Broadbandchoices.co.uk has released advice to help students save money on broadband when they head off to university.
The comparison site says there can be a difference of up to £25 a month, equivalent to £300 a year.
Dominic Baliszewski, telecoms expert at broadbandchoices.co.uk, says that there are a wide range of great deals available to students but that they need to be savvy and consider contract length, area coverage and download limits in order to get the best deal for their individual circumstances.
He says: "Broadband is not a luxury these days, but an essential utility for students. The pressures on student budgets are greater than ever before as tuition fees and living expense inflation bite into already limited funds.
Mr Baliszewski advises that students consider five important areas before signing up to any deal.
Timescale – Students frequently move so this will impact on whether you choose mobile or fixed line broadband. If you are likely to move regularly, then opt for a 9-month contract.
Monthly contract – If you are unsure of how much money you will have over the year then consider a monthly contract. This means you can be flexible with your finances and cancel a deal at short notice.
Download with caution – If you download a lot then be wary of mobile broadband deals, where the download allowances can be very stingy. It is important you do not go over your limit or the charges will soon mount up.
Look beyond short-term – Though these provide excellent flexibility usually, they often don’t have the best terms attached. If you know that you and your mates will be sharing a house for over 12 months then it is better to sign up to a deal with more generous freebies.
Check coverage – The deal you get will be dictated by what coverage is available in the area you live. Rural areas are particularly unreliable. You need to do a postcode search with any potential provider.
Mr Baliszewski added: “Students need to be smart with their money, especially when you consider that they may change accommodation at a moment's notice. Fortunately, broadband providers are aware of this and there are some great deals available."
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