Quick guide to saving money on broadband
Broadband can be a major monthly household expense. It’s not really an option any more (in most cases at least) to ditch broadband altogether, but here’s a few tips from consumer advice website Broadband Genie on how to make sure your getting the most for your money.
1. Consider switching provider. Make sure you know when your broadband contract ends, which is when you can switch provider without incurring a penalty. Changing provider is now much more straightforward thanks to a voluntary Ofcom scheme – just ask your current provider for a MAC code and pass it to your new provider.
2. Shop around. Use free comparison websites such as www.broadbandgenie.co.uk, or go direct to the providers to look up the best deals. The most popular providers are BT, Virgin Media, Tiscali, TalkTalk, AOL and Sky.
3. Bundle! Many providers offer substantial discounts if you take more than one service from them. So, if you also pay subscriptions to digital TV and telephone companies, consider taking them from one company.
4. Free gifts are available with many packages these days as an incentive to sign up (free wireless routers, free laptops, even free PS3s), as are headline-grabbing introductory offers. Do make sure you tot up the total contract cost, though, as you may find that these gifts aren’t quite so free.
5. Listen to offers. Getting new customers is expensive, so you may find that your current broadband supplier makes some pretty attractive offers to hang on to you. Don’t feel pressured, though – stick to your guns.
6. Understand your needs. Most important of all, make sure you understand what’s important to you in a broadband package so you don’t buy something you don’t need. Most broadband deals are differentiated by speed, download limit (literally how much you’re allowed to use the internet in a month) and contract length. Try and work out what you need before comparing packages.