Can I get broadband without paying for a landline? I never use my home phone and it seems a waste of money
I don’t have a landline phone and use my mobile to make all of my calls so why do I need to pay for it to access broadband?
I’ve heard it’s possible to buy broadband without a landline and this could cut my overall bills yet very few of the big providers seem to offer this.
Is there a way I can just pay for my broadband part of the service and not the landline?Via email.
Cost cutting: Can I cut my broadband bills by cutting out the landline costs?
Rebecca Rutt, of This is Money, replies: Many people, such as yourself, now rely solely on their mobile phone for making calls and therefore paying for a landline you’re not using can seem like a waste of money.
However, the reason you need to pay for the landline part of the service is because most broadband providers use the phone line to deliver broadband to your home.
The amount you pay is included in the overall package but this means it’s not possible to separate out the landline component and you’ll still need to pay for it, even if you don’t have or use a home phone.
Part of the reason the fee exists is because BT Openreach owns the majority of the UK’s broadband infrastructure. Other providers such as TalkTalk, Plusnet and Sky use its wires and the landline fee we all pay goes towards keeping the infrastructure working and fixing any faults.
This may change once BT and Openreach separate but it’s unclear how much of a difference it will make to consumer bills.
Virgin Media is the only major provider to have its own network although the prices aren’t significantly different to those from any of the other broadband providers using the Openreach network.
While it’s still pretty niche, there are some providers offering broadband-only packages that don’t require a phone line, although these tend to come with a higher price tag and only be available in certain areas.
Dan Howdle, consumer telecoms expert for Cable.co.uk, explains: ‘Broadband with no landline is somewhat of a misnomer when it comes to the majority of broadband and telephone providers in the UK, since in most cases you still need to have a landline, only not necessarily from the provider in question.
‘For example, you can get ‘broadband-only’ deals from Plusnet, but you still need a landline either from BT or another provider as without it there is no means to connect broadband to your home.
‘Virgin Media is the only widely available provider to offer true broadband-only deals, although since Virgin Media operates its own network you will need to check if you can get it.
‘Also, if the intention is to save money, you might want to compare Virgin’s broadband-only deals with those that do include a landline as often you will be saving little to nothing by opting out.
‘Both mobile broadband (3G and 4G) and satellite broadband are true landline-free solutions, but both are expensive and come with somewhat limiting data caps depending on what you are prepared to pay.
‘Again, if the intention of having no landline is to save money, neither of these solutions will achieve that.’
Rebecca Rutt adds: Relish and Hyperoptic are two providers operating a broadband-only service without a phone line but they aren’t widely available yet.
Hyperoptic is a superfast broadband provider that specialises in connecting multi-dwelling buildings, such as blocks of flats or offices.
It’s significantly higher than average broadband speeds, it’s more than 100 times faster than the current UK average, but this mean it also comes with a higher price tag.
Relish is another one and it uses the 4G network to provide broadband to customers. All it requires is a router which it will send out to you and this just needs to be plugged in. However, the drawback with this one is that it’s only currently available in central London.