Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Why oh why does loyalty get punished.

Joining in

Just spent 4 hours exchanging whatsapp messages, yes 4 hours!

Gotten no where, loyalty really is a punishment for a virgin customer. 

How on earth can a new customer get a faster speed (double mine!), a landline and even TV (with many channels, sports etc) for almost half what I am paying, I was offered a £5 discount and no change to the package. 

Really is the last straw.... Virgin you have it all wrong.  



Alessandro Volta

@philh0502 wrote:

Just spent 4 hours exchanging whatsapp messages, yes 4 hours!

Gotten no where, loyalty really is a punishment for a virgin customer. 

How on earth can a new customer get a faster speed (double mine!), a landline and even TV (with many channels, sports etc) for almost half what I am paying, I was offered a £5 discount and no change to the package. 

Really is the last straw.... Virgin you have it all wrong.  

A range of answers are given in this recent topic asking the same kind of question

Forum Team (Retired)
Forum Team (Retired)

Hi philh0502, 

Welcome to the Community and thank you for posting. 

I am very sorry to hear you were not able to get anywhere when speaking with our team via WhatsApp. 

When joining us, we do have incentives available but once these end, the package will be full price. We then will do all we can to offer an existing customer deal. 

New customer deals are offered to every customer joining us and you yourself will have benefitted from this when takin up your package. Unfortunately, once a new customer promotion has been used, we are not able to apply another to an existing customer account. 

We are very sorry for any disappointed caused but we would recommend speaking with the team directly on 0345 454 1111 / 150 to review your package. 





Thank you for the feedback, if the quality of the team on the phone is comparable to the WhatsApp experience then I see little point in wasting the time. The customer service is shocking, yesterdays experience was tough and stressful, I was being sold one thing and I knew full well that is what I would NOT be getting which as a result would lead to more phone calls/messages to get things put right after I had signed up for another term, weather or not this was intentional or not, I found my self searching the virgin media website in order to prove the representative that they were giving me false information.

Virgin used to have the market share in fast broadband, therefore most people had to use Virgin if they wanted a decent speed, unfortunately and it continues people simply do not want to use Virgin as a result of year upon year of shocking customer service.

Now I am also a sky customer (for TV) and I want to use Sky because they always look after us year on year, we always agree on reasonable price increases, that are not too dissimilar to new customer offers might I add and I really I don't mind paying a little more for the continuation of uninterrupted services. The customer service experience is excellent.

Unfortunately the area in which I live dictates that to have fast broadband I have to use virgin I cannot use sky/BT, surprising how many people turn down their face when they move into the area and realise that they have to use virgin. 

Is this really how Virgin media wants to be perceived? 

There is something inherently wrong within virgin media, pricing and customer service needs fixing. 


If I might play Devil's Advocate here, there's no such thing as "loyalty".  You've said it yourself, that (at the moment) VM have your broadband business only because they have a monopoly of high speeds.  You've not been staying with them as a favour, or because you want to help restock Branson's depleted wine cellar, or put more money towards Liberty Global's and Telefonica's impoverished shareholders who actually own VM.  In turn, VM charged you as much as they thought they could get away with - and even that's loss making for the company as whole.  There's no goodwill or generosity in this, it's an emotionless business contract.  

You are doing what I did until Openreach FTTP arrived recently, sticking with VM because the price/speed balance is better than was available from other suppliers.  What's in that to justify a discount?  You can certainly play the Retentions game and try and get yourself a deal as most customers do, but if doing that you have to play it right as below (point 9 duplicates what I said above as it's a stock response).

(1) Only try and negotiate after the fixed term has ended, or during the last 30 days before that.  Trying to cut a deal before that rarely get a decent deal.  Retentions staff are paid to do a job, and that's to get customers back on a fixed term contract at the minimum discount.  They do this day in day out, they're trained in how to handle negotiation, and they're paid incentives to get the right outcome for VM.  You or I negotiate a new broadband deal once every year and a half, so unless your day job is in procurement, then you need to make up for the unequal skills.

(2) Know what the alternative offers for other ISPs are and have them in front of you when calling, and remember that any price difference per month is multiplied by the 18 months of the contract.  This is potentially a £700-1,200 contract you're negotiating, treat it with the same energy and attention that you would for any other purchase of a grand.

(3) Regardless of what the agent might say, any offer completely lapses if you end the call "to think about it".  Know what a good price is before having the conversation, and if you're offered a great deal, then accept it immediately, equally don't feel pressured to accept a poor deal compared to other ISP offers.

(4) The way the retention agents incentives work, you'll get different offers on different days from the same agent, and different offers on the same day from different agents.  If you don't feel you're getting very far, end the call and try again another day - although the next agent will know you're a repeat caller, and will have to be pushed a bit harder as they'll assume you're more inclined to stay than leave. 

(5) Learn the craft of "retentions discussions as a customer".  In all of this, your leverage comes only from the extent to which the retention agent believes that you are genuinely prepared to leave, but can be retained for a discount.  These agents do this day in, day out, they're trained, they're usually experienced, they're paid on results, and it's pretty common to up the pressure on them by having league tables up in the office that show all agents' performance.  Every caller says they want a discount or they'll leave, many customers aren't prepared to cancel, and the agents are good at sniffing out those who show any of the signs of not really intending to leave.  Some customers can be distracted by an add-on offer that wasn't something the customer requested, but seems like a good deal, or by some sales patois about the Connect app, public hotspots, "best ever wifi" and the rest.  Focus on what you want, what you can get elsewhere, and have in your mind what is required to convince you to stay with VM - maybe write these down.  If this is about price, avoid starting any prattle about loyalty or fairness as that language instantly tells the agent you're likely to stay.  Be wary of retention hooks like bundled sims or TV packages they start offering unless you really get some value from those.  Many people get distracted by the offer a free wifi pod and a Volt bundle that they wouldn't otherwise have chosen, and because they think they're getting something great, end up paying £7-20 a month more, which adds up to quite a tidy sum over 18 months.  If that's actually what you want then by all means go for it, but always have in mind what you want from the call. 

(6) The agent will usually play on the speed advantage VM have for most customers.  You should acknowledge that, but don't let it become the lynchpin of an argument why you need to pay more than competitors, even if it is central to you staying with VM - always bring any discussion back to what you see as poor value from VM relative to competitor offers "yeah, the speeds great, but it's still the total cost that puts me off - if I go with XXXX that'll save me £17 a month, and over the contract period of 18 months that's over X hundred quid difference, I can't afford to ignore that".

(7) Keep it brisk, polite and chirpy - these guys and girls are doing the job they're paid to do, getting a mutually agreeable outcome quickly and with a friendly discussion is ideal for them, ideal for you.  Time is money to these people, so start off the call by giving the agent a good idea of where you want to end up - if you've caught their name when answering the phone, make it personable, eg "Hi Dave, I'm hoping you can help me as I'm at the end of my fixed term contract, and I think I'm going to have to cancel as the new contract price is so far different from the deals I can get from (eg) Plusnet/Sky, for £xx a month.  Can you match those prices for me?".  They'll usually try and offer something above those other company offers, if so come back along the lines "Thanks Dave that's in the right direction, but it's still well above what I'd pay elsewhere, and that £x a month difference is going to be £xxx over an 18 month contract - is there any more leeway to match the deals easily available?  I can commit now if you can match that price?"   If trying to deal with any offshore agents, then your experience is likely to be materially worse than the UK based retentions agents, although regardless of UK or offshore they're all outsourced staff who actually work for companies other than VM.

(8) If you really don't want to bother with the retentions pantomime, and just issue notice to cancel, then there's a good chance that you'll get one or several "outbound retentions" or win-back calls during the notice period.  These callers have access to the best pricing and are more likely to offer you something around new customer pricing than an inbound call you make to the retentions team.  Obviously there's no guarantee that these calls will be made, or that you'll be available to take them, so they can be part of your renewal strategy, but usually in conjunction with placing an order for a different ISP.  If the VM call comes and you agree terms, you cancel the different ISP under cooling off rights, and pay nothing.  If the VM outbound call doesn't come, or the terms remain unacceptable, then you allow the cancellation to run its course and use the new ISP connection.

(9) And a final observation.  Loyalty is a myth.  I've been a VM customer for 25+ years.  But that's not loyalty, its a hard nosed reflection that at each renewal point, I've looked to see what the alternative was, and VM was at that time my best option.  That won't be the case soon as they're laying Openreach FTTP in the area, and my point is that you and I have chosen to stick with VM because it suited us, and for no other reason.  We don't stay with VM for their customer service, we don't stay with VM because we love their brand, we don't stay with them because we feel sorry for Branson, and want to help him re-stock his Caribbean tax-dodgers wine cellar (although Branson has no operational involvement, his people simply licence the Virgin brand to a US company that operate the UK cable network).  If VM could make more money by ending your or my contract, they'd do it.  If we could get a genuinely better deal we'd take it and cancel VM, and that's something I've now done.  So keep in mind that you are the customer, and the power sits with you, but only through a willingness to take your business elsewhere, not because they owe you anything, or because you owe them anything. 

@Andrew-G wrote:


And this post really should be made into a sticky one at the top of the forum, to which we could simply refer people to - probably won't be though😉