When paying your bills providers will usually ask you to pay by Direct Debit, but there are other options and payment methods available.
You might want to pay for your broadband by debit or credit card, cheque or cash – but it’s worth noting that not all broadband providers are equal.
Some don’t offer broadband without Direct Debit at all, while others accept other payment methods but will charge you for the privilege.
BT offers alternatives to Direct Debit payments, but these come with their own complications.
For example, if you are not paying via a debit or credit card (this isn’t limited to Direct Debit payments) then you need to subscribe to BT’s Line Rental Plus service.
This service offers extra features, but will cost you £2 extra every month.
If you do choose this option, you can pay at PayPoint outlets at many newsagents and petrol stations using cash or cheque.
If you pay by credit card but do not use Direct Debit, you will incur a charge of £6 a month as a Payment Processing Fee.
Direct Save Telecom will only accept Direct Debit as a means of payment for broadband packages.
EE offers several options if you want to pay broadband without Direct Debit.
You can pay by cheque, or using a credit or debit card to make a payment either online or by telephone. A small charge of 42p a month will be added for all non-direct debit payment methods.
First Utility offer discounts on broadband for those who get their gas and electric through the same company, and offer Direct Debit payments on all three.
However, if you choose to pay via a different method (those offered include bank transfer, cheque, and credit card) you will be charged an extra £1 a month on top of your bill.
You can pay your monthly bills with John Lewis via Direct Debit, credit card, or cheque, while a one-off payment will only be accepted by credit or debit card.
Plusnet actually provides broadband to John Lewis Broadband customers, so any fees incurred for alternative payment methods will be similar to those for Plusnet customers.
Now offers a rolling monthly contract for your broadband instead of a longer 12 or 18-month fixed term, but this can only be paid for using a monthly Direct Debit payment.
The Post Office may not be the first name you think of when it comes to prospective broadband providers, but they stand out from the rest here due to the fact that they do not charge customers for paying their bills by alternative means.
You can pay over the counter in the Post Office by cash, cheque, or credit card without incurring extra fees for your broadband.
Plusnet have stopped accepting cheque and cash payments, which means there are fewer options available for those who want to pay for their broadband without setting up a Direct Debit.
Customers can pay with a credit card for their monthly bills if requested, but will be charged an extra £1.50 for “payment collection and processing charges”.
TalkTalk accepts recurring payments in one of two ways, by direct debit, or by credit card payments, although the latter involves extra charges amounting to £6 a year.
Sky also accepts credit card payments for those choosing no Direct Debit options, but charges will be incurred. There are no payment alternatives available, as cash payments, cheques, and bank transfers are not accepted.
Previously, Virgin Media customers who choose no Direct Debit options for broadband could be charged up to £5 a month, but these fees were slashed in April of 2016, and you will now only be charged an extra 45p per month.
The change was make in line with the 2012 Consumer Rights (Payment Surcharges) Regulations which stated that traders could not charge more than the “direct cost borne by them as a result of the consumer using a given means of payment.”
Broadband bills with Vodafone can only be paid by Direct Debit, there are no alternatives available.