End of expensive customer service numbers


Today, consumers risk paying a telephone charge for customer service phone numbers in Norway. This will end by October the 15th.


Many businesses use thirty-five and five-digit numbers for their customer services. A phone call to such numbers can cost consumers far beyond the normal price per minute.

Both the Marketing Act, and the European Court of Justice, prohibit traders from referring customers to expensive numbers. The rate should be the same as when calling a regular mobile or landline phone number.

Now the Ministry for Children and Equal Opportunities has warned that businesses have been given a deadline of the 15th of October to comply with the legislation. They must do this either by stoppage of the special numbers, or offer an alternative, and visible customer service number at the normal price.

‘I expect all companies to stop offering only their special special numbers to call their customer services department.

The Consumer Ombudsman will carry out an audit action to ensure that business operators follow the injunction.

Those who fail to do that are at risk of legal action,’ said consumer secretary, Solveig Horne of Fremskrittsparti (Frp) in a press release.

The Consumer Minister also encouraged people to tip the Consumer Ombudsman (Forbrukerombudet) about companies that do not comply with the law.


© NTB Scanpix / Norway Today