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Circumstances (IE no pay rise in God knows how long) dictate that saving some money is becoming an increasing urgent requirement for me. With that tightfisted objective in mind I decided my longstanding Virgin Media phone and broadband deal might worth having a look at.


I phoned VM on their free 150 number and (politely) asked if a better deal was possible. I got nowt from their Indian call centre but was eventually put through to their UK based Retention's Dept. I spoke to a very nice Scottish lady there who had a look at my current contract but she told me I was already getting a great deal and there was nothing she could do. Sticking resolutely to my guns I then told her I was sorry but I'd have to give the required 30 days notice and then cancel the contract - I was put on hold - 30 seconds later she came back to me and said that (surprise surprise) 'Customer Relations' had decided that a £10 a month 'Loyalty Discount' was available after all, if that is I agreed to a new 18 month contract.


So for a few minutes spent on the phone I saved myself £120 this year. I've also discovered that (although VM keep rather quite about it) another £68 pa saving is on offer if you pay up front for 12 months Phone line rental. The lesson is that all these company's are desperate to keep your business and just a little effort will bring its reward.


I'm not by nature one of life's hagglers, so if I can do it anybody can ... many of you lot probably already have!

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I've played sky and virgin off against each other a couple of times. Martin Lewis had an ex sky employee lifting the lid on the deals you can get. He gave the rundown , the times to call and the months you'll get better deals. Now is a good time because there's a lot of cancellations after Xmas. He said they have x amount of deals , so go to them in the middle of the month. Too early and they keep deals back so there's not so many, too late and they'll be gone. Bloke reckoned the retention deals and writtern into their margins. He said insist you really love it , but just can't afford it. I made out my mrs was pregnant once and therefore was only getting statutory maternity pay and we needed to cut back. They gave be a great deal for a year, to stay. After a year I played them off against virgin and they matched the deal.


Im still with virgin but struck it lucky when one of my mates sister got a job with them. She had 10 mates rates deals to give away, so provided we have everything and all tv channels we get it for half price. Just shows that their margins are high, because any staff discount would only be at cost at the very lowest level.

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