Ofcom announces cap on rip-off 118 directory enquiry call charges 

30th November 2018

The 118 directory enquiry service can be a very useful tool when trying to obtain certain phone numbers.  However it’s become increasingly easy to be put off using them as some providers have been found charging up to a jaw-dropping £20 for a 90 second call!

If you’ve been put off using a directory service due to the high fees, here’s some good news. Ofcom has become increasingly concerned about the dramatic rise in the price consumers pay to call 118 directory enquiries and have decided to introduce a price cap.118 118

Ofcom’s research has found that roughly 450,000 people paid a total of £2.4m a year more than they expected to pay  when calling 118 directory numbers.

It’s rumoured that these changes will come into place from April 1st2019 and the call charges will be capped at around £3.65 per 90 seconds.  This price cap will make the use of 118 services far more viable than their current pricing structure

Ofcom’s director of consumer policy, Jane Rumble stated that

“Directory enquiry prices have risen in recent years, and callers are paying much more than they expect”

“We’re taking action to protect callers by capping 118 prices. This will significantly cut the cost of many calls, and bring them back to 2012 levels.”

With more than a million people a year still using directory services, it’s crucial that these people are not taken advantage of and these new regulations set by Ofcom will do just that.

Here’s a quick breakdown of the current costs of calling 118 directory services:


Code Service Operator Tariff Band
118000 EE (Orange) NDQ EE (Orange) SC067 – Service Charge 80p + 25p/min
118003 Virgin Media – NTL International Directory Enquiries


Virgin Media SC045 – Service Charge £3.99 + £1.39/min
118060 British Telecom – International DQ British Telecom SC069 – Service Charge £4.99 + £1.35/min


WorldCom – Worldcom International DQ Verizon UK SC060 – Service Charge 77p + £1.55/min


Talk Talk Business – DQ Services for calling card products Talk Talk Business SC066 – Service Charge £2/call
118118 Full National and International DQ Service in English with call completion and classified directory The Number UK SC087 – Service Charge £8.98 + £4.49/min
118190 Virgin Media – TW DQ International Virgin Media SC068 – Service Charge £3.99 + £1.39/min
118323 Tesco Stores Ltd – Service 3 Vodafone (C&W) SC078 – Service Charge £1.50 + £1.50/min