Virgin Media Broadband Buyers Guide

Ultrafast high speed cable broadband available to around 60% of UK households

  • Fastest widely available broadband speed - with average download speeds of 516Mb on their fastest packages
  • Large range of TV and phone broadband bundles available, as well as broadband-only packages
  • Line rental cheaper than BT, also available with no phone line or line rental required
  • Technical support and repairs are free of charge
  • Free Hub 3 router with advanced 802.11ac wireless technology with all deals
  • Free wi-fi on the London Underground

Need help choosing? Give us a call on 0800 083 8870   Go to site

Virgin Media M100 plus Phone
£29.00 for 18 months
£51.00 thereafter

No upfront cost when you sign up online

  • 18 months reduced price!
  • 108Mb average download speed!
  • 10Mb average upload speed!
  • Truly unlimited usage
  • WiFi on the Tube
  • Free Super Hub with 802.11ac Wi-Fi
  • Add a mobile SIM for just £5 extra
  • Use home phone minutes on mobile
  • Weekend UK landline calls
  • No activation fee online
  • 18 month contract

Buy now

Or call us on
0800 083 8870

Virgin Media Big Bundle
£33.00 for 18 months
£56.00 thereafter

No upfront cost when you sign up online

  • 18 months reduced price!
  • 54Mb average download speed
  • 5Mb average upload speed!
  • Truly unlimited usage
  • Virgin TV V6 Box record up to 6 shows at the same time
  • 110+ TV channels including 20 HD
  • WiFi on the Tube
  • Virgin TV Anywhere app
  • Weekend UK landline calls
  • No activation fee online
  • 18 month contract

Buy now

Or call us on
0800 083 8870

Virgin Media Bigger Bundle + Movies
£57.00 for 18 months
£103.00 thereafter

No upfront cost when you sign up online

  • Offer 18 months reduced price!
  • 213Mb average download speed!
  • 20Mb average upload speed!
  • Truly unlimited usage
  • Virgin TV V6 Box record up to 6 shows at the same time
  • 220+ TV channels including 60+ HD
  • WiFi on the Tube
  • All the Sky Cinema channels in HD
  • All the BT Sports channels in HD
  • Free Super Hub with 802.11ac Wi-Fi
  • Weekend UK landline calls
  • No activation fee online
  • 18 month contract

Buy now

Or call us on
0800 083 8870

Reasons to choose Virgin Media

  • No need for line rental if you opt for a broadband-only deal - cable to the property allows for broadband-only packages
  • Fastest widely available provider in the UK, averaging 516Mb download speed, more than 7 times that of BT fibre, which is currently averaging 67Mb on its fastest speed
  • Consistently the fastest of the big national providers in our monthly speed test report
  • Hub 3 router standard on all deals offers 802.11ac advanced wireless technology with faster speeds at a distance
  • Equipment is 'rented', meaning Virgin provides free repairs and replacements (provided that the customer hasn't abused the equipment)
  • No switching hassle - different technology, can run concurrently with ADSL while one or the other is set up
  • TV services provided by underground high speed cables so not affected by storms or heavy usage of your broadband service
  • Family Plan - existing broadband and TV customers on a Virgin Pay Monthly SIM can bundle up to 5 SIMs on one account to get discounts and additional parental controls
  • Rated highest for reliability out of all TV with broadband providers by Broadband.co.uk vistors

Possible downsides

  • Only available to around 60% of the UK, ruling out the vast majority of rural areas, but their footprint is growing
  • Installation can be more complex if your home hasn't been connected to Virgin Media before

Features at a glance

  • Top speeds average 516Mb download speeds and 36Mb upload speeds

  • 18 month or 30 day contracts

  • Truly unlimited usage on all packages

  • £35 upfront cost as standard

  • Free technical support by phone or online - 8am-9pm Weekdays, 8am-8pm Saturdays, 8am-6pm Sundays

  • Free anti-malware protection, firewall and parental controls for up to 5 devices

  • Free advanced Hub 3 802.11ac wireless router with all deals

  • Full range of premium Pay TV channels available, including Sky Sports and Sky Cinema

  • Phone bundles available

  • Free wi-fi at over 3.5 million hotspots, including in the London Underground and Glasgow Subway

  • Phone line optional for broadband only deals

  • Virgin Media have published a Traffic Management Policy

3.1 stars
  satisfaction rating based on 8165 customer ratings since 2019-10-25. See more Virgin Media customer ratings and reviews.

Details last checked on 2020-10-22

Scroll for More
Package    
Speed    
Usage    
Contract    
1st Year Cost  (Sorted)  
Monthly Cost    
Virgin Media M100 More Info

Includes: Oomph 5GB SIM + 18 months reduced price + no phone line necessary + WiFi on the Tube + no activation fee online!
Uses underground high speed cables so isn't affected by storms

802.11ac Wireless Router

averages
108Mb
truly
unlimited
18
months
£348 £29.00
£46.00 after 18 months
Prices may change at any point during the contract

No upfront cost when you sign up online

Go to site

Or sign up by phone
0800 083 8870
Virgin Media M100 plus Phone More Info

Special offer: 18 months reduced price + free weekend calls + WiFi on the Tube + no activation fee online!
Uses underground high speed cables so isn't affected by storms

802.11ac Wireless RouterPhone CallingLine Rental

averages
108Mb
truly
unlimited
18
months
£348 £29.00
£51.00 after 18 months
Prices may change at any point during the contract

No upfront cost when you sign up online

Go to site

Or sign up by phone
0800 083 8870
Virgin Media Big Bundle More Info

Special offer: 18 months reduced price + free weekend calls + Virgin TV V6 Box + 110+ TV channels + WiFi on the Tube + no activation fee online!

802.11ac Wireless RouterPhone CallingTelevision ServiceLine Rental

averages
54Mb
truly
unlimited
18
months
£396 £33.00
£56.00 after 18 months
Prices may change at any point during the contract

No upfront cost when you sign up online

Go to site

Or sign up by phone
0800 083 8870
Virgin Media M200 More Info

Includes: Oomph 5GB SIM + 18 months reduced price + no phone line necessary + WiFi on the Tube + no activation fee online!
Uses underground high speed cables so isn't affected by storms

802.11ac Wireless Router

averages
213Mb
truly
unlimited
18
months
£420 £35.00
£52.00 after 18 months
Prices may change at any point during the contract

No upfront cost when you sign up online

Go to site

Or sign up by phone
0800 083 8870
Virgin Media M200 plus Phone More Info

Special offer: 18 months reduced price + free weekend calls + WiFi on the Tube + no activation fee online!
Uses underground high speed cables so isn't affected by storms

802.11ac Wireless RouterPhone CallingLine Rental

averages
213Mb
truly
unlimited
18
months
£420 £35.00
£57.00 after 18 months
Prices may change at any point during the contract

No upfront cost when you sign up online

Go to site

Or sign up by phone
0800 083 8870
Virgin Media Big Bundle + Drama & Docs More Info

Special offer: Virgin TV V6 Box + 190+ channels + free weekend calls + WiFi on the Tube + no activation fee online!

802.11ac Wireless RouterPhone CallingTelevision ServiceLine Rental

averages
108Mb
truly
unlimited
18
months
£456 £37.99
£74.00 after 18 months
Prices may change at any point during the contract

No upfront cost when you sign up online

Go to site

Or sign up by phone
0800 083 8870
Virgin Media M350 More Info

Includes: Oomph 5GB SIM + 18 months reduced price + no phone line necessary + WiFi on the Tube + no activation fee online!
Uses underground high speed cables so isn't affected by storms

802.11ac Wireless Router

averages
362Mb
truly
unlimited
18
months
£492 £41.00
£58.00 after 18 months
Prices may change at any point during the contract

No upfront cost when you sign up online

Go to site

Or sign up by phone
0800 083 8870
Virgin Media M350 plus Phone More Info

Special offer: 18 months reduced price + free weekend calls + WiFi on the Tube + no activation fee online!
350Mb speed availability subject to line check by Virgin Media

802.11ac Wireless RouterPhone CallingLine Rental

averages
362Mb
truly
unlimited
18
months
£492 £41.00
£63.00 after 18 months
Prices may change at any point during the contract

No upfront cost when you sign up online

Go to site

Or sign up by phone
0800 083 8870
Virgin Media M500 More Info

Special offer: Oomph 5GB SIM + 18 months reduced price + WiFi on the Tube + no activation fee online!
Uses underground high speed cables so isn't affected by storms
500Mb speed availability subject to line check by Virgin Media

802.11ac Wireless Router

averages
516Mb
truly
unlimited
18
months
£564 £47.00
£64.00 after 18 months
Prices may change at any point during the contract

No upfront cost when you sign up online

Go to site

Or sign up by phone
0800 083 8870
Virgin Media M500 plus Phone More Info

Special offer: 18 months reduced price + free weekend calls + WiFi on the Tube + no activation fee online!
500Mb speed availability subject to line check by Virgin Media

802.11ac Wireless RouterPhone CallingLine Rental

averages
516Mb
truly
unlimited
18
months
£564 £47.00
£69.00 after 18 months
Prices may change at any point during the contract

No upfront cost when you sign up online

Go to site

Or sign up by phone
0800 083 8870
Virgin Media Bigger Bundle More Info

Special offer: Free weekend calls + Virgin TV V6 Box + 210+ TV channels + WiFi on the Tube + no activation fee online!

802.11ac Wireless RouterPhone CallingTelevision ServiceLine Rental

averages
108Mb
truly
unlimited
18
months
£684 £57.00
£82.00 after 18 months
Prices may change at any point during the contract

No upfront cost when you sign up online

Go to site

Or sign up by phone
0800 083 8870
Virgin Media Bigger Bundle + Movies More Info

Special offer: 18 months reduced price + Virgin TV V6 Box + 220+ TV channels + WiFi on the Tube + no activation fee online!

802.11ac Wireless RouterPhone CallingTelevision ServiceLine Rental

averages
213Mb
truly
unlimited
18
months
£684 £57.00
£103.00 after 18 months
Prices may change at any point during the contract

No upfront cost when you sign up online

Go to site

Or sign up by phone
0800 083 8870
Virgin Media Bigger Bundle + Sports More Info

Special offer: Free weekend calls + Sky Sports for 12 months + Virgin TV V6 Box + 220+ TV channels + WiFi on the Tube + no activation fee online!

802.11ac Wireless RouterPhone CallingTelevision ServiceLine Rental

averages
108Mb
truly
unlimited
18
months
£864 £72.00
£107.00 after 18 months
Prices may change at any point during the contract

No upfront cost when you sign up online

Go to site

Or sign up by phone
0800 083 8870
Virgin Media Bigger Bundle + Sports & Movies More Info

Special offer: Free HD for 12 months + free weekend calls + Virgin TV V6 Box + 230+ TV channels + WiFi on the Tube + no activation fee online!

802.11ac Wireless RouterPhone CallingTelevision ServiceLine Rental

averages
213Mb
truly
unlimited
18
months
£948 £79.00
£123.00 after 18 months
Prices may change at any point during the contract

No upfront cost when you sign up online

Go to site

Or sign up by phone
0800 083 8870
Virgin Media Ultimate Oomph Bundle More Info

Flash sale! £100 Mastercard® + 18 months reduced price + free anytime calls + Truly Unlimited SIM + two Virgin TV V6 boxes + 245+ TV channels + WiFi on the Tube + no activation fee online!
Uses underground high speed cables so isn't affected by storms

802.11ac Wireless RouterPhone CallingTelevision ServiceLine Rental

averages
516Mb
truly
unlimited
18
months
£1068 £89.00
£139.00 after 18 months
Prices may change at any point during the contract
Reward offer online only


No upfront cost when you sign up online

Go to site

Or sign up by phone
0800 083 8870
  • ICON KEY
  • Wireless Router
  • 802.11n Wireless Router
  • 802.11ac Wireless Router
  • Phone Calling
  • Television Service
  • Line Rental

Details last checked on 2020-10-22

Customer Reviews

Sometimes the best way to get a feel for a broadband provider is to read what those who are already customers think of the service they're receiving. Below are all the reviews we've received for Virgin Media.

Customer Ratings Summary

  • Satisfaction
    3.1 stars
  • Customer Service
    2.9 stars
  • Speed
    3.1 stars
  • Reliability
    3 stars

Based on 8165 customer ratings since 2019-10-24

Show all time ratings

Add your own review of Virgin Media

Ratings are left by users of our speed test as well as by reviewers. Recent star ratings summarise the last 12 months of ratings or the last 100 placed, whichever is largest.

Reviewer Location Reviewing Date Ratings
Worst internet 've ever had. Its extremely extremely unstable. The speed is only good if you test a connection between your router and their server, otherwise its horrible. I strongly recommend to go for another broadband company as this always works badly.
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    1 star
London Virgin Media  
My broadband keeps dropping out, normally once or twice a day and it is impossible to talk to anyone about it. I have made several attempts to contact them by phone but it has never been answered and the online service get answered but never deals with the issue and just stops
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    5 stars
  • Reliability
    1 star
Cambridge Virgin Media  
Virgin is trying to charge me £273 for unused , not activated broadband which was cancelled within 14 days calling off period. It is nearly not possible to speak to customer service. Currently I'm waiting 3 hour on online chat to get an answer from Nidhi. Dear friend, in case you read this , can you hurry up please !
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    1 star
Strood Virgin Media  
Unbelievable worst experience to contact support.
It's been more than 2 weeks I'm losing my time every day to contact the support to get access to the account created with mistakes by support 2month ago.
Everyday I have to explain the same situation again to a support that randomly respond withing 10 hours. And every day the closing time make my enquiry deleted without any final solution!
So basically, there is no problem for them to get my money, but no solution to have access to my account.
  • Satisfaction
    2 stars
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    3 stars
  • Reliability
    3 stars
Dundee Virgin Media  
Unbelievable worst experience, took over existing internet account in June 2020, VM tried to invoice higher monthly charge, even tho we had proof of the agreed lower charge, VM refused to discuss, return our calls, continuously broke promises to investigate our concerns, ignored our written complain letters, even CISAS, the official watchdog upheld our complain in full by instructing VM to comply with the agreed lower monthly charge, issue an apology, remove all unwarranted charges VM tried to impose (late payment fee, reconnection fee etc) with 100% compensation awarded! It's October now, yet VM still stubbornly refused to comply, and is still trying to bully us into submission knowing we all need internet to work from home, and out internet is still disconnected whilst we have to incur high costs, tethering our mobile phone for internet connection.
It's a real shame VM is a British company.
We've never experienced such an unprofessional business operation.
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    3 stars
  • Reliability
    2 stars
Brighton Virgin Media  
Since being with virgin for nearly 2 years now it has been nothing but problems. Please do yourself a favour and don't bother with this company what-so-ever. You have any problems? You'll be redirected to someone in India to try and fix it (but never does). My ping in games goes over 800 making literally any game suddenly go unplayable and dropping any facetime calls you might have. I've tried multiple times to contact virgin about my problems and literally nothing is ever done about it. Over the 2 years of being with them I must have experienced at least 10 times that the internet has gone down for longer than a day.
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    1 star
Preston Virgin Media  
Can't believe such a big company can offer such awful customer service and make so many mistakes with the bill.
Firstly I was offered free activation as a student and instead of having the hub installed for me, I was left to set it up myself, later to discover my house had been disconnected from the network and required professional installation. When the guy finally came to install it a few days later I was then charged the activation fee I was promised would be free. After multiple calls to the overrun call line and a very rude response, I was refunded the money.

Secondly, I requested the M350 broadband and checked my contract to see I was being charged for the M500. after more issues contacting Virgin I finally got through and had my contract changed to the M350. However I am now being charged £56 where it should be £39 (I'm not even sure where this number came from?). I once again contacted and was told my contract would change on the 21st September to the correct amount. 21st September comes along and my contract hasn't changed so I have to contact virgin once again to avoid being overcharged by £17. This time my contract is changed to the correct amount however I am charged a £8.44 change fee which was not once mentioned to me and is not fair considering my contract was incorrect in the first place at a fault of Virgin. I have spent hours contacting Virgin and each time a new issue has arised. After asking for compensation for my stress I was refused and I have no patience left to contact them again and ask for the £8.44 refunded.

Oh and to top it off... the wifi has been so slow that most of my housemates have had to use their mobile data to save them waiting 10 minutes for a webpage to load.
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    1 star
Cardiff Virgin Media  
Helen was very helpful, had to wait a bit for a phone call but service is great
  • Satisfaction
    4 stars
  • Customer Service
    4 stars
  • Speed
    5 stars
  • Reliability
    4 stars
Norwich Virgin Media  
I have 1year contract with VM M350 only 1month left to get rid of this horrible exp. With them... and never more Virgin Media.i have speed from 0.32mbps to max 35mbps that is around 300/350 mpbs that i should have. Plus drop off each day.. i contact them 100of times and last think left is to wait to end my contract and share my bad exp with this scam VM
  • Satisfaction
    1 star
  • Customer Service
    1 star
  • Speed
    1 star
  • Reliability
    1 star
Peterborough Virgin Media  
There good at damaging people houses and when you go to make a complaint and claim there tell you we will have this look in to and pay for all the damaged to be fixed but tgat a lie as there never call you back there just lie and say the same everytime you call them just wait another week you will get a call when it comes to that week no call I do not trust them or go with them
Virgin Media  

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The reviews published on this page are those of the individual authors who have warrantied that they abide by our review guidelines. Reviews are not the opinion of Broadband.co.uk.

Student broadband

Find the best student broadband deals for 2020

Posted on 2020-09-07 16:57 in Features Offers Three 4GEE BT John Lewis NOW Broadband Plusnet Virgin Media

Fast, reliable broadband is a must-have for any student house. And given that it can take a couple of weeks to set up, it's one of the first things you'll want to get sorted when you move in for the new term.

If you haven't signed up for your own broadband package before, we'll tackle some of the questions you might have here.

It's all pretty straightforward, but as a student you won't have quite as many options as everyone else. Contract length is absolutely vital - you don't want to be saddled with a long term deal that you have to keep paying for during the summer holidays or beyond.

And with all the corona-driven uncertainty this year, flexibility is more important than ever. Let's take a look at some of the things you need to know.

What speed do you need?

Your usage is probably going to be pretty high, so the fibre deals in the 60-67Mb average speed range should be your starting point.

You might get away with one of the slower fibre packages if there's only two people in your house, but in most cases the extra speed will be worth more than the fiver or so difference in price.

Faster is always better, of course, and you might be lucky enough to be living in an area where you can get speeds over 100Mb - and sometimes quite a lot more. These might come from the normal fibre providers like BT or Sky, from Virgin Media, or in 5G areas through the likes of EE and Three. Just make sure you keep an eye on the contract length and any setup fees for these faster deals.

What length contract should you get?

Short contracts are key for student broadband, so don't even consider those that need an 18 or 24 month commitment.

12 months is the longest you should go for, but even then you'll end up with quite an overlap with the summer break where you're still paying for your internet while you're hitting the beaches in Spain. Don't rule these out entirely, though, as they might still work out cheaper than a shorter option.

BT offer a few nine month deals that align much better with your term time. Some broadband suppliers, including NOW Broadband and Virgin Media, also offer 30-day rolling contracts that you can cancel at any time. These are best for zero-commitment broadband, but they do often come with significant setup fees. Be sure to factor that in when you're comparing prices.

Do you need any extras?

If Netflix isn't enough and you want a bit of sports action or some more of the latest US shows, you can save some money by adding a pay TV plan to you broadband deal. You won't be able to do this through Sky, as they only offer TV on an 18 month contract, but you can get 30-day deals on NOW TV streaming with NOW Broadband.

For any overseas students in your house, consider adding a call plan with support for cheap international calls.

Who pays the bill?

Even though you'll be splitting the bill with all your housemates, one of you is going to have put their name on the contract. It will be their responsibility. This is one of the reasons why you don't want to sign up to anything longer than 12 months, tops. You don't want to be stuck paying your broadband bill long after your housemates have moved on.

It's a good idea to assign each one of your utilities to a different person in your household so you share the risk. To help manage bills you can also look into setting up a shared bank account across the household, or take a look at apps like Splitwise that make it easier to see who owes what.

Best broadband deals for students

So, what student broadband deal should you choose?

BT offer three plans specifically for students. They're nine month deals, with speeds ranging from 36Mb to 67Mb. You can add a Sports or Entertainment TV package, as well as call plans including cheap international calls to 236 countries.

For one month contracts, you've got two main choices:

  • NOW Broadband - speeds range from a sedate 11Mb (don't bother!) to a much more suitable 63Mb, with the option to add streaming TV plans as well. All of them come with a £65 upfront fee.
  • Virgin Media - speeds on the 30-day plans range from around 54Mb all the way up to over 500Mb. Many setup fees have been waived on the 1 month rolling contracts that are specifically for students, but bear in mind that installation takes longer if your house hasn't had Virgin before.

Your other options are for 12 month contracts. When you add in the setup fees and slightly higher prices for short deals, these year-long plans may still end up being competitive, even though you'll still be paying in July and August when you don't need it. Among your best options here are:

  • John Lewis Broadband - speeds go up to an average 66Mb, with no activation fee, and usually include an e-gift card as a bonus.
  • Plusnet - speeds up to 66Mb, with just a £10 activation fee. You also get the option to add BT Sport - with Premier League and Champions League football - after you've signed up.

And there's one last thing to consider - broadband over 4G or 5G. This won't be right for everyone: 4G speeds are better for one or two users rather than a large, heavy-use household, and though 5G is blazing fast it still has very patchy coverage. If you're in the right part of London, Three's 5G Home Unlimited plans look good, and include a 12 month option. Find more great mobile broadband deals here.

Ready to start shopping for student broadband? Use our postcode checker to compare the best broadband deals available in your area today.

Comments

Broadband complaints

Vodafone still the worst large provider for broadband complaints, say Ofcom

Posted on 2020-09-02 11:37 in News Post Office EE Vodafone Plusnet TalkTalk Sky Virgin Media BT

For the third successive quarter, Vodafone have been named as the 'big eight' broadband provider that generates the most complaints.

The unwanted title comes from Ofcom's latest complaints report for the last quarter of 2019. They show what while the industry average improved from 14 to 12 complaints per hundred thousand customers, Vodafone's number rose slightly to 27. That's around a quarter more than the next worst 'big eight' performers, Plusnet and TalkTalk.

Once again, the standout suppliers were EE and Sky with just five customers having cause to moan. They, along with BT, were the only companies to achieve below average grievance levels. Virgin Media made the biggest improvement, with their level of disgruntled users dropping from 20 in the previous quarter, to 14.

The data covers the UK's eight largest broadband suppliers, which all have at least 1.5% market share. Here's how they rank:

  Complaints per 100,000 customers Compared to previous quarter
EE 5 -
Sky 5 -
BT 10 -3
Industry Average 12 -2
Post Office 13 +3
Virgin Media 14 -6
TalkTalk 19 -3
Plusnet 20 -2
Vodafone 27 +1

 

The report covers October to December 2019. Its publication was delayed due to the coronavirus outbreak, and it also means that the data doesn't take into account the massive surge in broadband use during the lockdown. We'll have to wait and see what impact that had on customer satisfaction.

Customer satisfaction

Speaking of which, Ofcom have also released their latest annual Customer Satisfaction survey. The report, for the whole of 2019, shows that an overall 85% of users are happy with the broadband service they get.

Of the 'big eight', Plusnet came out on top with an impressive 93% satisfaction rate. This is in spite of them performing pretty badly in a couple of areas. Over the year they had the second highest number of complaints, at 100 per hundred thousand customers. They also had the second longest call waiting time. Anyone phoning Plusnet for support would have to wait an average three minutes 48 for the call to be answered. By comparison, TalkTalk would answer in just 39 seconds.

This was a rare win for TalkTalk, who came out bottom of the satisfaction chart at just 78%. Only 44% of their users were happy with how complaints were handled, too.

The Customer Satisfaction report ranks the leading broadband providers across a range of categories. Here are the winners and losers:

  Average Best Worst
Overall satisfaction 85% Plusnet - 93% TalkTalk - 78%
Customers with a reason to complain 12% BT, Post Office - 10% EE - 15%
Satisfaction with complaint handling 53% EE - 66% TalkTalk - 44%
Average call waiting time 2:10 EE - 0:26 Virgin Media - 4:26
Ofcom complaints per hundred thousand 52 Sky - 21 Vodafone - 115

 

Your broadband rights

You don't have to settle for poor service from your broadband provider. If you aren't happy with what you're getting, or you don't think you're getting what you're paying for, take a look at our guide to your rights as a broadband customer to find out what you can do. We've got some advice on how to complain to your broadband provider, too.

And, of course, when your contract is up, you don't need to stick around if your provider is not up to scratch. Check out the best broadband deals available today to see what your options are.

Comments

Virgin Media Broadband Buyers Guide - Is Virgin Media right for you?

Can I get Virgin Media?

Virgin Media ultrafast broadband is only available through the company's own fibre optic cable network, meaning you need to live in a Virgin Media cable area to be able to get it.

The network currently comprises about 60% of UK homes, although Virgin Media are looking at expanding their coverage by the end of 2020. Ultrafast speeds (in excess of 100Mb) are available in all cable areas, and the full upgrade from M200 to M350 rolled out across 2018. M500 rolled out across 2019, and M600 is due to roll out as part of the Ultimate Oomph package, but expect that to extend to other packages later on.

You can use our broadband checker to see if you live in an area with cable.

What packages are available?

Virgin Media provide 5 different broadband packages, each providing a different speed of broadband service:

  • M50, averages 54Mb download speed, 5Mb upload speed
  • M100, averages 108Mb download speed, 10Mb upload speed
  • M200, averages 213Mb download speed, 20Mb upload speed
  • M350, averages 362Mb download speed, 36Mb upload speed
  • M500, averages 516Mb download speed, 36Mb upload speed

All packages except M500 can be taken as standalone broadband deals, or with the option of line rental and a Weekend or Anytime calls package. Broadband is fully unlimited, with no restrictions on downloads or uploads. You can get Virgin Media broadband on both 18-month and 30-day rolling deals. The short term deal offers greater flexibility, but comes with a much higher upfront installation cost, typically £80, compared to £35 on the long. They're also more expensive per month if you choose a package with calls. You also have the option boost your speeds to the next package and get a 2GB data SIM bundled in.

Virgin Media is a "quad play" provider. This means that you can add a full range of pay TV services, plus a mobile deal, to your broadband and phone package. All TV deals require an 18 month contract.

Fibre optic broadband like that provided by Virgin Media does not vary in speed depending on how far you are from a telephone exchange, unlike their competitors who use copper phone lines.

Which package should I choose?

All Virgin Media broadband packages are truly unlimited, and offer 'superfast' and 'ultrafast' speeds over 24Mb and 350Mb respectively. When deciding which package is best for you, you should consider how heavily you use the internet, how many people will be using your connection, and your budget - you don't need to pay more than necessary.

Virgin Media claims an average 5 second download time for an album, and 2.4 minutes for a movie on M100, and even faster on M200 with less than a 4 second average download for an album and 1.45 minutes for a movie, and even faster still on M350. These speeds are more suited to people who download a lot, or who regularly play online games, especially if there is more than one person doing this.

As most internet users do not need the higher broadband speeds, the size of your household should be a primary consideration when selecting which package you wish to go for. Virgin Media claim the M100 package is ideal for families, and the M200 and 350 packages are the 'ultimate experience' easily adequate for 5 or more people. This assumes that everyone will be using the internet a lot - which may be the case for some larger families or student households, in which case going for a faster package will enable you to avoid slowdown when everyone is online at the same time.

However, there is no point in paying for more than you need.

Points to consider before you choose

  • How many people will be using your broadband connection?
  • Are you a heavy downloader, or do you regularly play online games?
  • Would the expense of the faster speed be worth it for you?

Compare all Virgin Media deals

What TV deals do Virgin Media offer?

As well as their very fast broadband speeds, another big attraction of Virgin Media is the range of premium Pay TV services they offer.

Virgin Media TV is delivered via Virgin's cable infrastructure, so you need to live in an area where this has been installed. You watch via the Ultra HD-ready Virgin TV V6 box, which allows you to record six shows while watching a seventh. You also get on-demand viewing and support for Netflix and YouTube. In addition, the Virgin TV Go app lets you watch on a phone or tablet. These services come on a 12 month contract.

Virgin Media TV offers four bundles with an increasing number of channels:

  • Big Bundle: over 120 channels, most of which are available through Freeview. You can add Sky Cinema or Sky Sports as add-ons without contract. The standard Player TV bundle comes with Virgin's M50 fibre broadband.
  • Big Bundle + Entertainment Picks: more than 150 channels, including the above plus premium entertainment channels like Sky One, Sky Witness and Fox. Sky Atlantic is not available on Virgin. Boost your TV options by adding Entertainment Picks, with a choice between Drama, Documentaries, Lifestyle and Sport Lite
  • Bigger Bundle: over 240 channels including HD and +1 versions of many of the Mix TV channels, plus BT Sport in Ultra HD and the Virgin TV Ultra HD channel. You can add Sky Cinema or Sky Sports as add-ons without contract. Bundled with M100 fibre broadband.
  • Ultimate Oomph Bundle: the full package of over 280 channels, including Sky Sports HD, Sky Cinema HD and BT Sport UHD, plus the Virgin TV Ultra HD channel. Bundled with the ultrafast M500 fibre broadband, Anytime calls and a mobile SIM with truly unlimited data, minutes and texts.

Virgin offers certain bundles that match TV packages with specfic broadband deals, but you can mix and match, too, to ensure you get exactly what you need. All TV packages come with an option to boost your speed to the next tier, aside from Ultimate Oomph which already offers the fastest speeds available.

How do I switch/sign-up?

Customers switching to Virgin Media will have an engineer come over to their house to install the cables and help you get set up with fibre broadband, including the Hub 3 router.

If you are switching to a Virgin Media package that includes phone services, you will need to switch your phone line. Virgin Media should do everything for you, including letting you keep your pre-existing phone number. If you do this, then your previous provider will automatically cancel your phone line and any broadband services that are associated with it.

If you're not switching phone services, you will need to give your current broadband provider 30 days notice of cancellation. If you're worried about downtime, you can always arrange for your current broadband to end a few days after your Virgin start date.

Find out more at our guide on switching broadband providers.

What do I get when I sign-up?

It's always good to know upfront what you'll get when signing up with an ISP so you know what you can enjoy for free, or to budget for any extras you may want.

  • Wireless router - All customers signing up to Virgin Media fibre broadband will get a free Virgin Media Hub 3 wireless router with the very latest 802.11ac wireless technology offering the fastest speeds and greatest range. The routers will be set up by a Virgin Media engineer on installation day.
  • Online security - F-Secure SAFE, an anti-virus tool worth £79.99 a year, is included free for all Virgin Media broadband customers. You can install this on up to five devices for 12 months, including PCs and Macs, and Android tablets and phones. You also get Virgin Media's Web Safe parental controls tools.
  • Inclusive phone calls - Virgin Media provide the option of getting phone services along with your broadband packages. The phone inclusive packages are less per month than the broadband-only packages. These phone packages offer Talk Weekends, which means unlimited weekend calls to UK landlines and Virgin Mobile numbers, and you can extend this to evenings and weekdays, or add international or mobile calls as optional extras for an extra cost. 087x and 084x numbers are subject to extra service and access charges.
  • Option of TV - You can also get broadband, phone and TV altogether as a combination package. These packages come in various sizes ranging from basic collections for lighter users to the VIP collection for those who want it all. These packages offer a wide range of cable and HD channels, with over 200 channels including most Sky channels with the larger collections. You also get a 1TB Virgin TV V6 box, which enables you to record up to 500 hours of TV.
  • Free tech support - If you experience any problems you can support over the phone between 8am and 10pm, seven days a week. Online chat is also avalable Monday to Saturday between 8am and 8pm.

What are the benefits of Virgin Media?

The benefits offered by an ISP may be what seals the deal in your decision to buy a package from them.

  • Fastest widely available broadband speeds - Virgin Media currently offer the fastest affordable consumer broadband speeds in the UK (excluding some full fibre services in limited localities) with ultrafast (above 100Mb) broadband available in all cable areas. Full speeds averaging 362Mb are in the process of being rolled out with many areas already upgraded and all areas can achieve average speeds of 213Mb.
  • Free hardware support - All Virgin Media broadband customers are entitled to free servicing and repairs on your broadband connection and Virgin Media Hub 3 router, and round-the-clock technical support for when things go wrong. However, because the equipment remains property of Virgin Media, and customers technically only rent it for free, any perceived misuse or mistreatment will not be covered by the free servicing and repairs.
  • Free London Underground wi-fi - Virgin Media customers are able to use wi-fi connections free of charge at over 250 London Underground stations, plus everywhere on the Galsgow subway.
  • All deals get the premium router - Virgin Media offer their very best router with the latest 802.11ac wireless on even their cheapest products. Equally, all TV customers get the same high-end V6 box regardless of how many channels they choose to take.

What are the drawbacks of Virgin Media?

Let's face it, not everything can be perfect, and even the best deals may have a downside.

  • Installation is more complex - If your house has never had Virgin Media before, then the installation will more complex. An engineer will need to run cabling from the connection point on your pavement to an outside socket installed on your outside wall, to a wall socket inside your house. Virgin says it normally takes around two hours, although could be longer in some cases. However, if your home is already set up for Virgin, a self install option might be available.
  • No fixed IP addresses - Virgin Media do not offer fixed IP addresses as part of their regular packages. However this is only likely to be an issue if you wish to set up a local web server, otherwise you are unlikely to notice the difference.
  • Slower upload speeds than most FTTC - Although Virgin Media's download speeds tend to outstrip fibre to the cabinet alternatives, their upload speeds don't tend to keep up. Many other fibre services offer upload speeds averaging around 19Mb while Virgin Media's M100 service offers only 6Mb average upload speeds, although their most expensive M350 service now offers 21Mb average upload speeds, and the new M500 service will offer 35Mb upload speeds.
  • High customer complaints - According to an Ofcom report, Virgin Media are the third most complained about of the major broadband suppliers.

 

Broadband.co.uk