Best value TV, phone and broadband packages
Want more TV channels in your life? It's worth knowing you'll probably get the best deal by bundling it with your phone and broadband. Check out the best offers below!
If watching catchup TV on your laptop isn't enough to satisfy your needs (even if it means not forking out for a TV licence if the following applies to you!), then a TV bundle that comes with phone and broadband will normally offer the best value.
Not only will you be saving cash, but you'll be saving yourself a lot of hassle by combining all three into one monthly bill with one provider. If you're organising your broadband anyway, you can normally add on a TV package easily.
As with all your main utility bills, we've done the hard graft to bring you a concise list of the best value broadband, phone and TV packages available to students right now.
There are a few providers that still offer TV-only packages if you've already got your broadband sorted elsewhere, so we've included those in a separate table below too.
At Save the Student we're all about transparency and making this stuff easier for you, so we've calculated the total lifetime cost of the various contracts below – and included any hidden extras that tend to be revealed at the last minute! That way there'll be no hidden surprises.
Every TV will allow you to watch the standard Freeview/Freesat channels completely free.
All new TVs now have Freeview built in – if you need to buy one, click here to browse on Amazon.
But if you’ve got an older TV, a basic Freeview set-top box will cost you roughly £25. You can also pay a little extra to get a Freeview HD box or even a personal video recorder like this Youview+ box for £79 so you can record live TV.
However, if you’re a big TV fan or want access to specific channels, you can pay for a premium digital channel service through the likes of Sky, Virgin Media, BT TV, Now TV and TalkTalk.
Once you organise a TV package with a provider, they’ll send you a set-top box that will connect your TV to all their channels and services.
Setting up the box is pretty straightforward, but just be aware that some services might require a satellite dish, which will come at an extra cost.
You’ll pay a monthly fee for the service, which will vary depending on how many channels you want access to.
That’s why bundling everything together with one provider is a smart move – you’ll pay much less than you would if you paid for broadband and TV individually.
Whether you’re just watching the standard Freeview/Freesat channels, or you’re paying for a premium service like Sky, you’ll still need to buy a TV Licence. Essentially you need a TV Licence to watch any live TV.
If you’re not bothered about buying a TV, you can still watch programmes on your laptop or computer using various apps and sites like TV catch up – and if the following criteria applies to you, you don’t need a TV licence to do so either!
And of course you can also get yourself a Netflix or Amazon Prime subscription (get 6 months for free here) to watch even more on demand TV. But before you do, find out how to save money on streaming film and TV.
Tips when choosing a package:
- Only pay for what you watch – Think carefully about the types of programmes you actually watch. There’s no point paying for a Sky Sports package if you rarely watch sport!
- Beware of upselling – There are loads of extra channels and equipment the companies will probably try to sell to you. Try not to get sucked into the upselling of paid extras!
- Read the broadband small print – The TV package is pretty straightforward, but you need to make sure you’re getting the right WiFi speed and data allowance with your broadband. Here’s everything you need to consider with your broadband
- Check the length of the contract – Minimum contract periods can be quite long (18 months or so). Make sure you check the contract length as well as any early termination penalties you might incur before signing up to anything
- Landlord’s consent – If you need a satellite dish installed, you’ll want to check with your landlord first. Most landlords will be fine with it (having a Sky dish or Virgin Media cable installed can even be a bonus for future tenants) but it’s best to ask first!
- Haggle, haggle, haggle – The companies tend to be open to haggling – it’s worth a shot.