Broadband with no contract explained
In this guide
- Why choose no contract broadband?
- Pros and cons
- Which deal is right for me?
- What will I need?
- How do I switch?
- Our recommendation
Why choose no contract broadband?
The prime reason for choosing no contract broadband is flexibility. Here are three reasons for choosing short-term broadband over the longer alternatives.
Short-term contracts provide flexibility
If you’re on a short-term rental contract with your landlord, you won’t be able to sign up to a long-length broadband service. Short-term broadband contracts can be a lifesaver in this situation, as they provide flexibility and the ability to leave without penalty. They’re also great if you’re not sure if you’ll be financially stable in the foreseeable future, or if you just want to test a broadband provider before you join for a longer period.
No termination fees on 30-day contracts
The shortest type of short-term contract lasts just 30 days, and they usually auto-renew. If you cancel a 30-day broadband contract, you won’t incur any termination fees. This takes a load off your mind, as in many cases, the only time you’ll cancel a broadband service is if you can no longer afford the monthly payments, and the presence of termination fees in this situation can feel like a cruel sting.
A great choice for students
If you’re a student in your second year of university it’s likely that you’ll be living in a student house-share for nine months of the year. In this case, you don’t want to be paying for broadband in the summer when you’re back at home, so short-term broadband can be a great solution.
Pros and cons
- No contract broadband provide flexibility
- No termination fees on 30-day contracts
- Great choice for students
- Installation is often expensive
- High monthly fees
- Limited fibre broadband options
Which deal is right for me?
There are three lengths of short-term contracts: 30-days, nine months, and 12 months. The deal you choose will depend on your personal circumstances.
Short, 30-day contracts are perfect for flexibility
When the future isn’t set in stone, you need the most flexible contracts available. The short-term 30-day broadband contracts are great for people about to move house, for business trippers, for short-term renters and for those in financial uncertainty who may need to cancel at a moment’s notice. With 30-day contracts, flexibility is the watchword.
Nine-month contracts are ideal for students
Students living in house-shares generally head back home in the summer months when university closes, and don’t want to be paying for a broadband service they’re not using during this period. Nine-month contracts are the answer. They usually last from October to June so completely navigate around the three summer months.
For cheaper broadband, choose a 12-month contract
A year-long contract may not seem very short – and in many ways it isn’t – but if you’re willing to choose a slightly longer contract you’ll benefit from lower monthly fees and possibly free installation, depending on provider.
What will I need?
To get online with a short-term broadband plan, there are a few things you’ll require.
You need to check broadband availability
There’s no point going through the process of signing up for broadband if the service either isn’t available, or will give a sub-par performance. To see if broadband is available where you are, and for an estimate of the speeds you’ll be able to reach, enter your postcode in the checker at the top of the page.
You’ll need a router and activation date
When you join a provider, you won’t be able to get online until you reach your activation date and install the broadband router at your property. A broadband router (usually delivered before your activation date) needs to be connected to your master phone socket, and will provide internet access wirelessly or through a connected Ethernet cable.
How do I switch?
Now that you know all there is to know about short-term broadband contracts, it’s time to pick a package and switch providers. Here’s how to do it.
Choose a deal
Once you’ve picked a deal from the list above, simply click the ‘see deal’ button to the package’s right to be taken to the provider’s website. There, you’ll be able to complete the sign up process, and before long you’ll be able to get online with your new service provider.
Your new provider will take care of cancellation
In general, once you’ve signed up for your new broadband service you won’t have to lift a finger to cancel your old service, as your new provider will do it for you. However, this doesn’t apply if you’re moving to or from Virgin Media. If you’re in this position, you will have to contact both providers to cancel. You can do this over the phone.
Six essential questions before you buy
- Do I want unlimited broadband?
- Is a 30-day contract right for me?
- Would I prefer a six- or nine-month contract?
- Can I afford the up-front fees?
- Would I prefer fibre broadband?
- Can I afford the monthly payments?
There’s one thing you may wish to do before you start comparing. Sit down and draw up a list of everything you want from a broadband package. Look at common usage (what you do online and how often) and consider your financial situation to ensure that you won’t get stuck for the monthly payments further down the line.