How to cancel your broadband deal
Looking to cancel your broadband deal? How easy it is will depend on who your current deal is with and which provider you want to be with next. In this guide, we’ll run you through all your options so you can decide the best way to put an end to your current broadband woes.
We assume you’re not planning on cutting yourself off from the internet altogether, so be sure to have your next deal sorted before you let your current provider pull the plug on your connection. The last thing you want is to end your contract and be without internet access for weeks while you’re getting your new connection set up. For a full guide on a smooth transition in this sense, see our guide to switching broadband provider.
We’ll begin, however, with a bit of overlap - it is an important question:
Do I need to cancel my broadband deal?
Whether or not you need to actually go to the effort of contacting your current provider to cancel your deal depends on who you’re with and who you’re switching to. We’re going to run you through a few of the major providers and what you need to do in each case:
Do I need to cancel Sky broadband?
If you’re switching to another provider, the likelihood is you don’t need to contact Sky to cancel your contract. The only time you’ll need to contact them to cancel is if you’re i) not switching to anyone in particular, or ii) switching to one of the following:
- A Virgin Media package
- BT Ultafast Fibre
- A Fibre to the Premises (FTTP) package from another provider
If none of this is true of you, you should just be able to sign up to a new deal online or over the phone and your new provider will take care of telling Sky. If one of the above points does describe your situation, you will need to contact Sky to cancel your contract. You’ll also want to contact them after you’ve switched to confirm that everything’s been cancelled properly and you won’t keep receiving bills.
According to Sky, the best way to do this is via the live chat function on their website, which is available 7 am to 11 pm every day, or by calling 03336 593 981.
When cancelling your Sky deal, it’s important to know whether or not you’re in what they call the “cooling off period”. The cooling off period is a period of 31 days during which you have the right to cancel your order for Sky Broadband and/or Managed Installation without having to give a reason. This 31-day period starts with either
- i) the delivery of your router;
- ii) activation; or
- iii) receipt of the relevant terms and conditions for your product/service.
If you’re still within the cooling off period, Sky will refund all payments made to them, including the cost of delivering equipment etc.
Here’s are the early termination charges (ETCs) for each deal per month when you cancel Sky:
|Broadband/Talk Product||Monthly ETC|
|Sky Broadband 12GB||£5.12|
|Sky Broadband Unlimited||£9.25|
|Sky Broadband Unlimited Pro||£11.32|
|Sky Broadband Everyday||£2.57|
|Sky Broadband Connect||£18.79|
|Sky Fibre/Fibre Lite||£1.24|
|Sky Fibre Max||£11.10|
|Sky Fibre Unlimited||£9.49|
|Sky Fibre Unlimited Plus||£10.60|
|Sky Fibre Unlimited Pro (taken before 15 May 2019)||£15.23|
|Line Rental (for Broadband Connect)||£9.32|
|Sky Broadband Essential||£12.26|
|Sky Fibre Unlimited Pro (where taken after 15 May 2019)||£20.65|
|Sky Broadband Superfast||£12.41|
|Broadband Ultrafast 150MB||£12.23|
|Broadband Ultrafast 300MB||£16.19|
|Sky Broadband Boost||£3.14|
Do I need to cancel BT broadband?
Much like with Sky, if you’re switching to a deal with another major provider (as long as it’s not Virgin Media, which uses a different network) you won’t need to contact BT about cancelling beforehand. If, however, you’re switching to Virgin or getting FTTP broadband set up, it’s best to contact BT about cancelling. In all cases, once you do make the switch, it’s always recommended to call to check that your old deal has been terminated effectively.
To contact BT about cancellation, you can call them on 0800 783 1401 from the UK or +44 179 359 6931 from abroad. Their offices are open from 8 am - 9 pm on weekdays, 8 am - 8 pm on Saturdays and 9 am - 6 pm on Sundays.
Here are the charges for each deal per month when you cancel BT:
|Broadband & Calls Package||Monthly ETC|
|Broadband Unlimited + Unlimited Evening & Weekend Calls||£17.50|
|Superfast Fibre Essential 30GB||£7.50|
|Superfast Fibre Essential Unlimited||£11.75|
|Superfast Fibre Essential Unlimited with Complete Wi-Fi||£13.25|
|Superfast Fibre Unlimited||£16|
|Superfast Fibre Unlimited with Complete Wi-Fi||£20.75|
|Superfast Fibre Unlimited + Unlimited Evening & Weekend Calls||£16.50|
|Superfast Fibre 2 Unlimited||£25|
|Superfast Fibre 2 Unlimited with Complete Wi-Fi||£28.75|
|Superfast Fibre 2 Unlimited + Unlimited Evening & Weekend Calls||£25.50|
|Superfast Fibre Plus||£28.75|
|Superfast Fibre Plus with Complete Wi-Fi||£28.75|
|Superfast Fibre 3 Plus with Complete Wi-Fi & Unlimited Weekend Calls||£16.50|
|Superfast Fibre 4 Plus with Complete Wi-Fi & Unlimited Weekend Calls||£5.25|
|Ultrafast Fibre Plus||£23.50|
|Ultrafast Fibre Plus with Complete Wi-Fi||£27|
|Ultrafast Fibre 2 Plus||£12.75|
|Ultrafast Fibre 2 Plus with Complete Wi-Fi||£17|
Do I need to cancel EE broadband?
A quick look at EE’s website and the forums on its Community page tells us that leaving EE isn’t quite as straightforward as switching to them. While they make life easy for those looking to join, even reimbursing them with £50 credit if their previous provider charges them for early cancellation, leaving EE doesn’t seem like such a walk in the park.
Not much information is offered on the EE website about the cancellation process, but its forums suggest that you will need to contact them to let them know if you don’t want to keep being billed. You’ll have to give 14 days’ notice, and some customers complain that even after calling they have continued to be billed...
EE’s freephone number is +44 800 079 8586. TV and broadband customers should press option 3. EE take a slightly different approach to early termination charges when you cancel. They can explain it better than we can:
- How does EE recalculate remaining contract charges for broadband?
- It takes your monthly (or other) charge and factors in any recurring discount you're receiving.
- It then deducts VAT at the prevailing rate.
- It then reduces the charge to take into account any costs saved because of you leaving early, such as wholesale costs.
- It deducts 4% for early receipt of payment.
- It multiplies this figure by the remaining months of your minimum term to calculate your final charge, reducing the remaining credit on your account.
Do I need to cancel Plusnet broadband?
Similarly, not much information is available outside of forums on cancelling Plusnet broadband. We had to go digging through forums to get any info and it seems that, while it may not be necessary to notify them before you cancel, it’s best to call Plusnet on 0800 013 2632 to make sure you don’t keep getting billed. It’s especially important to notify Plusnet about cancelling if you’re switching to a Virgin Media or FTTP deal.
If you cancel within 14 days of signing up to Plusnet or cancel an order for equipment within 14 days of receiving it, you won’t be charged. You will, however, have to let Plusnet know (ideally by phone) before this period ends.
Here’s a list of Plusnet’s early termination charges:
|Broadband & phone||£12.15|
|Broadband & phone (line rental saver)||£3.66|
|Unlimited Fibre||Broadband Only||£9.46|
|Broadband & phone||£11.29|
|Broadband & phone (line rental saver)||£2.80|
|Unlimited Fibre Extra||Broadband Only||£9.63|
|Broadband & phone||£11.61|
|Broadband & phone (line rental saver)||£3.12|
Do I need to cancel Virgin Media broadband?
Virgin offers a different type of service to the providers mentioned up to now, so cancelling or switching from one of their deals comes with its own problems. Firstly, you will definitely have to contact them to cancel your deal. It’s important to remember, however, that you shouldn’t do this until after your new deal is sorted and your connection is already live. If you don’t do this, you could be left with no connection at all.
Why will I be left without a connection?Virgin Media uses a different network to most providers. BT and EE, for example, use the same network, and both can ensure no loss in connection when you switch from one to the other as you’re already connected to their network. If you’re with Virgin, you won’t already be connected and you’ll have to wait for an engineer to get you set up.
To cancel your Virgin package, you can call 150 from a Virgin Media phone or mobile or 0345 454 1111 from any other phone (check with your provider to see how much this will cost). Remember that the standard notice period for cancelling a Virgin contract is 30 days.
Here’s what cancelling your Virgin Media contract will cost you for every month left on your deal:
|Broadband Package||Monthly ETC|
|VIVID 50 broadband||£29.84|
|VIVID 100 broadband||£34|
|VIVID 200 broadband||£38.15|
|VIVID 50 broadband & talk weekends||£35.42|
|VIVID 100 broadband & talk weekends||£22.95|
|VIVID 100 broadband & Mix TV||£40.15|
|VIVID 200 broadband & Mix TV||£44.31|
|VIVID 100 broadband & Full House TV||£53.42|
|VIVID 200 broadband & Full House TV||£57.58|
Frequently asked questions
Here we’ll answer some questions that people looking to cancel a broadband contract often ask.
Can I cancel my deal for free if my broadband is too slow?
This could be possible. If your provider is signed up to Ofcom’s broadband speed code of practice (most are), you have the right to leave a contract if your provider is unable to meet a minimum speed. In order to do this, you’ll have to first speak to your provider’s tech support - free cancellation is usually only an option if your provider agrees that your speed doesn’t meet minimum standards and it can’t do anything to fix the situation.
Will I be charged for cancelling my contract?
This depends entirely on your contract. Always check with your provider, but you may not be charged for cancelling your contract in the following circumstances:
- You’ve recently started your contract and are still within the “cooling off period” offered by many providers.
- Your provider doesn’t meet the minimum speed requirements set out by Ofcom.
- You’re on a 30-day rolling contract.
If you’re on a fixed-term contract, most providers have a set charge for each month remaining on your contract. These are all laid out in the tables we have included alongside each major provider listed above. If your provider isn’t included, you’ll find the table on their website. Unfortunately, there’s usually no avoiding this charge. If it’s still early days (but you’re out of the cooling off period) you could be faced with a hefty bill for early cancellation.