Recently thinking on quitting your current broadband provider and moving to another? Here is some good news for you! If you are switching landline or broadband or both over BT’s network, the process has become easier and simpler from June 2015.According to the telecom watchdog Ofcom‘s new regulations, the process of getting MAC (Migration Authorisation Code) from your current provider for switching broadband services has come to an end from June 2015.
Instead, just contact your new provider to inform that you want to move to their service. Then this internet or phone service service provider will take charge of transferring your broadband/phone service and finish the job. Means you no longer need to initiate the process by contacting your current provider and there is no need of waiting for MAC.
The simplest steps of switching broadband providers
- Choose your new provider and package
- Sign up for the chosen deal and contact the new provider to inform that you want to switch to their service
- Cancel the service if you migrate from ADSL to cable or vice versa
- Pay the termination or exit fee to the current provider, when the minimum contract term is not over
- Wait for a few days for an engineer visit to install the connection and equipment (if required)
Do I need to pay any fee to my current provider when I switch?
Switching broadband will not cost extra if you take a few precautions.
You will need to coordinate the data of switching to avoid early termination charges.
These charge will apply only when you cancel the existing service earlier than the minimum contract term (usually 12 months or 18 months).
To make the migration cost-free, smoother and hassle free. plan the switching of services in advance and your current provider needs to be given notice period regarding your decision to switch.
Early Termination Fee
When you quit your current provider or cancel the the service within your minimum contract (12 months, or 18 months as per the terms), you are subject to paying early termination charges.
These charges are calculated by multiplying the number of days or months left in the minimum contract by the monthly price of the package.
For example, If you cancel a service which costs £10 a month and and 3 months are left on the minimum contract, you will need to pay £30 as early termination charges.
If you have received any hardware like wireless router or box at a reduced cost as special offer, the standard cost of the device will be now applied and you will need to pay a charge for it.
Why switching broadband is painful sometimes?
You will need to pay hefty exit fee for leaving the current provider in the middle of contract. Usually you will be asked to pay for the remainder of the contract term and that should not happen, when you switch to new provider with intention to save money.
You could be left without broadband for a few days when seamless does not happen, which usually happens when migration takes place between ADSL and cable or vice versa.
You may lose the current email address provided by the provider, when you move to new service.
Things you need to do when you choose new provider
- Compare providers and their packages available in your area
- Make sure you choose the right package which can meet your requirements in terms of speed, download allowance etc.
- Get speed estimate from your new provider which is obliged to give you, as per new Ofcom norms.
- Read carefully the contract terms of new provider, especially those related to contract length, hidden cost etc.
Switching to BT
BT offers broadband, home phone and TV services to millions of homes across the UK. Just contact BT and place your order, they will initiate the process and let you know the progress and activation.
Activation of new BT broadband may usually take up to 14 days, after you switch. Likewise, it may take up to 2 weeks get your homephone switched to BT.
If you also subscribe to BT TV, this service will be installed soon after broadband activation.
Switching to Virgin Media
Virgin Media is a top cable broadband provider in the UK. You can get superfast fibre optic broadband, digital TV and Virgin Phone together as a bundle or standalone.
After signing up, Virgin Media would usually install the service in 10 days. Free installation applies when you buy services as bundles.
You will need to cancel your existing service by yourself and MAC is not needed to switch.
Switching to Sky
Sky offers broadband, TV and home phone and usually installs the service within 2 weeks after your order.
If you are currently on ADSL or fibre (BT, Plusnet or TalkTalk), Sky will do everything to help you switch, right from contacting your provider.
If you switch from Virgin Media to Sky, you may need enginner installation for broadband and home phone activation.
To get seamless service, it is advised that you cancel Virgin service only after your broadband on Sky is activated.
Switching to TalkTalk
TalkTalk is a major telecom operator offering broadband, phone and TV as bundles.
The switching is processed much quicker and simpler when you move only broadband from BT, Plusnet and Sky. TalkTalk will install new homephone if required, for example, you currently use Virgin Media cable network.
Usually TV service is installed after TalkTalk broadband got activated.
Old methods that were followed when switching broadband provider
1. Initiating the process by contacting your current provider (losing proivder led): If you want to transfer just broadband (not landline) to new service, you need to get Migration Authorisation Code (MAC) from your current provider. The 30 days valid MAC which you can get within five working days needs to be given to the new provider which will complete the switch process.2. Contacting new provider to switch bundled service (gaining provider led): When you switch both broadband and phone, you will only need to the service provider you have chosen to move. You need not contact your existing provider to cancel the service or initiate the process as the switching process will be initiated and taken care of the new operator.
3. Cancel and move (cease and re-provide): If you currently use BT network based ADSL broadband and wish to cable broadband (Virgin media or vice versa, you will need to cancel the existing service as well as sign up with your new provider.
You can get details about the end of current service and the activation of new service by contacting the respective customer support. This will help you to re-provide the service at scheduled time so you would not be left without broadband.
Ofcom’s current regulations allow all new customers to cancel the contract within 14 calendar days from the date they sign thecontract.
The first two methods apply, when you switch between standard and fibre optic broadband services which use BT’s networks.
When you move between different types of networks which include copper based ADSL, Virgin Media cable broadband or ultra-fast FTTP (fibre to the premises) broadband, you will need to follow third method.
Changes resulted after new Ofcom regulations
The first method has come to an end.This means you do not need to contact your existing provider (to get mandatory MAC) while switching broadband only or bundle (broadband + phone). Instead, like the second method, just contact your new provider to enable you migrate to their service.