A Guide to Broadband Deals and the Requirement to Change Broadband Providers – PART 2

An unprejudiced guide about how to switch ISPs without hassles

i. Before you plan to take the plunge and change service providers, try having a discussion with them regarding availing better deals form the present provider itself. Usually providers try their level best to keep their customers from moving to another provider therefore they often offer the customer some of the best deals to coax them to stay on. There are many clients who do not wish to change providers because they find that their present provider offered them a deal that they are extremely happy with. It is sensible that you let your present provider know that you plan a change, more so if you know that you are on a mutually agreed upon deal and are not getting the requisite services.

Once you have read the small print of the contract you are in a better state of mind and better informed too. This should get them coming to you with better deals and offers. Consider the offers and then decide whether or not you want to make the change. You have to understand that if you make a new deal with your old provider, you contract term will be reset as if you are a new user. If you are not satisfied with what has been put forth, decline and ask for the MAC; your provider is liable to provide it within five working days now.

ii. When you have requested for the MAC the cancellation team of the existing provider will get to work and they will try their best to make you change your mind using a variety of like saying that they are unable to create a MAC due to technical reasons etc. But don’t believe them it’s all a farce. You must know that now they will try all sorts of means to hold you back or not give you the MAC, so if you are determined that you definitely require a change, don’t waver, insist on the MAC; they cannot but give it to you otherwise they are breaking Ofcom rules. It is not true that one LLU provider cannot generate MAC for the user to switch providers any broadband provider can issue MAC. If they play up, inform them that you will get in touch with Ofcom and you might just probably get the MAC.
iii. Keep copies of all correspondences that you have made with your provider, because this may at some point of time come in useful for you in times of a difference in opinions. Also ensure that you have a record of the calls you have made to the customer service, who you talked to you and the time taken. Keep phone bills as proof of your calls. All this could be critical proof if you require a cancellation within your contract term.

How to make the change
Once you have the MAC give it to the new service provider within 30 days. As already mentioned it becomes invalid after 30 days. Remember try not to cross swords with the present provider because they can make it difficult for you to change providers.

Another factor to bear in mind is to have patience. Solving technical problems or switching providers take more time than you can imagine as all ISPs have to depend on the BT engineer to make the required technical alterations and to switch providers. In any case it would not do you any good to get BT to hasten the switch, as they cannot do anything any faster. Your new provider should be able to give you a tentative date for the changeover.

How to handle antagonistic providers
There are many reasons why you can be at loggerheads with your present provider and when they become antagonistic you find that you cannot get them to oblige you with MAC. The better solution would be to be more tolerant of them and comprehend that the switch over is not as easy as you think. Nevertheless at the end of the day your provider they have no go but to offer you MAC and that you have the right to it and the right to switch providers. Treat them well and they will be more amenable.

Get to know what you are entailed to
As a customer of a broadband service provider you are entailed to certain rights. The Sale of Goods Act of 1979 specifies these rights clearly with reference to broadband connections. They are:

  •  Services and goods rendered by the provider are of reasonably good quality and not defective
  •  Goods and services are as promised, implying that providers must keep their word about what they say you will get
  • The goods supplied must serve their purpose

In case you are given goods that do not meet the specified conditions you have the right to ask for a refund from the supplier.

If you have any problems regarding this contact Consumer direct which is a government service that does not charge any fee for their services. They will be right people to advise you on how to proceed. It would be in your interest to send copies of written complaints about provider to the person in charge of customer services who is stationed at the providers and also to the customer service contact. If you need legal advice contact “Which?”. This is a service that offers affordable legal help and can help you with regard to legal points from a consumer’s point of view.

Should it so happen that in spite of all this your issues are not solved, you could write an open letter to Otelo which is the office of the Ombudsman of Telecommunications. Otelo was established to look into grievances made by telecommunication consumers. The only drawback is that Otelo is able to cover providers who are its members. Though Otelo is free for the customer, they provider will have to pay to be examined, which implies that your complaint will be considered more seriously. But your complaint to Otelo should be genuine and common to many other customers. In case the provider has not signed up with Otelo you can always depend on Ofcom which is the regulatory body in the UK.

Approach BT only if all else fails. If you provider out of hostility refuses to give you MAC in spite of all negotiations, contact BT and request then to cut your broadband connection and reconnect it through your new provider. But remember that once your broadband connection is cut off it will take many weeks for a reconnection, during which you will have no access to the Internet. Therefore approach BT for disconnection only if you have no other go and your existing provider refuses to give you the MAC.

The introduction of the MAC code must actually stops such happenings as ISPs are legally entitled to give you the MAC and switch connections within 30 days, but with switching from one LLU provider to another is still a hassle and you will in all probability have to get in touch with BT to resolve the issue.

Speak Your Mind

Tell us what you're thinking...
and oh, if you want a pic to show with your comment, go get a gravatar!