When I asked Which? readers for their haggling stories, many told me of savings they’d made using just a phone call and a dash of charm. But not everyone liked the idea – one even claimed haggling was ‘unBritish’.
I can’t believe it. While I respect those who believe the price you agree at the start should be the price you pay – it doesn’t always follow.
Anyone with a service contract that lasts more than a couple of years knows that enticing deals used to lure us in at the start soon pass, and give way to bill creep.
Extra charges appear, the monthly cost goes up, and the companies bank on our apathy preventing us questioning the increases or taking our business elsewhere.
Our haggling survey reveals big savings you can make
Our latest research has found plenty of reasons why it’s worth haggling, most of which start with £ symbols. We found the average saving for broadband was £163 a year, mobile phone savings were £90 a year.
Tempted to pick up the phone?
Recently, I decided to try to save on my broadband/ TV package – I was in the middle of writing an article on haggling and felt I should at least give it a go.
It was easy. That’s what struck me. On the phone, I voiced a few doubts about the value of my service, lamented the lack of deals for existing customers, and pointed out some appealing prices offered by rivals.
That was it. I was £140 better off – and unbearably smug. All it cost me was a ten-minute phone call. And a few friends, after I bored them repeatedly with the lofty tales of my great negotiating skills.
Most people still don’t haggle
Fewer than half of the people we surveyed had tried to haggle. But more than 80% of those who did haggle, saved money.
If stoically paying over the odds for a service is a national trait, I’d suggest that like colonialism, it’s one we leave in the past.
Are you happy to haggle? What tips do you have?