Are you an avid online gamer? Do you regularly stream music, movies or TV shows? Unlimited broadband is the best option for you
What is unlimited broadband?
Unlimited broadband is when your broadband deal lets you make as many downloads as you want, so you can browse the internet without worrying about whether you’ll hit your allowance each month.
Most providers offer unlimited downloads as part of their standard broadband packages.
Do I need unlimited broadband?
While broadband deals with unlimited downloads are widespread and generally affordable, you might be able to get a cheaper deal if you don’t think you need unlimited access to the internet.
A good place to start is by working out what kind of internet user you are, which will also help you decide what kind of download speeds you need.
What kind of internet user am I?
Internet usage is generally sorted into three categories – light, medium, and heavy. The way you use broadband will help you decide what kind of speed and download limits you should get.
- Light users: If you only really use the internet for day-to-day activities, such as shopping, emails and banking, you might not necessarily need unlimited downloads or very fast speeds
- Medium users: If you regularly browse the web or social media, or occasionally like to stream music, movies or TV, you could benefit from faster internet and a bigger download limit
- Heavy users: If you use the internet often, or for heavier tasks such as sharing files, regular streaming or online gaming, quicker and unlimited downloads will be the best fit for you
What download speeds will I get with unlimited broadband?
The download speeds you get with your unlimited broadband deal will depend on whether your provider offers an ADSL, cable or fibre optic connection.
- ADSL: ADSL stands for ‘asymmetric digital subscriber line’. It’s the most widely available type of connection, but it usually offers the slowest download speeds of the three main types – around 10-30Mb/s on average
- Cable: Cable broadband packages aren’t as common as ADSL ones, but they offer faster average download speeds – around 50 to 100Mb/s
- Fibre: Fibre-optic broadband is becoming more widespread, and usually offers the fastest speeds available – often between 50 and 300Mb/s
You can learn more about how download speeds work with our guide to bits and bytes.
What other services can I get with unlimited broadband?
Unlimited broadband deals are often bundled together with a landline and/or a TV package. If you use these services, you might be able to save money by opting for one of the following bundle types:
• Broadband and phone• Broadband and TV• Broadband, phone and TV
Many providers also offer incentives such as cashback or free gifts. However, while these can be tempting additions to your deal, the quality of your connection is mort important long term.
What happens when I switch broadband providers?
Switching unlimited broadband deals is easy and usually takes no more than two weeks (although wait times may be longer during the Covid-19 pandemic). In most cases, your new provider will arrange the transfer, and you should experience little or no interruption to your internet connection.
Even if your new provider can’t manage the switch, all you have to do is tell your existing provider to cancel your service on the transfer date agreed with the new company.
You may have to pay an exit fee if switching to a new deal means coming out of your existing contract before the end of the term. However, under regulator Ofcom’s rules, you do not have to pay this charge if your existing provider cannot give you the download speeds you were promised in your contract.
Compare unlimited broadband deals
Finding a cheap unlimited download package is easier when you compare unlimited broadband deals with MoneySuperMarket.
Just enter your postcode into our postcode checker and tell us a bit about what you want from your broadband deal, and we’ll show you what’s available in your area.
You can then compare deals by the download speeds you’ll get, the type of connection you’ll be on, and the overall cost of your package – as well as any related freebies.
Once you’ve found the one you want, just click through to the provider to finalise your purchase.
Sources and methodology
* Annual savings based on average monthly bill of £33.99 from nationally representative sample (1000) vs our cheapest monthly cost for superfast broadband (>55Mbs) £18.95/month, May 22. Annual saving: £180.48.