When did mobile phone contracts start raising prices by RPI each year?

Posted 6th Jan 2022 (Posted 20 h, 0 m ago)
I took out my SIM contract in 2013 and it has stayed the same price the entire time. I'm looking for better deals now but they all state that they'll raise the price by RPI each year now. Was there some market shift in the last 9 years that means they all do this now?

I'm starting to think I may as well just stick with my permanent contract if this is the case.
Community Updates
Ask
New Comment
22 Comments
  1. Avatar
    Which contact do you have, that doesn't have this increase. Been common practice for quite a while
  2. Avatar
    Author
    Deedie06/01/2022 20:05

    Which contact do you have, that doesn't have this increase. Been common …Which contact do you have, that doesn't have this increase. Been common practice for quite a while


    £8/month from iD Mobile. Way more texts/messages/data than I use in a month and has rollover too.
  3. Avatar
    mg199506/01/2022 20:08

    £8/month from iD Mobile. Way more texts/messages/data than I use in a …£8/month from iD Mobile. Way more texts/messages/data than I use in a month and has rollover too.


    Stick to your current contract then. No need to change
  4. Avatar
    I was wondering this the other day too. I never had a mobile contract increase until 2020 even though the potential for one was often mentioned in the terms.

    I suspect some combination of Brexit and the great pandemic customer service downgrade (charge more for worse service and blame Covid because it's easy to get away with it) has come into play here.
  5. Avatar
    I might be wrong but a lot of contracts state they will be rising by CPI +3.9% - so theres an CPI increase plus an additional amount to cover something else.......
    Edited by: "Keith9534" 17 h, 34 m ago
  6. Avatar
    Fine by me, my Virgin Sim Only is going up so they're letting me leave for free, switched to o2 for double the data and a free upgrade to 1Gbps on Virgin Media for the same price as my current sim.
  7. Avatar
    Deedie06/01/2022 20:10

    Stick to your current contract then. No need to change


    So recently had some sharp practice from Vodafone which means this wouldn`t work. At the 24 month point my wife asked how much her contract would be if she just carried on ( presuming the cost of the handset had been covered already ).....we were told it would just be the same cost every month continuing on!?!?!?! At £55 a month this would be stupid and clearly they wanted to shift her to a contract which favoured their current practice of not seperating the phone and tarriff so any annual increase means the price paid for the handset increases too. The effect being something like buying a fixed price item which increases after purchase.

    Not sure people realise the effect of this?

    McShane106/01/2022 22:27

    Fine by me, my Virgin Sim Only is going up so they're letting me leave for …Fine by me, my Virgin Sim Only is going up so they're letting me leave for free, switched to o2 for double the data and a free upgrade to 1Gbps on Virgin Media for the same price as my current sim.


    New contracts won`t allow this going forward as they have already warned people ( in the T&C`s ) it will be happening.

    As usual, a regulator stops them ripping people off, so they just work around it.

    Will be some in contract price increases soon, which people will not being able to walk away from and will be lockled in
    Edited by: "Keith9534" 17 h, 25 m ago
  8. Avatar
    Keith953406/01/2022 22:29

    New contracts won`t allow this going forward as they have already warned …New contracts won`t allow this going forward as they have already warned people ( in the T&C`s ) it will be happening.As usual, a regulator stops them ripping people off, so they just work around it.Will be some in contract price increases soon, which people will not being able to walk away from and will be lockled in


    My current Virgin sim was taken out in June last year, according to the email I received the other day they told me when I took out the contract, the cost would be going up in April 2022. Despite that they're still allowing me to leave penalty free.

    Before that I was with Three who also put the price up each year but they never let me terminate the contract for free so no idea why Virgin are, oh well.
    Edited by: "McShane1" 17 h, 20 m ago
  9. Avatar
    McShane106/01/2022 22:35

    My current Virgin sim was taken out in June last year, according to the …My current Virgin sim was taken out in June last year, according to the email I received the other day they told me when I took out the contract, the cost would be going up in April 2022. Despite that they're still allowing me to leave penalty free. Before that I was with Three who also put the price up each year but they never let me terminate the contract for free so no idea why Virgin are, oh well.


    June 2021 T&C`s were different most likely so good deal for you.
  10. Avatar
    Ferris06/01/2022 21:54

    I was wondering this the other day too. I never had a mobile contract …I was wondering this the other day too. I never had a mobile contract increase until 2020 even though the potential for one was often mentioned in the terms. I suspect some combination of Brexit and the great pandemic customer service downgrade (charge more for worse service and blame Covid because it's easy to get away with it) has come into play here.


    It's been in mobile contracts for ages. Not that I agree with it.

    T-mobile now EE used to.
  11. Avatar
    Fagol06/01/2022 23:41

    It's been in mobile contracts for ages. Not that I agree with it. T-mobile …It's been in mobile contracts for ages. Not that I agree with it. T-mobile now EE used to.


    You're just repeating what I said - it's always been in the terms, but no mobile company I've been with (and I've had contracts with all of them over the last 20 years) ever exercised the right to impose annual price rises until the happy year of 2020.

    Broadband companies, on the other hand...
    Edited by: "Ferris" 14 h, 56 m ago
  12. Avatar
    Ferris07/01/2022 00:57

    You're just repeating what I said - it's always been in the terms, but no …You're just repeating what I said - it's always been in the terms, but no mobile company I've been with (and I've had contracts with all of them over the last 20 years) ever exercised the right to impose annual price rises until the happy year of 2020. Broadband companies, on the other hand...


    It's been happening for years, 3 have done it for at least 8 years, as have EE and o2.
  13. Avatar
    Westwoodo07/01/2022 01:14

    It's been happening for years, 3 have done it for at least 8 years, as …It's been happening for years, 3 have done it for at least 8 years, as have EE and o2.


    Maybe I've just been lucky then. Never had an annual price rise on a contract with any provider till May 2020. Broadband companies sometimes had two price rises a year, but mobile networks never had a single one in my experience.
    Edited by: "Ferris" 14 h, 37 m ago
  14. Avatar
    Ferris07/01/2022 01:18

    Maybe I've just been lucky then. Never had an annual price rise on a …Maybe I've just been lucky then. Never had an annual price rise on a contract with any provider till May 2020. Broadband companies sometimes had two price rises a year, but mobile networks never had a single one in my experience.


    You've been lucky and i've been unlucky. I've had contracts with EE, 3 and o2 and got yearly rises with each of them since 2013.
  15. Avatar
    Westwoodo07/01/2022 01:29

    You've been lucky and i've been unlucky. I've had contracts with EE, 3 and …You've been lucky and i've been unlucky. I've had contracts with EE, 3 and o2 and got yearly rises with each of them since 2013.


    Maybe it's because I've only had SIM-only deals in that timeframe? Only thing I can think of. O2, Vodafone, Three and some smaller networks. Only with Three in 2020 did I get my first increase.
  16. Avatar
    Ferris07/01/2022 00:57

    You're just repeating what I said - it's always been in the terms, but no …You're just repeating what I said - it's always been in the terms, but no mobile company I've been with (and I've had contracts with all of them over the last 20 years) ever exercised the right to impose annual price rises until the happy year of 2020. Broadband companies, on the other hand...


    Virgin Mobile have been doing it for several years (RPI + 3.9%). Started off on a £6 SIM-only many years ago, which is now up to £6.74!

    Bear in mind that's been under a period of low inflation. People are about to get financially squeezed like nothing in recent memory this year. The last RPI reading (Nov 21) was 7.1% (and rising). That would equate to an 11% contract price jump, but by February RPI, the relevant benchmark for the April annual price rise, it will likely be higher.

    Doesn't really matter if you're on a £6 contract, but if you're on a £60 one, and you've got multiple contracts tied to these increases, it will add up, when combined with the 40-50% rise in energy bills in April with the new price cap, all the other price rises, and incoming NI/tax increase.

    As you've said, you've got to be as savvy as possible and switch where there's a deal on, but a lot of this wall of rising costs / falling buying power will be unavoidable unless you're in a job / business where your income goes up by more than inflation.
  17. Avatar
    Immoraliste07/01/2022 02:28

    Virgin Mobile have been doing it for several years (RPI + 3.9%). Started …Virgin Mobile have been doing it for several years (RPI + 3.9%). Started off on a £6 SIM-only many years ago, which is now up to £6.74! Bear in mind that's been under a period of low inflation. People are about to get financially squeezed like nothing in recent memory this year. The last RPI reading (Nov 21) was 7.1% (and rising). That would equate to an 11% contract price jump, but by February RPI, the relevant benchmark for the April annual price rise, it will likely be higher.Doesn't really matter if you're on a £6 contract, but if you're on a £60 one, and you've got multiple contracts tied to these increases, it will add up, when combined with the 40-50% rise in energy bills in April with the new price cap, all the other price rises, and incoming NI/tax increase.As you've said, you've got to be as savvy as possible and switch where there's a deal on, but a lot of this wall of rising costs / falling buying power will be unavoidable unless you're in a job / business where your income goes up by more than inflation.


    You're right. I've been out of contract for a few months, and declined to get another as I didn't want the uncertainty of being tied in to a possibly large rise in a few months.

    As you say, it's shaping up to be a grim year (again) and even the savviest will struggle to escape rising costs.
  18. Avatar
    Here is the difference - inflation has been quite benign for the last few years so no one really saw the tiny raise or companies could still control their costs, so didn't bother raising prices. Now, inflation has jumped, costs have shot up thanks to the pandemic, companies have to pay for the loans they have taken for the 5G rollout and we are finally feeling the pain.
  19. Avatar
    bozo00707/01/2022 07:43

    Here is the difference - inflation has been quite benign for the last few …Here is the difference - inflation has been quite benign for the last few years so no one really saw the tiny raise or companies could still control their costs, so didn't bother raising prices. Now, inflation has jumped, costs have shot up thanks to the pandemic, companies have to pay for the loans they have taken for the 5G rollout and we are finally feeling the pain.


    This is the answer people are looking for. We’ve just had a load of cash injected in to the monetary supply of the country. We are now seeing the effects of that through inflation due to the spending power of the £ falling. Nothing to do with brexit like someone suggested.
  20. Avatar
    All my phone contracts have had this since i started getting them, maybe 2010 ish. Dont think i have ever noticed it with Sim only though which is what i use now.
  21. Avatar
    Its not just mobile contracts. I see it appears to be normal for broadband contracts now as well.
  22. Avatar
    IceIceLady07/01/2022 07:48

    This is the answer people are looking for. We’ve just had a load of cash i …This is the answer people are looking for. We’ve just had a load of cash injected in to the monetary supply of the country. We are now seeing the effects of that through inflation due to the spending power of the £ falling. Nothing to do with brexit like someone suggested.


    Interesting that every major network changed its terms to increase the annual rise at some point in 2020... To say it's all down to Brexit is certainly inaccurate. To say it's nothing to do with Brexit is also inaccurate.
Post a comment
Avatar
Top Merchants