Ofcom changes confirmed
Today (12th December 2013), Ofcom has confirmed that the Unbundled Tariff will be implemented by June 2015. Phone companies and users of 084, 087, 09 and 118 numbers have just over 18 months to prepare. Also, calls to freephone numbers, which begin 0800 and 0808, will become free-to-call from mobile phones.
Consumer Rights Directive
As well as the Unbundled Tariff, the EU Consumer Rights Directive is likely to result in a major shake-up of customer service phone numbers. It requires post-contract customer helplines not to cost more than the “basic rate” and the final version of the UK law on this is due to be published by 13th December.
We sincerely hope that 084 numbers are not allowed as basic rate and that passenger transport services will be covered!
Government use of 084 numbers
Not connected with the Consumer Rights Directive, but part of the wider issue of misuse of 0844 and 0845 numbers, HMRC switched from 0845 to 0300 numbers and DWP will also be introducing 03 numbers. The Public Accounts Committee was scathing about the widespread use of 0845 numbers by Government in its report.