Our new Broadband Haggling guide - please share your feedback

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  • Been with Virgin for years. Paying top dollar for broadband and free weekend calls. Saw Martin's email with £19 incl line rental, but Oomph upgrade deals also available. Asked Virgin to upgrade me. Now I can't get through. I'm blocked. Why should I pay £44 when upgrade allows 100mbps for £33? How do I get them to respond? Any help appreciated.
  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Forumite
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    compannie wrote: »
    Been with Virgin for years. Paying top dollar for broadband and free weekend calls. Saw Martin's email with £19 incl line rental, but Oomph upgrade deals also available. Asked Virgin to upgrade me. Now I can't get through. I'm blocked. Why should I pay £44 when upgrade allows 100mbps for £33? How do I get them to respond? Any help appreciated.

    How do you mean you're blocked?
  • Jst86Jst86 Forumite
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    MoneySaving Newbie
    Hello,

    I've also recently had success with Virgin. Signed up for their 100MB broadband deal last year which was £29 p/m for new customers. That contract was due to end in October at which point my bill would have gone up to £47 p/m, so I phoned them up fully expecting to close my account and go for the latest Vodaphone deal for £23 p/m for 18 months @ a speed of 65MB + £60 fee to change my line from fibre to home, to fibre to cabinet, which all the other companies use apart from Virgin in my area.. so a total of £28 p/m for a lower speed and a long contract.

    It took 4 disconnected lines, being fed some wrong information, a callback which never happened, and a 30 minute wait to be transfered to an "account specialist" who I guess have the power to cut your bills in half. But they eventually offered me £30 for 6 months then an increase to £33 for the next 6 months @ a speed of 100MB. So a shorter contract and only paying £42/year more than the best deal for a much faster speed. I'm happy with that.

    Perhaps I could have haggled instead of taking their first offer, but I had valued their service at £33p/m maximum, so getting less than that was a win in my book.. and certainly much better than the £47p/m they were going to put me on!
  • Haggling only works if there is effective competition.

    I was delighted when I was informed by the ‘Superfast Cornwall’ project that I would be getting a full fibre connection to my property.

    Rather less delighted to discover there is no effective competition, as all the providers from the comparison sites are unable to offer me a service when I give them my property details.

    So I’m stuck with just whatever BT choose to offer me.
  • edited 27 September 2019 at 4:51PM
    mrsp1987mrsp1987 Forumite
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    edited 27 September 2019 at 4:51PM
    I’ve just plucked up the courage to phone Virgin Media to try and haggle a better dal. Been with them since 2016 and been out of contract for about 2 years. We had issues with out previous supplier, Sky, and I have to admit that VM’s Internet is faultless. Husband refuses to switch to another provider. Currently paying £51.50 for 100MB BB and landline, which we never use and don’t really care about.

    So, I ring and am very polite and say before I choose to cancel I’d like to know what VM can offer. Long silence whilst he checks and he come see bald with an offer of £43 per month but it includes TV. I don’t want to upgrade my package I just want a discount. We have Sky to TV and are very happy with them too. Again, he goes away and long silence then comes back and says that I’m on the best deal and they can’t do anything other than reduce the line rental by £3 for 6 months. He says that they’ve got the best speeds out there and that no-one Else compares and that other providers have hidden charges. I mention that they’re offering my package to new customers for £27 per month. He says customers are entitled to special offers and we were new customers once too and we’re getting the benefit of all the investment into the service and the excellent speeds.

    End up being non-committal and ending the call feeling really rather deflated actually. Did I do something wrong? Did I get someone who had run out deals to offer? I hear anecdotal stories that call handlers have quotas, maybe they’ve met theirs for this month?

    So I suppose I’m after advice. Is it worth me trying again next week and seeing if I get a different response or not bother? I did ask what would happen if I cancelled and my husband signed up as a new customer. I was told that I’d have to leave for 3 months before I could be a new customer and that if my husband signed up as a new customer their background checks would identity that I was a previous customer recently and it wouldn’t work. Do you also think this is true?

    Any advice would be appreciated. Never haggled before so I don’t know if I’ve gone about it all wrong and shot myself in the foot so please be kind x

    Edit: Husband now says he wouldn’t mind leaving Sky. Further research required but this may open doors
  • edited 27 September 2019 at 4:57PM
    pphillipspphillips Forumite
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    edited 27 September 2019 at 4:57PM
    I was with VM for many years and the first thing I did when I wanted to haggle was to make sure I was speaking to the cancellations team (also called customer retentions). VM have changed their system recently so that, although you have pressed the option for cancellations on your phone keypad, they have actually put you through to customer service instead. Whats also a pain I've found is that some staff might refuse to put you through to that team so always say you are calling to cancel (even if you have no intention of cancelling). The other thing I would say is persistence. If they won't offer a discount then you can always say you will have a think about it (but call them back later to try again).
  • dreamingdreaming Forumite
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    I recently got a £20 per month reduction from Virgin after ringing up to cancel. I first rang as I wasn't sure if I was still in contract (I wasn't) and the adviser said all they could offer was the £3pm reduction as above. I went away and looked at all the deals available, left it a couple of days then rang and said I wanted to cancel. I got put through to another extension (I guess "retentions" although they didn't say that) and spoke to a very fast-speaking adviser who initially strated to tell me how good their service was - "the best speed you can get" etc. I did tell her that this wasn't a good thing to be telling me as on that particular day we were having intermitent problems in our area. Anyway I quoted some of the deals I could get and said I was going to go ahead with cancellation when they she realised that they could offer me a £20pm reduction after all, starting immediately and she placed a "loyalty" credit of £15 on my account as well to bring this month's bill down. This is fixed for 18 months. I was quite happy with that as although it didn't match the cheapest I could get it was fairly close and saves me having to set up new account. I have though taken the time to set up a Gmail account (currently have Virginmedia ISP) so I can haggle again in future.
  • mrsp1987mrsp1987 Forumite
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    I do wonder if I wasn’t put through to retentions. I just went through the automated menu. However, having now looked at the TV packages I know what I want (Bigger Bundle + sport) which as a new customer would be £72 per month. Don’t know what it’ll cost if I add it to my current package but it gives me more wiggle room I hope.
    Even if I don’t get it at £72 we’re currently paying £127 without Sky and Virgin so I’m pretty confident I’ll save some money
  • pphillipspphillips Forumite
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    mrsp1987 wrote: »
    I do wonder if I wasn’t put through to retentions. I just went through the automated menu. However, having now looked at the TV packages I know what I want (Bigger Bundle + sport) which as a new customer would be £72 per month. Don’t know what it’ll cost if I add it to my current package but it gives me more wiggle room I hope.
    Even if I don’t get it at £72 we’re currently paying £127 without Sky and Virgin so I’m pretty confident I’ll save some money

    I think that you could get offered the same price as new customers (but only because you will be upgrading your services and signing up to a new 12 month contract).
  • mrsp1987mrsp1987 Forumite
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    That’s what I’m hoping. Rather than asking for a discount I’m upgrading. I’d be saving £55 per month if I can’l get it at £72. That would make me very happy...and smug
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