If you’re dreading the sight of the post arriving in the mornings, knowing their dropping off one of those dreaded utility bills, then it may be time you looked at bundled telephone services.
There’s no beneficial reason to have multiple suppliers when you can roll all your telephony needs into the one provider. It may be that you thought you’d be getting cheaper savings, which may be the case. However, the beneficial factor is that by bundling all your telephony services into the one provider, gives you the bargaining chip to negotiate a better deal.
What’s better for a telephone provider? To supply with you with one mobile phone contract, or quadruple that with:
- Mobile services
…all into the one package.
That’s a lot of business to the provider and it’s all from your custom. That puts you in a position with a strong bargaining chip to get the price going.
Bundling telephone services are not suitable for everyone
It depends on your usage.
If you’re running a business, you’re going to need a landline for incoming calls, perhaps a geographical number, or even a free phone number for customers to call you.
You’d also need to have broadband to ensure you have fast communication online, as well as internal communication between your staff. That could also factor in video conferencing into your broadband usage.
Cable TV on the other wouldn’t be appropriate, unless you’re establishment is a sports bar, in which case, a cable sports package may be able to be bundled into your package to give you better savings on your business costs.
The landline too is something that an increasing number of residential users are opting to ditch, for the favoured convenience of on the go communication through a more valuable bundled mobile phone package.
The right choice would depend on how many calls you make and the amount of services you’re already signed up for.
Then there is the issue of your contractual obligations.
For some existing cable customers, and phone company customers, you may find that you’re under a contract of 12 or 24 months. Early termination of your service agreement could result in an early termination fee.
That would probably offset any financial benefits to rolling all your services into the one bundled offer.
Therefore, it’s beneficial to have a look through the contracts you’ve agreed to when you’ve signed up for a service.
For those who have met their contract agreements, and free to leave the service provider you have this is when you’re going to have the upper hand.
When you’ve met your contractual agreements and are therefore in an open market. Free to take your business to whomever you want to provide your service, another strong position to be in. You’ve already been a loyal customer to a company, and now they’ll want to do whatever they can to retain you.
This is when you need to know the utilities you need from each provider and can negotiate the best deal that’s right for your needs.
Negotiation with telephone providers for bundled services
When you have a few different providers, the paperwork can get unorganised. Besides that, you’ve more transactions to remember at the end of each month, so you don’t get stung with a late Direct Debit fee, or late payment charge, if you’re on paper billing.
The fewer providers you have to deal with, the easier it is to manage. That’s one benefit, but to add to that a cost saving would be even more advantageous.
The first thing to do to get your best savings is list down what you need and what you don’t need. If you’re paying for a landline service with additional add-ons such as call waiting, or caller ID, then consider if you can do without them.
If you cut back to a basic no frills landline package, you’re going to be seeing savings right away. Add-ons usually come at a premium of a few pounds a month. Some providers charge and others don’t, so if you really don’t want a no-frills package, then it’s definitely worth shopping around.
The other thing to consider is how long you’re comfortable in agreeing to contracts. Some providers require you to sign a 12 or 24-month service agreement. Others don’t require any.
Always be wary of the contracts before you sign up to any provider. If you’re signing a contract, that’s for the rates you agree at the time of signing. You may find that includes an introductory offer of half price line rental for your first 3-months. If that’s the case, negotiate and see if you can have that extended, especially for those two-year contracts.
For your mobile phone usage, if you’re going to bundle this into one provider for all your services, then factor in your usual monthly usage. If you’re buying voice packs of 500 minutes and you’re offered a 20% discount on a mobile tariff, inclusive of 300 minutes do some maths and find out if that is going to save you.
If you’re on a £25 a month mobile contract, with 500 inclusive minutes then figure out if the lower minutes package could cost you in the long run. If you don’t use your entire existing monthly usage each month, then it could save you. If on the other hand you do, then you’d need to calculate the cost of that extra 200 minutes you’d be paying for in addition to your monthly rate.
Convenience is a benefit to you, but your bills are a benefit to your provider. Make sure your agreement is mutually beneficially to you both, and don’t pay for minutes you don’t need.
In terms of your cable TV, most of the larger companies are able to bundle a range of services in addition to their premium TV service. Internet based live streaming could be a factor, but so could the download limitations put onto that service.
You need to be careful you have the right data plan in line with what you’ll be using. If you agree to a 2MB limit, for reduced costs, you could find that three films later, and you’re over your monthly limit.
That’s going to be costly as you can then be paying per MB used. Over a month, those can add up to a significant amount of money.
The best broadband deals are unlimited and they’re fairly expensive to have. If you’re going with this type of plan for your Internet, tying in your mobile, landline and your cable TV is a savings measure you can use to get the best price and ease for all your services from one provider.
It is not always the case, but it’s certainly worth looking into if you have one provider for each of your telephony services. One invoice is better than four. It’s easier to manage, and taking the right approach could see you make significant savings on your phone bill.