Updated: Tuesday 26 October, 2010
By Becca Talbot - firstname.lastname@example.org
If you want more from your home phone, bundling it with your broadband connection or digital TV service could save you money and even get you a better deal.
The table below shows some of the UK’s cheapest landline and broadband bundles - compare prices and see if you could save by switching to a cheap deal:
Benefits of bundling - You could save money by taking more than one service from the same provider. Some providers even throw in “free” broadband, digital TV or line rental when you take one of their bundles. You’ll also have less paperwork and only one company to pay.
Downsides of bundling - Calls outside of your package allowance can be quite expensive and if you get a “free” service, it might not be the best on the market.
Each home phone and broadband bundle provider has its own strengths and weaknesses. Companies that offer home phone and broadband bundles include:
Virgin Media - Virgin Media (www.virginmedia.com) has the UK’s fastest broadband speeds and consistently tops download speed tables. It also offers a free digital TV service with some packages. However, its home phone call costs are expensive outside of a bundled package.
Plusnet - Plusnet (www.plus.net) offers great rates on its home phone and broadband packages, with broadband and evening and weekend UK landline calls available from just £6.49 a month, plus line rental. Different call plans and a broadband deal with “unlimited broadband” downloads, subject to a fair usage policy are also available. Again, customers on the cheapest package have to be careful not to go over their allowance or they will be charged.
BT - BT (www.bt.com) is the UK’s biggest home phone provider and offers a great selection of added extras with its home phone and broadband packages, such as free security software and online storage services. It isn’t one of the cheapest providers on the market though.
Post Office - The Post Office (www.postoffice.co.uk) is the only home phone provider to accept over-the-counter cash payments for its home phone and broadband bundles, making it a great budgeting tool, even though it doesn’t offer the cheapest packages around.
Sky - Sky (www.sky.com) customers get a great choice of digital TV options with their home phone and broadband packages, and can even get “free broadband”. Sky line rental is cheaper than BT, but as with many bundled packages, call costs can be high.
Before signing up to a new home phone and broadband bundle, you need have a clear idea of what you want.
Think about your needs as a user; will you need a superfast broadband connection, a very high download limit or free calls during the day? You don’t want to sign-up to a long contract only to find that your monthly bills are a lot higher than expected because you’ve exceeded your download allowance or made lots of calls outside of your plan.
Avoid the temptation to sign-up for extra services just because they’re cheap. If you’re not going to use them, they will just be a waste of money.