THOUSANDS of Vodafone customers could slash their broadband bill as the communications giant has launched a new social tariff.
Households on benefits including Universal Credit are eligible for cheap deals called social broadband tariffs.
A number of providers offer these deals, and Vodafone has now launched a new offer for £12 a month for 12 months.
Its Vodafone Essentials Broadband, which works out as £144 a year, has been offered to hard-up customers struggling with a cost of living crisis.
It means customers can access the company's Fibre 1 or Full Fibre 1 deal – with an average speed of 38Mbps – for less.
You could save £10 a month – or £120 a year – compared to Vodafone's cheapest market rate broadband deal.
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This is the Vodafone Fibre 1 deal, which costs from £22 a month, which is £264 over 12 months.
To qualify for the deal, you need to be claiming one of the following benefits:
- Universal Credit
- Job Seekers Allowance
- Employment and Support Allowance
- Disability Allowance
- Personal Independence Payment
There is no set-up fee to pay, and you can leave for free at any time.
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Usually, if you choose to leave early before your deal is up, you can be hit with a penalty.
After 12 months, Vodafone will reassess whether you are still eligible for the deal.
Around 4.2million households are eligible for special social broadband tariffs – but only 136,000 have signed up.
The average saving you can make by signing up to a social tariff is £230.
It comes as Virgin Media slashed the price of its social tariff – the Essentials Broadband package – from £15 to £12.50 a month.
In April, Sky launched a cheaper £20 broadband tariff for struggling households as well.
What other social broadband tariffs are available?
Social broadband tariffs are available to people on certain benefits, including Universal Credit – and they can cut bills by hundreds of pounds a year.
But you'll have to get in touch with your provider to go onto one. If your provider doesn't offer one you can switch companies.
In August, Sun Money called on the government, regulator Ofcom and suppliers to do more to support struggling customers.
We launched a tool with the cost of living champions Nous to help highlight how much customers could save.
We also called on firms to make it easier for customers to switch to tariffs.
How you apply for one will vary depending on your provider as each one will have its own rules on eligibility.
Prices vary as well so it's worth shopping around by using price comparison sites such as Moneysupermarket.com or Uswitch.
Below is the full list of other broadband and phone social tariffs according to Ofcom.
Whether you can sign up to a specific deal will depend on where you live and the benefits you claim.
The speed and quality of the package may vary as well – make sure you check the deal out thoroughly to see if it suits you:
- Air Broadband Air Support: £20 a month
- BT Home Essentials: £15 a month
- BT Home Essentials 2: £20 a month
- Country Connect Social Tariff: £15 a month
- G.Network Essential Fibre Broadband: £15 a month
- Hyperoptic Fair Fibre 50: £15 a month
- Hyperoptic Fair Fibre 150: £25 a month
- KCOM Full Fibre Flex: £14.99 a month
- NOW Broadband Basics: £20 a month
- Sky Broadband Basics: £20 a month
- Virgin Media Essential Broadband: £12.50 a month
- VOXI For Now: £10 a month
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