Long past is the time when BT was the sole provider of every landline in the UK. Now a number of rivals have joined BT in the landline provider market, including Virgin Media and TalkTalk. You have a huge choice between providers not just for the line rental but also for making calls. You can opt for different companies for both but it will often work out cheaper to buy a package from one provider.
Below we will detail all the information you need to know before comparing phone line rental deals. So, how do you go about finding the cheapest phone line?
These two often get mistaken for one and the same thing but they appear as two separate items on your bill. The line rental is the sum you have to pay each month to your network provider for letting you use the phone line. The "phone calls" is the actual amount of talk time spent by you each month. It is very likely that you will be able to save between £3 and £5 a month by switching your current line rental provider. For the ultimate saving opt for your line rental and calls with one and the same provider.
Line rentals usually come with different call packages.
• Basic line rental -- this tariff doesn't include any free calls so you have to pay for the line rentals and any calls you make. This type of rental is usually the case when the line is needed for broadband connection.
• Evening and weekend calls -- with this tariff you will get free weekend and evening (off-peak) calls to other UK landlines. There is a separate charge for calls made outside these times. This will probably cost about £2-£3 extra a month more than the basic line rental.
• Anytime -- for an extra charge of £8 - £10 a month you'll be able to make unlimited calls to UK landlines no matter what time of the day it is.
• 08 numbers -- some providers offer free calls to 0845 and 0870 numbers. Of course 0800 are provided for free.
• Mobile calls -- if you happen to make a lot of mobile calls you can get these at discounted rates.
The best way is to compare what each provider has to offer to you. Compare the following:
• Monthly package cost -- this is the cost of your bundle -- calls and other bits you may have opted for excluding the line rental cost.
• Line rental cost
• Rates -- compare calling rates for calls you may make beyond your package.
• Contract length -- expect contracts between 12 and 24 months.
• Fees -- some providers may have one off connection fees. Look out for promotions that may save you this expense.
1. BT phone line: Take a BT line rental for £20.20 per month on pay as you go. You can get 700 minutes per month if you go for a costlier tarrif at £27.20 per month. You can go unlimited for £35.20 per month. These plans include minutes to uk landline and mobile numbers.
2. Virgin Media phone line: Take a Virgin Media line rental for £19 per month (or £128 if your pay for 12 months upfront) and choose from their 5 phone packages. M Talk Weekends if free of charge, L Talk Evenings & weekends is £5 on top, XL Talk Unlimited - £8 and XXL Talk Unlimited Extra for £17 extra (buys you unlimited UK mobile calls and unlimited calls to 0845 numbers.
3. TalkTalk phone line: Sign up for a TalkTalk landline at £15.99 per month and you get totally unlimited broadband for just £2.50 per month + free weekend and evening calls.
For the easiest comparison -- we recommend you to visit uSwitch. You will be able to compare many deals from BT, Virgin Media, TalkTalk and many more.
You may want to read about: Broadband No Phoneline.