Sky to hike broadband, TV and home phone prices by up to £72/yr
Millions of Sky broadband and TV customers will be hit with price hikes of up to £72 a year from April onwards, MoneySavingExpert.com can reveal. But if you're affected you may be able to leave penalty-free or haggle down your bill – we've full details on what's happening and your rights below.
Update 1 April 2021: Many hikes have now hit, so check if you can save by switching. But don't leave in anger if you're still on a good deal, especially as most firms are raising prices now anyway. If out of contract, you're free to leave at any time. If in contract, many can leave penalty-free though you must do so within 30 days of being notified by Sky – for some that window is closed, for others it's open but only just.
If you're on a standard rate deal (ie, not a special promo) most prices are rising
We'll split it by product to help explain:
- TV – prices will rise for all on 1 April, but the exact rise varies by package (see below).
- Broadband – everyone except those on the Ultrafast Broadband package faces a rise on 1 April, though the amount varies by package (see below).
- Landline – prices are rising on 1 May for those on the Anytime Extra and International Extra packages (exact rises below), but not for other standard packages.
- Mobile – no prices are rising.
If you're on a special promo it's unclear if your prices will rise
There's no uniform answer as to whether your prices will rise. You will be notified of exactly what's changing when you get a letter or email with the full info – this should come by 27 March.
If my bills are rising, how much will they go up by?
Overall, millions will pay more, with the average increase just over £3/month (£36/year). We've listed the increases by package type, but importantly, the rises are capped at £6/mth (£72/yr), so even if you have lots of products that are going up in price, your overall bill won't rise by more than that – Sky says 8% of customers will be hit with the maximum £72/yr price increase.
TV price rises on standard contracts (but note different prices for those in and out of contract)
- The Sky Signature TV package will go up by £1/mth – to £26/mth if in contract, £31/mth if out of contract.
- Multiscreen will go up by £1/mth, to £15/mth.
- Sky HD will go up by £1/mth, to £7/mth.
- Sky Ultimate (TV add-on which gives Netflix) will go up by £1/mth, to £5/mth – but ONLY for those in contract.
- Sky Sports will go up by £2/mth, to £32/mth – but ONLY for those out of contract.
- BT Sport will go up by £2/mth, to £27/mth. (This only affects Sky customers who pay for BT Sport via Sky, though if you pay via BT, it has recently announced separate price rises.)
However, Sky Cinema and Sky Kids aren't changing in price.
Broadband price rises on standard contracts (but note different prices for those in and out of contract)
- Sky Broadband Essential will go up by £3/mth – to £25/mth if in contract, £30/mth if out of contract.
- Sky Broadband Superfast will go up by £1/mth – to £28/mth if in contract, £33/mth if out of contract.
Note that the Ultrafast Broadband package isn't rising in price.
Landline price rises on standard contracts
- Sky Talk Anytime Extra will go up by £2/mth, to £12/mth.
- Sky Talk International Extra will go up by £2/mth, to £14/mth.
- Call costs: Sky says it's possible some customers could see prices increase as well, though it wasn't able to give us a breakdown of this as it says it's dependent on individual circumstances.
Note that the cost of Sky Talk Evening and Weekends Extra is not rising.
When will I be told of the possible rises?
Sky says you should get a letter or email between 17 February and 27 March. If your price isn't going up you won't hear anything.
It adds that affected customers should wait until they're contacted before they get in touch to discuss their options because you technically can't cancel penalty-free until you're notified of the hikes. But there's no harm in calling early to try to haggle your bills down. To make sure you're on the best broadband, phone and TV deal, use our free Broadband Unbundled tool.
Most Sky broadband, TV and home phone customers last saw prices hiked in April 2020, although tens of thousands of users whose prices didn't rise then saw the increase applied from August 2020 instead.
If you're not happy with the price hikes, you may be able to exit your contract with Sky penalty-free. But remember, there's no point leaving in a huff if your current deal is still the cheapest out there – so check rival providers' prices using our Broadband Unbundled tool, and remember other firms also increase prices from time to time.
Here are your rights if you want to leave Sky:
- Outside your minimum contract term for TV, phone and/or broadband? You can leave penalty-free at any time. To do this, contact Sky by phone (on 03337 593922), online or by post. You'll usually need to give 31 days' notice for TV packages, though Sky says the notice period for some TV add-ons may vary, and 14 days' notice for broadband and phone packages.
If you're out of contract there's a good chance you're paying over the odds, so check if you can find a better deal using Broadband Unbundled – you don't need to wait for notification of the price hikes to do this.
- Still in your minimum term for a Sky broadband or phone contract? You can also leave penalty-free. If you're affected by these price increases, you CAN cancel without paying an early termination charge. Technically, you can only do so once you've received official notification of the price increase, although there's no harm in calling sooner to see if you can haggle your bills down. Again, you can contact Sky by phone (on 03337 593922), online or by post. You must cancel within 30 days of being notified of the increase.
- Still in your minimum term for a Sky TV contract? Unfortunately you CAN'T leave penalty-free. You don't have the right to exit your contract penalty-free as a result of these price changes. Sky says this is because the terms and conditions for TV packages are different from those for broadband and phone packages – ie, you may have been warned that prices could rise.
However, if you're unhappy about the change it may still be worth trying to haggle with Sky (see more on this below). And some TV add-ons may have a rolling monthly contract, in which case you can remove them from your Sky package to avoid the hikes and cut costs.
If you've a bundle that includes TV and broadband, Sky says you can generally cancel the broadband penalty-free but not the TV. This may vary depending on when you signed up to the products though, so if unsure, check with Sky before cancelling.
Willing to stick with Sky? Haggle, haggle, haggle
If you're happy to stay with Sky despite the price increases, it's worth trying to haggle a better deal – especially if you've the right to leave penalty-free, in which case your bargaining position is strong. Price rises are always powerful haggling ammunition. Our most recent poll in November 2020 found 86% of Sky customers who tried to haggle got a discount, and some save hundreds each year.
See our Sky Haggling guide for full tips on how to do this, but for starters here are a few:
- Benchmark the best deal elsewhere so you ask for a realistic discount.
- Get through to the retentions (sometimes called disconnections) department. 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.
- If they won't slash the price, see if they can include any extras, such as a boosted TV package.
If you do haggle a better deal, always check the length of the new contract you sign up to and make sure you're happy being locked in for that long.
What does Sky say?
A Sky spokesperson said: "We know price increases are never welcome and we try to keep prices down whilst still delivering the content our customers love, the flexibility to choose the package that suits them and with leading customer service."