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By WelshPaul
#905
A shake-up of expensive phone numbers is happening right now thanks to the EU’s Consumer Rights Directive. It signals the end of the line for many ‘rip-off’ 0844, 0845 and 0871 customer service numbers.

The UK legislation, which came into effect on 13th June 2014, requires affected businesses to switch to lower cost “basic rate” prefixes for enquiries from customers. Permitted basic rate numbers include those which start with the digits 01, 02 and 03, mobile numbers and those which are free-to-caller from fixed and mobile telephones.

In summary, the guidance says that these number types are allowed:
  • Geographic rate numbers, which means any number which starts 01, 02 or 03.
  • A number which is free to call from all fixed and mobile telephone services, which will be 0800 or 0808 when the changes Ofcom has in the pipeline are applied in June 2015.
  • A mobile telephone number, which is prefixed 07 (except the 070 and 076 sub-prefixes)
The guidance also sets out those which are not allowed:
  • Premium Rate Service (PRS) ranges which start with 0871, 0872, 0873 and 09.
  • Other numbers that also convey a Service Charge, but which aren’t PRS; these are prefixed 0843, 0844 and 0845.
  • Numbers which start with 0870.
By SubZ87
#907
Unbelievable what's the catch? :lol:

And BT are still selling these?
http://business.bt.com/phone-services/
  • 0844 - your customer pays for the call
  • 0845 - you share the cost with your customer
  • 0871 - you make money when your customer calls
  • 09 - customer pays 25p to £1.50 per minute
I thought 0845 was "local rate" charge. But what's "local rate" it's a legacy term isn't it? Didn't 0845 come into existence when we used to pay extra for long distance calls, ie calls outside your local exchange area? Getting an 0845 was a way for companies to offer their customers a standard rate call no matter where they lived. And then it didn't matter where in the country you called, it all cost the same, and then inclusive time was introduced and it was debatable whether 0845 numbers would be included in those minutes. So it became cheaper to use Geographic rate numbers 01, 02 or 03.

http://www.phonepayplus.org.uk/For-Busi ... mbers.aspx

It's about time they did something like this for premium rate numbers anyway. The amount of companies that were starting to use 50p/min for their technical support lines was getting out of hand. If they operated a dedicated paid for support service alongside general enquiries that would be ok, but what was happening if I purchased something and for example it was dead on arrival, I'd have to pay 50p/min to report the matter and raise an RMA. I didn't think that was appropriate to my consumer rights. As it goes the same company expected me to pay for the return of the faulty goods too!
By GoofyCyborg
#909
The sad thing about this is that for years the government has used these rip off numbers too!

Jobseekers Direct 0845, Tax Credits 0845, Benefit Claims 0845.....

Even services offered by the NHS have used these numbers!

I wonder how long we will have to wait until they finally sort out the premium rate text scams that have been in circulation the past few years?
By SteveAtVoIP2Go
#919
It really is great that these rip-off numbers will no longer be allowed.

I'm working on UK dial plans at the moment and am interested in your summary below:
WelshPaul wrote:In summary, the guidance says that these number types are allowed:
  • Geographic rate numbers, which means any number which starts 01, 02 or 03.
  • A number which is free to call from all fixed and mobile telephone services, which will be 0800 or 0808 when the changes Ofcom has in the pipeline are applied in June 2015.
  • A mobile telephone number, which is prefixed 07 (except the 070 and 076 sub-prefixes)
Once the changes are in place, are these the only number types that can be dialled within the UK?
User avatar
By WelshPaul
#922
The new law, whose official title is “The Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation and Additional Charges) Regulations 2013(SI:2013/3134), doesn’t apply to all sectors. Financial services aren’t covered, but I hope that the FCA will see that its members will honour its spirit and see that they dump their 0844 and 0845 customer numbers. A number have already done so in the past few months.

For example - A call to a mail order company or high-street retailer about a faulty item is no longer allowed to incur a Service Charge such as that found on calls to 0844, 0845, and 0871 numbers. Charges above the basic rate will still be allowed for services that don’t form part of the contract, such as technical support. Businesses are also still free to use such numbers for sales lines, if they so wish.

I don't think I have ever come across a sales line that uses them though? I know I wouldn't call one to place an order! :thumbsdown:

Personally I would keep or add these numbers into any dialplan strings you have, at least for the time being. :)
By kaiuk
#1229
I always take a look at the say no to 0870 site and see if there is an alternative I can use. Usually there is an 01 or 02 number so I can just use my mobile phone minutes to call for free, but not it seems that the new 03 number is becoming more widely used.

A little confusing for some, but I think it is an alternative to 08 numbers that you can use your mobile minutes for. 087 and 084 were just too confusing for call rates, I'm glad it is changing.
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By CJT-80
#1231
Say No To 0870 has done very well, and continues to be a useful source of alternative numbers.

I have noticed more and more companies are now changing to 03 based numbers which match the 08 numbers they previously used.

Most of the Rail companies have switched, as well as a few Bus companies that used 084 numbers, notably Arriva Bus. Two main exceptions to the Transport services so far appear to be: National Rail Enquiries who still insist on using an 0845 number, and Traveline who use an 0871 number (the most expensive of them all)....

When will companies not want to rip us all off!

I am aware that with Traveline they merely divert the call to the relevant area you need timetable info for, but considering all the bus stops I have used outside of London have the number clearly displayed on, as well as a number of buses, they must make a fair amount of cash from it! :-(
User avatar
By WelshPaul
#1232
CJT-80 wrote:Two main exceptions to the Transport services so far appear to be: National Rail Enquiries who still insist on using an 0845 number, and Traveline who use an 0871 number (the most expensive of them all)....
I travel by train frequently however I always visit the nationalrail.co.uk website from my mobile to find out the latest times and any delays. Have done it this way for years! I wonder how much money I have saved over the years? :lol:
User avatar
By CJT-80
#1243
WelshPaul wrote:I travel by train frequently however I always visit the nationalrail.co.uk website from my mobile to find out the latest times and any delays. Have done it this way for years! I wonder how much money I have saved over the years? :lol:
I use the official National Rail App for my phone. I haven't paid for the non-advert version. It works fine, and I have never called NRE. It's just the fact they seem *Bleep* bent on not changing their number!
By c0d3r
#1244
Ofcom make out they are doing us all these favours yet they are the ones who introduced these numbers to start with! They also allowed these companies to use these numbers for years and rip us all off. Even our own government agencies used them, unemployed would have to call these rip off numbers when looking for jobs or enquiring about their benefits. Disgusting!
By pwarbi
#1582
It certainly IS about time these rip off numbers were got rid of. Does anybody know how and why these numbers were brought in, in the first place though?
And I guess the companies will no doubt already be looking at other ways to rob us now instead!
By wahmed
#1663
pwarbi wrote:It certainly IS about time these rip off numbers were got rid of. Does anybody know how and why these numbers were brought in, in the first place though?
And I guess the companies will no doubt already be looking at other ways to rob us now instead!

I think it was to deter us from calling them for little things. If you pay so much you're going to think twice before picking up the phone

OK thanks, what VPN are you using ??

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Thanks very much. Really appreciate it! :-D

Attached below is my latest OBIHAI UK configuratio…