PlusNet Broadband review

5 Aug 2011
Our Rating 

Heavy downloaders should look elsewhere, but PlusNet is a good choice for casual users

Page 1 of 3PlusNet Broadband review


This review was updated in July 2011 to reflect the findings of our latest survey.

PlusNet is owned by BT but it's run as an independent subsidiary. Its close relationship with BT may have something to do with its ability to offer aggressively low pricing on both standard and fibre broadband packages.

A certain distance from its parent company seems to be good for it, though – for the second year running, PlusNet has outperformed BT in our broadband satisfaction survey, particularly for technical support and overall customer satisfaction.

The Value package only includes 10GB a month, but it's a 20Mbit/s connection for just £6.49 a month once you've paid the £25 installation fee. The Extra package raises the monthly allowance to 60GB and costs £11.49 a month. That's plenty for most people, especially as all PlusNet packages are unmetered between midnight and 8am. Both of these deals are among the best around.

Opting for PlusNet's phone service waives the £25 installation fee. Given that it's cheaper than BT's line rental, there's no good reason not to. Meanwhile, those who don't need a free router can opt for a one-month rolling contract rather than a 12-month fixed term.

An extra £5 a month will get you the PlusNet Pro traffic prioritisation bolt-on. It’ll automatically prioritise your connection over other users who haven’t invested in the Pro add-on. This might be tempting for demanding users, we're concerned that PlusNet seems to be charging customers to take bandwidth away from other customers. If the majority of users go for this bolt-on, it could become a necessity in order to get any sort of decent connection speeds.

PlusNet also resell BT's fibre-optic service with downloads up to 40Mbit/s. Once again, it undercuts its parent company on price, charging just £16.49 a month for the Value Fibre service that's capped at 40GB per month, and £21.49 for Extra Fibre with a 120GB monthly limit. However, these prices are only available in certain designated "low cost areas". Elsewhere, they rise to £23 and £28 respectively, which is a little higher than BT's prices. Most homes won't be able to get this fibre-optic service at all.

If you opt for PlusNet, make sure you don’t go over your package’s download limit – you’ll be charged an extra £5 per 5GB. If value is a priority, though, PlusNet's revamped prices definitely hit the spot. The £6.49 PlusNet Value package lives up to its name – it's a Budget Buy. Meanwhile, PlusNet Extra is also an excellent choice.

See the next page for a full break-down and individual ratings of T-Mobile's services and the results of our broadband survey.

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Don't fall for they hype. I regret ever having to deal with this company.

Be wary when joining if you ever plan to switch away. I was with Plusnet for many years, decided to switch away, then got 5 emails and a text demanding money after the switch date when I was no longer a customer! Plusnet said they weren't notified of the switch (even though it's automated), so I had to pay for 2 weeks after the switch date and then another 2 weeks after that to cover "notice" which they already should have had from the automated switch-over, then pay £30 fee because the new provider "wasn't on their network". None of this is clear or fair, but it's all buried in the T&Cs so you're stuffed. All that money and years of being a Plusnet customer and then they screw you for a few pounds if you try and leave. I've put in a complaint and another to Ofcom. Shameful.

After 3 weeks Plusnet have still be unable to restore our broadband/phone service. Their customer support is beyond a joke and they cannot provide any further information on when our service will be restored! I would not recommend plusnet to anyone!

Do not listen to these reviews, there are many giving this company 5 stars. The fact is, actual clients give this less than 2/5, the average being 1/5 usually. Avoid this terrible company like the plague, they throttle and deny it, they have no live chat support, only phone with always high waiting times and a community run forum where you get overly-helpful members who aren't even plusnet employees trying to help out and usually making things worse. Their reliability is low, the down-time far exceeds any other ISP I've used and you get degradation in speed in both download and upload randomly. Please avoid this company, they need to close down because they are absolutely terrible.