The cost of living crisis is spiraling, with even more of a squeeze expected for many households since April. But some people are missing out on saving hundreds of pounds a year by not switching their mobile network provider.
According to new research by iD Mobile, the mobile virtual network operator from Currys, a third of Brits could be wasting money by not doing anything when their phone contract ends. People could be losing out on £156 a year on average – and in some instances up to £360 – by not switching their mobile network provider.
Most contracts will encompass the price of the mobile phone itself (handset) and the minutes, texts and data included in the package (inclusive usage). However, the cost of these contracts on a like-for-like basis (same phone and usage inclusions) can differ immensely across networks – sometimes as much as £30 per month.
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Additionally, the price you pay doesn’t always automatically decrease once you have finished the minimum term and have effectively paid off the phone element of the contract – meaning you’re paying more for the phone than you need to, reports Wales Online. Despite it being a legal requirement for network providers to inform their customers when their contract is up, a fifth (18%) still have no idea when it ends.
And even if they do, 28% plan to keep everything exactly as it (same phone on the same plan) without assessing their options – with a fifth of Brits (20%) under the impression it would be cheaper than switching to a new provider . A further 18% won’t be upgrading their handset or switching networks as they think it is too much of a hassle – effectively paying more than actually need to.
Additionally, two fifths (39%) of UK adults wouldn’t consider switching to a lesser-known mobile network, with 50% concerned that the network coverage may not be as good. This is in spite of the fact that the lesser-known mobile networks are all powered by the one of the UK’s four major networks, benefiting from the same level of coverage.
Although 95% of people are generally satisfied with their current plan, with the cost of living increasing, over half (53%) feel like they’re paying too much for their mobile package. Switching to a lesser-known network provider can be a simple and effective way to save money whilst not compromising on the handset or usage inclusions – with an average saving of £13 per month on like-for-like deals versus the major networks.
Customers can save £156 on average per year. Sue Hayward, Personal Finance Expert, says: “Every penny counts in the current cash strapped climate and it’s shocking that one in three of us seem happy to waste a whopping £156 a year on average, on our mobile bills, and in some instances over £360 a year, according to iD Mobile’s research.
“Despite one in two of us thinking we overpay for our plans, we seem reluctant to shop around and switch when comes to our mobile provider; which is curious considering how open we are to switch providers on other household bills to save money. Nearly half of us don’t think our mobile network rewards our loyalty – so it may be time for consumers to put loyalty aside, and switch providers to save some cash.
“Taking a few minutes to check your mobile contract, haggling for a better deal or switching to a provider like iD Mobile, can pay dividends and put pounds back in your pocket.”