Telecom operator BSNL has shown the first signs of prepaid tariff hike in Kerala circle. BSNL has reduced the validity of several prepaid plans in Kerala, hinting at a possible hike across all the circles in the upcoming weeks. BSNL's popular unlimited plans like the Rs 187, Rs 118, Rs 153 and so on have received a validity reduction in the said circle. Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) has over 10 million subscribers in Kerala alone, so the company seems to be testing the tariff hike in this circle first before reducing the validity of the same plans in other circles. Already, private telcos like Reliance Jio, Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea increased the prices of prepaid tariff plans, and the PSUs BSNL and MTNL are expected to announce the same in 2020.
BSNL Reduces Validity of Several Prepaid Plans in Kerala
In the current scenario, BSNL has the best prepaid plans in the industry. Even the country's basic prepaid plans are offering better benefits than those of private telecom operators. Airtel, Jio and Vodafone Idea hiked prepaid tariff prices by up to 40%, but it seems like BSNL will be just reducing the validity of the existing prepaid plans. Starting with the Rs 118 prepaid plan, it's now providing benefits for just 21 days in Kerala circle, whereas in other circles, the same plan offers 0.5GB data per day, 250 minutes of voice calling every day and 100 SMSes per day for 28 days.
Moving onto the Rs 186 & Rs 187 prepaid plans, they now offer benefits of 3GB data per day, unlimited voice calling with 250 minutes cap and 100 SMSes per day for 24 days in Kerala. However, the same plan is valid for 28 days in other circles. The Rs 153 plan is also valid for 21 days in Kerala circle, down from its earlier validity of 28 days.
Very recently, BSNL has reduced the validity of Rs 29 and Rs 47 across all the circles and this revision is also effective in Kerala telecom circle. Thankfully, BSNL did not revise the popular yearly prepaid plan of Rs 1,699 and it's still providing benefits for 365 days from the date of recharge.
The major reduction in validity happened to the Rs 399 prepaid plan of BSNL. For the unaware, BSNL has a Rs 399 prepaid recharge offering 1GB data per day, 100 SMSes per day and 250 minutes of voice calling for 80 days in every circle, however in Kerala circle, the same Rs 399 plan offers benefits for 65 days. On the brighter side, BSNL has increased the data benefit for 2GB per day in Kerala. The updated list of BSNL prepaid plans can be found in the below image.
BSNL May Reduce the Validity of the Same Plans in Other Circles
At the start of this month, we have reported that BSNL is still in the process of evaluating the new tariff plans and it may come up with the new ones by the end of December 2019. The telco already reduced the validity of entry-level prepaid plans like Rs 29 and Rs 47, and in Kerala circle, majority of the prepaid STVs and PVs already got a validity reduction.
Maybe BSNL is looking to reduce the validity of popular STVs by providing the same benefits as part of its tariff hike strategy. BSNL may announce the new plans in the next couple of weeks as majority of the promotional offers of the operator will expire on December 31, 2019. Having said that, we're pretty sure that BSNL will stay ahead of the competitors with its new prepaid plans.