Are you paying too much for the NBN?

The experts at WhistleOut reveal the three signs that could show you’re over-spending

Connected the NBN, or about to? The National Broadband Network has ushered in a world of choice for Australians when it comes to the internet – about speed, about data, about which provider you go with and more. That means more opportunities to save some money. But are you taking full advantage?

These are the three signs you might be paying too much for your NBN connection.

1. You signed up with a major provider

We get it. The internet is an important part of your life and you don’t want to risk problems with a company you’re not familiar with. Many Australians feel safer sticking with the big brands when it comes to their NBN connection.

But the arrival of the NBN has allowed dozens of low cost, high quality new internet providers to enter the market, and some can offer a saving of as much as $500 a year on your bill. The beauty of the NBN is that because it’s all connected to the same network, there’s much less difference between the quality of the connection offered by different providers than there used to be. In fact, low-cost providers like Exetel, amaysim and Mate Communicate offer typical evening speeds on the NBN that are equal to or even faster than those offered by the big companies like Optus and Telstra.

Smaller companies usually have great no-contract deals, which means you can always try before you commit and make sure you’re happy with the service. So if your NBN is with a major provider it could well be worth your while to think about switching to someone smaller and saving big.

Here are some low-cost plans on NBN 50 to get you started:

2. You’ve got unlimited data

If you do prefer to stick to a major internet provider, you can still save money by investigating options for data. Nowadays, many families are turning to unlimited data to make sure the internet is “always on”, just like electricity and running water. But depending on the provider, you can save if you take out a cheaper alternative.

You can knock $20 off your Telstra bill by choosing an allowance of 1000GB per month, which should be more than enough for the average household. Or for single-person households or light-internet users, providers like Belong and Exetel offer cheaper 100GB plans. Take a look at some of your recent internet bills to see how much data you typically use and see if you can’t save some money on your next plan by choosing a lower allowance.

Here are some lower-data plans on NBN 50 to get you started:

3. You’re on a high speed tier

It can be confusing trying to work out what NBN speed you need, and making sure you hit that sweet spot. Too slow and your everyone in your house will be frustrated with the poor speeds; too fast and you’re probably paying $20 or more over what you really need to be.

For typical households of two to four people, we recommend signing up for an NBN 50 plan. Current discounts make these more affordable than you might think and should provide all the power you need for everyone in your home to be doing their favourite things online at the same time – whether that be Netflix, YouTube, gaming or just a little Facebook.

If you’re a one or two person household of light internet users, on the other hand, you may find that NBN 25 is all you need and should be able to save yourself around $10 to $20 per month by choosing the lower speed category.

We only recommend Premium speed (NBN 100) for very large households and those regularly downloading and uploading large files, like someone with a home office. We almost never recommend NBN Basic (NBN 12) plans as most families won’t find this covers their daily needs.

Here are some NBN 50 and some NBN 25 plans to get you started:

Jacqui Dent is associate editor at WhistleOut, Australia’s largest mobile phone and internet comparison site.

* In highlighting particular offers we are not making specific recommendations as this article does not cover all available products and may not compare all features relevant to you. Any advice provided is general in nature and does not take account of your needs, objectives or financial situation. Individuals should consider their own circumstances, and if in doubt seek appropriate advice, before proceeding.
As a result of services provided by us, WhistleOut Pty Ltd may pay 9saver a portion of any fee of that they receive from their providers.