Compulsory charges: Telecommunications

Jul 7th '21

In January 2016 the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) published joint research with Ofcom that found that the telecoms industry’s approach to presenting pricing in fixed broadband ads was likely to confuse and mislead consumers about the cost of broadband services.


In essence, advertisers should make clear all up-front costs that would be paid by most customers by presenting them together with the total monthly cost. A broadband price statement is unlikely to mislead if it follows these Key Principles:


  • It presents all compulsory elements of the total financial commitment (up-front costs, ongoing costs and contract length) together, avoiding undue emphasis on any one element.
  • It presents one inclusive price for compulsory up-front costs and an inclusive price for a consumer’s ongoing monthly cost (combining the line rental and broadband cost where line rental is offered by the provider).
  • It makes clear if an introductory discounted price for one/some of the elements applies and, if so, for how long.


This applies to both consumer (B2C) and business (B2B) advertising (Plusnet plc, 15 November 2017).


Source: Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP)


Updated 07/07/2021


See: Telecommunications: Overview


Note: This advice is given by the CAP Executive about non-broadcast advertising. It does not constitute legal advice. It does not bind CAP, CAP advisory panels or the ASA. CAP’s AdviceOnline entries provide guidance on interpreting the UK Code of Non-broadcast Advertising and Direct & Promotional Marketing.


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