We know that energy suppliers are sneaky with their prices, but you may be surprised by just how ‘flexible’ broadband, mobile, and other fees are. If you’re not proactive, suppliers will quietly rip you off. Ismybillfair.com compares what you actually pay to others, and then helps you fix it.
According to Ismybillfair.com (IMBF) loyal customers tend to pay more than new ones. Enticement to action is more expensive than reassurance to stay, especially when most people don’t bother to keep an eye on it. In fact, “loyal” Virgin Media customers pay an average of £15.13 more per month. Ouch! Although BT are worse, at £19.63. Sky, £17.80.
I’ve been a Virgin Media customer since I moved in about 6 years ago. I’m largely happy with my broadband and TV service, although I’ve never quite worked out why I pay line rental for a landline I’ve never actually plugged a phone into. Every once in a while my bill creeps up, and every pandemic seems to slow my service right down. We were introduced to IMBF so I thought I’d give it a go.
Getting my comparison was super quick and simple. Apparently I pay more than average, but more than twice as much as at least one other Virgin Media customer, for (roughly) the same service. I do, however, feel sorry for whoever is paying £120.
Improve your existing deal. If you supplier already has a “partner” arrangement with IMBF they will work with them to offer you a fairer deal. This is not the case with Virgin Media, but they did point me to this very useful guide for dealing with it myself.
Switch. If your relationship is beyond repair they refer you to their comparison website partner. Why not?
It might be obvious to you that the second option is where IMBF make their money, and they prefer you to fall into that camp. However, they explain to me that the first option is also a valuable service that they offer to suppliers because it stops you switching to a new supplier, which is costly to them. You might wonder why they can’t just be fairer in the first place… Perhaps they will if more of their customers call them out.
So how did I get on? My friendly Retention Executive kindly offered me £15 off my monthly bills, which coincidentally (?) aligns with the “loyalty tax” figure above. It was tempting to take it, but in the name science, I took IMBF’s advice and said I’d call them back. She didn’t seem to like that. I’ll update.
Why not have a go yourself? Worst case is that you find you’re not paying too much. I doubt it though…