Which are the best internet providers in the UK?

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The cost of internet in the UK can vary from less than £20 per month to over £90 per month. However, most deals fall in the £20-£40 price bracket. Comparing internet providers can help you to save money on your monthly bill and secure a fast, reliable connection for your household.
When comparing internet providers, there are certain things you need to consider. While cost is probably the most obvious, average download speed is also very important. The faster your internet connection, the easier it will be for you and your household to watch TV shows and movies, game, shop and socialise online.
Last update: October 2021


To help you compare internet providers, and find the right deal for your needs, we’re taking a look at the most important things to consider when selecting your new broadband deal.

Which internet provider offers the best deals?


At the moment, there are around 200 internet providers in the UK. This gives customers a huge amount of choice, but can make it hard to narrow down the options to find the best possible deal.
Among the largest and most competitive UK internet providers are:

  • BT
  • Plusnet
  • EE
  • Sky Broadband
  • Virgin Media
  • TalkTalk
  • Vodafone
  • Post Office
  • Zen Internet
  • Hyperoptic

With so many companies in the industry, comparing deals can be a challenge. The best way to compare broadband packages quickly and easily is by using Broadband Plans. Give us a call and our expert on 0330 054 0020 team will talk you through the available options to find the deal that’s perfect for you and your household.

Who are the best internet providers in the UK?


When comparing internet providers, most customers will want to go with the best company around. However, as every household’s priorities and requirements are different, there’s not one single option that’s best for everyone.
Some of the most important factors to consider when deciding which the best internet provider is for your home include:

  • Cost
  • Average download speed
  • Customer service
  • Contract length
  • Reliability

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Best internet provider for cost

If you’re searching for reliable, affordable internet, some of the best companies to look at are:

  • Plusnet
  • TalkTalk
  • Now Broadband
  • EE

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The table below shows some of the cheapest deals currently available:


Supplier Package Monthly cost Average download speed Contract length
Plusnet Unlimited Broadband £18.99 10 Mbps 12 months
Vodafone Superfast 1 Fibre Broadband £21.95 35 Mbps 24 months
Shell Energy Superfast Fibre £21.99 35 Mbps 18 months
Hyperoptic 50Mb Fibre Connection £22 50 Mbps 12 months
TalkTalk Fibre 35 £22 38 Mbps 18 months
Virgin Media Ultrafast M100 Fibre £24 108 Mbps 18 months
EE Fibre Broadband Only £25 36 Mbps 24 months


Best internet provider for speed

Currently, the fastest internet in the UK is provided by BT and Virgin Media.

  • BT’s Full Fibre 900 package offers average download speeds of up to 900Mbps.
  • Virgin Media’s Gig1 package can give you access to an incredible 1,140Mbps, however this is only available to a small number of homes in the UK.

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All of the fastest internet deals are available to customers already connected to the UK’s full fibre network. At the moment, around 1 in 4 homes are on the network. The Government has said that it hopes to complete the rollout of full fibre by the end of 2025.
The table below shows some of the fastest broadband deals available across the UK:


Supplier Package Monthly cost Average download speed Contract length
Virgin Media Ultimate Oomph Bundle £79 630 Mbps 18 months
Virgin Media M500 £43 516 Mbps 18 months
Hyperoptic Hyperfast £47 900 Mbps 12 months
BT Fibre 900 £64.99 900 Mbps 24 months
BT Fibre 300 £54.99 300 Mbps 24 months
EE MAX 900 £60 900 Mbps 24 months


Best internet provider for customer service

For many people, customer service is a very important factor when choosing a broadband provider. The table below shows the average Trustpilot scores for the UK’s main internet providers:


Supplier TrustPilot rating (out of 5)
Virgin Media 1.2
BT 1.4
Plusnet 1.4
Sky Broadband 1.5
Now Broadband 1.5
EE 2.1
TalkTalk 2.4
Hyperoptic 4.7



As you can see, Hyperoptic has by far the best score out of these suppliers, with 88% of users rating the company as ‘excellent’. Zen Internet comes a close second with an overall score of 4.1 out of five while, at the other end of the scale, Virgin Media is rated ‘bad’ by a whopping 90% of their customers.

Best internet provider for contract length

Most UK internet providers offer standard contracts of 12 months. Occasionally, 9-month and rolling one-month deals are available, though these are likely to be a lot more expensive than longer contracts.
In general, 18-month contracts offer the best value for money. These are available from most internet providers in the UK.
If you want a shorter contract and more flexibility, opt for one of the deals the table below:


Supplier Contract length Monthly cost Data limit Average download speed
Now Broadband 1 month £28 Unlimited 63 Mbps
Now Broadband 1 month £18 Unlimited 11 Mbps
Now Broadband 1 month £22 Unlimited 36 Mbps
Cuckoo 1 month £29.99 Unlimited 67 Mbps


Best internet provider for reliability

These days, most internet providers offer customers a reliable service. It’s unlikely you’ll experience major outages and, in most cases, your internet download speed shouldn’t vary too far from the average you’ve been promised.
If you want to have more or less guaranteed download speeds, opt for full fibre broadband. With this type of broadband, fibre optic cables are laid from your home all the way to the data source. You don’t share your connection with other households and there’s no copper cabling to slow down your bandwidth. This makes for superfast internet that can be relied on.

What’s the worst internet provider?

A number of well known internet providers get fairly poor online reviews from their customer base. For example, Vodafone UK gets a Trustpilot score of just 1.3 out of 5, with a whopping 86% of reviewers rating the company as ‘bad’.
BT does little better with a score of 1.3 out of 5. EE scrapes in just above BT with a rating of 2 out of 5, while TalkTalk does a little better with an average score of 2.5 out of 5.

We compare the market to find you the best broadband deal.

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What is the fastest Internet in the UK?

At the moment, the fastest internet in the UK is offered by Virgin Media.

The supplier provides broadband speeds of up to 1 gigabit per second in some parts of the country and is already trialling internet capable of delivering an incredible 8 gigabits per second. That’s an astounding 216 times faster than current UK average internet speeds.
However, these services are still very limited so it’s likely you won’t see speeds anywhere near this fast in your region. To find out which provider offers the fastest internet near you, call Broadband Plans on 0330 054 0020. Our expert advisors will talk you through the quickest options available.

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Who is the best internet provider in the UK?


The biggest internet provider in the UK is currently BT. Both Plusnet and EE are now subsidiaries of BT, although they continue to operate under their own names. In total, BT, EE and Plusnet serve around 9.3 million homes and businesses across the country. The next largest internet provider is Sky Broadband, with an estimated 6.2 million customers, while Virgin Media comes in third with 5.4 million clients.
There are a number of advantages of choosing a large internet provider like BT, Sky or Virgin. These companies, and BT in particular, are leading the rollout of full fibre optic broadband and offer a good choice of different deals and packages.
However, customer service can suffer when dealing with larger businesses. If you want to feel valued as a customer and enjoy easy interactions with your internet provider, you may be better off with a smaller company like Zen Internet.

Choosing the right broadband provider

When selecting an internet provider for your home, it’s important to think about what’s most important to you. Do you want cheap internet? A superfast connection? Excellent customer service or a flexible contract length? Deciding on your priorities should help you to narrow down your options and find the best supplier for your needs.

Speed vs Cost

In general, download speeds in the UK vary from around 10Mbps to 100Mbps. Most people will probably experience average speeds of between 11Mps and 70Mbps depending on their location.
In some rural or remote areas, you may see speeds of less than 10Mbps. On the other hand, if you’re connected to full fibre broadband, you could see average download speeds well in excess of 100Mpbs. The faster your internet connection is, the easier it will be to watch TV and films, play computer games and make video calls. Often, the cheapest broadband packages come with the slowest internet.
However, if your provider can still guarantee you average speeds of around 10Mbps, this will be fast enough to watch TV and make video calls. Although if multiple people want to use the bandwidth at the same time, you may run into difficulties.
If you’re happy to pay around £25 – £30 per month for your broadband, you should be able to secure a deal that gives you between 11Mbps and 50Mbps. Some deals in this price range can even offer up to 70Mbps.
For the fastest possible internet (300Mbps – 900Mbps), you’ll be looking at £40-£90 per month. At these speeds, you shouldn’t have any problems at all calling, gaming, streaming and shopping online.

Internet providers by postcode

Some services, like full fibre broadband, are only available in certain parts of the country. In order to find out what’s on offer in your area, call our Broadband Plans. Our expert team will compare all the deals available in your postcode to help find the package that’s right for you.

Call us to find the best broadband and/or phone provider for free!

0330 054 0020

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FAQ

How much should I pay for home Internet?

Home internet packages in the UK start from around £18 per month. However, if you opt for one of these cheap deals, you’re likely to get a slow connection and may have trouble streaming, gaming and socialising online.
If you want a faster broadband connection of between 11Mbps and 50Mbps, you’ll probably need to pay between £20 and £30 per month. For super fast speeds above 50Mbps, you could pay anywhere from £30 to £90 per month.
When selecting a new broadband deal, it’s important to calculate the total cost of your connection. A lot of internet suppliers charge a connection fee. This can be up to £60 and can add a considerable amount to the cost of your internet.

Who is the cheapest internet provider in the UK?

The exact monthly cost of your internet will vary depending on your location, usage and requirements. However, there are some providers that offer consistently low cost deals to most parts of the UK. Internet suppliers that currently have broadband deals for less than £20 per month include:

  • TalkTalk
  • Onestream
  • Vodafone
  • Plusnet

Can I get WiFi without an internet provider?

If you want to enjoy a reliable WiFi connection in your home, you’ll need to sign up to an internet provider. Although you can use your smartphone as a hotspot for a limited period, the internet it provides won’t stretch to every room in your house and won’t be as fast or as reliable as broadband.

If you just want temporary access to the internet, or if you only use your connection for checking emails and social media, you could look into a 4G dongle. These are cheap devices that give you a 4G signal at home. You can then connect your phone and computer to this signal to enjoy 4G WiFi without a contract.

Who is the best Internet provider in the UK?

The UK internet provider with the best online reviews is Zen Internet. With an average score of 4.1 out of 5, Zen is a good choice for households that want a high level of customer service and a reliable connection.

Updated on 21 Jul, 2021

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Alex

Consumer Broadband Expert