Consumers often find it difficult to cancel subscription services

Britons are paying considerable sums of money towards subscription services they want to bring to an end.

Britons are paying considerable sums of money towards subscription services they want to bring to an end.

Last week, Citizens Advice warned that a significant number of consumers are signing up to appealing packages which they later find are rather difficult to cancel.

The organisation carried out a wide-reaching investigation into the policies in place for some of the country’s most popular subscription services, including gym memberships and online steaming platforms.

Analysing close to 600 cases it has dealt with in the three months to August this year, Citizens Advice found that the typical individual was paying more than £50 a month for services they no longer wanted.

More troubling still, nine out of 10 of those who had attempted to cancel had been told by the provider that they would not be able to do so. In one particularly unpleasant case, a person had tried to bring a service to an end after being made redundant. The provider had responded by asking for proof from their former employer that they were indeed out of work.

Gillian Guy, who heads up Citizens Advice, said: “Subscriptions are very easy to sign up to but can be difficult to get out of.

“People are wasting time and energy trying to cancel [them] while paying out of pocket.”

The situation has led to fresh calls for individuals to check terms and conditions carefully before they sign up to services.

The Government’s Consumer Minister, Margot James, said: “The UK’s consumer prot­ection regime is one of the world’s strongest but there’s always more to do to tackle the issues that could cause the greatest harm.”