BT 3 Months Free Broadband – Be Careful!

This BT complaint regarding 3 months free broadband is astonishing and a must read for anyone thinking about switching to BT Broadband because of the ‘free’ broadband offer.


While experiencing a great deal of frustration with my broadband supplier, I was receiving regular and persistent calls from BT together with printed matter in the post all designed to persuade me to transfer my allegiance to BT with the tempting offer of 3 months FREE.

During the course of long discussions with the BT agent I explained that I am a self employed individual working from home and supporting my customers ‘on-line’; I also discussed my dissatisfaction with the lack of support from my existing supplier and was reassured that BT has the top level of customer service, fastest download speeds etc. etc.

Having been persuaded, I switched to BT; The most apt description is out of the frying pan and into the fire.

To start with all went swimmingly, the new modem arrived within the agreed time frame and was truly ‘plug and play’ it took all of 5 mins to set it all up and get running, I was delighted and was looking forward to my “3 months FREE” as advertised.

It was then that the cold shower was turned on. Broadband speeds are no better than my last supplier ie. Approximately 1/10th of those advertised. This was no great shock as I think we have all come to accept the hyperbole indulged in by all of the broadband suppliers, albeit that they are bordering on criminal misrepresentation, but that is by the bye compared to the next ice cold douche. Within 7 days of going on line I was presented with a bill for £97.00; naturally, I immediately sought out the customer support department (very helpful and much better than my last supplier, I was told by BT) and wrote them a stiff note to the effect that I had signed up to a free 3 months deal and as a portion of the bill related to call charges I also wanted to know why I was being charged for telephone calls when I had signed up for an ‘all calls included package’.

The following is the reply from BT. I include it as a true facsimile as the content beggars belief.

Thank you for your email dated 12/07/11 regarding your BT account.
I have checked your account to confirm that an order has been placed on 11/06/11 which has 3 months free offer and on 04/07/11 there is another order placed for a special offer unlimited evening and weekend plan + broadband option 1 for £8.00 after discount + unlimited anytime plan add-on for £4.70 (£8.00+£4.70=£12.70). I can confirm that you save more on the present offer rather than 3 month free offer.
In regards to the payment processing fee which depends on the payment method you choose, we don’t charge people who pay through direct debit.
If you are unhappy about the package or any issue with the account please send us your daytime contact number so that I can arrange a conference with customer options team, so that they can assist you further.
I hope you have been happy with all I have done for you today. You will be getting an email soon with a short survey. Please be honest, it is about how I have dealt with things and also more generally about BT.
Thank you for contacting BT.

Yes folks!! It is cheaper to pay BT £90.00 than to get 3 months free.

In the follow up calls it was established that I had, indeed, ordered the daytime call package and so the call charges were deducted from my bill. We do not end there. You will recall that I discussed with BT the fact that I worked from home, on line, and no mention was ever made of the fact that there was a limit to the amount of time that I could use and above that limit there would be punitive charges, so you can imagine my surprise at being informed that I have been going over the limit each month.

Well the service I have signed up for is considerably more expensive than the one I have just bailed out of and it offers considerably less. But at least, I thought, I can rely on BT to supply a good technical service. What a fool I am.

On the Monday I was having some problems with the broadband connection and so, bearing in mind that I am in IT and used to sorting things out, I went through all of the procedures to ensure that I had covered all of the bases and having decided that I had done everything, I contacted the BT help desk.

Without boring you with all of the details of the Alice in Wonderland discussion I had with the individual in India I will give you his solution to my problem:- “You need to contact your computer supplier and arrange with them to strip your computer of the operating system and re install it” Gasps from my end of the line. “But I am running 4 machines here, all with different operating systems and they all have the same problem”.

All our technician could do was to advise me to have them all reinstalled. Later that day I was able to contact someone else at the help desk and it seems that he had been blessed with half a brain cell as he tested the line and confirmed that there was a fault on the line and that he would have an engineer fix it later that day. This whole farce had taken 3 days to resolve. That means no wages for three days.

My advice, if you want a reliable communication system that beats BT hands down you need to find two empty baked bean tins and a length of string and always remember that as the Holy Bible has it “it is better to give than to receive” and so when BT offer you 3 months free you must take holy vows and turn the other cheek and politely give them vast sums of money instead because, as they assure us, ‘it is cheaper to give us money than to receive a free offer’. Monty Python could not make it up.

Mike Teuten

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