Landline Deals for Pensioners – Good Practical Advice

Vikki BournerWritten by Vikki Bourner, on 16 May, 2024

Looking for landline deals for pensioners? This blog offers you some practical advice to consider before you dive head-first into your search.

If you’re part of the oldest and wisest generation you likely see your home phone as an essential lifeline. It’s your connection to loved ones, emergency services, and the world beyond your doorstep.

With landlines retiring in favour of digital voice, many people assume that their current landline provider will just switch them over when the time comes, but this won’t always be the case. Some companies won’t offer new home VoIP, Plusnet being a classic example. Others may not offer VoIP landline deals for pensioners that are suitable or affordable.

The question is, where are the phone line-only deals? Where are the cheap phone plans for seniors? They are sure hard to find! And when searching you’re met with complex pricing plans, hidden fees, and features that may not cater to your unique needs as an older adult. Trying to find the right provider can prove to be impossible at times.

So, in good old Phonely fashion, we’ve put together a helpful guide that aims to simplify the process, offering clear insights, recommendations and advice to help you or your loved one find the most cost-effective and user-friendly landline service.

How to discover the right landline provider for your needs.

Landline basics to consider

Before you start, you should know that searching for affordable phone line-only deals or landline deals for pensioners may not yield many helpful results. This is because the new digital voice home phone requires broadband to work. Your best bet is to search for digital voice or VoIP-only deals.

But before you get Googling, it’s a great idea to decide whether you want your plan to be inclusive of broadband or if you wish to have that separately. You should also make a note of what’s important to have in your perfect landline deal. Here are things you should consider,

1. Call needs: Think about how many calls you make per day & per week & how long they tend to last. To what destinations are those calls? Local, national, or international? This will help you to determine the appropriate call package or allowance.

2. Budget & pricing structure: If you are of pension age, chances are that you live on a fixed income. This can make affordability a vital factor when seeking out a new home phone provider. If your income is particularly low, you may be entitled to Pension Credit.

3. Ease of use: As we get older, some of us just want an easy life! If that’s you, look for providers that promote themselves as user-friendly. Also, consider new handsets with larger easy-to-read buttons or screens.

4. Helpful features: The great thing about VoIP is that you get crystal clear audio quality. But other features may be helpful to you too. These could include voicemail if you miss any calls or an easy-to-search & dial contact book.

Comparing the best basic home phone deals

If you’re just looking to swap your current landline over to digital voice, without the frills, then you have options. Below we’ve created a table which compares what the big providers offer in respect of basic packages. We’ve also added ourselves in there too, in case you’re curious!

This table shows the features, benefits and costs of basic plans of several big brand phone providers and Phonely.

As you can see, it can be expensive if you want to stick to the big companies that you know. Plus, what this chart doesn’t show is the cost after your contract has ended. For example, with Virgin Media, after your initial contract period ends, your bill will double to £56 a month. At Phonely, you may see a small yearly price rise of 3.9% in accordance with the Consumer Price Index Rate of inflation. This is standard for BT and Sky too.

The above chart also highlights that BT, Sky and Virgin Media are prioritising their broadband services over home phones with their pay-as-you-go calling and call limits. It’s true that here at Phonely we do not supply broadband but when you consider the cost of calls with other providers, you can see how it can make sense to keep your broadband and home phone separate.

A realistic landline price comparison

To demonstrate a true-to-life price comparison, below we’ve created another chart to make clear the costs of the following real-life scenarios:

  1. You call your local surgery at least once a month, for prescriptions or to arrange an appointment. This is always on a weekday morning & worst case scenario you are on hold for 20 minutes, then talk for 3 minutes – it’s hard to get through these days.
  2. You speak to various friends on the phone during the week. You take turns calling each other. This means you dial one of them & chat for more than an hour at a time, once a week, usually on a Wednesday lunchtime.
  3. You touch base with one of your closest family members via their mobile number, at the weekends, the conversations are about 30 minutes, and you call once a week.
  4. You usually have some admin to take care of every month. Whether it’s a call to a utility company or local council, to pay a bill or renew a subscription, it’s during the week, lasts 15 minutes on average & is usually a local number.
Comparing call costs.

Pay-as-you-go costs soon mount up, even when your home phone isn’t used every day. As a society, we’ve all been convinced that we should bundle all our services together to get a better deal, but as you can see from this chart – this isn’t always the case.

Features that could benefit older adults & the vulnerable

As technology improves, criminals find new ways to part us from our money. So with the advent of digital voice and VoIP, it’s wise to consider security measures. Scams and fraud are proven to be on the rise so protection is important. Luckily, some home phone providers have noticed this (including Phonely) and are putting tools in place to help keep customers safe. With this in mind, here are some features you could look out for in your search for the best phone service.

  • Emergency assistance: Some landline services offer dedicated emergency buttons, priority routing to emergency services, or pre-arranged human support & backup.
  • Nuisance call blocking: Advanced call screening & blocking tools can filter out unwanted sales calls & potential scams.
  • Robust scam call protection: Ant-scam introductions, call recording & keyword notifications can stop phone criminals at every turn.

BT and Sky offer call barring within their call packages which is a great start. At Phonely we unrivalled scam protection with CallGuard.

Protection against scams has never been more important.

Final tips for choosing a landline deal

Before you commit to the best landline deals for pensioners or cheap phone plan for seniors (however they’ve sold it to you) make sure you do your due diligence.

  • Beware of hidden fees: Carefully review the terms & conditions to avoid unexpected charges for activation, early termination, or additional services.
  • Avoid long contracts: Opt for flexible, commitment-free plans that allow you to switch providers if your needs change.
  • Customer service reputation: Research providers’ customer service records & reviews, to ensure you’ll get prompt & accessible support when needed.
Always check the small print and reviews

Summing up landline deals for pensioners

Finding the right landline deal is crucial for everyone, including pensioners because you’re seeking reliable communication, peace of mind, and value for money. By considering factors like call needs, budget, ease of use, and advanced features, you can make an informed decision that enhances your life and retirement.

And remember, service bundles don’t always represent a value-for-money or cheaper deal. More often than not, having your broadband and home phone separate can be far more budget-friendly.

If you’re concerned about scams and fraud, at Phonely we have lots of information on our blogs, social media and even a free downloadable booklet. There’s also Citizens Advice who run campaigns on scam awareness, Age UK and Friends Against Scams are also available to contact and have websites full of advice. There is a lot out there for you to learn to enable you to be vigilant and feel confident when you pick up your phone. You’re not alone.

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