (see for example the MSE internaitonal call checker for examples). Does this mean in future they will cost a minimum of 9.58ppm+some other amount per minute?
    Yes, the recipient of the 0844 number you're calling is obliged to publish their element of cost (the service charge) which will be up to 7p/min, which is indeed added to the access charge levied by your provider.

    Seems to me that not for the first time (e.g. 'simplifying' overdraft charges), well-intentioned regulation will actually increase costs without necessarily making them as transparent as they'd like to think....
  • edited 30 May 2015 at 1:44PM
    Ian011Ian011 Forumite
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    edited 30 May 2015 at 1:44PM
    The price you'll pay to call banks, businesses and government departments from landlines and mobiles will become clearer ...

    The above statement is incorrect. Banks, businesses and government departments in general no longer use numbers starting 084, 087 or 09.

    Regulation 41 of the Consumer Contracts Regulations came into force on 13 June 2014 and requires retailers, traders and passenger transport companies to use numbers starting 01, 02, 03 or 080 for post sales helplines.

    The FCA will shortly publish similar regulation for the financial sector. Ahead of this, most banks have already changed their 0845 numbers to new 0345 numbers.

    Guidance published by the Cabinet Office in December 2013 has forced most government departments and public services, including most local authorities, to swap their 0845 numbers over to the matching 0345 number or to a new 0300 number.

    While there is no specific regulation for sales lines, businesses that charge extra when someone calls to buy something now have to declare that fee and risk consumers shopping elsewhere.

    084, 087 and 09 numbers are for chargeable services paid for as the call is being made. Users of these numbers must justify and declare their Service Charge else change their number to stop imposing it. Ofcom made 03 numbers available in 2007 for this purpose. Calls to 03 numbers cost the same as calling 01 and 02 numbers and count towards inclusive allowances on landlines and mobiles. The most simple migration is from 084 to 034 or from 087 to 037 where just a single digit changes.


    See also
    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5219756
    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5220589
    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5223890
  • edited 30 May 2015 at 10:38AM
    Ian011Ian011 Forumite
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    edited 30 May 2015 at 10:38AM
    michaels wrote: »
    Nope, still don't understand. Currently I can call 0844 from BT for 1-5 ppm (total) plus a 15p connection charge (see for example the MSE international call checker for examples). Does this mean in future they will cost a minimum of 9.58ppm+some other amount per minute?

    For the last couple of decades, BT has been prevented from making margin on call origination to 084, 087, 09 and 118 numbers. When you pay BT for a call to one of these numbers almost all of the money is passed on and paid to the benefit of the called party and their telecoms provider.

    That regulation will end on 1 July 2015 and BT will thereafter be allowed to make margin on these calls for the first time. Other landline providers and mobile providers have always made margin on these calls hence BT's retail rates have always varied from all other providers. BT's share of the call cost will no longer be zero. It will be 9.58p per minute, similar to other landline providers.

    On the same date, a new system for the way call charges are declared comes into force. Every landline and mobile provider will be required to declare their portion of the call cost. This will be declared as their Access Charge.

    The organisation you are calling will also declare their share of the call cost. Of those using 0843, 0844, 0871 and 0872 numbers, most have elected to carry on with a very similar level to whatever they currently receive. This will be declared as their Service Charge.

    Revenue sharing returns to 0870 numbers after a gap of six years and the declared Service Charge will be up to 13p per minute, the same as for 0871 and 0872 numbers. This replaces the current undeclared termination rate of about 0.5p per minute.

    Revenue sharing continues on 0845 numbers. The undeclared termination rate of 2p per minute will be replaced by declared Service Charges of up to 7p per minute, the same as for 0843 and 0844 numbers.

    The Service Charge limits for 09 numbers will be £3.60 per minute and £6 per call and not the £3 per minute or £5 per call that were quoted in the article.



    See also
    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5230983
    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5230985
  • Doc_NDoc_N Forumite
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    Clearer?

    Does Ofcom really regard this mess as in any way clear?

    Sadly, it probably does - which says more about Ofcom than words can possibly describe.


    [PS - does anyone know whether 084 and 087 numbers will remain included (along with 03 numbers) in weekend, off-peak and all-inclusive 'packages' with companies such as BT, Plusnet and TalkTalk?]
  • EctophileEctophile Forumite
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    What the new rates reveal is what a rip-off these premium-rate numbers are for customers.

    We can now see that the high charges aren't actually all going to the people you are phoning. Instead, the phone companies are adding excessive charges on top.

    As an example, my PAYG mobile phone has a fixed charge of 14p/minute to all land-lines and mobiles. But under the new tariff, calls to premium rate numbers will be charged at 44p/minute in addition to whatever the called service charges.

    What is their justification for adding an extra 30p/minute to all calls to these services?

    As an aside, Orange PAYG customers will simply be blocked from calling all 09 or 118 numbers from July. There's no way to unblock them other than by switching to an EE tariff. I don't suppose I will bother, though, given how over-priced those numbers are.
    If it sticks, force it.
    If it breaks, well it wasn't working right anyway.
  • edited 29 May 2015 at 7:52PM
    Ian011Ian011 Forumite
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    edited 29 May 2015 at 7:52PM
    Many users of 0845 numbers have spent the last decade or more repeatedly stating that they receive no financial benefit from these calls all the while benefitting from the 2p per minute Enhanced Termination Rate. From 1 July 2015 they will have to state the level of this benefit as their Service Charge (as well as being able to select any rate between 1p and 7p per minute).

    Most banks have already declined to do this and have instead changed their number to the matching 03 number. Most government departments and public services have already changed to a new 03 number. Calls to 03 numbers cost the same as calling 01 and 02 numbers and count towards inclusive allowances on landlines and mobiles. There is NO Service Charge and revenue sharing is not permitted.
  • Ian011Ian011 Forumite
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    Doc_N wrote: »
    Clearer?

    Does Ofcom really regard this mess as in any way clear?
    It's much clearer. One consistent tariff structure for all 084, 087, 090, 091, 098 and 118 numbers. Separation of the cost of the call and the cost of the service delivered by the third party that you called.

    Doc_N wrote: »
    [PS - does anyone know whether 084 and 087 numbers will remain included (along with 03 numbers) in weekend, off-peak and all-inclusive 'packages' with companies such as BT, Plusnet and TalkTalk?]
    Some are including them as they continue their attempt to deceive callers as to the real cost of the calls. TalkTalk has elected to end the deception and bring full transparency to these call costs.
  • michaelsmichaels Forumite
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    But calling abroad via an 0844 number that currently costs 1p/minute from a BT line will in future cost 10.58p/minute? Bit of a hike isn't it?

    Presumably that has just killed the business model of all these call services :(
    I think....
  • edited 30 May 2015 at 10:39AM
    Ian011Ian011 Forumite
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    edited 30 May 2015 at 10:39AM
    michaels wrote: »
    But calling abroad via an 0844 number that currently costs 1p/minute from a BT line will in future cost 10.58p/minute? Bit of a hike isn't it?

    Presumably that has just killed the business model of all these call services :(
    Their business model relied on some outdated regulation (the NTS Retail Condition) that applied only to calls made from BT lines. For the last couple of decades BT has been prevented from making margin on these calls. That regulation ends on 1 July 2015. BT rates will align with those of other providers and they have set their Access Charge at 9.58p per minute.

    Other landline and mobile providers have always taken a cut of the call cost, but have never declared how much it was. Many of the various dial-through services aren't exactly clear in warning that their 084 and 087 numbers will cost a fortune if called from some other landline providers or from a mobile. Declaration of the respective Access Charges will make that clear.

    Some of these dial-through services will close. Others have introduced numbers starting 020, 03 or 080 for access. With these, the international leg of the call is paid for either by buying a top up in advance or via a separate monthly bill.



    See also
    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5219071
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