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Bonjour Bev et al,

I am sure that this topic has been raised before , but has anyone got any suggestions for an alternative to the pricey packages offered by Orange and the like?

We have a 'phone landline( calls extra)/ computer connection + 'free-to-France' 'computer' 'phone/presumably a TV connection plus one mobile phone ( calls extra) package tied in with a Livebox. For this we pay over 100 euros a month.

In the UK we had a similar deal ( once again the TV connection was of no interest) and a separate mobile phone arrangement yet we paid no more than £50/50 Euros/$75 for everything combined.

Any ideas?

Have heard some nightmare stories of people being seduced into special offers which after a few weeks revert to the original rates and thus lock the client into the same yearly contractual nightmare . This is compounded when customer service - never the best at most times - is diminished because the providers for phone/computer/mobile etc are now no longer one and the same.

And while I am on this theme, are all pay-as-you go packages as punitive as Orange?

What ever I prepay on my mobile I have a short time to use the credits and not being a manic consumer (ie not a teenager ) I am usually out of pocket - and then Orange text to say I loose my number if I do not recharge within a week. I am not over concerned by what mobile number I have - not too sure I like being blackmailed.

Apart from that life is great! Best wishes from a sunny France Centre,John
 

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As with all complex questions, "it depends."

You say you aren't interested in the television part of the package. If that's the case, you should be able to put together the services you want, perhaps without the convenience of a "box" package.

Phone landline and Internet depend on your being in an area that is "dégrouppe"" for ADSL, but should be available from most of the standard Internet providers. Or you just get a phone line (through France Telecom) and Internet service through whoever you please. "Free" calls to all France are available through a VOIP provider like Wengo for about 7€ a month and 2 Euro-cents (or less) a minute to most other countries you might want to call.

French mobile phones are alleged to be the most expensive in Europe. I know what you mean about having to use the pay as you go cards in a certain period of time. I have a minimum subscription of 1 hour a month (with 1 month carry-over of what I don't use within a given month) for about 20€ a month. Taking a quick look at some of the alternative carriers for mobiles, they all seem to have about the same rates these days.
Cheers,
Bev
 
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