Digital Housing Hub - #digihousing

where social housing providers meet to help their residents embrace the web

Everything you want to know about £10/mth BT Basic broadband but were afraid to ask

So I thought I would collate everything we know about BT Basic+Broadband so far here to hopefully make it all easier to find:

1. '99%' of people should not have to pay line installation charges for BT Basic even without an existing line (see comments for more info on this)

2. Total cost is £9.95/mth but paid quarterly so some budgeting may be needed for some people (£5.10/mth for landline inc. £1.50 calls, £4.85/mth broadband add-on)

3. Has to be applied for using special application form and only account holder (account holder to be?) can apply. Trying to switch through normal channels will probably lead to wrong product. Application form request number is 0800 800 864 (8am-6pm Mon-Fri). Application form 'must be returned within 14 days' (!!)

4. BT Basic only available for (most) people on

  • Income Support

  • Income-based Jobseeker's Allowance

  • Pensions Credit (Guaranteed Credit)

  • Employment Support Allowance (Income related)

  • Universal Credit (and are on zero earnings)

5. Eligibility is checked with DWP and application can take one month.

6. Anecdotally, it seems some BT advisers may easily be confused by the similar terms " BT basic broadband" (i.e. to them BT's entry-level standard offer) and "BT Basic plus broadband" (i.e. what we are talking about here, their social offer). Therefore it is likely best to deal with BT through the above number and ensure applicant refers to "BT Basic with broadband" to minimise risk of confusion

7. There is a small charge for the router (not stated but expect around £4-5.99)

8. Important that users are aware there is a 10GB/mth data limit and so *really* not suitable for more than a very small usage of video streaming. Should be enough for basic browsing/emailing/surfing however. Excess charges WILL apply for exceeding the 10GB (an email warning sent when getting close but we know not all people read their emails!) which would quickly make an unlimited deal better value if regularly exceeding

9. Calls - UK landline calls 11.3p per minute with a call set up fee of 3.3p. Calls to 0845 and 0870 numbers free at weekends and BT Basic is exempt from any payment processing fees.

Additional information: Service also includes parental control offer, unlimited access to wifi hotspots, BT Sports app and online player (a really bad idea given data cap!), 5GB cloud storage. Landline includes free BT Privacy and caller display.

BT's Guide to BT Basic can be downloaded here in PDF

Views: 6013

Comment by James Lewis on April 28, 2015 at 9:33

Here is the information on line installation and when charges would occur, from my live chat with a BT Adviser:

Paula: Sorry it took so long James

James Lewis: don't mind I've had to wait as long as it produces some clearer information

Paula: OK the connection charge is free to all eligible BT Basic customers, however if it is a new build with no line plant, there may be extra charges, the charges would be determined based on the engineers survey carried out.

James Lewis: OK, so people would need at least the socket already then (assuming the socket indicates a line was laid if not actually activated)

James Lewis: (I mean people can use the presence of a socket as a rule-of-thumb indicator they probably won't need to pay an extra fee)

Paula: No not necessarily James, Openreach will cover up to £2,800 plus VAT for a connection, if the connection costs more than this we would pass the charge onto the customer. Additional charges are quite rare.

Paula: The additional charges would usually be for external work, no line plant, ducting etc

James Lewis: Great so people would probably have to not have a line and require a fairly lengthy line to their property from existing infrastructure to have charges over the £2.8k if I understand you correctly? Essentially 98% or so of people could probably get BT Basic without installation charges?

Paula: Yes James that's correct, when an order is placed, the engineers would carry out a survey if required, customers will be informed of any extra charges and would have the option to cancel the order.

James Lewis: That's really helpful Paula - thank you so much!

Paula: The charges are quite rare, no problem, sorry it took so long.

James Lewis: It was well worth the wait!

Paula: Glad to have got that cleared up for you James, other than any possible Excess Construction Charges, connection for eligible BT Basic customers is free.

Comment by James Lewis on April 28, 2015 at 9:38

It's worth mentioning that there may be problems with signing up to BT, which may relate to the confusion mentioned in the original post- here is feedback from someone who tried to sign up to it before (reposted with thanks to Matt Nelson). 

"I haven't been in touch for a while because it has taken absolutely ages to sort out stuff with BT. Lesson learned: don't subscribe to BT Basics! I first spoke to someone at BT in the last week of November last year - and I am still waiting for my BT Basics package and broadband to be activated. The whole thing's been a complete nightmare and I would strongly advise you NOT to recommend it to anyone else! In the first instance I was wrongly advised, in the second instance they have now got four months line rental at FULL PRICE out of me and still haven't even sent me the paperwork to forward to the DWP to prove my benefits status. Thus, instead of having to pay roughly £5 a month I have had to pay £15 a month plus VAT. In addition they insist you pay 3 months up front if you are on BT Basics (£54 including VAT) and do not send out the paperwork to forward to the DWP until this money has been paid and your line and broadband have been activated -
ostensibly February 21st in my case (although I'm beginning to think pigs might be more likely to fly......). Even worse, once they have signed you up to BT Basics they then inform you that you cannot take advantage of any special offers regarding broadband, but have to take out their £16 a month option. I'm flabbergasted at how cunning and wily they are!! My partner has encouraged me to keep on trying, although I was ready to knock the whole thing on the head and just get a dongle, so I will see what happens on Feb 21st. The main reason I'm emailing you is 1/ to let you know why I haven't been in touch to claim my broadband payment refund and 2/ to strongly recommend that you don't recommend BT in any shape or form to anyone else!!!
We live and learn.........Fingers crossed for the 21st."

Comment by James Lewis on June 2, 2015 at 14:44

Update -  according to Moneysavingexpert here  people on BT Basic won't pay access charges when the new structure (from 1 July) for 08xx and other numbers come in, just the service charge - for 084x numbers this will be a maximum of 7p/min, for 087x numbers a max.13p/min

Comment by James Lewis on January 25, 2017 at 15:32

There've been a few changes including an increase in the data allowance to 12GBpm, and a cap on charges for calls to most numbers except I think 09 numbers (£!0 max.). Latest details are here

Add a Comment

You need to be a member of Digital Housing Hub - #digihousing to add comments!

Join Digital Housing Hub - #digihousing

TWITTER: #digihousing



  • Add Videos
  • View All


© 2019   Created by Vicky Lawson.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service