Paper bills: consumers paying more than necessary

In the United Kingdom, companies charging their customers for paper bills or statements may be taking advantage of them by increasing charges to as much as a 442%.

According to a recent investigation by Keep Me Posted, UK customers who cannot go online or cimply choose to receive their bills on paper are being charged an average of £1.67 (and up to £1.90) for a monthly statement. This is particularly true for mobile phone companies, telecoms and broadband service providers.

This figure stands in stark contrast to the actual cost of a bill or statement sent out by a company, ranging between 35p and 65p depending on the total volume of mailings. Indeed, it indicates that companies may be making a profit by passing on inflated costs to their customers.

Further evidence could be seen in the costs for more ad-hoc requests such as duplicate bank statements which cost the customer £5 and more per statement.

Judith Donovan CBE, Chair of the Keep Me Posted campaign, said: “Until recently, big business quite rightly considered paper bills and statements the preferred means of communicating important financial and other information to customers. The figures we have uncovered as part of our investigation indicate that some companies now feel that not only can they pass on the cost to their customers but they can actually profit from inflated charges at the customer’s expense.”

KeepMePosted EU will keep you updated as the story unfolds.

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