You may have yet to hear about it, as it’s not being shouted about loud enough, but you may be entitled to social broadband tariffs.
Many people are concerned about their bills, especially regarding the cost of internet and phone services. The government has partnered with various internet service providers to offer ‘social tariffs’, which provide discounted broadband and mobile packages to people on government benefits.
What is a social broadband tariff?
A social tariff is broadband and phone packages offered at lower prices for people receiving Universal Credit, Pension Credit, and other government benefits. These cheap broadband packages are sometimes referred to as ‘essential’ or ‘basic’ broadband by some providers.
Who is eligible for a broadband social tariff?
If you or a household member currently receive Universal Credit, you may be eligible to switch to any available social tariffs.
The most prominent broadband providers have discounted packages available to people on Pension Credit, Employment and Support Allowance, Jobseeker’s Allowance, and Income Support.
What are the benefits of a Social Tariff?
A social tariff could be an excellent option for those with a variety of benefits:
- Available to those on a variety of benefits, including Universal Credit
- Cheaper than regular packages, with prices ranging from £10 to £20
- Fast and unlimited broadband, with most tariffs offering superfast speeds over 30 Mbit/s
- Low set-up costs, with providers informing you of any charges before signing up
- Free to switch to a social tariff if your provider offers it
- Price remains the same throughout the contract, with no mid-contract price increases
- No fee for leaving the social tariff before the end of the contract.
What providers offer a social tariff?
Here is a breakdown of the broadband providers who offer a social tariff for home broadband:
|Provider||Price per month||Average Speed (Mbits)|
|BT Home Essential||£15||36|
|BT Home Essential 2||£20||67|
|Hyperoptic Fair Fibre 50||£15||50|
|Hyperoptic Fair Fibre 150||£20||150|
|SMARTY||£12||5G where available|
* Providers might only cover some premises in the regions listed. Check the provider’s website for more information about coverage.
** Wildanet’s tariff is only available to those who receive Universal Credit. They are considering including other benefits.
How fast are the social broadband tariffs?
The speed of broadband varies by provider, but speed ranges from 20Mbit/s for £12.50 per month to 150Mbit/s for £20 per month.
Is there an exit fee when switching to a new social tariff?
The good news is that there is no exit fee if you switch to a social tariff with your current provider.
It’s not clear if your current provider will charge you if you switch to a new provider on their social tariff, and generally, it is dealt with on a case-by-case basis.
If your current provider’s social tariff doesn’t meet your requirements, contact them and ask if they will charge a fee if you switch to a new provider on their social tariff – in most cases, the current provider should let you go with no exit fee.
Compare the latest broadband deals with AquaSwitch: