Black Friday and Cyber Monday: these phrases 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 and Cyber Monday broadband deals too.
But with so many offers, it can be hard to figure out which ones are the best.
How to get a good Black Friday broadband deal
If your broadband contract is ending soon, or you've been paying out-of-contract prices for far too long and want to find a better deal, Black Friday could be a great chance to switch to a new package.
Just like everything else in shops, broadband deals will be available at heavily discounted prices on Black Friday, meaning you could get a high-speed, high-quality service for a very affordable price.
But 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 increase your data allowance or speeds — but by how much?
You might not need a heavy-use deal if you’re just checking emails and Facebook. But if you’re planning on getting a Netflix, Apple TV Plus or Disney Plus subscription to get through the colder months, 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 broadband speed guide.
Are you looking to buy a new TV on sale? Look for broadband and digital TV bundles so you can make the most of your new TV with the best digital content available. 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 the case 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'd be required to pay if you switched 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.
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 27th 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.
Compare all Black Friday broadband deals now.
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 on 30th November.
Cyber Monday broadband deals
More deals are being announced every day. We'll also be keeping our Cyber Monday broadband deals table updated, too, so you can compare all of the deals as they come through.