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Best TV packages

Top TV packages from Virgin, Sky, BT, TalkTalk and NOW TV from just £23 per month.

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Sky Stream + Entertainment + Netflix Sky
order by phone
£23.00 per month(prices may change during contract)
New customers onlyNo dish neededNext day deliveryStream live TV
  • broadband not
    included
  • 150+TV Channels
  • Zero One-off cost
  • 18 Month Contract
  • No phone line
£23.00 per month(prices may change during contract)
Get Deal
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Sky Stream + Entertainment + Netflix + Superfast Sky
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£38.00 per month(prices may change during contract)
New customers onlyNo dish neededStream live TV
  • 61Mb Average Speed
  • 150+TV Channels
  • Zero One-off cost
  • 18 Month Contract
  • Pay as you go calls
£38.00 per month(prices may change during contract)
Get Deal
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Sky Stream + Sports + Netflix Sky
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£43.00 per month(prices may change during contract)
New customers onlyNo dish neededStream live TV
  • broadband not
    included
  • 150+TV Channels
  • Zero One-off cost
  • 18 Month Contract
  • No phone line
£43.00 per month(prices may change during contract)
Get Deal
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Sky Stream + Entertainment + Netflix + Gigafast Sky
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£54.00 per month(prices may change during contract)
New customers onlyNo dish neededStream live TV
  • 900Mb Average Speed
  • 100+TV Channels
  • Zero One-off cost
  • 18 Month Contract
  • Pay as you go calls
£54.00 per month(prices may change during contract)
Get Deal
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Sky Glass + TV + Netflix + Sky Live + Superfast Sky
£55.00 per month(prices may change during contract)
New customers onlyOrder online only43" Sky GlassSubscription required
  • 61Mb Average Speed
  • 150+TV Channels
  • £10.00 One-off cost
  • 48 Month Contract
  • Pay as you go calls
£55.00 per month(prices may change during contract)
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Sky Q TV Essentials + Broadband Superfast 35 Sky
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£33.00 per month(prices may change during contract)
New customers only200+ free-to-air channels via satellite dishBroadband speed guarantee
  • 36Mb Average Speed
  • 200+TV Channels
  • Zero One-off cost
  • 18 Month Contract
  • Pay as you go calls
£33.00 per month(prices may change during contract)
Get Deal
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Sky Glass + TV + Netflix + Superfast Sky
£49.00 per month(prices may change during contract)
New customers onlyOrder online only43" Sky GlassSubscription required
  • 61Mb Average Speed
  • 150+TV Channels
  • £10.00 One-off cost
  • 48 Month Contract
  • Pay as you go calls
£49.00 per month(prices may change during contract)
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Sky Stream + Entertainment + Netflix + Ultrafast Sky
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£40.00 per month(prices may change during contract)
New customers onlyNo dish neededStream live TV
  • 145Mb Average Speed
  • 150+TV Channels
  • Zero One-off cost
  • 18 Month Contract
  • Pay as you go calls
£40.00 per month(prices may change during contract)
Get Deal
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Virgin Media Bigger Combo Bundle Virgin Media
order by phone
£40.00 per month(prices may change during contract)
New customers only190+ channelsSky channelsVirgin TV 360 box
  • 362Mb Average Speed
  • 190+TV Channels
  • Zero One-off cost
  • 18 Month Contract
  • Inclusiveweekend calls
£40.00 per month(prices may change during contract)
Get Deal
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Sky Stream + Entertainment + Cinema + Netflix + Ultrafast Plus Sky
order by phone
£54.00 per month(prices may change during contract)
New customers onlyNo dish neededStream live TV
  • 500Mb Average Speed
  • 150+TV Channels
  • Zero One-off cost
  • 18 Month Contract
  • Pay as you go calls
£54.00 per month(prices may change during contract)
Get Deal
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Our most popular deals are sorted by how many people click and purchase a deal. Any featured or recommended deals are not included and will be clearly marked.
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Cable.co.uk may earn a commission when you purchase via links on our site. The price you pay will always be equal to or often cheaper than the price you would pay by going direct to the provider. Broadband speeds are dependent on where you live and you may receive slower speeds than listed. Broadband is subject to availability. Please refer to individual broadband provider's terms and conditions before signing up. All prices are inclusive of VAT except business prices.

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Best TV packages

How do I choose a TV package?

Like anything in life, if you want to do a good job you've got to put the work in. Happily, there's not that much work needed to find the right TV deal for you and your household. It's just that if you don't want to be guessing, there is some

Research your household's viewing habits

You know what members of your household like to watch – of course you do, you live with them. However, for the purposes of this exercise, you're going to have to look a little deeper than 'Jack likes kids stuff cos he's eight'.

Sit down, interview your household/family and make sure you get it right. The last thing you want to hear Jack say is "I want to watch The Clone Wars on Disney+" and you've chosen a provider without the right box to do it. So find a notepad, sit them all down and ask:

  • What are your favourite shows, movies or streams?
  • Do you watch stuff not shown on regular TV (Netflix, YouTube, Amazon, Twitch etc.) – streamed to your computer or mobile, say? If so, what?
  • Do you prefer to watch TV in a living room setting or do you prefer to watch in your own room?

Identify special requirements (4K, HD, Asian channels, Netflix and so on)

If you've ever booked a plane ticket, you'll be familiar with the process of having to choose a meal suited to your diet. This is a bit like that – if you have to have the Kosher meal and your preferred airline doesn't serve it, you'll either go without or choose another airline.

In the case of TV packages, this manifests as discreet services or features that you can't get with all providers. For example, you can't watch NOW TV on a Virgin Media Stream box, and there's a comparatively pathetic assortment of Asian channels available from most providers, while Sky has them by the bucketload.

Think about your budget

It's time to give the financials some thought. In an ideal world we'd probably all take out Virgin's Mega Volt Bundle or Sky's 'everything' package (Sky stopped naming its bundles some time ago, so now you have to just choose a bundle and then choose all the add-ons you want). If money is no object, go right ahead and do that – there's more content there than you'll be able to watch in nine lifetimes.

For most of us, though, money is a factor, not only because it makes good old-fashioned sense to keep our monthly costs down, but also because everyone loves finding a good deal – there's something immensely satisfying about it.

In our TV package comparison, you'll find the best deals in the country right now. But how much should you expect to pay? You can get a vast majority of channels for around £20-£30 per month these days. Sticking to Sky or Virgin means you'll also get the best selection.

It's when you add on premium channels like sports and movies that things start to get considerably more expensive. Sky Sports on its own (which you can also get on Virgin Media, EE TV and NOW TV) costs about the same as all the other channels put together, so you should seriously consider whether you really need these if budget is paramount.

The primary reason you should have a budget in mind however, is to prevent yourself getting carried away. A figure in mind before you compare packages gives you what psychologists refer to as an 'anchor' – a point from which to make reasonable judgements as to what you can and can't afford.

Get TV only or bundle with broadband, phone and even mobile?

You will save money if you get your TV, broadband, home phone and even mobile SIM from one provider. It's good for the provider – it gets them more valuable customers – and it's good for you, since you can take advantage of, say, cheaper SIM tariffs only available to broadband and/or TV customers.

There's no getting away from it in many cases. Sky TV only without broadband is like a sink without a tap, and in the case of EE TV or Virgin TV, you're not even allowed to have it unless you're also a BT/EE or Virgin Media Broadband customer respectively. Most providers to not offer TV solo – Sky is your best option if that's what you desire.

If you have existing services beyond TV, opening your mind to the idea of bundling two, three or even four services from the same provider will expand your options and save you money.

Decide how many screens you'll want to watch on

When you interviewed your household, did anyone express a keen interest in watching telly on their own, in bed or in their own space? If they did, there is an additional layer of complexity to consider here.

For one, needing a multiroom TV solution means you've narrowed possible providers to just three: Sky, Virgin, TalkTalk and BT. The additional complexity then comes in the form of how many additional rooms members of your household will want to watch in.

On Virgin TV, you'll be charged £10 each month for a mini version of its TV 360 Box to be used in another room, and an extra £5 for a second one. However, with the option of using Virgin TV Go, it is possible to cast your Virgin TV shows to another TV without the need for an extra box.

Sky offers a dedicated miniature multiroom box option in the form of the Sky Q Minis. These costs £12 for one extra box, but will cost an extra £49 per box if you want more than one. Things can quickly add up. Sky Stream is a bit more friendly with a £12 per month subscription to Sky Whole Home, and £39.99 one-off cost for each additional Sky Stream Puck.

With BT, now EE TV, you can sign up to Extra Box, which again, comes with a £10 monthly fee, and costs an extra £49 per month per box. Multiroom is expensive, but less so with Sky Stream.

Match your household's viewing habits to the right package

You probably have a fairly decent idea of what you're going for by now – two or three categories of programming that are important, along with one or two features you'd prefer to have. There's a wealth of information on those 'special features' we talked about (Netflix, Asian Channels etc.) further down this guide, but for now it's time to play with some fun tools to help you find what you want.

In the next section – How to choose a TV provider – you'll find a tool for each of the main providers that will allow you to see exactly what channels are available from each provider. So head down there and have a fiddle…

How do I choose a TV provider?

Choosing a TV provider has one thing going for it: It's nowhere near as baffling as choosing a broadband deal because there are a lot less providers who offer it. On top of that, only two providers – Virgin and Sky – offer a lot beyond the standard Freeview channels.

Virgin TV

Virgin TV offers up to 260 (ish) channels and is generally accepted as the second-best TV provider in the UK. Sky cannot however quite match Virgin Media's top broadband speeds.

Virgin does offer the 'meat' of Sky's TV offering, but falls short in two key areas: Sky's exclusive channels – we'd love to be able to say they don't matter, but we're talking the likes of Sky Atlantic here, arguably the most sought-after channel of all thanks to its exclusive screenings of House of The Dragon, Succession, True Detective and others. And Sky Box Sets, which offers free, on-demand access to 500+ TV shows and over 1,000 movies at any given time. Virgin cannot get even close to that with its relatively limited on-demand offering.

For Virgin TV's full TV channel listings, see our Virgin Media TV channels guide.

Sky TV

There aren't a lot of downsides to Sky TV. Even those who don't want a satellite dish on their house can now plump for the totally excellent Sky Stream service instead. In fact, Sky has winded down its promotion of its traditional Sky Q satellite service and we can expect a slow phase-out across the rest of this decade.

Sky has the best content, the most content and the best equipment. It even offers mobile SIMs with free calls and texts for existing customers. It is also, hands-down, the best TV provider. However, it is not the best provider of broadband – that's Virgin Media.

We now have a detailed list of every channel you'll get on Sky Stream (and those you won't in our Sky Stream TV channels guide.

EE TV (formerly BT TV)

The vast majority of EE TV's channels are Freeview. That is, you don't actually need to pay anything to get these channels. In this respect, EE TV pales in comparison to Virgin TV's offering, and is utterly obliterated by Sky's.

TalkTalk TV

Like EE TV, only worse, TalkTalk TV offers nothing at all that's unique or exclusive. You also have to be a TalkTalk broadband customer or you can't have it at all.

Hang on. There must be something, right? It can't be that bad. That's the point – there's nothing bad about it at all. It's just there's nothing good about it either – nothing noteworthy. It's a good option if you're already a TalkTalk broadband customer and not fussed about channel count, free on-demand content, multiroom or anything else, but otherwise forget it.

TalkTalk does offer on-demand movies and TV, but it's on a pay-to-play basis.

Why you might choose TV from someone else

Are you the type of person who favours a python over a dog? Do you run Linux on your PC instead of Windows? Are your children called Agamemnon and Boudicca? Maybe, then, you're the sort that just has to be different.

There really is no reason to look beyond the options we've outlined above. It represents the full gamut of decent telly packages in the UK, and if you read between the lines, what with us running out of things to say by the time we got to the numbingly basic TalkTalk TV, you'll have already realised there isn't a lot more out there.

However, there are some hipster choices, like Freesat. We wouldn't recommend them, but if you must, you must…

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Frequently asked questions

Who is the cheapest TV provider?

Our cheapest TV packages start from £23 per month. To check which TV provider is the cheapest, see our comparison.

Can I watch Netflix on Virgin Media, Sky, and EE TV?

You can watch Netflix on all of these subscription TV set-top boxes, and all of them now include a Netflix subscription as standard on at least some of their packages.

Can I watch my subscription TV service on my mobile or tablet?

Sky offers both Sky Go and Sky Go Extra apps, the former free, the latter for a small additional charge. With Sky Go you can't download content in advance and watch it later (useful to save on mobile data), with Sky Go Extra you can. Sky Go Extra is also free if you subscribe to Sky Multiroom.

EE TV offers the EE TV app. On it you can watch anything you could watch on your EE TV subscription.

Virgin Media offers its Virgin TV Go app. It provides access instantly, anywhere, to all content you subscribe to. Virgin TV Go, however, does not allow you to download content in advance in order to watch it later, so could prove very costly if you have a restrictive data tariff on your device.

TalkTalk TV Store has an app. Remember this is pay-per-view content only and does not allow you to watch channels offered in your TalkTalk TV contract. It does, however, allow you to download over wi-fi and watch while on the move – probably the most important feature there is.

Can I watch digital TV on my laptop?

Absolutely. If it has an app, it'll be available on Windows or Apple operating systems. For which apps do what with what provider, check out the question and answer directly above this one.

Do I need a satellite dish to get Sky, Virgin, BT and TalkTalk TV?

Only Sky Q requires a satellite dish, Sky Stream doesn't and neither do services from BT (EE TV), Virgin TV or TalkTalk TV.

Do I need a broadband connection to watch digital TV?

Not necessarily. Some Freeview boxes only require a roof aerial, but for subscriptions to the likes of Sky, Virgin TV, EE TV and TalkTalk TV then yes, you need a broadband connection which in all cases except Sky must be the same as your TV provider.

Can I get Sky, Virgin TV, BT TV or TalkTalk TV without a subscription?

Only Sky Stream offers a full-blooded subscription TV service on a one-month contract.

Can I record TV and movies on Sky, Virgin, BT (EE TV) or TalkTalk TV?

Yes in all cases. No on Sky Stream, though you can earmark content to watch later, which is functionally the same thing.

Do I still need a TV license to watch digital TV?

Yes, you do, if it's being broadcast live. It is an offence to watch or record programmes as they're shown live on TV or online without a TV licence, and it is an offence to watch or download catch up TV or on demand services on TV or online without a TV licence.

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