Ofcom has released guidance for consumers to protect against unexpected mid-contract price rises.
The regulator has published a consumer guide for people about to sign up to new mobile phone, home phone or broadband contracts (see below).
Core subscription price has been broken down to fixed, tiered and variable. Fixed literally means fixed, and cannot be changed for the whole 18 months, while tiered refers to tariffs in which customers pay different prices at different times. Variable tariffs refer to contracts that can change in price at the providers discretion.
Out of the major mobile operators, Three was the only network to commit to fixed, while O2 fell into the tiered category.
According to Ofcom’s guidance, if a provider increases a subscription amount beyond what was agreed at point of sale, a customer should be given at least one month’s notice while being free to exit the contract without penalty.