How to get a better broadband deal

Read our advice on how to get a better broadband deal, from deals, haggling, rewards schemes and more.

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Many of us have come to rely on a steady internet connection as readily as the air we breathe. Much like our water & energy bills, broadband can cost a significant sum each month. uSwitch puts the average monthly broadband cost in the UK at between £20 - £40, with prices varying between different speeds and across the country. 

If you’re wondering how to get a better broadband deal, there are a number of things you can do to drive prices down. Read on for our tips for saving on your bill, and stay connected for less.

Choose the right plan

Start by deciding what kind of broadband plan you need. You’ll want to consider: 

What kind of broadband speeds do I need?

This may seem obvious, but not everyone needs the fastest Wi-Fi. How fast a connection you need depends on what you’ll be doing online and how many people will be using the Wi-Fi at any given time. 

Broadband speeds are measured in Megabytes per second or Mbps, with most websites placing download speeds front & centre. Plans with standard download speeds (anywhere between 1 - 30Mbps) are the cheapest and can handle one device streaming TV, although this might be slow at the lower end. 

If multiple people will be using your network, or you plan on doing more demanding tasks like online gaming, you’ll need to opt for superfast (30 - 300Mbps), ultrafast (300 - 999Mbps), or even hyperfast or gigabit connections instead. Faster connections tend to cost more per month.

Is it cheaper to buy a broadband package?

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Although you can purchase broadband-only plans, some options combine broadband with phone & TV packages, which can be cheaper than paying for each of these services separately. Prices vary depending on which bundle you choose, but if you’re in the market for TV or phone lines as well as broadband, opting for bundles can be an opportunity to save some money on your bills.

According to U-Save, broadband-only plans offering superfast speeds cost an average of £43.71 per month, whilst TechRadar reports the cheapest broadband only plans can be as cheap as £20 at lower speeds. Comparing different kinds of bundles, U-Save found that superfast phone & broadband packages cost an average of £39.75, whilst equivalent phone, broadband & TV bundles cost an average of £56.99. 

Providers sometimes throw extras such as free streaming services subscriptions or gift cards in with select plans to sweeten the deal, so next time you're looking for a new plan, bear the value of any extras in mind when comparing different plans.

Are longer broadband contracts cheaper?

Generally, longer plans tend to be cheaper per month to incentivise you to stay with a provider. For example, a 24-month plan will often cost less than paying for month-by-month options. However, watch out for mid-contract price changes. Sometimes providers offer low introductory rates that only last for the first few months but will change prices part-way through your contract. Mid-contract price hikes are often significant, so this is worth factoring in when choosing a plan.

Finally, you should check the reliability of different networks in your area to see if you’ll actually get the speeds you’ll be paying for. Many providers have coverage checkers on their websites where you can enter your postcode to see if their services are available where you live. No matter how fast or cheap a plan may be, it’s not worth signing up if you can’t get the full service it’s advertising. If a provider doesn’t adequately cover your area, check to see if another can.

Shop around and compare different providers

Once you’ve decided what you’ll need from your broadband, you should compare the prices different providers offer for similar plans. Broadband pricing is often dynamic, with companies regularly changing their rates to remain competitive and attract new customers. You might like the look of a plan with BT, for example, but you should check what the likes of EE, Sky, Vodafone or Plusnet charge for similar speeds to see if that’s the best price on offer.

It may seem sensible to stick to the bigger providers, but there a plenty of lesser-known companies on the market that offer competitive deals. Many of these companies also use the same infrastructure that larger companies do to provide you with a connection, making them genuinely viable alternatives if the big names can’t meet your needs. 

One of the easiest ways to compare prices is through a price comparison website. There a number of services on the market such as Go.Compare, MoneySuperMarket and Take a look the prices currently on the market using the likes of the Go.Compare broadband price comparison feature, where you can enter your postcode, filter by your criteria, and see all available providers in your area.

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Look for new sign-up offers

Companies love offering introductory deals to draw in new customers. These offers can include cheaper rates, freebies, or exemptions from setup fees to make them more enticing. For example, here at MyVoucherCodes, we’ve previously seen TalkTalk offer free Wi-Fi setup and a £100 Love2Shop voucher to new customers who take out selected plans. 

It’s not just the big names that run new customer deals, either; smaller companies tend to offer surprisingly generous competitive introductory rates compared to bigger providers. For example, we’ve seen SimplyBroadband offering connections for as little as £1.75 per month for your first year - that’s just £21 in that year! However, as the wording suggests, it’s not uncommon for these deals to include mid-contract price changes, which may work out more expensive in the long run. 

Make sure to check what you’ll pay after the introductory rate ends, and work out how much more your bill will cost to see if you’ll really get savings throughout your contract. Introductory deals come & go often, so don’t feel the need to rush into a new plan if you aren’t seeing anything appealing right now. Waiting a month or two can be the difference between an acceptable price & serious savings.

Save with rewards schemes

Many broadband retailers operate rewards schemes that offer customers perks for brand loyalty. These schemes differ from provider to provider and can include free memberships or subscriptions, entry into prize draws, discounts with high-street retailers, and crucially, money off your bills. Read on to see which of the major broadband providers run reward schemes that can save you on the cost of your connection.

BT - My Rewards

BT’s loyalty scheme, My Rewards, is simple: they offer vouchers or gift cards with selected plans. Vouchers grant a set amount of credit that you can redeem against your next BT order or bill, whilst reward cards are pre-paid cards topped up with a specific balance that can be used like a debit card. Generally, faster speeds or more all-encompassing packages incur better rewards. We’ve seen as much as £100 offered with selected BT plans.

EE - Airtime Rewards

EE’s loyalty scheme offers a range of perks to customers, including freebies & competition entries. Using the scheme can also help you save on your bills. First, members can take part in Airtime Rewards, which gives you cashback on every purchase you make with more than 50 retailers. A second scheme, WeAre8, lets you earn credit in exchange for watching & sharing ads. The amount of credit you’ll earn from both these schemes depends on what you buy or how many ads you watch respectively. Either way, you can redeem your balance against your broadband bill, letting you save money through simple activities. 

Plusnet - Plusnet Rewards

Plusnet is owned by BT, so it’s no surprise they use a similar reward scheme. Just like BT, Plusnet offers up to £100 off your bills with selected plans via rewards vouchers or gift cards. Again, the more advanced plan you choose, the more you’ll generally save, with up to £100 off on offer.

Sky - VIP

Sky’s loyalty scheme offers perks such as free movies & streaming subscriptions, entries into competitions, experience days, and discounts on their bills. Rewards get better the longer you’ve been with Sky: members start at the Silver tier when they join, then progress to Gold after 3 years, Platinum after 8, and Diamond after 15 years with Sky respectively. Sky doesn’t always run promotions for money off your bill, however, and these usually only apply to new customers. You’ll need to keep an eye out for the opportune time to join Sky for a chance to save on their prices. 

TalkTalk - TalkTalk Reward Cards

TalkTalk runs a similar scheme to BT & Plusnet, offering customers reward cards worth up to £100 with selected plans. You can choose cards from retailers such as Amazon, Sainsbury’s, Tescos & Morrisons, or a Giftcloud Pre-paid Mastercard (which can be redeemed against orders with a number of high-street retailers). However, these cannot be redeemed against your bills. The company does offer the occasional cashback deal though, letting you earn a cashback balance on selected purchases which can then be redeemed against bills. We’ve previously seen as much as £125 cashback up for grabs.

Haggle with your current provider

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If there aren’t better deals on the market right now, another option open to you is to haggle with your current provider. Although most of us squirm at the thought of it, calling your current supplier and asking if they can offer better prices might be more fruitful than you’d expect. 

Research suggests it’s between 5 - 25 times cheaper for businesses to retain existing customers than acquire new ones, so providers usually prefer to give customers an incentive to stay if they call and voice their intentions to leave for a competitor. This may be in the form of add-ons & extras such as subscriptions or memberships to music or streaming services, better monthly rates that will save you money on your bills, or even a number of months free of charge!

How to haggle with your broadband provider

Haggling can be daunting at first, but following these simple tips can help you secure the best deal.

Don’t be afraid to change providers

When it’s time to reassess your broadband provider, price changes will likely mean the landscape looks very different from the last time you shopped around. New deals may mean that even if your current provider is offering the same low prices if you stay with them, moving to a competitor could be an opportunity to save big. 

Always compare the deals on offer from different providers, and consider setup fees, extras, mid-contract price changes, and any additional charges when you’re weighing up your options. It’s best to avoid moving mid-contract wherever possible, as this often incurs exit fees that make switching more costly. Some providers also include clauses in their contracts that obligate you to pay off the remainder of your bill as well as an exit fee if you leave early. 

For example, you might have 6 months left of your current contract. If you leave early, you could end up having to keep paying your usual bill each month (alongside any new bills) until your contract expires. Some providers even ask you to pay this off in one lump sum, which can seriously set you back. If you do have to leave early, always ask to negotiate a monthly repayment plan to make the costs more manageable.

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So there you have it! Although broadband can cost a significant sum, following these steps should help make your bills more bank balance-friendly. Remember, for the best results, work out what you need from your plan, keep your eyes peeled for the best offers on the market, dig deep into the details, talk it out with your provider, and don’t be afraid to change things up if a better offer comes along.

Harry Bowden-Ford

I’m Harry, the tech editor, and I started working at MyVoucherCodes in March 2022. When I’m not writing about retailers, I spend my time listening to music and podcasts, playing guitar in a band and writing music reviews. I’m also a fan of long walks, reading new books, kicking back in front of the Xbox and discovering new places.