Canada’s Competition Bureau, a law enforcement agency advocating for fair play for consumers navigating in the business environment, has labelled this week as Switch Week. According to a press release from the Competition Bureau, “By switching your telecom, insurance and banking providers or renegotiating your contracts, you can take advantage of competition to lower your monthly bills and get better products and services.”
The release suggests five steps consumers should take to make sure they are getting the best service and value from their providers.
Step one: Consider when the best time would be to make a switch. Reviewing options near the end of a contract period will allow a consumer to change plans without breaking an agreement and incurring extra fees.
Step two: Consumers should review their current plan to determine if it is still the right fit or if changes are needed. Put the current plan side by side with a competitor when comparing plan details and costs.
Step three: Research other options to see what is available. Even if consumers decide to stay with their current provider, that provider may be open to adjusting current services or renegotiating terms.
Step four: When setting up a new service, be mindful of deadlines and renewal requirements. Give yourself time to set up a new plan before the old one expires. If switching providers, follow up to make sure the original provider knows to cancel its service when new coverage starts.
Step five: Make a habit of reviewing your telecom, insurance, and banking choices. Be ready to evaluate how your own needs may have changed. Also keep in mind that providers can change their terms over time. Reviewing your service contracts will help guarantee that you are setting yourself up with services and prices that address your changing needs.
Canadian consumers surveyed said that on average, they saved $1,860 CAD [$1,464 USD] per year when they re-evaluated services for their cell phones, internet, television, home and car insurance, and banking.
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