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How Long Does It Take to Switch Broadband Provider?

According to a Uswitch study, 32% of respondents said that they believed the broadband switching process to be ‘too much hassle’... and nearly half of people are still with the first deal they ever signed up to.  

While switching to a new broadband provider was hard work and confusing back in the day, it’s not anymore! Ofcom has set new rules to make the whole process much easier for the consumer, which also maintains competitive pricing within the market. 

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In fact, out-of-contract broadband customers could actually save hundreds and hundreds of pounds every year by regularly switching to a new deal. 

So don’t put it off anymore... read on to find out what the reformed process involves and how long it will take to switch over.

What is the switching process? 

Ofcom’s rules state that the new broadband provider must handle the switch if a customer is moving to another provider on the Openreach network. This includes BT, Sky, TalkTalk, Plusnet and Vodafone.  

In this instance, all you have to do as the consumer is: 

1) Find a new deal that suits your household 

Important factors to consider are price, speed, contract length, download limits and any additional fees. 

2) Sign up and confirm your purchase 

Once you’ve found a deal you’re happy with, you can usually make your purchase online or by speaking to an adviser. 

3) Let your new provider handle the rest 

Your new provider will contact your old provider to cancel your contract and coordinate your activation and deactivation dates. You can sit back and relax.

The rules are a little different if you’re moving to another network, such as Virgin, Hyperoptic, Gigaclear and CityFibre. The consumer would need to coordinate the switch themselves by contacting both your new and old providers. However, Ofcom is also looking at simplifying the switch between different networks.

How long does it take?  

The switching process typically takes around two weeks – although this could vary from provider to provider. 

It may take a little longer to get set up if you need an engineer to visit your property and install a new phone box. 

But don’t worry, you won’t be offline during this time. You will remain connected to your existing service until your new service has been set up. The actual switch-over will happen on the same day and around the same time, so you should only be offline for around 30 mins to an hour.

Can I switch mid-contract? 

Of course. Consumers can leave their current broadband provider at any time they wish. However, you might incur early termination fees if you cancel your broadband mid-contract. 

There some instances where you may be able to cancel without being charged. Ofcom's rules state that customers can leave without penalty within 30 days of a price increase notification or if they’re not getting the speeds they were promised.

Ready to take the plunge and switch to a better or cheaper broadband deal? It’ll only take 2 minutes of your time to sign up to a new package. Then you may be able to leave everything else to your new provider! 

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