Telecoms provider TalkTalk is to raise prices from 1 August, can reveal, with some broadband customers set to pay an extra £21/year and mobile customers facing an increase of up to £30/year. Yet it's possible to beat the hikes – you can quit your contract penalty-free or try to haggle a better deal.

TalkTalk is contacting customers this week to inform them about the price increases, which apply to its Simply and Essential broadband plans and pay-monthly Sim deals.

The company last hiked its prices in November 2016. Anyone who's on one of TalkTalk's new fixed low price plans WON'T be affected by the price rises.

How are TalkTalk prices changing?

The biggest hike will be to its 'Large Sim' plan, which will jump by £2.50/month, while the broadband packages – which also include line rental – will cost an extra £1.75/month. Here's a full rundown:

Broadband and line rental charges (per month)

Package name Current price Price from 1 Aug
Simply broadband £27.95 £29.70
Essential broadband £30.45 £32.20

Pay-monthly Sim packages (per month)

Package name Current price Price from 1 Aug
Small £7.90 £8.90
Medium £13 £14.50
Large £15.50 £18
Mobile 5 £5.50 £7
Mobile 10 £10.50 £12
Mobile 15 £15.50 £17

Customers with a free Essential Sim plan will not see any price rises, while those on promotional Sim deals will see proportional increases – for example, if you have a half-price Sim deal your monthly bill will only rise by half the standard increase.

TalkTalk is also hiking call charges, but these alone wouldn't mean you can leave penalty free. It says many customers have inclusive calls within their packages, so will not be affected.

How to beat the hikes

The good news is it's possible to take action now to avoid the price rises. Here's what to try:

1) Escape your contract penalty-free

If you're affected by the price hikes and are still within your contract's minimum term, TalkTalk says you can choose to leave – and walk away without paying an exit fee. But there's no point leaving if your current deal is still the cheapest out there – so check rival providers' prices and factor in exit fees before you ditch and switch.

You'll need to notify TalkTalk of your decision to leave, online or by phone, within 30 days of receiving official notification of the price hikes. If you choose to leave after the 30-day period, you'll have to pay an early termination charge.

TalkTalk says broadband customers can switch to one of its fixed price plans, which it says are a cheaper alternative and protect against future price rises. Its 12 and 18-month contracts cost £25.50/mth, while its 24-month fix is £22.95/mth (all include line rental).

But it's likely you can beat this price, with our top-pick cheapest broadband deal from Origin, which costs £125 for one year's broadband and line rental, equivalent to £10.42/mth. See our Cheap Broadband guide for a full round-up of the cheapest alternatives.

If you're a mobile customer looking for alternatives, see our top picks in the Cheap Sim Deals guide.

2) Haggle, haggle, haggle...

If you're not happy with the hikes, but are happy to stay with TalkTalk, it's worth calling it and haggling – you could beat the hikes and bag yourself a bargain. Price hikes are always powerful haggling ammunition, particularly if you have the right to leave penalty-free.

Broadband customers can use our Haggle with TalkTalk guide for full step-by-step help. Here are five tips to get you started...

  • Benchmark the best deal elsewhere so you ask for a realistic discount.
  • Get through to the retentions (sometimes called disconnections) department, as they have the most power to slash costs as their job is to keep you.
  • Use charm and be friendly. Aggression or anger will just put their back up.
  • Don't panic if they call your bluff and say they'll disconnect you.
  • Problems mean discounts, so if you've had issues with TalkTalk in the past – eg, slow broadband – politely tell it when you haggle.

Also watch Martin's How to Haggle video for more inspiration.

TalkTalk hits broadband and mobile customers with price hikes
The biggest hike will be to its 'Large Sim' plan, which will jump by £2.50/month

Why does TalkTalk say about the hikes?

A spokesperson said: "TalkTalk is making several changes to its packages, including increasing upload speeds on its fibre broadband product, extending its range of free privacy features and updating its HomeSafe and KidSafe online security features.

"Over a million customers have now benefited from our fixed low price plans, ensuring their broadband price will remain the same for the length of their contract. All TalkTalk customers, both new and existing, can fix their broadband price for 12, 18 or 24 months by switching to a fixed low price plan.

"In making improvements to our network and products, some call rates, mobile and legacy broadband package prices will increase."

Have your say