Cheap broadband deals really couldn't get much more keenly priced. As the economic outlook worsens, belt-tightening and penny pinching are more important than ever before and internet service providers (ISPs) are responding with the cheapest broadband deals so far.
The cheapest broadband deals now start from free. Yes that's right, free broadband! From the cheapest broadband packages to the more expensive bigger bundle packs, many broadband packages now offer a free introductory period.
Competition for your business has never been so tough. The result? To make their broadband packages as attractive as possible in these hard times, ISPs have had to start offering some really cheap broadband packages, with loads of freebies thrown in for good measure.
Combat the downturn with budget broadband bundle offers
For those of us looking to cut back on our monthly bills, a cheap broadband starter pack for less than £10 per month could mean you get everything you need from your packages but still end up with some spare cash to spend elsewhere.
If you sign up to some broadband packages you may not have to pay a penny for as long as six months. Although, of course, you should remember you will have to pay at some point, so you may want to make sure you budget for this once you have to start paying for your broadband!
Some of the most appealing cheap broadband packages are those that give us great deals on something else on top of our broadband. Cheap broadband is increasingly becoming more about a whole home entertainment package, and ISPs have cottoned on to the fact that budget broadband bundles that take extra services are what we want.
Cheap Broadband gets you started
Taking out a cheap broadband package is great if you're not sure which package is right for you - particularly if you're new to broadband. It's good to know you can always upgrade to a more costly package later on, whereas you may have to wait until the end of the contract to downgrade.
Some of the cheapest broadband deals on the market are basic or starter packs. These cheap broadband starter packs usually come with a free wireless router as well as free home phone calls. This means that cheap broadband can not only offer you a great monthly deal, but will also provide you with everything you need to get set up for broadband on a budget!
Benefits of cheap broadband
- Light users or browsers Some of us only want to use the internet at the weekends or in the evenings, just to check-in on our email inbox and maybe browse a few internet shops. Cheap broadband packages are a great way for light internet users to have access to emails and online shopping from under £5 per month.
- Beginners If you're just getting started with the internet and you're really not sure how much you're going to use it, it's really not worth signing up to an expensive long term contract. You may well find that you are a techy in the making and end up becoming a heavy internet user, but it definitely makes sense to sign up for a cheap package - you can always upgrade later! You will find cheap broadband starter packs for less than £5 per month.
- Students If you want to save your pennies for books or beers, then finding the cheapest broadband deal will be a top priority! Several of the top ISPs cater to your needs with cheap broadband deals designed to fulfil students' requirements. With dedicated student deals making broadband cheap as chips, why would you pay more?
- Modem owners If you already own a wireless modem, you can get a cheap broadband package and save money on hardware. UK Online allows you to use your existing modem or router at no extra cost! It does recommend that you use the Netgear wireless router, but you can buy this seperately to the cheap broadband package.
Low cost broadband providers:
Cheap AOL Broadband deals
AOL's cheap broadband packages are great if you are just starting out with broadband. Its cheapest broadband package comes in at a shade over £5 per month and is great value for money. Even AOL's cheap broadband packages come with a free wireless router. And if you go for bundle options you will also get free off-peak or anytime phone calls thrown in.
AOL's cheapest broadband deal offers:
- Up to 8Mbps download speed (depending on line & location).
- A wireless router.
- Zero hassle set-up.
- Easy-install pack with step-by-step instructions.
- 2,500 experts to talk to for free-phone technical advice, 8am till midnight.
- No hidden charges.
- There’s no set up fee, just BT line rental required.
Cheap Virgin Media broadband deals
Though not available to everyone, Virgin Media's cheapest broadband package is one of the cheapest broadband deals around. For not much outlay, you get unlimited downloads, a connection of up to 30Mb, free weekend calls, modem and PC guard. You do have to pay £11.25 for your landline, though, so if you're looking to really save the pennies, it's possibly not the best cheap broadband package out there.
Virgin Media's cheapest broadband deal gets you:
- Up to 30Mbps service.
- No download limits.
- PCguard2: Protect your PC with anti-virus, firewall & pop-up blocker.
- A modem to connect you to the internet.
- Help when you need it, online and on the phone.
Cheap TalkTalk broadband
TalkTalk Essentials is a great deal, giving you a free wireless router, off-peak calls and inclusive broadband. Starting from just over £3 per month, you can add as many boosts as you want to your package from just £4 each in order to create a cheap broadband deal that's just right for you!
TalkTalk's cheapest broadband deal gets you:
- Up to 14Mbps Broadband.
- 40Gb download limit.
- Unlimited inclusive evening and weekend calls.
- Free wireless router.
Cheap O2 broadband
Despite not always being the cheapest ISP out there, O2 has responded to the credit crunch with really competitive cheap home broadband deals. O2's entry-level deal is available for a cut-price if you're an existing O2 mobile phone customer - great for those of us looking to make savings across the board.
O2's cheapest broadband deal provides:
- Up to 16Mbps download speed (subject to location).
- McAfee security software.
- Free wireless router.
- Up to 10 e-mail addresses.
Cheap BT broadband
BT offers some great recession-beating bundles that give you cheap broadband, TV and home phone for £5 per month. Or you can take just broadband and calls for £5 per month.
BT's cheapest broadband deal takes in:
- Free BT Home Hub.
- Up to 16Mbps download speed.
- Basic Security.
- 10GB monthly usage.
- Free WiFi minutes each month.
Things to consider when buying cheap broadband
Something that seems like a great cheap broadband deal could actually turn out to be a false economy if it doesn't give you everything that you want. When signing up for a cheap broadband deal, you should consider several things:
- Download allowance
- Contract length
It is also worth checking whether there are any hidden costs that come with cheap broadband deals. Some ISPs will make money from you by selling you a cheap broadband package then adding extras at a cost, for example:
- Introductory periods: How long does the headline price last and what is the price when this finishes? It's worth bearing in mind that some of the cheapest broadband deals out there are half-price for the first three months and then will cost you twice the advertised price for the rest of the 12 or 24 month period. You should always check out any price conditions. At uSwitch Tech, we try to clearly label any price conditions on our comparison tables so you get a good idea of how much the deals will cost you in the long term.
- Excess usage costs: If you go beyond your monthly allocated allowance what price do you pay? The cheapest broadband packages are great value for the average internet user. However, if you know that you are a heavy internet user and that you are likely to repeatedly go over your download limit, it may well be worth investing a little more money to get a bigger download allowance than what's included in the cheapest broadband packages.
- Set-up charges: How much does it cost to set up your contract? Most ISPs don’t charge anything for set-up but it’s worth finding out, particularly if you are installing new hardware.
- Hardware costs: Do you have to pay for a router, and if you do, do you have to have a router? You may already have a working router at home. If you do, it’s worth finding out if you can use it with your new plan, instead of paying for a new one.
Delivery charges Make sure you find out about all delivery costs if you are going to have new broadband hardware sent to you in the post. Most of the major ISPs will send you everything you need for free, but it’s worth checking so you don’t get stung for P&P.
For more information on broadband charges, see our guide broadband charges
With the economic climate forcing everyone to make cut-backs and savings, it could be well worth your while to switching to a new broadband provider. Finding the cheapest broadband deals is easy using the table above. As utility bills go sky-high, it's reassuring to know you can find a great cheap broadband deal to make savings without sacrificing your connection!
Rather see cheap mobile broadband deals? You can compare cheap mobile broadband deals here: cheap mobile broadband