Dan Howdle | February 6th, 2023
Plusnet, Yorkshire's once-independent, popular broadband provider, was bought by BT a number of years ago now. It has however, maintained much of its independence and, notably, its stellar reputation for good value for money and end high-quality customer service.
Use our broadband coverage check to find out if Plusnet is available where you are. Click the button below to find the best deals available in your area.
Our Plusnet broadband comparison page is full of useful tools and filters. Firstly, it's going to show you which Plusnet packages are available to you based on your postcode. Don't worry, we don't store your data. This is important because not everyone can get the same packages– it depends where you live.
Around 15-30% of the UK can get so-called 'ultrafast' speeds due to the installation of pure fibre in their area. Not all fibre broadband is created equal, and pure fibre, or 'ultrafast' broadband is by far the most capable, but as we said has limited availability. You should also note that you won't get a TV deal with Plusnet. Plusnet ended its TV service somewhere around the end of 2021.
Plusnet operates on the Openreach network. No doubt you've seen Openreach vans out and about, but what does that mean exactly? Well, Openreach is the physical network on which most providers piggyback. Essentially, they buy space on the network and use it to provide you with your services. The ost notable exception to this is Virgin Media, which operates on its own network, though notably is only available to around 60% of UK households, compared to 99.9% on Openreach.
So, when it comes to Plusnet, pretty much everyone can get it. The question that will remain for many then, will be what speed thye can specifically get? Are you super-lucky and live somewhere you can get the provider's ultrafast pure fibre services? Or are you super-unlucky and the location of your home means you can barely get a speed to serve your needs? It's a bit of a lottery, but our postcode checker has the answers you need.
It's extremely unlikely that you cannot get Plusnet where you live, since it is available to very, very close to every home in the UK. That's not to say it's impossible, though. If you can't get Plusnet where you live it would mean the Openreach network doesn't reach you, which in turn means that you won't be able to get broadband from any other provider either. Sure, Virgin Media operates on a different network, but tends not to be available where Openreach is not.
So, what can you do? Well, you can register your interest in getting it with Openreach, but that's unlikely to speed things up in it getting to you, especially if your home is a farmhouse, barn conversion, converted windmill etc. out in the sticks. The options you should explore instead are 4G/5G home broadband and satellite broadband.
The way speed levels are organised at Plusnet is pretty similar to other providers on the Openreach network (BT, Sky, TalkTalk and the rest). The reason for this is you essentially have three different technologies running concurrently on the network, and where you live you may be able to have one, two or even all three of these technogies to choose from.
The slowest is 'standard broadband', also known as ADSL. This typically runs from 10 to 17Mbps. Plusnet specifically offers an average ADSL speed of 10Mbps, so at the lower end, and this speed does vary between providers. ADSL runs entirely on copper wires, essentially the old phone network. At 36 to 66Mbps, the middle-ground tech, available to most people is simply called 'fibre broadband' or 'superfast', though the latter of these names is beginning to look increasingly silly. It uses fast fibre cables as far as the cabinet in your street with the remaining distance to your home made up of older, slower, copper cabling.
Finally, there is pure fibre. This has a bunch of different names. It can be called FTTP, FTTC, pure fibre, ultrafast, gigabit broadband and a few more names besides. But it all refers to the same thing: Fibre cables that run all the way to your home. Pure fibre can reach speeds of up to 1,000Mbps at the time of writing (though it's capable of much, much faster). Plusnet offers speeds of up to 900Mbps, but you will have to be very lucky to live somewhere you can get it.
Most people are already with a provider on the Openreach network when switching to Plusnet. The so-called installation usually takes about two weeks from ordering, but if you're already with another Openreach provider (not Virgin Media), it can be a lot quicker since it involves simply posting you the router and you plugging it in with no need for an engineer visit.
If you're with Virgin Media or don't have any sort of internet connection currently, you may need a visit from an engineer. This will rarely mean a person entering your home to install something. Usually it simply means they have to visit the street cabinet and get you set up. If your home has never had a phone line, this is the only instance where an engineer will actually have to visit your home, and Plusnet – as all providers – may charge you for installing the physical line.
This is Plusnet's entry-level ADSL package, and offers a speed of around 10Mbps. This is an average, so your actual connection may be faster or slower in realty. We don't really recommend ADSL to anyone these days. It doesn't save much money – if any – and really should be reserved for households that can't get anything else. It's just not fast enough for a lot of modern-day activities like streaming and gaming.
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Most people will be able to get these packages, offering superfast broadband (see definitions further up this page) at two speed tiers: 36Mbps and 66Mbps. This will be enough for many households, though we tend to recommend the fastest thing you can get if you're a 4K streamer or have a gamer or two in the household.
See our fibre broadband deals.
This is the fastest tier, but only available to around one in five households. Plusnet Full Fibre offers speeds of up to 900Mbps – a speed that is, frankly, too fast for most households. Not that having too much speed is a problem, more that unless you have a few gamers around the house who regularly download large games and updates, you just won't use that speed, so you might as well save some money and plump for something a bit slower.
See our full fibre broadband deals.