• Mon. Nov 28th, 2022

Millions could save hundreds of pounds a year on cheap broadband tariffs as Virgin Media slashes prices – how to get it | The Sun

Oct 11, 2022

VIRGIN Media has slashed the price of its cheap home internet tariff for low income customers – here's how to get it.

Households on benefits including Universal Credit are eligible for cheap deals called social broadband tariffs.

A number of providers offer these deals, including Virgin Media, which has slashed the price on one of its packages.

Its Essential Broadband package, for those on Universal Credit and with speeds of 15 Megabits per second (Mbps), will drop to £12.50 a month from £15.

All new and existing customers are eligible for the new lower price.

The same customers will have access to a new package, Essential Broadband Plus, offering higher broadband speeds of 50Mbps for £20 a month.

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Both plans have no fixed-term contract or activation fee.

For those who pick the Essential Broadband Plus package, they'll be able to pay a one-off £20 fee to buy Stream as well, a video streaming platform.

Jeff Dodds, Virgin Media's chief operating officer, said: "Connectivity remains an essential part of our lives, so we are boosting the support we provide to those who need it most in the cost-of-living crisis."

It comes after Virgin Media confirmed earlier this year it was working on a system to put automated checks in place for customers to confirm their eligibility for social tariffs.

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The company said this would mean it could offer its social tariff broadband schemes to those on pension credit for the first time.

What are social broadband tariffs?

Social broadband tariffs are available to people on certain benefits, including Universal Credit.

But it's estimated millions who qualify aren't making use of the saving.

Sun Money is calling on the Government, regulator Ofcom and suppliers to do more to support struggling customers and make it easier for customers to switch to a social tariff.

How you apply for one will vary depending on your provider as each one will have its own rules on eligibility.

Prices vary as well so it's worth shopping around by using price comparison sites such as Moneysupermarket.com or Uswitch.

For example, BT let you sign up online, while you have to call Sky and Now.

Virgin Media let you sign up for its £12.50 and £20 tariffs online, but you'll need proof of receipt of Universal Credit.

BT has a social tariff for £15 a month while Now Broadband charges £20 a month on a rolling contract.

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Sky's offering is £20 a month, however the deal is for 18 months so you may need to pay an exit fee to get out of it earlier.

Exit fees are what you have to pay if you want to move across from a normal broadband tariff to a social tariff, so it's worth seeing what yours would be if you switched.

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