By Ninder Kaur
Ringing 0800 and 0808 numbers will finally be free, and other charges will become a lot more clear, under new Ofcom rules.
Despite being referred to as ‘freephone numbers’ and not usually being charged from landlines, many run up huge costs ringing 0800 and other numbers.
Ofcom’s research found that callers in the UK spend 250 million hours calling these numbers every year, costing around £900 million.
The cost of these calls was often unclear which has prompted the telecommunications regulator it clear up these charges for landline and mobile users.
The new regulations should bring a end to the infuriatingly vague – “Calls may vary from other landlines and calls from mobiles may cost considerably more.”
From today, charges for service numbers will be made up of an ‘access charge’ going to the phone company, plus a ‘service charge’ set by the company or organisation being called.
Telecoms companies will be responsible for setting the access charge and will have to make it clear to consumers how much they are paying on their bills.
They will also be required to inform new customers of the charge when they sign up to a new deal.