Archive for the ‘Telephone lines & call tariffs’ Category


3 Digit numbers and helplines

Monday, November 27th, 2017

Do you know the 3 digit telephone numbers to use for the various helplines?

Here’s the low down on the most popular used numbers.

999 is the traditional emergency number within the UK. This service has been operating for 80 years and caters for all life-threatening emergencies handled by Police, Ambulance and Fire & Rescue services.  This number is free.

112 is also for emergencies. There is no difference between 999 or 112 they both do the same thing.  112 is the result of a 1994 EU directive to standardized emergency numbers across Europe. The number is free.

111 This the NHS medical advisory service, which is a non-emergency service, to be used when the situation is not life threatening. The number is free.

101 is the Police non-emergency number. You should use this number if you want to report a crime that does not need an emergency response. Calls to this number are not free. The charge is currently 15p per minute regardless of the length of the call or whether you call from a landline or mobile. The charge for this call is made by the carrier not the Police.

105 is the National Power service number.  This is the number to call if you have a power cut or have questions relating to safety issues concerning power.  The number is free.

123 is the Speaking Clock. This service was introduced in Britain in 1936 and is still popular today, receiving more than 30 million calls a year. In 1936 a call to the Speaking Clock was just a penny but today it costs approximately 45p per minute when calling from a landline. This can vary depending on providers so it pays to check.

100 is the Operator. The service can help with all calling issues, reverse call charges and booking alarm calls within the UK.  Charges may vary depending upon provider.

151 is the International Operator. For assistance when making a call or when having difficulty reaching a number outside the UK. Charges may vary depending upon provider.

192 was the number for Direct Enquiries, however this was replaced by the 118 range (for example 118 118) and can be very expensive.  Always check costs if you think you need to use this number.

Directory Enquiries Rip Off

Tuesday, April 5th, 2016

In the old days if you needed a telephone number the quickest way to find it was by dialling 192 directory enquiries. This was the way for 47 years. To begin with the service was free and then BT got wise and started to charge but even so it was still a popular tool for finding a number quickly. In 2001 the industry regulator felt that BT was abusing their position and made the decision to open up the field to competition. Old GPO Phone

Enter 118 118, the men with the moustaches and similar services. Not only can they find the number you’re looking for but they can connect you too! It seems very efficient, not to mention handy for you, you don’t have to write the number down, just hang on the line whilst they connect you. Job done!

But hang on a minute, it may seem convenient at first but when your telephone bill lands in your lap you may think twice.

We have received reports from two customers recently saying they had been charged £78 and £92 for using the 118 118 service and could not understand why it was so much for a single call. In both instances they had agreed to be put through to the number they were looking for. The charges are ridiculously expensive. Not only were they paying high fees for the initial enquiry but they continued to pay premium rates for the entire duration of the call. A 30 minute phone conversation could easily cost you £150 and much more if calling from a mobile.

Fortunately most people turn to the internet these days and search for the details they want, which is of course free, however, there are still people using this service unaware that they are about to run up a huge bill. canstockphoto13268529

If you have to use this service then write the number down, hang up and dial the number yourself, it may be slower, it may be less convenient but one things for sure, it will definitely be cheaper. Do be aware that your initial call may cost in the region of £5.

• Never let them connect you
• Use the internet wherever possible
• Use an alternative 118 service, there are cheaper options, however this may involve registering and your information may go into a database which will likely sell your details.
• 195 is a special directory for people with disabilities. You will need to complete a form and get it signed by your GP to sign up to this service.

Business Telecom Rates

Tuesday, October 29th, 2013

Our call usage is changing all the time, as are the tariffs yet it is not unusual to find customers with the same call package they’ve had for years.

Is it about time you gave your office telecoms on overhaul? You could be pleasantly surprised.

Over-paying a few pounds a week might not sound too disastrous, but adding it up over a year might be enough to make you sit down and check your bill.
There are many deals to be had at the moment but beware of the cheap options, you know the ones that almost sound too good to be true, they often come with a fixed term, where you get locked in and can be difficult to escape.

You also might want to consider the type of service you receive from your provider, how easy is it to report a fault? Is it easy to communicate with them? Are they helpful? Can you rely on them to deal with your query quickly and efficiently or do you have to make constant phone calls chasing them up, only to speak to different people each time. It could be time for a change.

If you are too busy to check your bill, why not email us a copy and we’ll make a start for you. We offer a free audit service so will be happy to look at the rates and compare prices for you.
Email your bill to with ‘audit my bill’ in the subject line.

Need more business phone lines?

Sunday, June 20th, 2010

Business phone lines are the arteries that keep your business going.

They’re your way of communicating with the outside world and few, if any, businesses can survive if access to communications is unreliable or limited.


If you’ve ever been in the position of needing to make a call but have been constantly unable to get an outside line, then you’ll know how frustrating and possibly business damaging that can be.

Equally, clients that keep trying to call you only to receive an engaged signal in response are not likely to keep trying indefinitely. They’ll simply call someone that is capable of taking their calls.


The days when business phone lines carried only voice communications are now almost entirely gone.

If the phone line is the artery of a business then data is its blood.

Many businesses now send large amounts of data up and down their phone lines to and from the internet or other information systems

If your systems and phone lines aren’t capable of supporting that, you may be facing trouble in the not too distant future.

Integration is key

In fact, important as phone lines are, they need to be seen in association with your entire business telephony infrastructure.

That includes lines, any forms of routers you have installed, PCs and your business telephone system.

Thinking about any component of this in isolation may be dangerous. Having one component that is state-of-the-art and fully fit for purpose may not yield you much benefit if other components are incompatible or outmoded.

Into this integration view should also go telephone systems maintenance. Getting the best out of your integrated systems typically involves regular expert maintenance.

Holding you back

Having outmoded business phone and data systems may severely hold back your business from the opportunities offered by the modern world’s technology explosion.

That’s probably not a position you’ll want to occupy, particularly given the relatively modest costs of some very powerful entry-level systems.

So, if you’re thinking about expanding your business telecoms support or simply trying to fix some existing problems, contacting a supplier such as ourselves that has appropriate business telephony experience may be a good idea.

We will be able to help you identify what’s required and at a price that fits your budget. It may be a case of additional business phone lines – but there may be other opportunities as well!