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How to switch from Virgin Media to BT

Friday, September 1st 2017

If you’re with Virgin Media and are pondering a switch to a new provider, you may be considering BT, which is one of the most popular broadband, TV and phone providers in the UK.

Switching providers can seem stressful at first - the mere prospect of losing your broadband, phone and tv services can be enough to put many people off. But it doesn’t have to be a problem, as our step-by-step guide will show.

Step 1: Decide which services to switch

Work out exactly which services you want to switch before you call BT. If you want to transfer your broadband but would rather keep Virgin Media TV, you can. However, if you want BT TV, you have to also take BT broadband because the BT TV service relies on a BT internet connection.

Step 2: Choose a new deal from BT

BT broadband operates on a different network to Virgin Media broadband, so although you will probably be able to get standard BT broadband, you may not be able to get BT fibre – also known as BT Infinity. During your purchase process, BT will ask for your postcode - this is to check whether BT is available in your area.

Most popular BT packages

  • BT Unlimited Broadband + Calls

    • Up to 17Mb download speed
    • Truly unlimited monthly usage
    • Free weekend calls
    Offer ends 22nd March
    £19 .99
    £59.99 set-up cost includes line rental See Deal
  • BT Unlimited Broadband + Calls + TV Starter & Sport

    • Freeview + BT Sport (add at checkout)
    • Up to 17Mb download speed
    • Truly unlimited monthly usage
    • Free weekend calls
    Offer ends 22nd March
    £19 .99
    £69.99 set-up cost includes line rental See Deal
  • BT Unlimited Infinity 1 + Calls

    • Up to 52Mb download speed
    • Truly unlimited monthly usage
    • Free weekend calls
    Offer ends 22nd March
    £28 .99
    £9.99 set-up cost includes line rental See Deal

See all BT packages

Step 3: Tell Virgin you are leaving

Virgin operates on a different network to BT so you will need to let Virgin Media know you are leaving. Virgin will then send you a letter regarding your cancellation and also give you a date on when your services are going to end. It will also tell you if you have to pay any cancellation fees.

Switching to BT from Virgin Media shouldn’t take you long, though it can take up to two weeks for your new services to activate. If you wait to cancel Virgin Media until your BT services are active, you’ll avoid losing your internet connection.

Frequently asked questions

Does BT impose traffic management?

All BT broadband products are free from traffic management, so downloads and uploads aren’t artificially slowed at any time. There are a few BT broadband products with usage caps however, so check carefully beforehand if you are after an unlimited service.

Will there be installation costs?

You won’t have to pay a connection charge when you join BT, but you may have to pay an activation fee depending on which package you choose. All TV packages are subject to activation fees, and all broadband packages require a charge of £9.99 for delivery of the Home Hub router.

Will I have to pay cancellation charges to leave Virgin Media?

You will only need to pay cancellation charges if you leave Virgin Media while still within the minimum term of your Virgin Media contract. Most Virgin Media broadband, TV and phone contracts last for 12 months, so if you ring to cancel just seven or nine months into your contract you’ll be hit by substantial termination fees.

Do I need a MAC code?

No. You don’t need a MAC code to switch broadband provider any more.

Can I keep my phone number?

When you sign up for BT’s phone service, tell them you want to keep your existing phone number. BT will transfer your phone number from Virgin Media without any further action on your part. Bear in mind this transferral may take a couple of weeks to complete.

Can I keep my email address?

When you cancel your Virgin Media broadband your Virgin email account will remain active for around 90 days. You can’t keep your email address indefinitely if you cancel. Before it shuts down, be sure to back up any important emails and files, because everything stored on the email system will be lost when the account is deactivated.

Why do we need your postcode?

Once you enter your postcode, Cable.co.uk will perform a live lookup and check all the available providers in your area.

This ensures you receive accurate information on the availability of providers and packages in your area.

Your information is safe with us. We won't share your postcode with anyone. Guaranteed.