3.3% mid-contract price hike for Orange and T-Mobile customers

Mobile phoneCustomers with a T-Mobile or Orange contract will soon face higher bills as EE, which owns the two operators, has announced a price rise of 3.3%.

The company has blamed rising business costs for the hike, which will come into force on 10th April for Orange customers and 9th May for those on T-Mobile.

It's not expected to be received well by customers, especially as the telecoms regulator is currently investigating mid-contract price rises.

Price rise
EE is pushing up prices in line with the Retail Prices Index measurement of inflation by 3.3%, which it says will add on around 70p to the average bill.

This follows on from several other mobile operators, including O2 and Vodafone, which both announced mid-contract price hikes last year.

Customers will be written to in the next few days with details of the price rise. A calculator will be available on the EE website to show exactly how prices will rise, and how much could be saved on the new tariff.

Fixed-rate tariff
To combat the price hikes EE is offering a new tariff which it says will give customers more predictability in their monthly prices.

It's called the 'Fix Your Monthly Plan' tariff, which it says is the first of its kind for the telecoms industry.

This is because it will charge one fixed-rate monthly fee for 12 months, so customers on this tariff will be immune from any further price hikes in the next year.

Those customers who have less than 12 months left on an existing contract with EE will be able to switch to the new fixed deal and then upgrade when their original contract was due to end.

But the new contract will still cost at least an extra 50p per month. In some cases it could add an extra £2 for customers on tariffs costing £35 or more.

'Fix Your Monthly Plan' prices

Current monthly plan (per month)

Fix your monthly plan charge extra
(per month)

Up to £14.99








Mid-contact price rises
The regulator, Ofcom, is currently looking into mid-contract price rises by telecoms companies.

It thinks customers should be allowed to exit a contract without penalty if price rises are announced during a fixed contract.

The investigation started after a number of firms pushes up prices for customers during a "fixed" contract. But as the consultation isn't expected to close until 14th March, and a final decision published by June, it's unlikely to have an impact for Orange and T-Mobile customers.

Today's announcement from EE is positive because it shows the operator is taking a stand against mid-contract rises by launching a fixed contract.

But as the current tariffs it offers were supposed to be set at a 'fixed' price, and the new contract it's offering will be more expensive, it's unlikely to go down well with customers.

Are you an Orange or T-Mobile customer? How do you feel about the price rises?

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