Student Accommodation

Best digital TV package deals 2018

We all like a TV binge, but knowing which subscription packages are worth the money and bagging the cheapest deal isn't straightforward. Let us entertain you with our best buys...student TV deals

With the rise of online streaming services, the cost of paid TV subscriptions has dropped significantly. Whether you're into your sport, movies or boxset binges, paying for live TV channels is still popular (especially in shared student houses).

We've reviewed and compared the best TV package deals currently available below. And we'll throw in a couple of money saving tips along the way too 😉

For the best value most of the TV packages here are bundled with broadband. If you have an existing broadband contract you can usually go TV only by browsing the provider's website.

Compare TV package deals

ProviderBroadbandContractEffective Monthly CostWebsite
Virgin Media
Virgin Media Player Bundle
54 Mbps
FIBRE
12
months
£23.66
Inc. fees & reward
Visit » £100 VOUCHER
Sky TV
Sky Entertainment
Add-on (11 Mbps) 18
months
£20 Inc. fees Visit »
TalkTalk
TalkTalk Fast Broadband + TV
11 Mbps 12
months
£26.08 Inc. fees Visit »
BT TV bundle
BT Entertainment Bundle
50 Mbps
FIBRE
18
months
£40.55 Inc. fees & reward Visit » £100 VOUCHER

Digital TV package reviews

Virgin Media

Virgin Media

The Player Bundle

STS Exclusive – £100 Nando’s vouchers! Plus free upgrade to ultrafast fibre and TV package makes this unbeatable for value.

As an exclusive and limited availability offer, you must call freephone 0800 090 1352 to secure it.

Get this deal »

Package details

  • Channels: 70+
  • TV box: Record (1Tb), pause/rewind
  • Average broadband speed: 54 Mbps 😮
  • Contract: 12 months
  • Reward: £100 Restaurant Choice voucher
  • Extra: 70+ TV channels, smart TV box + Talk Weekends calls
  • Advertised cost: £32pm
  • Effective cost: £23.66pm (see below)
  • Lifetime cost: £284

Effective cost breakdown

  • TV & broadband for 12 months: £384
  • Activation fee: FREE
  • Reward: £100 voucher
  • Calculation: (£384 – £100) / 12 = £23.66pm

Visit deal page »

↑ Comparison table

 

Sky TV

Sky TV

Sky Entertainment

More channels than other providers, plus the Sky Q box allows syncing with devices. Choice of add-on packages inc. Sports, Cinema, HD. Broadband bundle optional.

Get this deal »

Package details

  • Channels: 300+
  • TV box: Record (1Tb), pause/rewind, sync
  • Contract: 18 months
  • Advertised cost: £20pm
  • Effective cost: £21.12pm
  • Lifetime cost: £380

Effective cost breakdown

  • TV for 18 months: £360
  • Activation fee: £20
  • Calculation: (£360 + £20) / 18 = £21.12pm

Visit Sky TV »

↑ Comparison table

 

TalkTalk TV

TalkTalk

Fast Broadband + TV Plus Box + TV Select

30 extra entertainment channels (inc. Sky) beamed from a smart recording TV box. Broadband included.

Get this deal »

Package details

  • Channels: 80+
  • TV box: Record (180hrs), pause/rewind
  • Average broadband speed: 11 Mbps
  • Contract: 12 months
  • Advertised cost: £24pm
  • Effective cost: £26.08pm (see below)
  • Lifetime cost: £313

Effective cost breakdown

  • TV & broadband for 12 months: £288
  • Activation fee: FREE
  • TV box: £25
  • Calculation: (£288 + £25) / 12 = £26.08pm

Visit TalkTalk »

↑ Comparison table

 

BT TV

BT TV

Entertainment Bundle

Good choice if you want BT Sport, otherwise Virgin Media on a shorter contract better value as a fibre bundle.

Get this deal »

Package details

  • Channels: 80
  • TV box: Record (1Tb), pause/rewind
  • Average broadband speed: 50 Mbps
  • Contract: 18 months
  • Reward: £100 Prepaid MasterCard
  • Advertised cost: £44.99pm
  • Effective cost: £40.55pm (see below)
  • Lifetime cost: £729.81

Effective cost breakdown

  • TV & broadband for 18 months: £809.82
  • Activation fee: £19.99
  • Reward: £100
  • Calculation: (£809.82 + £19.99 – £100) / 18 = £40.55pm

Visit BT »

↑ Comparison table

7 ways to get cheaper TV

Here are some quick ideas to save money on paying for TV services:

  1. Only sign up for the channels you need
  2. Pay upfront
  3. Select paperless billing
  4. Bundle with broadband and line rental
  5. Watch out for price hikes (switch or…)
  6. Always haggle at the end of contract
  7. Seek out hidden charges when comparing (‘effective monthly cost’)

Do you need a paid TV subscription?

Freeview boxes (like these) give you access to over 70 channels – including HD – and can cost less than £50. After that viewing is free (hence the name…).

If it’s movies you’re into, online streaming services like Netflix and Amazon Prime (get six months free here) may satisfy your cravings for less money.

But if you have specific interests, such as live sport or Disney boxsets, paying for a TV subscription can open you up to over 300 live channels. Just review all the channels you’re getting before committing to a lengthy contract and weigh up the value for you.

How does installation work?

Getting set up with a TV package is usually quite easy. After confirming they can supply your address, your provider will send you a set-top box that you can connect to your TV.

However if your house hasn’t had cable or satellite services before, installation can be more complex often requiring an engineer visit that comes with extra cost. You also need to get permission from your landlord!

After installation you’ll pay the advertised monthly fee for the length of the contract. If you find you’re not watching all the channels you can sometimes rework the contract.

Do I need to pay for a TV Licence?

Yes! Even though you’re paying a monthly subscription for your TV package, this doesn’t include the cost of a TV Licence. You’ll need to buy this separately.

They cost around £150 for the year and can be bought online. You can apply for a refund if you don’t watch live TV during the summer months.

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