Are slow internet speeds bogging you down? If you are working from home or an avid gamer, slow internet speeds can be very frustrating.
However, life can go a lot smoother if you get a reliable broadband connection, so I compiled a list of the best broadband deals in the UK.
So, if you’re ready to upgrade your connection and forget about painfully slow internet speeds, join me as I go through what needs to be considered before picking the deal that best meets your needs.
Best Broadband Deals
Let’s start with the deals that come with a few extra services in addition to broadband.
If you live in Yorkshire or Lincolnshire, KCOM is one of the few broadband providers in the area that offers fibre to the home (FTTH) connectivity. The result is super-fast and stable speeds with minimal downtime.
If you check KCOM packages, you can see a reflection of this performance. They start at fibre lite offering 30Mbps download speed at £29.99 a month with unlimited data.
The highest package is 900Mbps (180Mbps upload speed), which is enough to keep your smart home connected while streaming or gaming in 8K video quality. All this goes for £69.99 a month, a good deal for the lightning-fast speeds.
Others in the middle include 100, 300, and 500Mbps going for £39.99, £49.99, and £59.99, respectively, all with unlimited data.
Prices include line rental, and you get a new landline number regardless of whether you already had one or not.
As a new customer, you have to pay a one-time fee of £24.99 to cater for installation and a next-gen Lighthub Wi-Fi router. After all, a powerful wireless signal is crucial to handling fast speeds while maintaining reliable connections.
- Fast speeds of up to 900Mbps
- Multiple package options
- Includes line rental
- Includes a next-gen Lighthub router
- Only available in Yorkshire and Lincolnshire
TalkTalk Fibre 35
TalkTalk also offers unlimited fibre broadband plans, but they fall into two categories.
The essentials bouquet has a fibre 35 package that offers speeds of up to 38Mbps for only £23 per month (24-month contract). Fibre 65 offers more speeds (67Mbps) for streaming & gaming and costs only £24 monthly.
Both have an easy self-setup process and include a Wi-Fi Hub Black, as well as free calls to anyone else on the network.
If you have a busier home, TalkTalk offers an Ultrafast bouquet with four packages.
Fibre 150 gives average speeds of 145Mbps, and it includes SuperSafe security, Fixed Price Plus (no mid-contract price hikes), and an award-winning Wi-Fi hub.
Fibre 250 adds to this by increasing the speeds up to 290Mbps and including free UK landline calls for only £40.
You can also get pure broadband only, with fibre 150 giving you 147Mbps and a next-gen Amazon eero 6 dual-band Wi-Fi router for £32. For £8 more, you can get 506Mbps download speeds and a next-gen Amazon eero Pro 6 tri-band Wi-Fi router.
These last four options require expert installation and come in an 18- month contract for broadband-only or 24 months for the or complete packages.
If you are not satisfied with the service, TalkTalk gives a Great Connection Guarantee, allowing you to walk away with no questions asked during the first 30 days.
- Zero installation cost
- Includes Wi-Fi hub or router
- Fixed Price Plus
- 30-day Great Connection Guarantee
- Long 24-month contracts
BT Fibre 1
Switching from your current provider to BT Fibre 1 is a quick and easy process requiring only three steps.
The first is ordering your preferred package, and there is no need to contact your current provider, except if it is Virgin Media. Next, BT will give you a switching date, usually within two weeks as you wait for your smart hub.
Lastly, BT will test you when the broadband is active so that you can connect your smart hub. That’s it.
On top of that, BT owns the Openreach network and switching between providers in their system is super easy.
In addition to the standard home packages, this provider offers student broadband deals with short 9- or 12-month contracts.
They include fibre essential (36Mbps), fibre 1 (50Mbps), and fibre 2 (67Mbps) for £24.99, £29.99, and £31.99 monthly, respectively, in the 12-month contract.
Prices for the 9-month contract are a bit high, hitting £27.99, £31.99, and £33.99 monthly, respectively. None of these services comes with a landline phone service.
The future of broadband is full-fibre, and BT provides FTTH connections with speeds reaching up to 900Mbps.
Have a big online meeting? Want to stream live sports, movies, or play games online? Full-fibre will sort you out.
All options come with a speed guarantee, a high-performance Wi-Fi hub, high-security features, and expert customer care service.
- Short contract student broadband deals
- Full fibre connection option
- Speed guarantee
- Includes a powerful Wi-Fi hub
- Lacks a fixed price guarantee
Plusnet Unlimited Fibre Broadband
Plusnet offers some of the best deals in the market, such as 10, 36, and 66Mbps for only £17.99, £22.99, and £24.99, respectively. All three are on offer for the 18-month contract and have a zero-activation fee plus zero line-rental fees.
Under normal circumstances, they attract an activation fee of £5 for the 10Mbps package and £10 for the other two.
However, don’t forget that the upper two packages come with a £50 Plusnet reward card as a thank you gift for signing up – talk about a deal!
You can get the same packages for a shorter 12-month period that cost a little more, hitting £21.99, 24.99, and £26.99, respectively.
If you want to include call plans, you can get the three packages with the evening, weekend, UK, and mobile calls, or unlimited UK and mobile calls.
Plusnet makes their deals sweeter by including a Wi-Fi router to enhance the broadband experience, parental controls, online security, and award-winning 7-day customer service.
You will also get access to exclusive BT sports deals once you start using the service.
- Zero activation fee offer
- Call plan options available
- Award-winning 7-day customer service
- Access to exclusive BT sport deals
- Few packages
- No full-fibre connection
Virgin Media M50
Virgin Media boasts of being the country’s fastest broadband provider, with Gig1 fibre averaging speeds of 1,130Mbps.
However, one of the most popular bundles in the network includes the M50 (big bundle), an 18-month, £33/month contract with a £35 set up fee.
It contains three things: fibre broadband reaching speeds of up to 54Mbps and a home phone with unlimited weekend calls to Virgin mobile numbers, UK landlines, and 0870 numbers.
The third service in the package covers TV, where you get a 360 box to pause, rewind, and record TV, watch Netflix, and all free to air channels.
It is a pretty good deal, although the cost increases to £56 monthly after the 18-month contract expires.
If you want faster speeds, there are several options to consider above M50. They include M100 (108Mbps), M200 (216Mbps), M350 (362Mbps), M500 (516Mbps), M600 (630Mbps), and Gig1 fibre broadband (1,130Mbps).
The pricing for each bundle depends on the plan as it might include phone minutes or TV, or both.
- Fast broadband exceeding 1Gbps
- Includes a TV box
- Multiple package options
- Includes a home phone
- High set up fee
John Lewis Unlimited Broadband
Although John Lewis only provides a single package of 10Mbps, it does give you the option of customizing your options, and I like this a lot.
Unlimited broadband with a phone and line rental costs £19 for a 12-month contract, and it includes zero activation fees and a router with free delivery. Additionally, you get weekends plus evening calls to UK landlines and 24/7 UK customer care service.
For an extra £6.28 monthly, the provider will include calls to UK landlines at any time of the day, Monday to Monday.
If you have international businesses to run, you can pay an extra £8.37 instead. It will cover calls to UK landlines at any time and 300 minutes to 35 global destinations.
With either of the two options above, you can add on calls to UK mobiles all day, every day, by only paying £5 more.
The deal is very flexible, and it comes with online security to safeguard your computers.
However, it is worth mentioning that the price spikes from £19 to £36.54 a month after the 12-month period, which is quite costly for 10Mbps.
- Customizable package options
- Zero activation fees
- Includes a router with free delivery
- Online security
- Relatively slow speeds
- Single package option
Best Broadband Only Deals
The broadband deals above come with a few extra services like TV and landline. But why pay for them if you never use them? If you want broadband only, these deals will give you the best value.
Plusnet Unlimited Fibre Extra
With average speeds of up to 66Mbps, the unlimited fibre extra package delivers the fastest download speeds in the Plusnet network. It is perfect for busy online households with multiple active devices for working, video calling, streaming, and HD gaming.
The package costs only £24.99/month for an 18-month contract with line rental included and zero activation fees. However, this is an offer because usually there is a £10 activation fee.
What’s more, you get a £50 reward card after signing up, which you can use on any high street store displaying the Mastercard logo. Consider this as a thank you for joining the platform.
Accompanying this is award-winning customer service 24/7, as well as contract reminders and account reviews to ensure you get the best deal.
If you do not want a long commitment, there is a 12-month contract going for £26.99/month with a £10 activation fee.
- Zero activation fee for the 18-month contract
- Includes a £50 reward card
- Contract reminders and account reviews
- Award-winning customer service 24/7
- No FTTH
- High activation fee (for the 12-month contract)
Virgin Media M100
I listed Virgin Media M50 earlier, which contains fibre broadband, a home phone, and cable TV as part of the package. If you only need an internet connection to hook up your devices, the M100 is a better option.
The package provides average download and upload speeds of 108Mbps and 10Mbps, respectively. These are enough for 5 – 9 devices. You will also get a hub 3 for Wi-Fi connectivity in your home.
Since Virgin Media is not on the Openreach network, switching to Virgin Media can be expensive and take some time. It explains why they have a high £35 set up fee, after which you will be paying £44 monthly.
- Fast upload and download speeds
- Includes a hub 3
- Ideal for up to nine devices
- High activation fee
EE Unlimited Broadband
EE offers some of the best broadband-only packages with no data caps or downloads limits. The first three packages have zero setup fees and include a 5GB monthly mobile data plan.
With 10Mbps, Standard is perfect for basic streaming and browsing in small households, and it costs £22.5 per month. Fibre gives you 36Mbps for £27 while Fibre Plus costs £31 for 67Mbps.
However, if you have a busy home with multiple devices and need 4K/8K streaming, these options won’t cut it.
Luckily, EE offers super-fast speeds to handle your needs. The Fibre Max 100 package gives an average of 145Mbps for only £39/month, while Fibre Max 300 more than doubles this to 300Mbps and costs only £8 more.
The ultimate package is Full Fibre Max 900, which gives lightning-fast speeds reaching 900Mbps for £60 per month.
These last three options have a £25 set up fee and include a 20GB monthly mobile data plan.
If you are unsure about switching, think about this. EE will contact your current provider and give you £50 in credit if you incur charges for early cancellation.
- Includes a free monthly mobile data plan
- Super-fast speeds reaching 900Mbps
- Easy switching with a £50 credit for early cancellation
- High setup fee for the higher packages
Crucial Things You Need to Know
While going through the deals above, you likely noticed some confusing technical terms or have unanswered questions. Let’s go over some of the things you need to know.
Broadband vs Fibre: What’s the Difference?
Broadband is a type of internet service providing high-speed internet, and it uses various mediums, such as radio, twisted pair, copper wires, or fibre optic cables. The service comprises wide bandwidth transmission over these media to transport multiple signals to many customers.
However, fibre refers to an internet connection consisting of only an optical fibre cable to your home. It delivers the fastest speeds, reaching up to 1,000Mbps. Fibre packages are usually expensive but are the best for busy homes with multiple devices.
Will I Get the Advertised Broadband Speed?
Most broadband companies advertise their services using the average internet speed. They can be high when few people are online or low during peak hours, usually in the evening.
However, some providers guarantee speeds, so you will get what you signed up for in the contract.
Anything can happen, so it is best to get a provider with excellent customer service to help you out in case you experience super slow speeds.
What Broadband Speed Do I Need?
It depends on how busy your home is.
For light usage, such as general web browsing, checking emails, online banking, etc., 10 – 25Mbps is enough. Typically, this should cover 1 – 3 users.
For medium users who are regularly on social media, YouTube, and streaming in HD quality, speeds of 50 – 200Mbps will keep you entertained without lagging.
Heavy users need the top most packages offering speeds exceeding 500Mbps. With such a connection, you can download/upload massive amounts of data, stream 4K/8K content, and do online gaming.
Smart homes also need super-fast speeds to keep all the devices connected.
What Other Extras Should I Consider?
Even though some customers prefer broadband only, you can get a few useful extras to give you the best deal.
Depending on your needs, consider getting a package offering evening, weekend, or 24/7 calling minutes.
Another convenient extra is a monthly mobile data plan to give you free internet on your phone when away from home.
Cable TV and sports packages are also a big plus, especially if you enjoy watching TV shows or league games. However, if you get enough entertainment from streaming services like Amazon Prime and Netflix, don’t waste money on a package with TV.
Do I Need To Pay for Line Rental? Can I Get Broadband Without Line Rental?
Most broadband companies do not own the network infrastructure consisting of copper phone lines. They use the Openreach network, which handles all the cabling, street cabinets, and phone exchanges, acting as a backbone to your service provider.
Therefore, you must pay line rental as a fee for using this backbone infrastructure.
The only way to avoid paying line rental for your broadband package is to go for a service that operates its independent cable network. They include providers like Hyperoptic and Virgin Media.
However, these providers usually offer Fiber-to-the-Home (FTTH) with super-fast speeds but at high costs. It could be cheaper to pay for broadband with line rental, so always do your research to get the most affordable package.
How Do Broadband Contracts Work? Can I Get Out Easily?
Unlike mobile phone or streaming service contracts, signing with an internet provider binds you to terms and conditions that include paying for the broadband service for the minimum period.
It could be 12, 18, or 24 months, and if you decide not to pay, expect hefty cancellation fees for terminating the contract.
That said, contracts vary depending on the internet provider, so make sure to go through the fine print before agreeing.
Should I Go With a Big or Small Provider?
There is no clear answer to this question. Big providers have better and more distributed infrastructure, expertise, and capital to upgrade systems for better service.
However, with many customers countrywide, it might be tough to get immediate customer care service. Your issue might not be a priority at the moment.
On the other hand, small ISPs usually try to beat the big guys by providing high-quality customer service, making their customers feel well served. But with less advanced infrastructure and capital, they might not offer the best deals.
A crucial pointer to help you pick the best service is checking customer feedback or reviews because you will get the same treatment.
Which Are the Most Popular Broadband Providers in the UK?
With over nine million subscribers, BT is the telecom equivalent British Gas in the energy sector and is a household name.
Sky Broadband is second, although their 6.2 million subscribers are in the UK and Ireland. Technically, Virgin Media is the second most popular provider in the UK only as their subscriber numbers are slightly above 5.4 million.
Also on the top ten list are TalkTalk, Vodafone UK, Shell Energy, Glide, Zen internet, Ask4, and KCOM.
Who Actually Provides the Best Broadband Service?
Popularity and customer service aside, who gives the best broadband service?
According to Ofcom, over 80% of customers are satisfied with Virgin Media, with 16% having complained for one reason or another. Of these, 46% felt well-served with the handling of complaints.
Plusnet also ranks highly, especially with customer satisfaction, which is at 86%. However, the almost 8-minute average call waiting time makes it a lot less desirable.
All in all, there are several factors to consider when determining the best broadband service, so it is impossible to come up with a clear winner.
You have to put some research into it, then pick what works for you.
From the nine broadband deals listed above, each has its upsides and downsides. But the most crucial part of the deal is the terms and conditions.
Don’t sign any contract until you have fully understood the details. Find a provider offering the speeds plus extras you need, then scrutinize the fine print. If everything looks good, sign up or switch.