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Students using mobile broadband

Pay as you go mobile (PAYG) broadband deals are surging in popularity among undergraduates, new figures show, as students look to limit their outgoings

According to data from Tesco Telecoms, sales of pre-paid mobile broadband have risen by 71 per cent in recent weeks. The company attributes the trend to students’ waking up to the flexibility that a PAYG dongle deal offers.

Tesco also claims that students appreciate that these kind of products mean that there is “no need to install a landline” as well as the fact that they eliminate “monthly squabbles over whoever’s paying the direct debit”.

Commenting on developments, Jessica McArdle, marketing manager at Top 10 Broadband, said: “The mobile broadband market is being rocked with demand for pay as you go dongles as students seek out flexible broadband solutions to fit their budgets."

PAYG and one month contract mobile broadband is available from all of the UK’s major suppliers, including Orange, 3, T-Mobile, O2 and Vodafone.

One month contract packages allow users to sign up for a month’s use and also entitle them to cancel their agreement with their broadband supplier at any time with no penalty. Meanwhile, PAYG plans work identically to similar mobile phone deals, whereby consumers can simply add credit to allow them to get online as and when it is required.

However, a range of other broadband options remain open to students looking to save money on broadband. For instance, for a limited period all students who sign up for selected Orange broadband laptop contracts and standalone dongle deals benefit from £20 of free HMV vouchers.

The Orange network provides a broadband connection speed of up to 3.6Mb, with a range of price points and contract lengths on offer for those wishing to take advantage of the promotion.

Alternatively, Be Broadband’s nine-month home broadband contract deal is also tailor-made for students. The short length of the contract matches the length of time students spend away from home studying and means that they do not pay for broadband during the summer holidays.

Be’s deal provides a super fast broadband service of up to 24Mb, as well as unlimited monthly usage and award-winning customer support.

Ms McArdle said: “Be's nine month offer is ideal students looking for a high-quality, speedy connection for their student residence without having to pay for the months they're off on holiday.”

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