Research into Google Trends data, from comparison site BroadbandGenie.co.uk, suggests as many as 1.7 million more people could now be paying higher out-of-contract prices as a result of a dramatic decline in broadband switches.
Broadband deals are sold with discounts for the initial contract term, offering good value before the price increases after the minimum term is completed. In July 2020, 8.7 million broadband customers were out of contract and were, on average, paying £56.40 per year more than those in contract.
Since the easing of lockdown restrictions (May-August 2021), Google Trends data for broadband deals suggests a 20% drop in searches compared to the same period in 2020. The comparison site fears this could equate to an additional 1.7 million bill payers could be out of contract, equating to additional consumer spend of up to £98 million.
Matt Powell, Editor of Broadband Genie, said:
“Many people upgraded their broadband package in 2020 to handle the extra demands of working from home and homeschooling. But anyone who signed up for a 12-month contract in early-mid 2020 and has not switched or renewed since then may now be paying a higher rate.
“Getting a lower price on your broadband contract doesn’t mean you have to compromise on speed. Use free comparison websites to shop around to see what options are out there. Or, if you like your current provider, renewing your contract will also get you significant savings.”