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Been waiting for nearly 5 months for Virgin Media broadband installation. Anyone know how to speed it up?

Joining in

Hi folks,

I was meant to get Virgin Media broadband installed mid-December 2022 and they have delayed installation every couple weeks and as of now, 2nd May 2023, it still has not been installed. This has been incredibly disruptive since I cancelled my previous provider in December and have been having to commute for over an hour into the office or go to a cafe to do my work. I was calling every day at the beginning but gradually called less and less because customer service has been completely unhelpful.

Firstly, what on earth is the hold up? Secondly, has anyone been able to force VM to actually install broadband? It's an absolute joke at this point. I would go with another provider but annoyingly VM's broadband speed is more than double any other provider in my area. 

Thanks in advance.


Fibre optic

I think it is important to set expectations, even if it is news/advice that you would rather not hear!

Firstly absolutely nothing and nobody can 'force' VM to provide you with a service if they don't want to - naturally they do want to, as they want to collect money from you, but you have now become trapped in the procedural and nightmarish mess that Kafka would appreciate.

The installation work is all outsourced, which in itself is absolutely fine. But having outsourced your job to a third party, VM themselves appear to lose all interest in it or ability to see what is going on. Bottom line, if you are to call VM to chase it up, the poor soul on the phone, quite literally has no insight as to what is happening, what the holdup is, or when it will, in actuality, be done.

Common excuses on here, involve 'local Council permits', blocked ducts etc - all fair enough, but after five/six months, it is stretching credulity somewhat, no? What, I feel is more likely, is that your installation job has been given to a contractor, who has better and more lucrative other projects to do first - eventually they will get around to you, just don;'t hold your breath!

Now working on the basis that, realistically, there is nothing that you or VM nor any of the forum team can practically do to expedite things, you have a few options. Firstly, make notes, keep records of every date you were promised it would be installed by, VM are obliged by OFCOM regulations to pay you compensation for each day past the first installation date given in writing. Keeping notes of these dates, when you called VM, what was promised, what actually happened, will be invaluable if and when you need to escalate it to the industry arbitration service to get your  just compensation.

In the meantime, work on the basis that this won't happen anytime soon, what short-term alternatives do you have? Maybe a 4G/5G router on a monthly plan might save you from having to commute - the owed compensation would more than cover the cost of this - eventually!

If you were to give up and cancel, VM are still obliged to pay the compensation, in the form of a cheque, for each day form the first install date up until the date you cancel - which means that you might decide to not actually cancel but just make alternate arrangements and think about the compensation racking up. On that matter, it is quite possible that VM will thy to argue it's way out of paying you anything on some oddball, BS excuse. You can always post back on here for further advice, in that situation.

Forum Team
Forum Team

Hi waitingforgodot, thanks for the message and sorry to hear that there is a delay with the installation. 

We appreciate this has been a very frustrating time and you were looking forward to enjoying your new service. We want nothing more than to provide the service but the problem as you may have been made aware is one of construction.

We do not come across these issues until we action the installation. When you first call, the Sales team check to see if the address is marked as serviceable. This simply means the architecture is in place. In this case it is. Prior to you install a crew come out to what we term pre-pull the external cable. It’s at this point we sometimes come across constructions issues. Services are subject to availability.

In most areas the cabinets, cables, ducting for the cables etc has been in situe for a number of years. Ducting can become blocked or crushed. Access points outside homes called T plates get covered over, if councils resurface pavements etc. So we have to clear whatever presents itself before we can carry out the install. 

We will need to plan the works and once resolved we will contact you to arrange the installation. I am sorry that it has taken this long and you are free to cancel the installation order at any time as we know that it has been a delayed installation. 

Kind regards, Chris. 

Chris, yes, I do understand the reality here, but I do have one or two queries about the setup.

OK yes, I fully get that your sales staff would sign someone up (well are incentivised to), and give them an installation date, even though they aren’t aware, indeed, can’t possibly be aware, of the physical reality of the situation on the ground or hence if their promises of installation dates are realistic! Yes?

OK, 9 times out of 10 this all works just fine and the customer is happy. What we seem to have here is an example of the one time out of ten when it doesn’t - and at this point VM do seem to have left the poor customer in the lurch!

Local authority permissions, planning works? All fine, except we seem to be talking some five months here, with absolutely no progress. So, honestly, your explanations or excuses, are probably not going to inspire confidence in the OP here or other potential VM customers, no?

Oddly enough you seem to have neglected to mention the OFCOM mandated compensation that the OP is entitled to for a missed installation even if they, understandably, decide to cancel with VM, on the grounds of, well incompetence, really, I’m sure it just slipped your mind!