The best broadband deals in the UK for November  11/07/2018 15:45:58   Joseph Green

Every once in a while you are forced to look into finding a new broadband deal. This is usually because your contract is up or you think there's a better deal out there somewhere. What we're saying is that hunting for a new broadband deal isn't necessarily something you would do out of choice.

That is where we step in, though, because we're taking the stress out of finding a new broadband provider. With this guide to choosing the best broadband for you and your home, you can relax, sit back, and let us handle the grunt work.

In our handy guide, we have carefully handpicked the best deals for each provider, whether that's for fibre, broadband and TV packages, or simpler broadband only plans. So whatever you need, we have you covered. 

And if you're still undecided as to what kind of broadband deal you need and which provider to go for, then check out our sister publication PCMag for a detailed round up of all the best deals in your area.

So let's get started. These are the leading broadband providers in the UK and their best deals for November:

Much like other providers, Virgin Media offers its very best deals when you combine broadband with television services. If your TV situation is already worked out, then you can still opt for a broadband only deal — it's just going to be a little more expensive for what you get.
Virgin is the fastest provider in the UK that's available on a nationwide basis, and it knows it. It revels in its status as the king of speed and only offers speedy packages. The slowest package you can get is the Vivid 50 fibre service, which has an advertised average speed of 54Mbits/sec. To put it in perspective, that's faster than the fastest package of some other providers. The fastest package you can get with Virgin Media is the Vivid 350, with a speed of 362Mbits/sec (apparently). That is more than five (yes five) times as fast as the best service that Sky and BT can offer. That is some serious speed and something that will appeal to those who prioritise speed over everything else.
Some other positives of Virgin Media are that all the packages are unlimited and the default contract period is only 12 months, compared to 18 months for a lot of others in the market. That gives you a little more flexibility and freedom if things don't go well.

BT is constantly improving its speeds and has the popular Infinity fibre broadband in its back pocket, making it one of the most sought-after providers in the UK.
In case you didn't know, BT is the parent company of Openreach. Who on earth are Openreach? Well they maintain the fibre-optic network that has spread to almost every corner of the UK. Other major providers, such as Sky, TalkTalk, and Plusnet use the Openreach network, but don't let that concern you. There shouldn't be any bottleneck issues, particularly as BT is the boss.
So what's the negative side of having a provider with this clout? Well you'll pay for it. BT's broadband service is relatively expensive. And the real thing to chew over is that Virgin also offers its own competitively priced fibre service, with much faster headline speeds. So does the reliability of BT's service justify the higher price?
BT's most affordable broadband deal offers 17Mb in speed. That equates to just over 2Mbps. That's fast enough to let you browse the web, stream music, and watch catch-up TV without constant buffering, but it may struggle to cope with large families all using different devices at the same time.

TalkTalk is one of the biggest and most recognised providers in the UK. While it isn't quite the super power that BT is, it is certainly up there with over four million users.
TalkTalk’s fibre-optic connections are borrowed from BT Openreach. Therefore, if you can get fibre broadband from BT, you can get it from TalkTalk. Simple. 
If you are willing to commit to a two-year contract, then some of the prices that TalkTalk can offer are impressive, but two years is a big commitment, especially when it comes to a service that can vary in performance. Nevertheless, contracts are competitively priced, with no caps, and no traffic shaping, plus a strong router. So maybe two years wouldn't be so bad after all.
The customer service record of TalkTalk is a concern, particularly when you consider that the performance of this provider doesn't quite match up to its rivals. This shouldn't put you off, though, as despite not excelling in one specific area, TalkTalk is still a solid option across the board. 
Sky is still primarily known as a TV supplier, but it's also one of the biggest broadband suppliers here. Sky has competitive packages that rival the big boys like BT and Virgin Media, so you need to check them out before making a decision.
Sky's best-value broadband offerings, much like Virgin Media, are the ones that include a TV package, but there are also a strong selection of broadband-only deals to consider too. Sky offers a choice of packages and speeds, ranging from the 10Mbits/sec Broadband Unlimited package up to the top-speed 63Mbits/sec Fibre Max offering. So whatever your speed requirements are, Sky should have a package for you.
So the bottom line is that Sky's broadband offering is a strong one. It has good value fibre packages, decent performance, and a good customer service record. Yes the top speeds are not quite as good as BT or Virgin Media, but if you aren't in desperate need of the absolute fastest service in the market, then Sky is a good bet.
Plusnet only has a small slice of the UK broadband pie in the UK. It is owned by BT, however, so it has a lot of knowledge and resources to fall back on. 
Plusnet isn't just an offshoot of BT, however. It operates as an independent business, with its own pricing structure and customer service. There are a number of details that help Plusnet to stand out from the crowd. Even though they are small they make sure they are heard.
Plusnet doesn’t insist on including line rental with your internet service. So this makes perfect sense if you have an existing phone line through BT. You can then just keep that line and only pay Plusnet for your internet connection. That's not to say it wouldn't actually work out cheaper to switch completely over to Plusnet, however.
Plusnet also gives you a choice of signing up for 12 months or 18, unlike some providers that will want you for two years. What we are saying is that Plusnet is great if you require flexibility, and perhaps a cheaper option. No, the speeds are not going to be great, but if you are a small household Plusnet could be perfect.
The Post Office is on the cheaper side of the broadband provider spectrum, offering similarly priced deals to the likes of Plusnet.
They also keep things simple with three unlimited standard deals: 11Mb average, 35Mb average and 63Mb average.
Like some other providers, you will need to take out Post Office line rental to access the broadband deals, but the cost isn't massively affected. The Post Office provides inclusive weekend calls to UK landlines too. This little addition improves the value of the packages on offer.
Furthermore, if you are going for the long contract and a big commitment, then the Post Office offers some of the best deals around, rewarding your loyalty.
If you're regularly downloading large files, or streaming movies and gaming, then you may want a tad more speed than the Post Office's 35Mbps service can offer, especially if there are several devices on the go at the same time. But checking out the average speed of the  Unlimited Fibre Broadband Plus package should be assurance that the Post Office can provide more than enough for the average user.
Why is a mobile phone provider in a list of broadband providers? Well EE might be better known as a mobile phone operator, but its home broadband services are very competitive and shouldn't be ignored.
EE usually has four strong packags on offer. They start with the basic ADSL2+ right the way up to the heady heights of the superfast 67Mbits/sec option for those that can get hooked up to the fabled fibre-optic cable.
As a genuinely attractive little bonus, all EE mobile customers will recieve a 5GB monthly boost to their mobile data plan if they sign up to the broadband as well. That's a big boost and could save you some serious cash if you are using all your data on a regular basis.
EE should be a serious option if you are on the lookout for a new deal. Performance is good, customers are satisfied, and the fibre packages are good value. The optional extras are more of a mixed bag but you don't get a broadband service for the extras, or do you?
Vodafone is absolutely massive when it comes to mobiles but it still feels quite new when you think of broadband. It's making a bid to gain some cred in the broadband world by offering some of the cheapest fibre broadband deals on the market. The question is, does the fact that it's so cheap mean that the quality of the service is low? The answer is no, not really.
So how can they offer such low prices while still offering a strong service. Well, as a newcomer to the market, it's kind of a necessity. They need to gain a foothold in the market and the real winner is the consumer.
Vodafone is every bit as good a provider as any out there. It's fast, reliable, and they have a good customer service record.
  • Vodafone Superfast 1 — 18 months, 35Mbps, £21.00 a month, zero up-front fee
  • Vodafone Superfast 2 — 18 months, 63Mbps, £26.00 a month, zero up-front fee

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