Ofcom has made calls to to 0800 and 0808 numbers free from mobile phones, and has clarified the costs of other mobile service calls.
Up to now, calling service numbers (including so-called ‘freephone’ numbers) that most UK companies seem to use has been something of a lottery for those of us who don’t use landlines.
The smallprint on such numbers typically comes with a vague warning that calls from a mobile may cost significantly more. It’s only when you get your next mobile bill that the damage (usually to the tune of a couple of pounds) becomes apparent.
This never seemed quite right, and Ofcom has finally stepped in to sort things out. UK Calling is the name of its initiative to ensure clear pricing information for UK calls.
From July 1 (that’s today), the cost of calling such service numbers will be made up of just two parts – an access charge from your mobile network provider and and a service charge from the service you wish to access.
The access charge will be a fixed cost-per-minute charge applicable to all such service calls. The service charge will be set by the organisation you’re calling, and will be made clear at wherever the service is advertised, just as landline charges presently are.
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That applies to service numbers such as those beginning with 084, 087, 09, and 118. Even better news is that 0800 and 0808 numbers will be genuinely free for mobile users as well as landline users.
Check out three of the best phones around in the video below.