Internet service at low cost ‘Social Tariff’
Internet service providers are now offering low cost ‘Social Tariff’
Although not widely advertised, internet service providers are now offering low cost ‘Social Tariff’ broadband plans for those on specific qualifying benefits which can provide considerable annual savings. The following sets out the various social tariff options that are available at the time of writing, from four of the main internet service providers.
BT has the ‘Home Essentials’ plan for £15 month and the ‘Home Essentials Unlimited’ plan for £20 month, available for both new and existing customers who are receiving the qualifying benefits, including universal credit and pension credit. There is an instant online eligibility checker at bt.com/home-essentials to see whether you qualify, or you can call 0800 800 150. To verify eligibility, you will need to provide your surname (last name), date of birth and National Insurance Number.
Sky has a Broadband ‘Basic’, Social Tariff plan for their customers who are struggling to pay their broadband bill, but want to stay connected. To qualify, the account holder needs to be claiming certain benefits, which Sky will validate with the DWP to confirm eligibility.
Sky Broadband ‘Basic’ plan costs £20 month for 18 months, and if you decide to leave before the end of the contract you don’t have to pay any early termination fees. Further details can be found at https://www.sky.com/help/articles/sky-social-tariff or you can call Sky on 0333 7591 018.
Virgin Mediaoffer their ‘Essential’ Broadband plan for anyone who receives Universal Credit, whether you are new to Virgin Media or an existing customer. If you are a new customer you will need to provided a screen shot of your online Universal Credits payment page, just visit https://www.virginmedia.com/broadband/low-income-families, where you can start a Live Chat and share the Universal Credits payment page. If you are an existing customer you are able to complete an online form with your details.
The ‘Essential’ Broadband plans cost either £12.50 or £20 on a rolling 30 day contract. Engineer setup is available at no extra cost.
Vodafone have designed their ‘Essentials’ Broadband plan which is available to all new and existing customers receiving specific government benefits. The 12 month contract costs £12 month with the option to leave early with no termination fees. At the end of the contract you can reapply for the ‘Essentials’ broadband if you are still in receipt of the qualify benefits.
With the current cost of living crisis, it’s important that struggling household check to see if they are missing out on any benefits or discounts they may be entitled to claim. The government benefits checker, www.gov.uk/check-benefits-financial-support/y can help in identifying any benefits that households may be eligible to claim.