Don’t Be Hit By These Hidden Charges When You Sign Up For Broadband
If your daily bedtime and morning ritual involves checking Facebook, watching YouTube, or streaming high bit-rate music from Spotify, you would appreciate a fast and stable broadband connection at home.
We have quite a few options when it comes to home internet packages these days. However, if you are in the market for a good broadband package for your home, there are a few things that you should really consider.
Broadband packages should not be chosen solely based on the monthly subscription prices, because there are a host of other charges you will need to be aware of to avoid being surprised with any additional charges when the time comes.
Here is a list of hidden cost and charges you need to consider for a broadband subscription in Malaysia:
1. Cancellation fee
Did you sign up for a home broadband package for 24 months only to realise that you need to move, and there’s no coverage wherever you are going? If you are not aware, terminating your subscription prior to the end of contract period can cost you an arm and a leg.
Today, most home broadband packages come with contracts of at least 12 months, or if you are getting TIME Fibre, you are looking at a 24 months contract. If you do change your mind due to whatever reasons, be prepared to fork out an exorbitant amount to exit your contract.
Here’s how much you are looking at for cancellation fees:
|After 12 months|
|After 24 months|
One exception to the termination fee is when you are relocating to an area that is not serviced by the ISP. In most cases, you will be able to ask the company to waive the payment if you cannot ask to relocate your existing line.
Maxis Fibre also charges an additional cancellation fee if you opted for its Zerolution programme. While this lets you add devices to your subscription for a low monthly price, you will have to pay off the remaining months left on your contract if you want to cancel.
Zerolution contracts are renewed at the end of each 24-month cycle; so you will want to keep this in mind when considering if Maxis Fibre Zerolution is for you. Additionally, Maxis will charge you an additional RM200 fee if the devices are not returned in working condition.
2. Non-resident deposit
Competitive pricing for high-speed broadband Internet connection caught your fancy? Unfortunately, if you are not a citizen or resident in Malaysia, you can expect to pay way more than the published prices for the fibre broadband subscriptions.
If you are non-Malaysians, you are required to fork out a few hundred bucks in cash as a deposit. However, certain ISPs like TIME Fibre, do allow waiver under certain condition, such as signing up for auto debit payment with a debit or credit card.
Here’s how much you can expect to pay if you are a non-resident in the country looking for home Internet connection:
TM UniFi is a much better option for foreigners in the country as they do not require additional deposit to sign up. This deposit is used to offset any outstanding payment on the subscription, in the event the subscribers fail to make monthly payment.
3. Voice call rates
Today broadband packages usually come bundled with IPTV such as UniFi TV and Astro, and also a phone line. Some packages do offer certain amount of free talk time, such as 330 minutes or 600 minutes’ worth of FREE calls to all mobile and land lines in Malaysia respectively for Maxis Fibre Broadband packages.
However, ISPs like TIME and TM UniFi do not offer any free minutes for voice. If you like talking on the phone, it’s worth your penny to check out the call rates before you sign up for a plan.
|Local call rates to |
|Nationwide call rates |
to fixed line
|Call rates to local |
600 minutes and a flat
rate of RM0.10/minute
UniFi offers one of the most expensive voice rates compared to TIME and Maxis. If you do make a lot of calls using your landline, then this could make or break your broadband deal. Maxis on the other hand offers the best rate for all local calls, and if you are a Maxis ONE mobile subscriber, you also get free unlimited calls and SMS on your mobile.
TIME also has a clause that requires you to pay for the remaining months on your voice plan package if you decide to cancel your broadband plan. This is not part of the broadband subscription, but rather included as part of the agreement for the voice call package (which is optional).
4. Other charges
There are other types of charges which you may have not heard about but it’s good to be aware of what they are.
TIME broadband’s home fibre agreement requires that you take the security of your home network very seriously. The company reserves the right to fine you (clause 4.4 of the user agreement) if it discovers that your devices have been turned into part of a bot network and you did not attempt to mitigate the chance of it happening.
This happens if a cybercriminal manages to infect your devices (which can be everything from laptops to smart washing machines) with a computer virus, and then gets them to attack websites.
While you’re unlikely to ever be hit by this charge, this is something you should be aware that might be happening. If this happens, TIME is more likely to be able to tell if there is something wrong with your network than you are.
Very often, broadband subscribers make their decisions solely based on the monthly subscription fee, and only found out all the hidden charges when things go wrong.
These hidden charges are usually avoidable if you put them into consideration before you sign up for a broadband package. The trick is to shop around to make sure you truly are getting the best deal.
Looking for a broadband package for your home? Compare what’s available in the market and apply for a home fibre broadband here.