How to save money on Sky Sports TV packages
- Check availability
- Consider other providers
- Don't oversubscribe
- Pay-Per-View options
- Haggle for a better deal
- Your comments
There's a lot of competition in the UK subscription TV marketplace these days with each provider aiming to land more and more new subscribers as possible each year.
This is great news for consumers as it means that throughout the year you’ll see some good deals from the big three TV providers – Sky, Virgin Media and BT.
Here are our top tips for finding yourself the cheapest Sky Sports deal in your area:
There are five main providers that offer Sky Sports in the UK – BT, TalkTalk, Top Up TV, Virgin Media and of course Sky. Availability can vary across the country, with customers in isolated areas often having less choice of providers than those in cities:
- Sky Sports from Sky is available to almost every home in the UK. To subscribe you’ll need a satellite dish on the outside of your property, a Sky+ box and a viewing card .
- To get Sky Sports on BT Vision you’ll need a standard BT Vision box, a BT Infinity fibre broadband subscription and a viewing card.
- Sky Sports from Virgin Media is only available in areas within the cable network. Virgin’s network currently reaches around half the homes in the UK.
- Sky Sports is also available on Top Up TV across most of the UK. To receive it you’ll need a Top Up TV set-top box and a Top Up TV viewing card.
- Sky Sports is also available as a ‘Boost’ for the TalkTalk Plus TV, broadband & calls package. You’ll need to be a TalkTalk Plus customer with a suitable set-top box and a viewing card.
Start by using our postcode checker to find out which providers offer Sky Sports in your area.
Consider other Sky Sports providers
Don’t make the mistake of thinking that you can only get Sky Sports on Sky. Virgin Media, BT, TalkTalk and Top Up TV also offer Sky Sports as extra standalone channels or as part of a multichannel pack. And when you come to compare Sky Sports packages think about any other services you may need - if you get them all at the same time you should be able to save yourself some money.
- If you want superfast broadband and you live in a Virgin Media cable or OpenReach Fibre area then why not consider a Sky Sports TV and broadband bundle.
- If you make a lot of calls at all times of the day and week, especially during peak times consider adding an anytime calls plan to your Sky Sports package.
There can be a lot of options in some areas so think outside the box and consider getting Sky Sports from a different provider, and perhaps bundled with one or more other money-saving services like faster broadband and inclusive calls.
Only sign up for what you need
Sky Sports broadcasts over 100 different sports across five dedicated channels with almost as much exposure given to cricket and rugby as to football.
If you're only interested in Premiership football, for example, you may well find that you don't need the full Sky Sports pack. Check which channel shows the sport you like and just sign up for that channel.
Sky, Virgin Media, BT and Top Up TV all give you the option to sign up for just Sky Sports 1, just Sky Sports 2 or for the full range of Sky Sports channels:
Sky lets you add just Sky Sports 1 or 2 to a subscription, or take the full range of Sky Sports channels with contracts starting at just one month.
With Virgin Media you can sign up for Sky Sports 1 or Sky Sports 2 individually or subscribe to Sky Sports 1-4 in a money-saving bundle.
BT has a two-tier pricing structure for adding Sky Sports 1 or 2. If you’re a BT broadband and TV customer the cost is very similar to that of Sky and Virgin Media. However, if you’re a broadband, TV and calls subscriber you can add Sky Sports for less than Sky customers can.
If you’ve got Top Up TV you can add Sky Sports 1 on its own or choose to take Sky Sports 1 and Sky Sports 2 in a money-saving bundle.
Sky Sports HD – your options
For many, Sky Sports just isn’t the same if it isn’t in HD. With a high definition sports package you can get closer to the action than ever before with a picture around five times sharper than DVD and sound that’s crystal clear.
If you’re hoping to enjoy Sky Sports HDTV then your only options are Sky and Virgin Media, with Sky being the cheapest. BT Vision currently doesn’t offer any of its live TV channels in HD, choosing to limit their HD provision to on-demand content.
If you have Sky+ HD then you’ll need to add the HD pack to your subscription to watch your chosen channels in High Definition. With Sky you can add either Sky Sports 1 or 2 individually or add both together to also unlock Sky Sports News HD and Sky Sports 3 and 4 in Standard Definition.
With Virgin Media you’ll usually have to pay a one-off fee to unlock the HD function of your V or V+ box, plus play a small additional monthly fee for each set-top box that you want to watch HD channels on. All of these charges are in addition to the cost of each Sky Sports channel.
Don’t subscribe, Pay-Per-View
If you’re only interested in watching selected games, such as the local football derby, it may not be economical to subscribe to a Sky Sports channel or channel pack at all.
Many big games are available on a Pay-per-View basis. This means that you’ll pay a one-off fee to watch one particular game and that’s that. No subscription fees, no paying extra for games you’re not interested in - you just pay for exactly what you want to watch and nothing else.
Watch Sky Sports online
Sky Sports isn't limited to just TV. With Sky Go you can watch a large selection of Sky TV channels including Sky Sports on your laptop, desktop PC or Xbox 360.
You can subscribe to Sky Go whether you’re a Sky TV subscriber or not. Existing Sky TV subscribers can watch a range of channels, including Sky Sports, that reflect the channels they subscribe to; non-Sky customers can sign up for Sky Go on contracts as short as one month to enjoy everything Sky TV and Sky Sports has to offer, but without being tied down.
Sky Go service is absolutely free to existing customers and is very reasonably priced for those who sign up for it as a standalone service. And Sky Go service is a great way to get Sky TV in your own home even if you’re not willing or able to have a satellite dish installed outside your home.
Check the terms of your agreement
Each provider has their own terms and conditions and you should check them closely when selecting your Sky Sports package. As a rule, when you add a channel or channel pack to your subscription you'll be entering into a new agreement with your provider which means that you’ll be tied into having that channel or channel pack for a minimum period.
Any changes you make to your subscription, such as swapping Sky Sports 1 for Sky Sports 2, will probably cause your minimum period to start again so try to limit any unnecessary changes to your agreement down the line by selecting your original deal as carefully as possible.
Haggle for a better deal
Speaking to your digital TV provider to try and negotiate a cheaper deal is always worth a try.
Call them and see if they’re willing to reduce the cost of subscribing to Sky Sports. Even if they’re not, they may tell you about special offers that you may have missed such as a discount for subscribing to Sky Sports and Sky Movies together.
If you're an existing customer then try to get what is known as a “retention deal”. If you contact your TV provider and let them know that you’re seriously considering leaving them for one of their competitors you may be able to negotiate a discount on Sky Sports in return for staying with them. The person on the other end of the phone may well be able to offer you a discount or added perk as a way of keeping your business.
The trick here is to be polite, but don’t be shy! And only try if your contract is up or coming to an end. If you’re in the middle of your first year with your TV provider then your chances of success haggling over the price or getting a retention deal are very slim indeed.
If you are out of contract and you don’t get any joy from the person you speak to it’s always worth pointing out to them that you should be considered a valued customer, especially if you’re considering leaving after several years with the provider. Again, make sure you’re polite, they don’t have to give you anything and if you’re rude then chances are they won’t.
If you've been polite yet don't manage to negotiate a deal you can ask to speak to a supervisor who may be more accommodating. And if you still don’t have any luck just compare offers from other providers and find yourself a better deal!Compare the best Sky Sports deals and offers
Use our handy package comparison tool to compare the latest Sky Sports prices and features.
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