/ Money, Technology

EE announces price rise for loyal customers

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EE has announced a 2.7% price rise for EE, T-Mobile and Orange customers who signed before Ofcom’s new rules came into effect. Have you been contacted by EE about a price rise?

From 28 May, EE’s pay-monthly contract customers will be hit by a price rise of 2.7%. The increase is in line with the Retail Price Index rate of inflation as announced in March this year.

The price rise will add 68p to a £25-a-month contract, and if you’re unhappy with the hike you’ll have to pay the cancellation charges that apply.

So far, so similar.

Customers after 26 March

However, the price rise will not apply to customers who joined or upgraded between 23 January and 26 March 2014. Ofcom’s new rules on mid-contract price hikes came into effect on 23 January, thanks to the 60,000 people who supported our Fixed Means Fixed campaign. However, for people who signed after 26 March, EE customers will be hit by a price rise once a year, every year in March. EE comments:

‘Contracts entered from the 26th March will be subject to terms and conditions stating that their monthly price plan will be increased in March each year by the latest rate of RPI. The first increase does not take place until March 2015.’

No more price hikes

We wrote to EE last month asking it to make a solid commitment to keep prices the same during the full term of its customers’ contracts. It’s therefore disappointing that EE has made a last ditch attempt to hike prices for its loyal customers. The fact that EE is writing yearly price rises into its customers’ contracts, just like O2, is even worse and not in the spirit of Ofcom’s new rules.

We’ve also had assurances from other providers, including Three Mobile, that they’ll stick to the spirit of Ofcom’s new rules and won’t increase prices mid-contract, and we expect this to be EE’s last. We hope EE’s customers will take a stand and show their provider they won’t put up with this by choosing other operators who are playing fair and who offer fixed prices, that stay fixed, for the duration of the contract.

Have you been contacted by EE about a price rise on your contract? What do you think about it? Will you be looking to switch to another mobile phone provider?

[UPDATE] – This post has been updated to reflect the fact that EE customers who sign after 26 March will be agreeing to yearly RPI price rises. And for that reason we have launched a call to EE’s CEO to think again – you can help by joining more than 3,000 others in emailing EE’s CEO.

Comments
RandomCurve says:
26 August 2014

Well the case against EE for changing the T&Cs is hotting up! Those who missed the 30 day deadline for cancellation may still be able to get a PENALTY FREE cancellation! Why? Because the notification EE sent was (I believe) misleading and therefore EE can not on rely on a 30 day period for you to enforce your rights. We have had one case (a price case) which was “out of time” where the adjudicator still allowed the customer a penalty free cancellation as EE had not informed the customer of their cancellation rights! If the adjudicators apply that principle to the change in T&Cs (and we already know that 97% of cases re T&Cs were WON by the consumer) then there is an excellent chance of really showing EE what you think of them and getting a PENALTY FRE cancellation:
Template letters and CISAS case for cancelation can be found here:

http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5021418

And news of the price rise case that was “out of time”, but was still awarded a penalty free cancellation can be found here (post #1538 and #1539)

http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=4818999&page=77

So time for “moaning” about EEs behaviour, and “Talking” to Mr Swantee are over – take some action NOW!

David says:
6 September 2014

My wife and I signed up to EE last October for 24 months. Is there any way we can make a joint approach to CISAS about the 2.7% price hike,, or will we have to make completely separate applications?
Thanks.

RandomCurve says:
7 September 2014

Too late for the price rise cancellation, but you would have been subjected to the change in T&Cs in March 2014 so as per my comment above (26th August) follow the links and send the email.

It has just got more interesting as CISAS (the independent adjudicator) has accepted that there is a case to be answered. This shows just how scared EE are that EVERY EE (inc Orange and T-Mobile) customer will legally be allowed to cancel their contracts penalty free!

I made a few phone calls and sent a few emails to Ofcom – and CISAS were forced to take the cases – in that particular episode (March 2013 T-Mobile price rise) 94% of consumers won!

I have (this weekend) emailed Ofcom – Ofcom will stop them (they have no choice) see post #251 on this forum:
http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5021418&page=13

WHICH – why am I doing this – YOU are supposed to be consumer champion!!

[This comment has been edited for breaking our T&Cs. Thanks, mods.]

RandomCurve says:
7 September 2014

Oh – and make separate applications if the contracts are in different names.

@randomcurve, Seems like you have a brilliant news story there, should we be looking out for you on BBC or Sky News anytime soon?

“””WHICH – why am I doing this – YOU are supposed to be consumer champion!! “”””

Precisely, that’s the reason I have cancelled my Which? membership. All Which? does nowadays is to run either hollow campaigns like emailing the CEO or half-baked campaigns like the bank fees; the latter has resulted in banks charging ridiculous fees for even authorised overdrafts.

RandomCurve says:
9 September 2014

If only. I have offered to work with The BBC, Metro/Daily mail and copied in Which, Sky, IT v, The FT etc etc free of charge to get this story some publicity – and nobody will take it.
It is not just EE another operator has settled out of court on a price increase case and made it subject to a gagging order. The phone companies know they can’t win this and so try to keep it quiet. Another non EE case (O2) goes to court early November and the person whose case it is has informed me that they will not settle out of court even of offered so that we can get a court ruling ont this.
Vodafone still seem to have the so called independent adjudicator under control to stop them taking cases – despite Ofcom riing that the adjudicator should accept them
I rely do not know how and why they are getting away with this.

I’m very pleased to report that I have too won my CISAS case regarding EE. CISAS has told EE to refund my contract charges back to 12th April 2014, pay me £100 in compensation, let me out of my contract without any termination fees, provide me with the PAC code and issue me a letter of apology!

After recent comments I was getting worried but I’m over the moon that I’ve won! I’ve been without any service for 2 weeks because the local mast is down and this has happened 4 other times in the past 6 months, leaving me without the ability to make/receive any calls or texts so I’m soooo pleased I can finally get rid of EE and go over to o2.

Don’t give up your fight! You can still win your case if your contract started after 23 January 2014 and before 1st May 2014. Particularly if you took your contract or upgrade out on the phone during this period, therefore not being able to agree to any TOS.

James McGlyn says:
16 October 2014

I’m very surprised anyone has managed to get any money out of EE. http://number-talk.co.uk/ee-uk-customer-services-contact-number/

[This comment has been edited to align with our community guidelines. Thanks, mods]

@ James McGlyn: Yes, EE refunded all charges since April 2014 + gave me compensation + PAC code + email apology. They do comply with CISAS ruling.

This statement is currently on EE’s website for new customers – and I assume existing ones who upgrade their phones :-

“The monthly price shown will be adjusted every year in your March bill by the Retail Price Index announced in February that year.”

I suppose this still means that a fixed contract isn’t fixed.

I have checked out most of the phone services now and the only one that will give a positive guarantee that they won’t increase prices during a contract is Tesco Mobile. The lady at Three ‘wasn’t sure’ but thought they wouldn’t.

Also, How can Which? recommend EE broadband when its the same as the phone division. For what it’s worth I also have EE fibre optic broadband and, speed wise, it’s no different to ADSL. I’m ditching EE altogether when my contract is up.

RandomCurve says:
16 October 2014

The mistake most people make is that that they think that because EE haves stated plainly that they can increases prices – by when and by how much, that they can actually do this legally – they CAN’T.
They do comply with Ofcom regulations, but there are still many rules in the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contract Regulations (passing on risk of inflation, proving that RPI is the actual cost increase incurred) which means that you can challenge price rises. Also USD 20/22 (the European Directive (ED) governing mobile contracts) clearly states that you can terminate your contract penalty free for ANY modification to the contract. Ofcom have qualified that in the UK implementation by replacing “any” with “changes that are likely to be of material detriment”. If the END RESULT of the member countries implementation is not as the ED prescribes then you can rely on the ED – i.e. you can get a penalty free cancellation. Also if EE impose an increase of RPI – when CPI is the true measure of inflation then you have suffered a REAL TERMS increase – and that is of material detriment to you!

When will Which? Protect the consumer???

So if EE’s intended and advertised price increase is illegal, why doesn’t the OFT take issue with them? Can’t we somehow force them to?

Assuming Random Curve is correct – and I have every reason to believe that he is – it still seems to me that EE think that they’re above the law and can do what they want.

It’s not helping the case that Which? is recommending EE for their broadband service, which in my personal experience is pretty poor. Certainly I’d never recommend EE for anything – and I’m a customer of 30 years standing. They used to be OK when they were just Orange but not any more.

If EE want to put there prices up once per year (like Sky do) and make this 100% clear in the T&C’s and on the website i see no problem in this.

I’m by no means a fan of EE and do give them a hard time. But I can just see no problem with them putting prices up once per year. It is not a shock as they make it 100% clear. The only thing I don’t agree with is them saying the contracts are fixed. But I don’t think they do that anymore anyway.

I have no problem with EE raising their prices annually but their contracts should be referred to as Variable Price Contracts and the monthly price referred to as Initial Price. Potential customers should also be given the maximum annual percentage price increase they could be asked to pay.

David seems to have been a customer of EE/Orange since before the company existed. 🙂

Thank you wavechange, that is what I was trying to say, you worded it better haha. Thanks 🙂

RandomCurve says:
17 October 2014

I contacted the OFT back in 2013 when T-Mobile and Orange both tried to apply a price rise (I say tried as I escaped the T-Mobile contract and prevented the Orange price rise -and received £150 and £50 compensation respectively) and all they could offer was “Ofcom regulate the mobile industry and so you need to contact them”!

RandomCurve says:
17 October 2014

The issue is that in the FIXED period of your contract EE (with Ofcoms help – and it seems Which? blind eye) can not increase the price legally as you have no option (or so they make you believe) but to pay – however the UTCCRs are clear:

12.2 Any purely discretionary right to set or vary a price after the consumer has become bound to pay is obviously objectionable. That applies particularly to terms allowing the supplier to charge a price on delivery of goods that is not what was quoted to the consumer when the order was placed. It also applies to rights to increase payments under continuing contracts where consumers are ‘captive’ – that is, they have no penalty-free right to cancel.

In other words the clause is UNFAIR which means it is UNEFORCABLE!
Once you are out of the fixed period EE (and any other operator) can increase the prices by as much as they want because you have the OPTION of walking away from the contract.

RandomCurve says:
17 October 2014

It is not the wording of Fixed or Variable that is the issue – the issue is that in the initial contract term you are effectively CAPTIVE, and that is why there are laws set up to protect you from abuse whilst you are captive.

“David seems to have been a customer of EE/Orange since before the company existed. 🙂 ”

You are right, Wavechange. I was a customer of EE when it was Dixons ‘Freeserve’, then when it was taken over by Orange and, more recently by EE. My point was that in the early days, it was a decent, honourable company. Since they have become EE they have become greedy and anti-customer.

Olaf Swantee is a very arrogant individual who’s sole motive seems to be profit and under his leadership, EE has become the Ryanair of the telecoms industry. I had no beef with them when they were Orange but I won’t do business with cheats – which in my view is what EE have become. So, yes, a 30 year relationship is definitely coming to an end when my contracts are up. I’m astonished that you seem to think that their behaviour is acceptable – it isn’t!

David – I think you and everyone else is right to be concerned about the mobile phone industry. My first experience of poor service was when T-Mobile took over One2One and the price of my PAYG calls doubled. I promptly moved to Vodafone. When a company lets me down I do don’t forget in a hurry.

At one time the double glazing industry came under a great deal of criticism. Hopefully the phone companies will learn that they must treat their customers fairly.

So then we are singing from the same song sheet. I had the impression from your previous post that you thought that EE’s behaviour was acceptable.

When my last contract ran out I was determined to leave EE but I was sweet-talked into staying on the basis of a ‘special deal’ as I was a ‘valued customer’ who they didn’t want to lose. It turned out I could have got a better deal elsewhere – so, in effect, they lied to me.

They also lied about their ‘blisteringly high speeds’ on fibre optic broadband. They weren’t. In fact the speeds were slower than before. I had to complain directly to Swantee’s office before they would even look at the problem which they then blamed on BT. To BT’s credit, they sent an engineer who checked all the outside connections and found them all ok. The net effect is that I am paying nearly double for a line that is no faster than adsl. That contract expires in February thank goodness.

I have not contributed much to the discussion recently but I feel very strongly about unfair treatment of consumers, and mobile phones provide easy to understand examples of this.

Some broadband services seem to have cleaned up their act and are more honest about what they provide, but there is still some way to go before I would consider their marketing is honest.

Bookworm says:
17 October 2014

I was a customer when they were one 2 one – much more reputable then. Unfortunately I am not “money” to the mobile phone companies as I don’t use it much so if I threaten to leave it wouldn’t really be much of a loss and for what I pay I get the coverage that I wouldn’t get for the same price elsewhere. None of which stops me feeling angry at the way a fixed price contract is no longer a fixed price contract.

RandomCurve says:
17 October 2014

If you had your T&Cs changed by EE, Orange or T-Mobile in March 2014 then you should be able to get a PENALTY FREE cancellation (you keep your phone and receive a PAC code) – Do you know why?
Well that change means that whereas before EE could only apply the LOWEST inflation rate they can now apply RPI before you can cancel your contract – see here:
http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5064278&page=11 post number #202

Why aren’t WHICH? reporting and support this – to close to Olaf???

David says:
22 October 2014

I have just lost a case against EE submitted to CISAS in which I complained about the 2.7% RPI price rise in May. I am left wondering now whether I should have opted to try and get a penalty free release from my contract. I thought that I was part paying for the phone itself and that I’d dig myself into a bigger hole if I hadn’t finished paying for it.
I entered my contract in October 2013 and have another year to run. Briefly, I felt the contract was a fixed term one in effect and felt the tiny print on the other side made it an unfair term. This does not seem to have been recognised; it does not cause a “significant imbalance” in rights/obligations. The 30 days’ notice of increase makes it a balanced clause! The relevant clause (7.1.4) has apparently been “expressed with adequate clarity and legibility” even though lettering on my copy at the time of sale was about 1mm high!
I could go on, and will do so if this is of interest. I just look forward even more to getting out of the clutches of EE.

Sorry to hear you lost your case David. I think it could be because of the dates (although I could be wrong).
The way I understand it is that to have a chance you had to have taken your contract out after the release of Ofcom’s new guidelines and before EE and the others added the clause to their T&C’s so I believe you had to have taken your contract out between January and May of this year.
I won my case because I had renewed my contract with them in February this year over the phone so the contract was taken out after Ofcom’s latest guidelines and before EE had added the clause to their T&C’s.

What infuriates me though is as stated above it seems legally you still have every right to get out of your contract without penalty because you and everybody else were sold a Fixed Contract or at the very least it was implied that you/everyone was entering a Fixed Contract!

I wish I was a lawyer so that I could take on a class action suite against all of the mobile providers regarding this because that is what is needed for any real change to be made. You don’t need to be a lawyer to know that a contract in which you are sold a product/service for a specific monthly fee is binding legally unless EE and all the others start stating at the point of sale that there will be a price increase every year! We can only hope that one of the people ripped off happens to also be a lawyer and they take it upon themselves to take them on and make a stand!

I’m sorry to hear that you lost, David. I hope that you’re not too much out of pocket. I only have a month left to run on my contract and I will go with either Three, Tesco or possibly Virgin. I noticed in their small print recently that they, too, will honour a fixed term contract.

Des anyone have any opinions of these suppliers – do they have other failings? I really would be interested in your views.

Thank you,

David (the other one 🙂

David says:
22 October 2014

Thanks, David. For me it was more a matter of principle – I’m not TOO much out of pocket. It seems that EE are getting away with making a contract look like a fixed term one and then burying their price variation clause deep in the smallprint.
Three and Tesco are two I was thinking of so I too would be interested to hear any opinions.
Roll on October 2015!

Thanks for taking part in the conversation David and David 🙂 As we seem to have two Davids it would be great, and slightly less confusing, if you could both upload an avatar to the Convo? You can do it here: https://conversation.which.co.uk/your-account/

David says:
22 October 2014

Hi Andy, Thanks. Interesting comments about dates you make.
I totally agree with all you say. It seems plain common sense to me to put your faith in the bold lettering at the top of what had the hallmarks of a fixed contract. How many people are going to have the time (or patience) to be bothered to go through all those tiny Ts&Cs detailed on the back?! I always thought the law hinged on what was “reasonably foreseeable” and the key points at the top of the contract are bold and unambiguous.
I can’t remember precisely what the adjudication said about “good faith”; suffice to say it didn’t seem like common sense to me. It also relied on the notorious para 7.1.4, regardless of the fact that it was written in minute lettering – the language itself apparently was clear.
I would certainly echo your last comments about someone who’d been ripped off being a lawyer! I think I shall take further advice, as this adjudication to me seems to fly in the face of PLAIN COMMON SENSE!! I have already been in touch with Consumer line, though, and from what I understand my case was passed to Trading Standards a while ago. I wonder if anything’ll come of that!

Tammy says:
16 November 2014

Hi

I need help , ok so I’m a student and I started with EE January 17th 2014, now I signed my contract to pay £42 a month suddenly it went to £44 with no warning with no letter no notice so I am confused until I found this form why I was being charged . The prices went higher bloody hell. I’ve been reading the form and people have been getting free cancelation penalty , I want to leave ee for this reason especially because as you guys mentioned every year prices will go higher I don’t want that and that is right at all. Who are they to make decision and force us to way what they want I don’t think so . Can I write a case against them and get free cancelation . Number one I’m a student who if been mislead when I first got this contract because the man who sold it to me in phones for you told me that if I ever wanted to bring down my tarrif and price monthly down I could do so after 3 months and he didn’t evrrrrr mention at prices would go higher or anything like thT . So basically what can I do … I don’t have that kind of money to pay anymore. Help guys I’m worried

RandomCurve says:
17 November 2014

Tammy – there is some hope!!!

As you started your contract on 17th January, then in early February you would have received a text from EE saying they were changing the Terms and Conditions – the text should also have explained that you could cancel your contract – it did not. 97% of those who challenged within 30 days (EEs time limit) of receiving the text successfully escaped their contracts. As EE did not send the correct notification I think that the 30 day limit for claiming does not apply – so far we have WON one case and LOST 2. However I am considering to re-writing the case to increase the success rate.

And then submit a CISAS case. if you are serious about wanting to escape your contract I will rewrite the emails for you.
Also see here:
http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5064278&page=14

Tammy says:
19 November 2014

Thank you so much for getting back. Oh and no they didn’t text me about this change which I will also mention . Yessss I’p want to escape this because this is toture and so unfair . I read on previous thread people asked for compensation and got back the extra chargers that they were charged . I’m so great at writing email as I have dyslexia. Thank you !!! Let’s hope we win this case and help others I can’t believe I noticed now !!!

Tammy

Tammy says:
19 November 2014

I meant I’m not so great at writing Emails. I did send one email two weeks ago customer support regarding their horrible 4g and service coverage nobody responded. So what do I begin with ?

RandomCurve says:
23 November 2014

Just noticed your reply. I’ll prepare something.

Tammy says:
24 November 2014

Thank you

RandomCurve says:
29 November 2014

Okay I have drafted an email – note there are TWO options, go for a contract cancellation, or go for a 50% refund. Looking at the results of the cases over 30 days old so far (EE have won 2, we have won 1 and had one award of £50 compensation, but no cancellation). I recommend that you go for the 50% refund option.
Post #280
http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?p=67101372&posted=1#post67101372

Tammy says:
4 December 2014

Hiiii sorry for the late reply I had problem with my ee internet!! I will go for then50% compensation

Thank you so much

Tammy

RandomCurve says:
4 December 2014

You’re welcome.

EE will either ignore you (in which case I have the follow-up email ready to go) and it will help you to get compensation if they do initially ignore you;
or
They will tell you they have done nothing wrong quoting RPI as an inflation statistic, although your case has nothing to do with RPI, but the change in T&Cs -again a follow-up email is ready to go;
or
the third possibility (unlikely) is that they will say they have fully complied with GC 9.6 – again their is a follow-up email ready to go!

The above approaches are used by EE consistently to make people not bother pursuing the case. It will take about 4 emails (all already written) and then a case to CISAS (I have one I can adapt). So expect not to have this resolved until end January at the earliest, but if you win you will get a back dated refund!!!

It would be so much easier if Which? would actually intervene and help us!!!!

RandomCurve says:
11 December 2014

Any response from EE yet? If not then time to send a chaser – they are supposed to respond within 7 working days.

Went over minutes by 102. At 40p per minute it’s robbery. Asked T Mobile I thought as we neared our limit we got a text letting us know. Oh sure you do the rep says. But yours isn’t switched on cause we don’t do that automatically. You’ve got to ask for it. Oh and we can’t guarantee you’ll get a text cause it doesn’t always work. Another way of sneaking over the top charges we can’t dispute.

Oh bliss . . . ! Never have to deal with Orange again. My old number was parked on PAYG until I had an account phone to put it on and today I received the PAC that I’d requested. No more rip-offs, no more cranky website, no more EE!

If you have a TalkTalk landline the present ‘small’ sim only offer is 300 minutes, unlimited texts and 600mb of data for 12 months at £3.75, also, if you need to call abroad often there is a very low cost add on that gives access to most countries landlines and some countries mobile networks on the same basis as the landline package! This will save us hundreds. And, no, I don’t work for TT but I do get landline and broadband from them and get good value for money.

Tracy says:
1 March 2015

Hi everyone – trying to find the right information online is a bit of a minefield and I was hoping someone might be able to put me straight on here, please.

I took out a contract with EE on 23rd May 2014 and have just received “the letter” telling me the rpi price will be changing (increasing) on my monthly plan in March and informing me that if I want to cancel my contract, I will have to pay an early termination charge. This letter was a complete surprise to me, I don’t recall it ever being mentioned (I even had to look up what rpi was!), so looked it up online and eventually ended up here. Should I just accept this, because the letter basically tells me I have no choice?

Whether they’re in the right or wrong, I feel deceived and this, quite frankly, rubs me up the wrong way!

Many thanks.

Aly says:
20 March 2015

I was just about to process an upgrade (new iPhone 6 and contract) from Orange to EE, but having read all these messages I think I will move to Three. It’s a bit more expensive and less data allowance but at least there won’t be any surprise price increases (RPIs). Thanks for highlighting the issue.

I have just had a text from Vodafone to let me know that EE and O2 have announced increases in prices mid-contract, and saying that: “Unlike other networks we won’t increase your monthly fee as long as you stay within your monthly allowance.”

Normally I don’t like companies sending texts but when it shows that they are listening to their customers, I will make an exception.

How long will it be before EE and O2 are letting their customers know that Fixed Means Fixed?

My contract runs out in June 2016 I will no be renewing as I have been a loyal customer too EE but their not being loyal back, EE needs to step up & look after their customers as they have you, I think you are going to lose many customers

RAY MILLS says:
31 July 2016

IS THIS ANOTHER CASE OF THE RICH ROBBING THE POOR

This comment was removed at the request of the user

No it’s Orange squeezing the Lemon