How to cut down your broadband costs
Say goodbye to overpaying on your annual broadband, TV and phone bills. These simple money-saving tips will help you reduce the cost of your plan and ensure your broadband needs are still being met.
With the rise of people working from home and the popularity of TV streaming services, having a strong and speedy broadband connection has never been more important, nor more expensive for Irish households.
Common broadband costs, such as data allowance surcharges and hidden installation fees, as well as expensive standard rates, mean people are often overpaying for their broadband connection.
However, by following our simple steps you can reduce the cost of your broadband bill while continuing to enjoy the benefits of a high-speed internet connection.
1. Pay for what you need
Determining what type of broadband user you are is a sure way of cutting down your annual broadband bill. There is no point in paying for unlimited broadband, or the fastest speeds if you are not using it.
On the other hand, if you are a high data user, you want to ensure you have a broadband plan that covers your needs, so you don’t end up paying penalties for going over your monthly data limit.
For those of you who only need the internet to check emails or browse social media, a data allowance of up to 10 GB a month is enough to suit your needs.
However, in contrast to light users, those who have multiple devices connected to the internet, and who regularly download and/or stream movies, music and play online games, your household would be better suited to an unlimited data allowance plan.
2. Consider your contract length
Another important element to consider is the length of your contract. These generally vary between 12-18 months, but some can stretch to 24 months. You don't want to end up paying for a pricey broadband plan for longer than you need.
Students, in particular, need to be wary of this as they generally will only need a broadband plan to cover the 9 months of their school year. Therefore, they should aim to avail of the shorter 12-month contracts on the market.
With a shorter contract, once your term ends you’re free to switch to a new provider to avail of new customer rates. If you’re locked into a longer contract and you want to leave, you may be subject to a penalty fee for leaving early.
This cost varies from provider to provider, however, you’ll likely be expected to pay the outstanding balance that you were due to pay if you had completed your contract.
3. Determine what speed you require
The fastest speeds you’ll get will depend on your location, how far you are from your local telephone exchange and whether you have access to fibre broadband in your area. Usually the faster the broadband, the more expensive it is.
When looking at broadband deals, the speeds advertised only refer to the maximum possible speed and are not guaranteed. In many cases, the speed you may end up with will be a lot slower than what you were expecting, so make sure you’re not overpaying for a service that’s not up to scratch.
Some broadband providers will have coverage maps, which will indicate the speed you could get by using their service when you input your address or Eircode.
By running a broadband speed test, you can determine what your current internet speed is.
If you’re happy with your current speed, consider looking for a cheaper broadband deal with the same speed from a different provider.
On the other hand, if your broadband speed isn’t adequate enough, it may be possible to find a deal with faster speeds for a similar price to what you’re currently paying.
It’s also a good idea to factor in the type of household and your usage when determining what speed to go for. If you live alone and you’re not a huge internet user, you should look for a lower speed broadband option. There’s no point paying for 500Mbps when 100Mbps could be enough.
4. Consider bundling
Having separate broadband, phone and TV bills can prove costly. Many broadband providers require you to have a phone line installed in your home to avail of their services, particularly for standard ADSL broadband. As a result, it can often be cheaper to buy your broadband as part of a bundle deal.
With a broadband bundle, you can include your landline costs and TV services as well. So, instead of having to pay three separate bills, you’ll be paying for your broadband, phone and TV altogether in one bill.
Keep in mind that bundles might not be for everyone. If you don’t use a landline, or if you never watch TV, a bundle might not be the right choice as you may actually end up wasting money on services you don’t use.
When comparing your options on bonkers.ie, you’ll be able to filter your results by bundle types and tailor your results to suit your requirements. For example, if you don’t use your landline, you can search for just TV and broadband bundles instead.
5. Switch to a different provider
If you feel like you’re overpaying for your broadband, phone and TV plan then it may be high time to switch providers. This is because broadband suppliers often save their best deals for their new customers. Once your initial contract is up, your discount will end and you will be bumped up to the standard rate.
By switching suppliers, you could save over €150 a year on broadband costs alone. You also gain the freedom to choose a new broadband plan that is better suited for your needs, such as a faster connection or a lower data allowance.
Thankfully, switching broadband suppliers is simple. With our free and easy to use broadband comparison tools, you will be able to compare the best broadband, TV and phone packages on the market within minutes. Once you decide which company you want to move to, you’ll need to contact your current provider and return your equipment.
To ensure a smooth transition between providers, you must give your current provider at least 30 days notice in advance of your current contract renewing or ending.
If you change your mind after you finish the application for a new provider, you will have 14 days to cancel your new plan without facing any penalty fees.
Take control of your household bills
Finding the best value broadband, phone and TV bundle can seem like a daunting and time-consuming task.
At bonkers.ie, we have made this process easy for you so that you can start reducing your broadband bills today.
Don’t stop there, bonkers.ie provides a range of comparison tools so you can cut the cost of other household expenses. From switching energy providers to taking control of your personal finances to ensuring all of your insurance needs are taken care of, bonkers.ie has got you covered.
Check out our broadband guides
Take a look at some of our other helpful guides for more information on broadband, so that you will feel confident when choosing the correct broadband provider and plan for you.
- We know that broadband can be a confusing subject, this is why we have broken down and explained the five different broadband connection types available for you.
- When comparing the best broadband deals on the market, you need to keep certain factors in mind. We have listed the top 7 things to consider when assessing your options.
- Before you begin the broadband switching process, take a look at the frequently asked questions on the switching process.
- College is a costly time for students, and here at bonkers, we are all about saving money. Take a look at our guide on the best broadband deals for students.
Get in touch
Have you been inspired to tackle the cost of your broadband bill? Or have you even discovered some broadband money-saving tips on your own? Let us know today, contact us on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter.