The news that BT will increase its line rental and call charges may well prove to be a decisive argument that competitors like Virgin Media, Sky and Talktalk will use to convince BT customers to jump ship.
However, BT customers will be able to cut the line rental cost by opting for an annual line rental fee which will cost £131.88 or £10.99 per month, a saving of £1.05 per month compared to the paper-free billing option.
Furthermore, until the 29th of October, BT will reduce the annual cost to £113.88 or £9.49 per month, that's a saving of £2.55 per month. The company will be introducing the new charges on the 1st of October 2010.
Costs are higher for those not paying by direct debit and opting for a paper bills.
Note that you won't pay charges to calls on UK landlines during the weekend and if you intend to make more than 90 minutes worth of daytime calls per month, you'd be better off opting for the £4.99 unlimited Anytime calling plan.
Talktalk's cheapest package adds Evening calls and calls to 36 international landline destinations and costs £14.44. Virgin Media on the other hand charges £11.99 per month for a Talk weekend service while Sky includes free broadband as well for £11.54.
The rise in cost is unlikely to hit those customers who receive Income support, Jobseeker's Allowance or Employment support as BT Basic line rental still remains on £13.50 for every 3 months with a call allowance of £4.50 for three months.