Ofcom says most consumers who complained about price hikes did so on account of them being ’unfair’.
Telecoms regulator Ofcom has revealed that the lion’s share of the 1,500 complaints it received between September 2011 and May 2012 regarding mid-contract price increases were made by consumers claiming that they were ‘unfair’.
Earlier this month, Ofcom announced that it would be launching a consultation into the issue of mid-contract price rises, after the decision by all four operators to introduce such measures was met with a raft of complaints.
The operators claim that the rises are necessary, given the rate of inflation and increased costs. However, the response from many consumers has been one of outrage rather than sympathy, with several citing the rises as ‘unfair’.
Ofcom has now published a breakdown of the complaints it received between September 2011 and May 2012, which showed that 25 per cent of consumers were angry about the principle of mid-term rises, while 24 per cent were unhappy with the lack of transparency around the subject.
Meanwhile, 22 per cent harboured a sense of ‘general dissatisfaction’ about the price jumps and 16 per cent complained specifically about the amount of the increase.
Claudio Pollack, consumer group director at Ofcom, said: “Many consumers have complained to us that they are not made aware of the potential for price rises in what they believe to be fixed contract. Ofcom is consulting on rules that we propose would give consumers a fair deal in relation to mid-contract price rises.”
The consultation closes on March 14th, with a decision expected to be published in June.