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Is Plusnet broadband any good?

Tuesday, February 18th 2014

Plusnet is great if you’re looking for a cheap broadband provider with good customer service. Its low asking prices and Yorkshire charm are the positives, although its traffic management system will frustrate some.

Plusnet was voted Which? Magazine's Recommended Broadband Provider in 2011 and 2012, and our impartial guide looks at all the pros and cons so you can decide if it's the right option for you.

The pros and cons

Let’s take a quick peek at Plusnet’s pros and cons.

Pros

  • Cheap broadband packages
  • UK-based customer service
  • Unlimited packages across the board

Cons

  • Price dependent on location
  • Not the fastest provider
  • Traffic management

What we like

Cheap broadband packages

While it’s not the cheapest in the market (that honour currently goes to Primus Saver) you’re certainly not going to feel ripped off if you sign up to Plusnet. The low prices mean you can get fibre optic broadband without breaking the bank, so if you’re seeking a bargain for your broadband, Plusnet could be the one for you.

UK-based customer service

All of Plusnet’s customer service teams are based in the UK and are available to call at any time. And Plusnet claims it really does mean any time. If you want to phone up at midnight on Christmas Eve and complain about your download speeds, you can go right ahead. The Yorkshire-based provider has won several awards for its customer service, and has done well in independent surveys examining the number of complaints raised against different broadband providers, beating industry leaders Sky and Virgin.

Unlimited packages across the board

Although previously offering a number of packages with quite tight data limits, Plusnet made the move to unlimited broadband on all services in June 2014. The old Essentials deals were dropped in favour of the three remaining broadband plans: Unlimited, Unlimited Fibre and Unlimited Fibre Extra.

Compare Plusnet packages →

What we don’t like

Price depends on location

Plusnet’s prices depend on where you are in the country, with the cheapest prices offered to those in areas with massive broadband coverage. For a company with an almost rural persona this seems contradictory: if you live in a small village, expect to pay more than if you live in a bustling metropolis. The locations are broken down into three markets. Generally, the more out of the way your residence, the more you’ll have to pay to get Plusnet.

Not the fastest provider

In a market where an increasing number of broadband providers are offering 100Mbps and above connection speeds, Plusnet is looking increasingly slow in comparison. Although this might not be a major issue for many broadband customers, those that are planning on frequently partaking in bandwidth-heavy activities might find the maximum of up to 72Mbps not quite speed enough for their needs.

Traffic management policy

Traffic management refers to the act of controlling the traffic through a broadband network to avoid congestion, packet loss and slowdown on prioritised services. Plusnet goes to great pains to make its traffic management policy as transparent and easy to understand as possible, even listing every PC game that’s given priority on its network. Nevertheless, traffic management is still traffic management, and if you don’t like the Orwellian sound of terms like ‘bandwidth throttling’ and ‘artificial control’, you won’t like signing up to Plusnet.

Compare all broadband deals →

Package comparison

Use our handy package comparison tool to compare the latest Plusnet broadband prices and features.

  • Broadband
    Max Download Speed17Mb
    Max Upload Speed1.3Mb
    Monthly UsageUnlimited
    Fair UsageNo
    Traffic ShapingYes
    IP AddressingDynamic
    Digital TV
    TV Channels-
    SD Channels-
    HD Channels-
    3D Channels-
    Radio Channels-
    Home Phone
    Daytime Calls8.4ppm
    Evening Calls8.4ppm
    Weekend CallsInclusive
    Pricing & Contract
    Monthly Cost
    (£9.99 after 12 mths)
    £2.50
    Upfront Cost£5.99
    Contract Length12 months
    Line Rental p/m£15.95
    Average Monthly£18.95
    First Year Cost£227.39
    Lifetime Cost£227.39
    See deal →
    or call 0800 840 5395
  • Broadband
    Max Download Speed38Mb
    Max Upload Speed19Mb
    Monthly UsageUnlimited
    Fair UsageNo
    Traffic ShapingYes
    IP AddressingDynamic
    Digital TV
    TV Channels-
    SD Channels-
    HD Channels-
    3D Channels-
    Radio Channels-
    Home Phone
    Daytime Calls8.4ppm
    Evening CallsInclusive
    Weekend CallsInclusive
    Pricing & Contract
    Monthly Cost
    (£14.99 after 6 mths)
    £3.75
    Upfront Cost£5.99
    Contract Length18 months
    Line Rental p/m£15.95
    Average Monthly£27.53
    First Year Cost£309.83
    Lifetime Cost£495.47
    See deal →
    or call 0800 840 5395
  • Broadband
    Max Download Speed76Mb
    Max Upload Speed19Mb
    Monthly UsageUnlimited
    Fair UsageNo
    Traffic ShapingYes
    IP AddressingDynamic
    Digital TV
    TV Channels-
    SD Channels-
    HD Channels-
    3D Channels-
    Radio Channels-
    Home Phone
    Daytime Calls8.4ppm
    Evening CallsInclusive
    Weekend CallsInclusive
    Pricing & Contract
    Monthly Cost
    (£19.99 after 9 mths)
    £12.50
    Upfront Cost£5.99
    Contract Length18 months
    Line Rental p/m£15.95
    Average Monthly£32.53
    First Year Cost£369.86
    Lifetime Cost£585.50
    See deal →
    or call 0800 840 5395

Availability

Plusnet is owned by BT and uses the parent company’s infrastructure to carry its broadband services. It reaches around 80% of the UK population with its lowest priced service; but is it available where you are? To find out, put your postcode into the checker below and hit Go.

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Summary

Good customer service and a clear unlimited broadband policy on all packages mean Plusnet can be a great choice for cheap broadband, if you’re inside one of the low price areas. However, if you live outside of these areas you may be able to find much cheaper broadband from other providers, so it’s a good idea to shop around.

And don't forget, Cable.co.uk now produces in-depth broadband reviews of every major UK broadband package, so check them out if you need more information.

Visit Plusnet →

Plusnet broadband reviews

Cable.co.uk now produces in-depth broadband reviews of every major UK broadband package, follow the links below to check out what we thought of Plusnet's range.

Unlimited fibre broadband

3.2

Unlimited fibre broadband
Unlimited broadband

2.8

Unlimited broadband
Essentials Broadband

2.4

Essentials Broadband

Comments (128)

paul
1 day ago

Customer service is very poor. I would get broadband from someone else.

adam B
4 days ago

Hi guys. I am not british and this is probably why Plusnet treating me like a idiot.I was with Plusnet for more than 3 years and paid for nothing-in contract is ip to 17mbps I had 5mbps only so I could not watching movies or listenning music.I sent complaint and they promised arrange appointment with engineer so I was waiting for whole day but He did not come...After that I said that is not point to pay for s***** broadband and cancelled contract.....Plusnet sent me outstanding fees what is impossible because I had Direct Debit so all payments was automatically. I did not pay that blackmail so they don't want to send me MAC code which is required for next provider and don't want to disconnect line with Plusnet. They permanently avoid to explain for what I have pay....for last 2 months I did not have any answer They have slowest broadband and most rude customer service and want to cheat everyone. Strongly not recommend .

Miguel
6 days ago

Warning! They'll rip you off even when they can't provide a service! Plusnet can't provide me a service because of a fault they are not able to fix in a timely manner. I decided to cancel my service use a different broadband service provider, but they are going to charge me over £200 for a service they have not yet provided and can't provide!!! I've not even had the service for a month yet! This is highway robbery! I can't believe that the government allows this to happen!

Simon P
14 days ago

I have endured nothing short of a terrible time allowing Plusnet anywhere near my phone line and broadband service. Please read my experience before contemplating your choice of phone/internet company - I don't want anyone else to go through the stress and pain I have suffered and so I am sharing my experience as it was...

I was persuaded to cancel an order with BT in favour of Plusnet's "Outstanding Service". I did order a transfer of line and a fibre broadband service from them.

Plusnet cut off my Talktalk phone line including my valued home number and broadband service on August 4th in error without reconnecting me to their service. This was not the correct day as I had already requested a much later date some weeks before, because my wife has a lot of night shifts and access to my home office communications is critical at the present time. I was told that there had been two serious mistakes with my seemless transfer and my number had been terminated by mistake as well.

I have been chasing around for hours on end calling and writing on their ticketing system which appears the only way to get anything done or complain but nothing seems to happen. When I called they simply said that complaints were not taken by phone. My complaint seems so far to have been ignored (but then perhaps that is OK as they say it might take 5 days - or more I was told when I called as they had a lot to deal with at the moment and the systems were down that day apparently!) - So are mine - internet and phones for my home office (VOIP) and home phone line!

They now say they have allocated a definite day more than 2 weeks hence as the earlier dates I requested are now not available for the restoration of my service that should still be operational - not quite the same as waiting for a seemless transfer a couple of weeks or so late - is it?

Having decided I did not trust Plusnet to install my service again (after all the mistakes and poor service) and not too sure whether this date is actually booked (they have a odd requesting system which didn't happen for me twice before). I decided to order a transfer of my line to BT which can be done in 5-10 days (quicker than waiting for Plusnet to reconnect me). However because of Plusnet's double mix up my line can't be transferred at the moment! I have tried to discuss this with someone at Plusnet but they don't seem to be able to help me despite the fact they are in effect locking my line up preventing me doing anything.

My only other option has been a radical one (justified I feel). I have this evening abandoned my home line, number and internet service and ordered a completely new line from BT for installation. I know now with confidence that although I will have to wait a little longer that my new service with BT will be installed on 28th August by a company that I can actually have a dialogue with and rely on. Unfortunately it is not quite the service I want as the unlimited service with BT is too expensive for me so I have had to settle for a 20G limited service. This is I feel a desperate solution to a serious problem that I simply cannot tolerate the loss of all these critical services any longer. The Plusnet line is therefore now surplus to requirements and I am wondering whether it will be possible to recover the number that is so valuable to us?

This action has been a very costly (£400 down in pre-payments), lost my long term land line number (what a pain), no internet and phone for home and office for 3 1/2 weeks not to mention all the wasted time and stress trying to resolve this. I am considering my legal position with respect to the various aspects of this and how and in what form Plusnet could make this whole dismal saga up to me and my poor wife. We are beside ourselves with the whole thing!

If a manager at Plusnet is reading this then perhaps you could give me a call on my mobile. This web site may be the quickest way to initiate a dialogue with someone who actually cares at Plusnet? I say contact me on my mobile because my land lines are down and I only have sporadic access to internet. I did call a few times on my mobile and after queueing for long periods when answered I was told no manager was available and that all complaints should be directed to the ticketing system (5 day response at best) and I was concerned with the call charges I might be racking up calling an 0800 number on my mobile.

Or alternatively apparently I can write a complaint to their headquarters. Then I can have a blistering 10 day response time!! I have chosen the faster approach and heard nothing so far.

So if you have read this far and are considering what phone/internet company to use then you can make up your own mind, I have simply shared my experience with Plusnet on this occasion. I would also like to ask the managers at Plusnet to withdraw the advert advertising the great customer service which keeps coming over my car radio and now makes me grind my teeth. Unless my experience is an isolated one, which I suspect it is not, them your advert is, in my opinion, a misrepresentation of your poor customer service through a slow ticketing system.

My final comment is simply that this is the worst customer service that I have ever experienced with any company I have dealt with particularly when it has been their mistakes that dropped me unnecessarily into a distressing crisis. It has made me feel that the managers their do not seem to care at all.

My feeling is that I should consider issuing some sort of legal proceedings for damages if appropriate refunds, appropriate financial compensation and an apology are not forthcoming in double quick time.

Any response Plusnet or do I have to pursue this along those avenues?

Emily d' Souza
14 days ago

4 weeks now of internet in and out. Sometimes up to 4/5 hours without any connection at all. We've had BT engineers come out three times to see if there's a problem on there side . Still get terrible internet connection from Plusnet.

Mark
15 days ago

Be wary when joining if you ever plan to switch away. I was with Plusnet for many years, decided to switch away, then got 5 emails and a text demanding money after the switch date when I was no longer a customer! Plusnet said they weren't notified of the switch (even though it's automated), so I had to pay for 2 weeks after the switch date and then another 2 weeks after that to cover "notice" which they already should have had from the automated switch-over, then pay £30 fee because the new provider "wasn't on their network". None of this is clear or fair, but it's all buried in the T&Cs so you're stuffed. All that money and happy years of being a Plusnet customer and then they screw you for a few pounds if you try and leave. I've put in a complaint and another to Ofcom. Shameful.

Ruby
19 days ago

I want to cancel my plus net contract, I am still in the 14 day cancellation period. Every time I telephone them I am told the waiting time is 30 minutes. I don't intend waiting for 30 minutes to tell them this. I used their ticket system, guess how long I may have to wait for a reply? 39 hours, they are really taking the mickey now. Yorkshire do me proud, do me a favour? answer the phone on time

lyndon george
27 days ago

don,t go any where near this company, three weeks, paid up front, no phone no internet

Sarah
16th July 2014

The Internet connection is so slow. I can't even use BBC iPlayer without it, reloading I am never using this service again. I have gone from virgin media 30 MB per second to modem speed.

Sam
11th July 2014

Total rubbish. It should be avoided, its an insult to Yorkshire!

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