Black Friday: the phrase can either fill you with dread or joy. It’s a time to get some great deals on electronics and other Christmas gifts, and broadband providers have started piggybacking on the uptake in electronics purchases by offering their own Black Friday broadband deals too.
But with so many offers, it can be hard to figure out which ones are the best.
We’ve compiled this guide to give you our take on Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals and help you navigate what to look for in broadband bundles.
What is Black Friday?
Black Friday comes to us from the US. The name refers to the Friday following Thanksgiving, which is celebrated on the fourth Thursday in November. Therefore, Black Friday is always the fourth Friday in November. This year, it falls on 29th November.
Since the early 20th century, this day has come to signal the beginning of the Christmas shopping season for a few reasons. In America, Thanksgiving is a major holiday, and there are televised parades — usually sponsored by department stores — to celebrate the holiday.
At the end of most parades, Santa Claus makes an appearance, which inevitably makes people start thinking about Christmas and shopping.
This is convenient because students and the majority of non-retail employees have both Thursday and Friday off of work, giving most people a four-day weekend — perfect for shopping.
Why is it called Black Friday?
Black Friday is one of the biggest, busiest shopping days of the year. Because of the increase in spending, there’s a popular theory that the day gets its name from older accounting systems which wrote losses in red ink and profits in black.
The uptick in sales on this day drive enough profits to move stores out of the red and into the black — but this is just a theory. In reality, no one knows exactly where the name came from.
One thing is clear, though: Black Friday is here to stay.
What's Cyber Monday?
While many people still go shopping in stores on Black Friday, thanks to store-only offers and doorbuster sales, retailers noticed an interesting shift in the early 2000s.
In 2003 and 2004, online sales for retailers — particularly clothing stores — spiked on the following Monday. This could be due to people who were too busy with family or travel over the Thanksgiving weekend to get any shopping done, or maybe people needed back-up gifts after missing out on limited-time Black Friday deals in store. Or maybe employees returning to work after a long weekend wanted to carry on shopping rather than focusing on work again.
Online retailers quickly took advantage of this trend and coined a new term and holiday in 2005: Cyber Monday.
This year, Cyber Monday is 2nd December.
How to get a good Black Friday broadband deal
Before you rush into signing up for a broadband contract, make sure it’s actually a good offer for you.
How much broadband speed do you need?
If, like many of us, you’re planning on buying a load of new electronics this Black Friday, it’s a good idea to also think about what broadband speeds you need to support them. With new devices being added to your home, maybe you need to up your data allowance or speeds — but by how much?
If you’re just checking emails and Facebook, you might not need a heavy usage deal. If you’re planning on getting a Netflix, Apple TV+ or Disney+ subscription to get through the colder months, however, you might want to opt for an unlimited package to ensure uninterrupted streaming.
To get a better idea of what broadband speed each gadget will need, take a look at our Black Friday broadband speed guide.
Did you just buy a new TV on sale? Look for broadband bundles that also include TV packages. And remember, if it’s a smart TV that connects to Wi-Fi, it will now also be using your data and broadband, too.
Don’t be tempted by freebies
Providers often sweeten their Black Friday broadband deals with free gifts and vouchers. And while these are great, you need to make sure you read the fine print first before you sign.
Be sure to check out how long introductory discounts actually last for, too. Are they only good for a few months or do they last the entire contract? The free 4K TV may not actually be that great a deal if you end up paying even more during the total length of your contract.
What’s the cost of the full contract?
Speaking of your contract, consider the cost of the full contract, not just the monthly rate. Yes, it requires some maths, but what you think is a good deal might not actually be a good deal once you add it all out.
Are you able to switch today?
Finally, make sure you check your current contract — if you’re still in one — to see what fees you’re required to pay if you switch providers. If these fees are too high, it may offset the savings you’d get from any Black Friday broadband deals.
Keep in mind you'll need to notify your provider roughly 30 days in advance, even if you're out of contract, before you can switch, but you can use this to lock in a great broadband deal now, even if your contract ends in December.
Compare all Black Friday broadband deals now.Share this article