Home » Competition »Consumer News »Frontier »Internet Overcharging »Rural Broadband » Currently Reading:

Frontier Adds New $1.50 Surcharge to Broadband Bills; Customers Told It Will Improve Service

Phillip Dampier August 23, 2011 Competition, Consumer News, Frontier, Internet Overcharging, Rural Broadband 8 Comments

Frontier Communications is adding a new $1.50 monthly surcharge for broadband customers not currently enrolled in a “price protection agreement.”  Labeled the HSI Surcharge, the new fee started showing up on customer bills this month, with only a vague explanation buried inside the bill:

Courtesy: Manmaniac

Frontier's Fast One.

Customers attempting to get an explanation of what this charge was all about got a myriad of answers from Frontier customer service representatives:

  • It’s a broadband tax;
  • It’s a surcharge to help pay for network improvements;
  • It’s a charge for customers who refuse to take a price protection plan;
  • It’s a rate increase.

Stop the Cap! called Frontier this afternoon and was told it was designed to collect additional revenue to fund network expansion and was, effectively a rate increase.  Even customers on 1-3 year price protection agreements will eventually pay the “surcharge” as their agreements expire.  It is not a government-mandated charge or tax.

Effectively, this rate increase allows the company to advertise their Internet service at a deceptively low price, until customers discover Frontier’s modem rental fees and surcharges.  In 2009, during Stop the Cap!‘s flirtation with Frontier DSL, we found the “out the door” price for their 3.1Mbps service was actually higher than that charged by Time Warner Cable’s 10Mbps Road Runner service.

Currently there are 8 comments on this Article:

  1. Elena says:

    We have to stop these stealing as Frontier will continue to do so in the future!!!

  2. Annie says:

    And even if you have what you think is a price protection plan, they can add this surcharge to your bill. Two and half years ago I signed up for an internet package with a price guaranteed for life, but because of the fine print that says the guaranteed price doesn’t include taxes or surcharges, Frontier effectively raised the cost of my service. I know Frontier/Verizon was losing money on FIOS — is this their way of recouping some of that?

  3. Dave says:

    Thanks for this article, STC. I’ve been in an exchange of views with Frontier’s office at 41st St. in Everett, WA.

    Here’s the fifth excuse for the HSI surcharge: “The official reason is this: This pass thru surcharge on High Speed Internet service is due to increased costs brought on by the rapid volume growth of services like internet video.” That’s an exact quote from someone in the Customer Relations/GM Partnership Team, who also offered up a ‘but we’re not as bad as Comcast’ argument. Great way to make the sale, eh?

    $1.50 times unknown tens of thousands of customers is substantial. I won’t have it. My account is set to close in several days. Until people are prepared to 1) close their accounts and 2) do so in cooperation as publicly as possible, this will continue. I’ll be checking for follow-up comments, in case there’s an appetite for a larger response.

  4. Dave says:

    The class-action lawsuit is in Minnesota. Here’s the link.

  5. Julia says:

    We have to stop this junk fee. If we don’t, frontier will continue to charge more under the name “state taxes and other charges”!!

  6. john says:

    I know its an all post but it is the current top list for “hsi surcharge” searches.

    Just talked to a frontier rep “it is a federal fee mandatory for all internet subscribers”
    The modem rental fee is mandatory from Frontier regardless if you have your own modem or use theirs.

    • They are wrong. There is no federally mandated HSI surcharge. In fact, the only federally mandated fee is the one that funds the Universal Service Fund, which is now being reformed to help divert money to rural broadband.

      Frontier is charging just another bill-padding junk fee on their customers, just like the always-increasing “modem rental fee.”

      It is why I don’t recommend Frontier products to my friends and family. They deliver lower speeds and charge higher out the door prices than the local cable company. It just makes so sense to do business with them.

Search This Site:


Recent Comments:

  • Paul Houle: It's a very interesting situation. The track record for mergers tends to be pretty bad both in terms of making money and the impact on consumers. ...
  • James T.: How come corporations like Comcast,At&t,Verizon,Frontier,Centurylink,Charter, Fairpoint etcera are embolden at the behaste of The Universal Servic...
  • Fred Pilot: I propose a federal solution in my 2015 eBook, "Service Unavailable: America's Telecommunications Infrastructure Crisis." It is clear to me that witho...
  • Josh: Geez, how "fun". I was going to say you can save a little, plus be safer, by doing your own cable box + router, except if you're doing phone throug...
  • Elissa: So I just got the letter it's says on average we use 978 a month yes I have 3 school aged kids plus our phone and there dvr box all come from the mode...
  • LG: This is precisely why we need to federalize and make the internet a utility. Interstate grids should be established with existing right-of ways next ...
  • SAL-e: As they say: "The hope dies last." And you are victim of false dilemma. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/False_dilemma)...
  • Rusty: Dealing with TWC is a real hair puller. I ditched cable TV years ago because I just don't watch TV anymore, most of what I do watch I can stream off ...
  • Phillip Dampier: That's the Frontier way. You sign up for a trial, forget about it, and then the charges show up on a bill page with a dozen other charges and fees and...
  • Ralph: "“Frontier has been pushing us hard to sell customers on our Frontier Secure suite of products, which adds anything from $5 to $25 to your bill..." ...
  • James R Curry: I bet John Oliver won't rail against this deal like he did with Comcast/NBC....
  • Andy: WHAT WILL MORE VERTICAL AND HORIZONTAL M&A LOOK LIKE WITH THIS JIGSAW PUZZLE? Comcast – NBC - NBCU Entertainment - Universal - Universal Studio...

Your Account: