Three to stop charging for calls to 0800 numbers from mobiles

Saqib Shah
March 18, 2014

Starting today, UK mobile network operator Three is to stop charging customers who sign up to its new plans for calls to 0800 numbers.

Additionally, charges to 08 helpline numbers – such as 084 and 087 – will be reduced to 5p per minute.

Existing Three customers can swap over from their current plan without paying a fee and can keep their existing contract end date.

Dave Dyson, CEO at Three,   said, “We asked people what frustrated them most about their mobile bills and confusion around the cost of calling 08 numbers came out top by a big margin.”

“These charges are often buried in the small print and they’re expensive enough to make most customers fear calling them from their mobiles.”

According to new research conducted by YouGov, 0800 numbers are a constant source of frustration for consumers, with many still in the dark when it comes to the cost of making calls to 0800 numbers from their mobile phone.

Three quarters of people surveyed have no idea how much their operator charges them for an 0800 call and 10 per cent think these are free, as they would be from a landline. Research also highlights that calls to 0800, 0845 and 0870 numbers cost UK mobile consumers an estimated £600 million a year.

According to YouGov, 47 per cent of mobile phone users have experienced bill shock, with almost a third (31 per cent) of these users saying this was caused by out of bundle expensive calls such as 0800 or 0845 numbers.

Telecoms regulator Ofcom has already announced an end to charges for calls to 0800 numbers from mobiles, but this will not be enforced until 26 June 2015.


About the Author

Saqib Shah

Tech/gaming journalist for What Mobile magazine and website. Interests include film, digital media and foreign affairs.

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