How to cancel Virgin Media
By Dan Howdle | Tuesday, March 3rd 2020
No matter how long you've been with Virgin Media, you can cancel. Of course, sometimes that's going to mean early exit fees and sometimes it's not. In this guide we'll walk you through the ins and outs, show you your rights as a customer, when it's okay to leave, when it's not, and what if anything it will ultimately cost you.
The most important thing to know first and foremost is whether you're still in your Virgin Media contract period or not. If you're not sure, worry not. There are some easy ways to find out which we will cover a bit further down. Before we get to the specific ins and outs, then, take a quick look at our checklist and be sure you have everything you need in order to get started.
Checklist: Things to do before you cancel Virgin Media
Before you call Virgin Media or indeed decide whether cancelling your contract is really worth it, it's a good idea to make sure you have the following information to hand.
- Check whether you're still in contract or out of contract – You can log on online at the Virgin Media website to check whether you're still under contract. Alternatively, search your email to find the first emails sent you by Virgin Media. This will usually denote the start of your contract and will also contain the details of your contract length. From there you should be able to figure out whether you're still in your contract period or not. You can also phone Virgin Media, but we wouldn't advise that until a bit further into the process
- Make a note of the correct Virgin Media contact numbers – You can either dial 150 from your Virgin Media home phone or 0345 454 1111 from any other phone
- Know which broadband provider you are switching to – It's a good idea to know where you're going before you take those final steps to leave Virgin Media. You can compare all of the best broadband deals available at your address right here on Cable.co.uk. You can also compare broadband deals by entering your postcode below
Cancelling Virgin Media if you're still in contract
Virgin Media contract termination fees
If you still have time left until the end of your contracted period, Virgin Media is going to charge you what it calls a 'disconnection fee'. Other providers sometimes call this a cancellation fee, or an early exit fee. Virgin Media would prefer you don't think of it as a punishment for leaving early, but instead as compensation paid to Virgin Media for having set you up with services you will not be using for the minimum period and, it would argue, therefore not allowing it to make a profit.
Virgin Media's terms and conditions are rather wishy-washy when it comes to describing exactly what it is you're likely to pay, stating you may pay 'up to' 100% of your monthly payments for however long is left on your contract. However, further investigation reveals that most of the stated disconnection fees are between 80% and 82% of your monthly tariff for the remainder of the period.
As an example, then, if you had six months left on your contract and your monthly payments for your Virgin Media services are £50 per month, you will pay around £40 multiplied by the six months remaining, or around about £240. Ouch! Sometimes, though – sometimes you can cancel for free, even if you're still under contract. Let's look at that next.
Cancelling Virgin Media broadband and TV at the same time
If you have both Virgin Media broadband and TV in a bundle, it's double trouble. Cancelling your services means paying a 'disconnection' fee of 80-100% of what remains on your contract including both services. Virgin Media will want its V6 set-top box back, too, and you will have to go to the extra trouble of boxing it up and posting it. Same if you just want to cancel Virgin TV.
When you can cancel Virgin Media broadband and/or TV for free
A contract works both ways. If you think Virgin Media has a cheek charging you for every month of your contract whether you end it or not, just remember that Virgin Media has a host of obligations to you too. And it's when it breaks one of those obligations that you have the opportunity to cancel Virgin Media during your contract for free.
Here are the four scenarios when you could leave without paying.
- During your free cancellation or 'cooling off' period – The law states that you have 14 days from and including the day your services are switched on to leave without any further charge. This is often referred to as a 'cooling off period'. The only thing you won't be compensated for will be any money you spent on pay-per-view TV. You can't sign up, watch the latest Tyson Fury fight, then cancel. Virgin Media will still charge you for what you watched
- When your service is faulty and Virgin Media cannot fix it – This rarely happens, but if your Virgin Media services develop a fault (ultra-slow broadband, outages, TV interruptions and so on) and you have given Virgin Media four weeks to fix it and it has failed to do so, you can leave without charge
- When you are getting broadband at a fraction of the speeds promised – Virgin Media will supply you with the average speed you should expect at your address when you sign up. If your speeds fall below the promised level then you may have grounds to leave without charge, provided Virgin Media cannot remedy the situation. Do remember, though, that when measuring your speed you must do so with a computer attached with a LAN cable to the router. Wifi cannot deliver the full speeds available on the Virgin Media network and should not be used if you wish to see what speed you're getting
- When Virgin Media raises the price of your package – If Virgin Media hikes the price of your broadband during your contract period it has to send you a letter to inform you it is doing so. You can cancel free of charge within 30 days of receiving that letter
Cancelling Virgin Media if you're out of contract
If you've checked and you're out of contract the world is you're oyster. You can cancel and switch to another provider with very little fuss. But before you call 150 from your Virgin Media home phone or 0345 454 1111 from any other phone to tell Virgin Media you're leaving, we strongly recommend you keep the following in mind regarding retentions.
How to deal with Virgin Media's retentions team
Virgin Media don't want you to leave. No provider does. Sometimes that means it will attempt sweet-talk you into staying, and sometimes even offer you a better deal than you're getting if it will convince you. There are no hard and fast rules in terms of what it might offer you or not, but it's a good idea to get a few things clear in your head before you make that call.
- Know which provider you are switching to and why – If you're simply unhappy with Virgin Media, it will want to know why top see if it can smooth things over. If on the other hand you just want to change or to take advantage of another provider's special offer, it's a good idea to know what's on offer as this will give Virgin Media a chance to match it. You can still walk, but having a game plan is always a good thing
- Be assertive – If you're a pushover then let's face it, you're probably never leaving Virgin Media as it will talk you out of it every time. Be prepared to stand your ground if leaving is what you really want
- Be prepared to take a better deal if one is offered – Every now and then Virgin Media will offer you the moon on a stick if you'll stay. It might knock a significan chunk off your monthly bill for example. Don't count on it offering this, though, as it doesn't always work. If you're telling Virgin Media you're leaving you'd best be prepared to follow through on that threat if it doesn't offer you a better deal
Cancelling Virgin Media if you're moving house
If you are still under contract with Virgin Media, you want to move house, but Virgin Media is not available at your new property, it will still charge you an early exit fee regardless of that fact. However unfair that may seem, Ofcom has looked into this and for a short while Virgin Media even changed its policy. However, it has now reverted back.
Frequently asked questions
What happens to my Virgin Media router and set-top box?
When you sign up for broadband or TV services with Virgin Media, the router and TV box come as part of the service. You'll usually be expected to return them when you leave, and the company could charge you for them if you don't.
Can I keep my Virgin Media email address?
If you quit Virgin broadband, you'll get a grace period of 90 days, but you'll then lose your mail service. You'll need to make sure you save any contacts, emails and files you wish to keep before your account is closed.
What if Virgin Media owes me a refund?
In some cases, where you've paid for services in advance, you may be due a refund when you leave. In this case, you'll get a cheque sent out 35 days after your account is closed. And you could be waiting even longer, with Virgin Media claiming the cheque could then take another ten days to arrive.
What is Virgin Media's cancellation number?
To cancel your Virgin Media contract, dial 150 from your Virgin Media home phone or 0345 454 1111 from any other phone.