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Vodafone pledges to end mid-contract price hikes with fixed-price promise

Move comes just weeks ahead of 2.7 percent increase for EE customers
Fri May 09 2014, 13:36
A Vodafone logo

UK MOBILE OPERATOR Vodafone has announced a "fixed price promise" for all of its customers, which means it won't increase the price of a contract during its calendar term.

Earlier this year, UK telecoms watchdog Ofcom announced new guidelines that meant that, from 23 January, customers can cancel a contract for free if an operator increases the price. Vodafone announced today that it has embraced the legislation, albeit over four months later.

The operator announced a fixed price promise for all of its contract customers on Friday, saying "Today we're committing to keep the price our customers pay for their monthly plan fixed for the duration of the contract, whether that's one, 12 or 24 months."

Vodafone head of consumer marketing Mark Howe explained the scheme in more detail. He said, "In short, it means fixed. We're being very clear to our customers that the price you pay for your bundle of minutes, texts and data each month won't increase for the length of your contract.

"Technically, the Ofcom guidelines allow operators to increase their prices every year in line with inflation if they're clear and upfront about it, but we don't think that's in keeping with the spirit of the regulations."

While this is good news for Vodafone customers, those on the EE network aren't so lucky, with the operator set to increase its prices by 2.7 percent on 28 May. What's more, as this increase is in line with inflation, customers won't be able to leave for free.

O2 customers likely will find themselves in a similar situation, too. Following Ofcom's January announcement, O2 issued an update to its terms and conditions saying that it could increase a customers monthly fee every 12 months if it so wishes.

Three customers shouldn't have anything to worry about, though, with the operator embracing Ofcom's guidelines. It said in January, "Ofcom's move is good news, both for consumers and competition as prices will be more transparent as a result." µ


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