Frequently Asked Questions

We’ve compiled a list of our most frequently asked questions below, but if you can’t quite find what you’re looking for, try using the search function at the top of the page.

What is a Premium Rate Number?2020-12-14T17:14:58+00:00

Premium rate numbers are a set of shortcodes and numbers that start with certain prefixes and that cost more than a standard text message to another 07 number or to call than a ‘geographic’ number (numbers that start with a code that tells you whereabouts in the UK you’re calling).

Most shortcodes will incur a standard network charge as a minimum, and won’t be included in your bundle. For landline numbers, some examples of premium rate prefixes are 09, 118 or 0871. Premium rate numbers can also be 5 or 7 digits (such as those you might call to vote on a TV show).

Pricing should always be clear to you before you use a Premium Rate Service.

How do I know if a number is ‘Premium Rate’?2020-12-14T17:16:29+00:00

If texting a number is going to incur an additional charge, the pricing should be made clear and transparent before you purchase the service. Please be aware that texts to 5-digit mobile shortcodes will usually incur a ‘Standard Network Charge’ as a minimum.

What does ‘Standard Network Rate’ Mean?2021-01-15T11:24:06+00:00

Every time you send a text, you pay your mobile phone network operator a fee for doing so. This varies from network to network and may also vary depending on the number you’re sending a text to. This is known as a ‘standard network rate’ or ‘standard network charge’. All networks vary in their definition of Standard Network Rate, so please check your network’s website to find out more. In the case of shortcode and phone-paid services, texts sent at standard network rate may not be included in any bundles you may have as part of your deal with your network operator and will generally incur a charge, even if you have unlimited texts included in your contract. If you want to know what the network charge will be for your phone, you should contact your mobile network operator.

What are Service and Network Access Charges?2021-01-15T11:20:36+00:00

For some more traditional voice calls and services, the cost of calling is made up of two parts: a Service Charge and a Network Access Charge. The Service Charge amount varies according to which service you are calling, while the Network Access Charge is what your own phone company charges you for calling these numbers.

The Service Charge is the part of the call cost that is passed on to the service provider you are calling and/or their telecoms supplier. It is intended to help cover the cost of the service being provided and organisations can select from a range of different charge rates. The Service Charge should always be clear in any promotional material advertising the service.

In addition to the advertised ‘Service Charge’, you may also be charged your phone company’s Network Access Charge, which is a standard per-minute rate that applies to all calls of this type. Every phone company charges different amounts so you should ask your network about the cost for you.

Why can i not access Phone Paid Services?2021-09-28T10:21:11+00:00

If you cannot access phone-paid services, and you would like to, you may have a block or bar on your phone which you can ask your phone company to remove.

Some phone companies allow you to automatically do this, for example for EE customers with single line accounts; to remove a bar text ‘UNBAR’ to 150. This is a free service. If you have more than one line on your account, you will need to contact Customer Services on 150’.


Can I access Phone-paid Services from abroad?2020-12-14T16:57:10+00:00

Phone-paid services should not work if you are calling or texting from outside of the UK. Similarly, If your mobile phone is on a contract with a non-UK-based network provider, then phone-paid services may not work from your phone.

Am I signed up to a Subscription Service?2020-12-14T17:16:56+00:00

A subscription service is one which is paid for through recurring weekly or monthly charges of the same amount. An additional charge on your phone bill does not necessarily mean you have been subscribed to a regular service. You may have signed up to a subscription service, or you may have purchased the service or content with a single, one-off charge. You will need to speak to the service provider who has charged you to find out what the charge is for and whether it is part of a regular subscription.

The charge shown isn’t the amount I was expecting2020-12-14T17:15:42+00:00

If the charge is less than you were expecting, this could be because VAT has been deducted from the message cost and added elsewhere on your bill. Similarly, it may be that you were expecting, say a £30 charge on your phone bill for a charity donation you made. It’s possible this may appear as three separate £10 charges etc. Ultimately, the total price you pay should always be made transparent to you at the point of purchase, before you incur any charges.

I have multiple charges on my bill?2020-12-14T17:15:57+00:00

When you use phone-paid services, the corresponding charge will often be made to your phone in the form of a ‘bounceback’ or ‘mobile terminating’ message. This is the equivalent of a virtual ‘receipt’ which you will receive on your handset, so it is important not to ignore these. This will appear on your mobile phone bill as a charge, and your standard network rate may appear as a separate charge.

Similarly, it may be that you were expecting, say a £30 charge on your phone bill for a charity donation you made. It’s possible this may appear as three separate £10 charges etc.

How do I stop future additional charges?2020-12-14T17:16:12+00:00

The easiest way to avoid future additional charges on your phone bill is not to interact with a premium rate service you don’t want to be charged for. The cost should always be transparent so you know whether a service is premium rate or not.

If you’d like to end a phone-paid subscription you can usually reply to the service provider’s messages with the word STOP / STOP ALL, or send STOP/ STOP ALL to the shortcode that appears on your phone bill.

If you would prefer not to interact with any phone-paid services, you can request a ‘block’ or ‘bar’ on these services from your phone network operator.

What is Alternative Dispute Resolution?2020-12-14T17:14:20+00:00

Some service providers offer Alternative Dispute Resolution, or ADR. ADR is where a wholly independent body examines both sides of the dispute and provides a binding decision to resolve the dispute. This decision can be weighted either towards the service provider or consumer but each case will be accompanied by a report explaining how the outcome was achieved. The consumer and service provider can use the ADR report if the dispute escalates to the PSA or to the consumer’s network operator. If you are unable to agree a resolution on your phone-paid query with the service provider, then you should ask if they are able to offer ADR as a next step.

Go to Top