Highlights

Here is a quick look at some of the highlights unearthed in the study

  • Ukraine

    #1. Ukraine

    Broadband in Ukraine is fast and cheap, though take-up is still relatively low – around half the population has internet access compared to 90% in the UK, for example.

  • Syria

    #2. Syria

    Coming from 1st place when this sample was last taken, war-torn Syria offers, on average, the world's second cheapest broadband packages this time around. It should be noted that low prices are largely due to the ongoing collapse of the Syrian Pound.

  • Russian Federation

    #3. Russian Federation

    Russian broadband is cheap and fast, with both ADSL and FTTH offered in major cities. Providers offer speeds of up to 700Mbps at an average price of just USD 7.50 per month.

  • Bhutan

    #4. Bhutan

    Bhutan has poor fixed-line internet infrastructure due to the topographical issues of it being in the Himalayas. For economic reasons, compared to the rest of the world, broadband in Bhutan is cheap.




  • Five most expensive packages in the world

    The five most expensive individual (not average) broadband packages in the world are to be found in Mauritania (USD 1368.02), Ghana (USD 1412.39), Comoros (USD 1520.78), Laos (USD 4213.20), and Eritrea (USD 15051.29).

    The expense comes from a combination political climate, warfare, of extremely low take-up (no economy of scale) and the fact that in most cases the price you pay will go in large part to actually building a physical line to your property since few already exist. These 'works costs' rise exponentially the further your abode sits from each country's main urban centres.

  • Five cheapest packages in the world

    The five cheapest individual (not average) broadband packages in the world are to be found in Moldova (USD 2.82), Russian Federation (USD 2.73), Syria (USD 2.13), Sri Lanka (USD 1.19), and Kyrgyzstan (USD 1.04).

    When it comes to cheapest, though, don't expect a fast (or even in some cases, reliable) connection for the most part, with Kyrgyzstan, Syria and Sri Lanka all offering relatively slow speeds and somewhat limited availability. Moldova and Russian Federation are the exceptions here, with broadband that is not only cheap, but also fast thanks to widespread deployment of fibre.




  • How fast are the five most expensive packages?

    A quick glance is enough to see that, generally speaking, the most expensive countries in the world for broadband are also some of the slowest. All of them average less that 5.5Mbps, which is too slow to stream an HD movie – something you're sure to want if you're paying USD 300 or more for your broadband every month.

    Eritrea, the most expensive country recorded in this year's study failed to deliver a high enough sample size in out speed tests to be accurately measured. However, the other four most expensive countries were measured and as you can see, they won't be winning any speed awards.

  • How fast are the five cheapest packages?

    Of the five cheapest countries for broadband, Bhutan and Syria are the only countries with average measured speeds low enough to compare with those of the five most expensive. In all other cases the speeds offered by the five cheapest exceed those of the five most expensive.

    This should come as no major surprise. As a general rule, countries which offer cheap broadband do so as a result of having a homogeneous, reliable infrastructure and a healthy, competitive marketplace with a large number of providers.


  • Asia (excl. Near East)

    Bhutan is the cheapest country in which to buy broadband in the Asia Excl. Near East region (as well as fourth-cheapest globally) with an average package price of USD 8.71 per month, followed by Sri Lanka (USD 9.58) and Iran (USD 9.60) – all three rank among the top 10 cheapest in the world.

    Timor- Leste (USD 107.33), Brunei Darussalam (USD 137.62) and Macau (USD 307.74) provide the most expensive package prices per month in the region. 

  • Baltics

    Of the three countries included in the study in the Baltic region, all ranked in the top 60 cheapest countries in the world.

    Lithuania came out on top in the region with an average annual package price of USD 13.35. It also ranked 19th in the world. Latvia is a close second in 27th place overall (USD 16.99). Estonia is the most expensive in the region, but still among the cheapest in the world – 55th cheapest overall, and with an average package price of USD 30.34.

    Every country in this region sits comfortably in the top 60 least expensive countries to get a broadband deal, with Lithuania sneaking into the top ten.

  • Caribbean

    Saint-Martin (France) offers the cheapest broadband of the 29 countries included in the study in the Caribbean, with an average package price of USD 24.66 per month. This is closely followed by Dominican Republic (USD 26.78), and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines (USD 44.40).

    The region as a whole is a mixed bag, with many of the countries included finding themselves at the most expensive end of the table. Antigua and Barbuda (USD 129.14), Cayman Islands (USD 170.03) and British Virgin Islands (USD 179.00) are all extremely expensive both for the region and for the world.


  • Central America

    Mexico remains the cheapest country to buy a broadband deal in Central America, with an average broadband package cost per month of USD 29.01.

    Panama is now the most expensive with an average package price of USD 66.05 per month. It would be fair to say that all ten countries measured in Central America ended up mid-table, none faring particularly well, or particularly poorly.

  • CIS (Former USSR)

    Five of the top ten cheapest countries in the world are found in the former USSR (Commonwealth of Independent States or CIS), including the Russian Federation itself with an average package cost of just USD 7.50 per month.

    Conversely, the United States has some of the most expensive broadband in the world, coming in 131st place with an average monthly package cost of USD 59.99. 

  • Eastern Europe

    In the Eastern Europe region, 13 countries were measured in total. All of them find themselves well inside the top half of the table, the region as a whole faring extremely well, broadly speaking.

    Romania (USD 10.59), Bulgaria (USD 12.69), and Hungary (USD 15.45) are the cheapest in the region, while Albania (USD 28.99), Northern Macedonia (USD 29.79), and Slovenia (USD 36.41) are the most expensive.


  • Near East

    In the Near East region, war-ravaged Syria came in cheapest with an average monthly price of USD 6.69 per month (and ranked second overall), with Kuwait (USD 77.98), Oman (USD 91.04), Saudi Arabia (USD 107.27), United Arab Emirates (USD 111.20) and Qatar (USD 116.73) providing the most expensive connectivity in the region. 

  • Northern Africa

    Northern Africa consists of just six countries that qualified for the study, three faring particularly well, a couple fairly average and one in the lower half of the table.

    The cheapest countries are Tunisia (USD 11.65), Egypt (USD 17.83), and Algeria (USD 19.87), all three of which are in the top 40 countries globally. Libya is the region’s outlier, costing a rather expensive USD 70.67 per month on average for a broadband package, and finishing in 145th place globally.

  • Northern America

    In North America, consisting of only four countries, the United States offers the cheapest broadband on average (USD 59.99), coming in 23 positions ahead of Canada globally (USD 76.14).

    Greenland provides the most expensive packages in the region with an average price of USD 130.29 per month. No country in the region fares well compared to much of the world, with the cheapest country – United States – reaching only 131st place.


  • Oceania

    14 of the 16 countries studied in Oceania are found in the most expensive half of the global table (New Caledonia and Fiji being the only exceptions).

    Generally, though, larger landmasses such as Australia and New Zealand are cheaper than smaller island states. Christmas Island (USD 148.30), Vanuatu (USD 160.13) and Samoa (USD 192.84) are the most expensive in the region, as well as some of the most expensive places to get a broadband package in the world.

  • South America

    The study looked at a total of ten countries in South America. Of these, Argentina is the cheapest place to get a broadband deal, with an average package price of USD 19.49.

    Thanks to hyperinflation, Venezuela once again could not be measured in this study. The most expensive territory by far for fixed-line broadband is the Falkland Islands, where the average cost per month comes in at USD 149.38.

  • Sub-Saharan Africa

    Sub-Saharan Africa fares worst overall with most of its 37 included countries in the most expensive half of the table. Somalia is the cheapest in the region, coming in 30th in the world, and with an average package price of USD 19.15.

    Eritrea, meanwhile, charges residential users an average of USD 2,666.24 per month for fixed-line broadband, making it the most expensive in the world. Burundi (USD 370.00), Comoros (USD 414.01), and Mauritania (USD 712.46) join Eritrea as the most expensive countries in the region, and constitute the four most expensive countries in the world. 


  • Western Europe

    Within Western Europe, France is the cheapest, with an average package price of USD 32.16 per month, followed by Italy (USD 32.73), and Portugal (USD 33.31). The UK comes in 4th cheapest out of 29 Western European nations (and 67th cheapest worldwide), with an average package price of USD 34.78 per month.

    However, due to lower average speeds compared to much of Europe, it fares far worse in terms of value for money, coming in 25th of 29 countries in Western Europe, and 93rd in the world, with a cost per 1Mbps of bandwidth, per month, of USD 1.06. 



Resources

Downloadable versions of the data set (.xls), the original press release and the research methodology (.pdf)

  • The data

    This .xlsx file contains the complete data set for this year and the two years preceding.

  • Press release

    If you wish to see the original press release for this research, you can download it here as a PDF.

  • Methodology

    An in-depth research methodology which answers most questions concerning method, omissions and inclusions.



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