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SammiBabe
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Message 1 of 14
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Bill Increase

Hello,

I hope this is the right place to post this.

I have just received my latest VM bill and I can see it is increasing next month.

I'm sitting here with a thumping heart as I am very worried about talking to someone about this on the phone. I suffer with bad anxiety, and I don't even know if I am being charged correctly or why it's gone up and I am feeling rather ill at the thought of having to try and find a 'better deal' from some other provider.

I need to keep the services we have at the moment as my two children are starting University this September and I need to keep in contact on the phone with my ageing parents. I guess all I'm asking for is if there is some way I can contact someone about how to get the price down, without having to 'talk' (I just can't do that with my anxiety as it is) or if anyone knows of an easy way to find another provider with the same services but cheaper.

I saw an advert for new Virgin customers to get more than I am getting on my package at the moment for almost £10 a month less than I am paying, but I can't just end and return as a new customer can I?

If someone could help me, or message me some information I would be most grateful.

I'm sorry if I sound a bit pathetic but I am literally sat here feeling sick and dizzy, and I can't even think straight.

 

thank you

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japitts
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Message 2 of 14
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Re: Bill Increase

There's a bit of everything in there!

Firstly, your bill & contract (all downloadable from your "my Virgin Media" online account) will show the standard price of whatever package you're on, together with any discounts and/or promotions you have - and their expiry date. That's the best place to start, in order to explain the "why" and/or "what" bits here.

In short, no you can't just leave and re-join as a new-customer without completely disconnecting for (answer seems to vary but certainly in the order of) potentially 3months.

Once you know what combination of services you have (your contract & bill will itemise this), head along to build your bundle and get an idea of current pricing for it (look at the standard pricing) - you can also tweak combinations to see what effect this has on the package price. Armed with all this, you're at least much better informed and that may go some way to alleviating the situation.

Package changes can normally only be done by calling through to 150 and using the "thinking of leaving us" options. I'd strongly recommend checking over your bills and playing with the bundle builder - to gauge what package you're on, and the current pricing for it. Hopefully you'll feel a bit better with a bit of info in-hand.

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Message 3 of 14
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Re: Bill Increase

Hello,

 

thank you for your reply.

 

I've had a look but I'm very confused still.

I am currently on:

 

You bought Bigger Bundle

Full House TV (XL) Virgin TV V6 Box, Powered by TiVO
M350 Fibre Broadband
Telephone line rental, Free Voicemail, Talk More Evenings and Weekends

It says I have a Promotional discount until July 18 and that if I end my services before 18 January 2021 I may incur a fee.

£80

Then £93 from July 19

I was looking at the Build Your bundle, but the names are different for the TV box thingy and there's no Full house TV (XL) that I can see. I don't even know what's in that bundle, we rarely watch TV, only a few hours in the evening at most, and then it's some repeat on while we eat. Some of the channels don't load but I don't know if that's because we don't have them or I'm pressing something wrong.

The Broadband is the important one, what with the kids and my husband and I on the computers almost all day, working and studying. But the speed we have right now is fine for us, although the WiFi drops out every so often.

The phone is fine as it is, I call my mum, and she can call me, I've tried getting her to call my mobile, but she says it's too expensive and I agree.

I tried making a bundle on the bundle maker thingy, and I think it's similar to what I have:

 TV
  • Mixit TV
  • Virgin TV 360 box
 Broadband
  • M350 Fibre Broadband
  • Virgin Media Hub 3
 Phone
  • Talk Weekends
  • Free Voicemail
  • Virgin Phone Line

This says it would be:

Monthly cost (18 month contract)
£41.99 a month for 18 months
then £74.00 a month
 
Which is a lot less than the £93 they say it will increase to!

I've been with Virgin since the Telewest/Blueyonder days, I think it's about 30 years now and I don't want the trouble of cancelling, returning, and trying to set something else up, I'm happy as I am, just can't afford £93 a month.

I'm not sure what to do now.

Thanks again for replying
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goslow
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Message 4 of 14
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Re: Bill Increase


@SammiBabe wrote:

Hello,

thank you for your reply.

I've had a look but I'm very confused still.

<snip>

I'm not sure what to do now.

Thanks again for replying

Unfortunately, VM don't want you to contact them! They would like you to just keep paying the bill and the price increases!

They make it as difficult as possible for you to contact them other than by phone and the phone contact can be highly variable. In the last year, there was a text messaging service which you could text to but I can't see any evidence of that existing just now. Someone else may be able to advise if it still operates. You might occasionally see a 'messenger' option in the contact routes but that seems to come and go too.

I have just tried the contact options web pages and they go around and around in an endless loop circling through the same pages but with no actual means of contact!

Anyway, is your husband able to assist in the process? Are you yourself the named account holder?

I would have thought it should be possible for you to phone up and do the security question clearance part to begin with, then for your husband to take over the negotiations/haggling aspect and/or be on the line together during the call.

There is an excellent post from @Andrew-G, one of the forum VIPs, on a suggested approach to negotiating if that is not something you are comfortable doing.

https://community.virginmedia.com/t5/Networking-and-WiFi/can-you-downgrade-package-without-using-the...

As advised by @japitts, if you have done your research then you will be in the best position to have the conversation with VM.

japitts
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Message 5 of 14
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Re: Bill Increase

Let's break this down a little then, we're making some good inroads here.


@SammiBabe wrote:

I am currently on: Bigger Bundle

Full House TV (XL) Virgin TV V6 Box, Powered by TiVO
M350 Fibre Broadband
Telephone line rental, Free Voicemail, Talk More Evenings and Weekends


Forget for a moment the "bigger bundle", that's just the name that marketing people gave to your combination of services when you chose them. It's the constituent parts that matter - Full-House, M350 and Talk Evenings&Weekends.


@SammiBabe wrote:

I was looking at the Build Your bundle, but the names are different for the TV box thingy and there's no Full house TV (XL) that I can see. I don't even know what's in that bundle....

This says it would be:

Monthly cost (18 month contract)
£41.99 a month for 18 months
then £74.00 a month
 
Which is a lot less than the £93 they say it will increase to!

The TV box is a red herring in this case - you're using the bundle builder to get an idea of pricing on your existing equipment so forget the 360 bit. Full-House has been discontinued since a couple of years, and replaced with "Maxit" which is the same except that the chargeable kids channels are now an add-on regardless. You can check the channels in the various packages at the bottom of this page

Playing with your options, I've gone for... Maxit, M350, Evenings & weekends phone - and got a standard price of £102/month. You could very likely get a discount on that, in exchange for re-contracting for 18months.

You've mentioned service problems with your TV & broadband - in the interests of simplicity, can I suggest starting a separate post for those in...

broadband queries or TV V6 queries - otherwise this post is going to get unnecessarily complicated. It's entirely possible - but not certain - that the issues with both of those could be related.

In terms of getting your package sorted, @goslow has given some great advice - only the account holder can manage contract renewals with VM but calling into pass security, and then passing the phone over to some who's also read these posts and is "prepared" would be an excellent plan. This process probably isn't as complicated as you're making it, but it's certainly a very wise idea to go prepared. Edited to add: The text message service does still exist, but I can't in all honesty recommend it for package renegotiations, the retentions agents on the phone are much better placed to offer you the best deal.

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Message 6 of 14
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Re: Bill Increase

ok, thank you both for your help.

 

I will drink a strong cup of tea, and try and settle my nerves and call them. The contract is in my name only.

My husband is here, so I will try and persuade him to talk on my behalf.

I'll make a note of other deals available to me from other suppliers as mentioned in the post you suggested.

I hate this, truly, having to call and try and get things I need at a price I can afford.  It really is giving me terrible anxiety.

I really wish I could type to someone, as I find it far easier to do that thank talk!

 

Anyway, thank you all for your help so far, will report back once I've been brave 🙂

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Serena_C
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Message 7 of 14
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Re: Bill Increase

Hi @SammiBabe

 

Thank you for your post regarding your price increase, I am really sorry to hear of the anxiety this is causing you.

 

As we bill 30 days in advance, I believe your increased price will be due to the agreed promotional discount expiring on 19th July. I understand it is frustrating to see different deals offered to new customers. As with all providers, we do offer introductory deals to new customers, at the start of all of our customer’s time with us they will have benefited from such a deal. Once this expires we'll always do all we can to offer the best existing customer deal available. If you would like to discuss the options available to you please give us a call on 0345 454 1111 / 150 Option 1. If you do not wish to speak with us on the phone, you can also text +44753 305 1809.

 

Please let me know how you get on with your call / text

 

Best wishes,

 

Serena

newapollo
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Message 8 of 14
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Re: Bill Increase

Hi SammiBabe,

I agree with  japitts that talking on the phone is the best way forward, however there is another option you could try.

Log into My Virgin Media at the top of this page https://my.virginmedia.com/home/index

Hover your mouse over the My Upgrades and Offers link in the navigation menu, and in the drop down click on the Top Offers text.

This will open up at page that may show you some discounted offers.

If not there should be a red "Chat now" icon which opens an online chat messenger (like facebook messenger) where you can type/chat with an agent. This isn't instant nor as easy as talking on the phone, but you may find it useful.

Dave

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SammiBabe
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Message 9 of 14
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Re: Bill Increase

Hello everyone.

 

Many thanks for all the responses, nice to feel I had somewhere to go and read helpful advice 🙂

 

I called them.

 

It was so nerve wracking, I barely made it pass the security checks.

I passed the phone onto my husband, who spoke to them while I had to go outside for some air.

 

He tells me he has got rid of the children's channels we had on the TV (I didn't know we still had those, all my 'kids' are over 18 now)

He also got rid of the evenings calls, but kept the weekends.

And this resulted in a new contract, for 18 months, at the same price we have been paying which is £84 per month.

 

Thank you all again very, very much for all your help and info.

 

Oh, I did find the 'chat now' thingy button, but nothing happened when I clicked it 😞

 

Have a glorious day everyone!

 

newapollo
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Message 10 of 14
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Re: Bill Increase

Hi again SammiBabe,

Thanks for the update. I'm pleased you and your husband managed to agree a new contract.

If you ever have any further issues pop back onto the Community Forums and we will try to help or offer advice.

Take care and stay safe.

Dave

The Service you do for others is the rent you pay for your room here on Earth - Muhammad Ali


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