Finding cheap broadband deals can be difficult. And finding a cheap broadband deal that fits your exact requirements can be even harder.
But Martin Lewis, the Money Saving Expert, estimates that we waste hundreds of pounds a year by sticking with our standard broadband provider, rather than shopping around for better deals. In fact, he reckons that it’s quite common for customers to not only save money and to get a much better broadband package with faster downloads and speed, and unlimited usage.
How do I find cheap broadband deals?
The problem with finding cheap broadband deals is that almost all broadband deals seem cheap at a quick glance. However, lots of companies lure you in by having a low broadband cost and a high line rental fee. You’re obliged to pay both and, pretty soon, that £7.99 a month broadband becomes £42 a month with line rental. It’s gone from one of the cheap broadband deals to one of the more expensive ones in the blink of an eye.
What else do I need to bear in mind when looking for cheap broadband deals?
When you’re looking for cheap broadband deals, bear in mind to check also the download speeds – and do a little bit of research in your local area to see what kind of speed you can expect.
Although you may see 17MB advertised, remember that the broadband provider only needs to provide 10% of their customers with this speed to be able to use it in their advertising. If you’re one of the unlucky 90%, then you could be given something significantly slower for exactly the same price.
Interestingly, if you’re currently on a broadband package promised high speeds and you’re not getting them (you can check online using tools such as Speed Test.
If you’re not getting the speed you were promised – give your provider a call and ask why. If there’s a fault they’ll fix it, if not, you may be eligible for a discount or refund.
And, if you’re really frustrated by your slow speeds, calling up and threatening to cancel your contract (a threat you have to be prepared to follow through on) usually gets them to fix the problem for you.
If that route isn’t for you, lodging an official complaint often works too.
What cheap broadband deal do I need?
Finding the right broadband package for you isn’t just about finding the lowest prices – in fact, if you choose a cheap package that doesn’t cover your usage, you may end up paying far more in extra charges than you would have if you bought a package that caters to your needs.
As a quick example, if you only use your internet for surfing the web every now and again, watching a few YouTube videos here and there and checking your emails, a basic broadband package with a relatively low download limit and speed will be fine for you. Around 10MB a month would suit you just fine.
However, if you’re always watching Netflix or streaming things online – through iPlayer, ITV Player, Amazon Prime or any other streaming service – a 10MB download limit isn’t going to suit you at all. After just a few days, you’ll have burnt through that and will be incurring fees for all of the extra steaming you do, resulting in a pretty hefty bill at the end of the month.
In this situation, it’s far easier to have found a package that caters for your needs and to have budgeted the cost in, rather than being surprised when a huge bill drops on the mat.
Where can I find the best cheap broadband deals?
Price comparison sites are a great start – but bear in mind all of this advice, especially about the line rental. However, if you haven’t got the time to search out – MoneySavingExpert.com have put together a great list of the best deals from a range of UK broadband providers – why not take a glance over that?
And if you’re looking to switch, make sure you check your bill or phone your provider to make sure what download limit you’ll need on your new package.
Finding cheap broadband deals isn’t easy – but you could end up saving yourself hundreds of pounds and getting much better internet at the same time. In fact, making sure that you are getting the best possible deal on your utilities is one of the easiest ways to free up a bit of extra cash every month. (For other great ways to give yourself a little more financial wiggle room, check out these creative ways to make money on the side.