Broadband and phone

Now you know what type of user you are, the next step is to find the best broadband deals on the market. Let's take a look at the different types of broadband packages available:

Broadband only or bundled products?

If you are looking for a broadband package your focus may be purely on your internet connection but now there are a number of additional products that can be tied in with your broadband deal. However, there are plenty of fantastic 'broadband only' deals on the market - now almost as cheap as dial-up connections. Remember to consider all of the expenses however, including set-up costs and monthly line rental fees.

A 'bundled' product is a combination of two or more associated products or services to form a new product.

The primary reason for a consumer to choose a bundle over separate products is to save money, it also makes it much more convenient to handle from a billing and servicing perspective as several consumer products are provided by one company.

The greatest change in the broadband market at this point is the combination of both broadband and phone services. Major broadband providers are eager to tap into the phone market, grab your combined phone and broadband business and place it all under one 'bundled' product package. So much so that they are willing to slash prices and even offer 'free broadband' or 'free phone calls'.

There are at present more than 40 broadband providers in the UK offering a combined broadband/phone bundled package. Competition in this sector is increasing rapidly which will benefit the consumer as prices are driven down even further.

There are also a number of other bundles in the market that combine more than just broadband and phone. The guide will examine the expansion of broadband products in the next section.

Whatever kind of bundle you think might suit your needs make sure you look at the whole market to find the best deal.

Click here to see the best broadband / phone 'bundled' packages

With the mind boggling array of broadband packages available today it is important to remember that many of the "free broadband" offers will require you to sign up to a specific home phone line rental package. In some cases this may affect the overall cost of the service that you sign up to. For this reason we have provided a line rental guide which clearly shows which packages are available and helps you decide which one is right for you.

The home phone line rental packages have been tailored to meet individual needs such as free evening and weekend calls, unlimited weekend calls and discounted international call charges. As the broadband providers compete for your connection they provide more and more value through bundled packages offering broadband, mobile, home phone and digital TV. It is often cheaper to sign up to a broadband and landline package together than it is for just one service - added value for you and an opportunity to actually reduce your overall bills - as long as you select the right deal for you...

Home Phone and line rental packages available with broadband

Provider Monthly Line Rental Notes

AOL

£10.50 Can be paid direct to BT or AOL

Be*

£9.90 Paid to Be Broadband

British Telecom (BT)

£10.50 Paid to BT

Demon

£10.50 Paid to BT

Direct Save Telecom

£9.95 Paid to DST

Eclipse Internet

£10.50 Paid to Eclipse or BT

Madasafish

£9.95 Paid to Madasafish

Namesco

£10.50 Paid to BT

Orange

FREE or £10.50 Free on Orange LLU or Paid to BT

PIPEX

£10.50 Paid to BT

PlusNet

£10.50 Paid to BT

Sky

£10.50 Paid to Sky or BT

Talk Talk

£10.50 Paid to Talk Talk

Tiscali

FREE or £10.50 Free on Tiscali LLU or Paid to BT

T-Mobile

None No telephone line required

Toucan

£8.99 Paid to Toucan or BT

UK Online

£10.50 Paid to UK Online or BT

Virgin Media

FREE or £10.50 (Cable or Non Cable) Cable line needs to be installed or paid to BT

3 mobile broadband

None No telephone line required

There are now many different types of broadband bundles in the market, but the most common remains the merging of broadband and home phone services. It's a natural match because ADSL broadband services use the remaining bandwidth on a phone line. So could you save money by combining both deals from the same provider?

Broadband and home phone bundles explained

The concept of broadband and home bundles hit its peak in 2006 when TalkTalk launched its 'free broadband' offer. Basically this meant taking out a TalkTalk calling package and receiving a broadband internet service from the company for 'free'.

The catch with the deal was that you couldn't actually order broadband on its own from the provider. Therefore cynics would argue that you were paying for the price of broadband within the price of the phone service.

Nevertheless this was an attention grabbing deal that became massively popular – so much so that it actually caused problems for the provider because it couldn't meet the demand quickly enough.

There are a host of broadband and phone deals available across the UK. Many of them offer enticing freebies such as free weekend calls, free anytime calls or free off-peak calls. There are broadband-related incentives too, such as free wireless routers, free modems and free line rental.

The key for most users will be the price of the combined service. Is it cheaper to get your broadband and home service from the same provider than it is to have two separate services from different providers?

However, there are some other key questions you should ask yourself before opting for a broadband/phone bundle:

What are the download speeds and download limits? Are they sufficient for your usage or do you need a broadband only deal that offers faster speeds or a larger download cap?

  • What is the cost of the combined service and would you be better off buying broadband and phone separately? Remember to take into account the total cost at the end of the contract – many providers offer introductory rates which can make their prices seem cheaper than they really are.
  • Is line rental included in the price? If not, how much will it cost you?
  • If you are offered a freebie as part of the deal, think about if you really needed the freebie? If you needed a wireless router and it was offered free as part of the package, this could be a huge money saver. However, if you already have a perfectly adequate router, then the free offer shouldn't influence your decision.
  • Do you get free evening or weekend calls? Think about when you use the phone as to whether free minutes at off-peak hours are any use to you. What are the rates like for daytime calls?
  • How happy are you with your current service? If you're happy, you may not want to move at all as the new provider may offer a poorer service.

Once you've answered all these questions you should be in a position to evaluate whether a broadband and phone bundle is right for you. To compare the prices on broadband and home phone bundles, check out our broadband comparison tool.

Moneysupermarket.com Limited is an appointed representative of Moneysupermarket.com Financial Group Limited, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA FRN 303190). Moneysupermarket.com Financial Group Limited, registered in England No. 3157344. Registered Office: Moneysupermarket House, St. David's Park, Ewloe, CH5 3UZ. Telephone 01244 665700

XS SM MD LG