VIRGIN MEDIA broadband, TV and fixed-line phone customers will be slapped with average price hikes of 4.5 per cent later this year.
The company said prices for “the significant majority” of customers will rise by between £2 and £4 per month, or an average increase of 4.5 per cent.
This means that those on broadband, phone and TV packages will see increases of up to £48/year for those with broadband, phone and TV packages, while broadband customers can expect to pay £36 more per year.
The firm has been keen to stress that its price hikes have “nothing to do with the recent agreement we have reached with UKTV to restore its channels“, and instead blamed a 300 per cent increase in business rates on broadband networks.
Customers who are increasingly using the internet for more bandwidth-hungry activities are also to blame, says Virgin Media, which claims its network usage has increased by almost 40 per cent year-on-year.
A Virgin Media spokesman said: “Increasing prices is not a decision which we take lightly.
“We work hard to keep our prices competitive while continuing to invest in our network and improve the services we offer our customers.
“This year’s price increase is lower than last year while broadband usage on our network has increased by almost 40 per cent in that time, with approximately 60 per cent of total traffic now due to more streaming of video.
“At the same time the impact on us of a 300 per cent increase in business rates on broadband networks has started to take effect, hiking up the costs associated with building and running our network.”
The changes to bills will take effect from October, and Virgin Media will write to customers between now and the end of September to explain the increases.
If you’re not happy about the price hikes, customers can leave penalty-free by providing notice within 30-days of receiving the notification. µ
Source : Inquirer