If you’re in a student house, you can get a great deal on broadband that suits your specific needs
What is student broadband?
Student broadband is a broadband package designed especially for students. Student households are often a little bit different to other households – you’re likely to be in a shorter tenancy, and sharing bills between more people. Chances are there’ll also be more people using the internet at the same time. Luckily, some providers are now offering broadband deals tailored specifically to students and their needs.
Most broadband deals come with a contract that lasts for 12 months or more – but because students often go home during the holidays, that means you could end up paying for three months of broadband you’re not using. Consider going for a nine-month broadband deal, which starts at the beginning of the academic year and finishes once you’re headed home for the summer.
If you want even more flexibility, you could even go for a one-month rolling contract, offered by providers like Virgin. This means you’re only locked in to your broadband provider for 30 days at a time, so you can cancel whenever you want without paying extra fees.
Students are less likely to use a landline than many other customers – so you could also consider mobile broadband. Unlike ordinary broadband services, this doesn’t connect to a phone line, but uses mobile 4G and 5G networks. There are no cables, and you can sometimes get it installed the same day.
What should I look out for when choosing a student broadband package?
When you’re picking a broadband deal for your student house, there are a few things to look out for. If you have a lot of housemates, you’ll probably need higher speeds – but with more people pitching in, you can probably afford a pricier deal.
You should also think about how you’re likely to be using the internet. If everyone’s likely to be going online at the same time, you’ll want a speedy connection – but if you’re more likely to spend your evenings watching a film together, you could prioritise entertainment extras.
Some things to look out for when choosing your broadband include:
- Super speed: If you’re going to have multiple people using the internet on different devices, it’s important to make sure your broadband will be able to keep everyone connected at high speeds. Chances are you’ll need a faster connection than you would at your parents’ home
- Spread the cost: With plenty of housemates, you can get a great deal for less money per person. Remember, cheaper isn’t always better – even if you’re scrimping and saving elsewhere, buying broadband might be a good time to push the boat out
- Bundle up: If you have a TV, look out for broadband deals that include an entertainment package. You could get access to streaming services, smart TV apps and films on demand – perfect for a big night in
- Go wireless: A big chunk of the cost of broadband comes from the line rental – that’s the cost of using the copper-wire phone network. If you don’t need a landline, consider going for full-fibre broadband, or even a 5G mobile router that doesn’t use any wires at all
You should also be aware of some of the potential pitfalls that come with sorting out your broadband. These include:
- Contract length: If you’re only going to be staying in your student house for a year, don’t pick a deal with a contract that lasts for more than 12 months – or you’ll face hefty fines when you move out. If you’ll all be going home for the summer, see if you can get a nine-month contract. That way, you won’t be paying for broadband when nobody’s around
- Bill payer: Even if you’re all pitching in for broadband, there still needs to be one individual person named on the bill. Choose carefully – this person will have to be in charge of making sure the bill’s paid on time
Where can I get the best deal on broadband for students?
The best way to get a great deal on broadband is to use a price comparison site like MoneySuperMarket. Simply enter your postcode, and we’ll show you all the deals available in your area. You can filter by speed or contract length, or even see deals that include a TV package or landline phone calls.
Hundreds of deals are available at the click of a mouse, and within minutes you could be getting faster, cheaper broadband.
Sources and methodology
*Based on average monthly bill of £32.69 from nationally representative sample (1000) vs cheapest monthly cost for superfast broadband (>55Mbs), Vodafone £22/m. Annual saving £128.28.