uSwitch exposes BT's "underhand charges"

13 February 2007
BT has introduced 'stealth' charges which will leave non direct-debit customers £4.50 poorer each quarter, uSwitch.com claims.

The landline and broadband provider will also penalise customers with a 50 per cent rise in the late payment charges, the switching website says.

These "underhand charges", on top of the increased line rental charge from £10.50 to £11 per month for phone customers, show that "BT is not paying as much attention to keeping its customers happy" as it is to satisfying its shareholders, claims uSwitch.com's head of communications service Steve Weller.

"Our recent home phone customer satisfaction survey ranked BT at the bottom for 'value for money', with over four out of ten people dissatisfied with the value they were getting from their service," he added.

Worse yet, the charges on customers who do not pay via direct debit could disproportionately affect older people who prefer to pay monthly by visiting their bank in person, Mr Weller suggested.

But a BT spokesman told consumer body Which?: "Charges for customers not paying by direct debit are standard across the telecoms industry."

"BT's charges are quite modest compared to other companies," he added.

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