A simple trick to get a good deal on your Airtel broadband subscription, ahead of a planned disruption in the broadband market by Reliance Jio, is to negotiate for discounts and free data.
It may not actually be like bargaining with your vegetable vendor, but Airtel is offering you discounts and free data only if you are smart enough to just give them a call and negotiate. Just ahead of the Reliance JioGigaFiber launch, several Airtel broadband customers have secured discounts on monthly broadband bills by simply asking for them.
As part of its retention strategy for customers who may be lured away by lucrative offers from Reliance Jio, which is offering free 100GB data for the first 90 days under a preview offer, Bharti Airtel is offering customer retention discounts and bonus data.
Airtel has already announced new plans, with more data at lower cost. For several plans, the telecom service provider has removed its fair usage policy (FUP) limits, which allows unlimited data at the same speed. Most of these new plans have not been declared on Airtel’s website and can be uncovered by talking to the customer care helpline or by keeping an eye out on pamphlets or outdoor advertisements.
Such packages, however, vary from city to city. But since Reliance Jio has made it evident that it will disrupt the broadband market in India with 1Gbps data and cheap prices, Airtel has taken another step to protect its 9.53 crore customer base.
Airtel broadband users who are calling up the customer care helpline and trying to negotiate a deal with more discounts or bonus data are bagging benefits. These deals are being provided case by case without any official announcement from the service provider.
All such calls seeking discounts or subscribers asking to discontinue their Airtel broadband service are being transferred to a team specially assigned to retain customers. The executive online tries to understand what kind of deal the customer is looking at and based on the feedback prepares an irresistible offer. For example, if you are happy with 30 GB monthly data but find the monthly rental expensive, you can ask for cheaper plans with the same data limit. Or if you want more data at the same speed then also you can demand free bonus data.
Darshana Agarwal, a housewife living in Noida, wanted both. She called up the helpline and got her 30GB plan cost reduced to ₹ 499 from ₹ 599 and had the data doubled. An Airtel executive told her that this is a special customer retention discount and customer retention bonus data offer.
The Reliance Jio effect
Through its wireless broadband, Reliance Jio is already dominating the broadband market in India with a 48% market share, according to June 2018 data from the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai). Existing operators, especially in the wired broadband segment, fear the situation may worsen after Jio GigaFiber broadband is launched. Once the service is made available in the next few months, Jio has promised not to charge installation fees or rent for the first three months. With plans to roll out broadband services in 1,000 cities, Reliance Jio will offer 100GB data at a speed of 100Mbps free for 90 days.
It will only charge a refundable security deposit of ₹ 4,500 against the Jio broadband modem.