In these days and times, it’s almost unthinkable not to have internet access. It has become increasingly important, especially as everyone starts to “Work From Home” due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The digital age we live in also means that almost everything is impossible without a good internet connection.
However, shopping for a broadband package or provider can seem a daunting task. There are tons of packages and providers that not only look alike but also seem to communicate the same message. You also need to consider any specific requirements you might have, your budget, and factors such as your type of web usage.
Here are six key questions to consider before committing to any contract with a broadband provider.
1. What’s My Installation Cost?
You want to have a complete view of what it will take to have your internet service provider (ISP) up and running. Installation costs can be tricky, and you want to be sure there are no hidden or additional costs you didn’t budget for showing up midway through the installation.
2. Are The Speeds Guaranteed?
While most ISPs won’t guarantee speeds, it doesn’t hurt to ask that question. You can at least ensure they list out what happens if your internet isn’t performing at your contract’s signed off speed. There are many free websites you can use to test your internet speed for free.
3. Are There Any Promos or Special Offers?
Most broadband providers such as Verizon FiOS always have one promo or the other running on their websites or key outlets. Look around. Shop for deals or discounts that save you some dollars in the short term. However, be wary of a sharp hike in the prices once the offer expires.
4. Are The Data Plans Limited or Unlimited?
Depending on your level of internet usage, you might prefer an unlimited data plan. Some internet providers may place no restrictions on your internet limits, while some might use a soft or hard data limit.
A soft data limit would mean that after you have consumed the agreed amount of data on your contract, your internet speeds will slow down. While with a hard limit, once you get to that point, you will either be cut off or charged for the excess data consumed.
5. What Sort Of Support Do They Provide?
Once in a while, and mostly when unexpected, the ISP might have issues. Can you reach their support team to help you with minimal stress? Some ISPs will provide you with the option of an online knowledge portal, a live chat, and a support phone line you can reach in case of any outages.
You should also know their support or customer service hours.
6. How Long Does Installation Take?
Installation times can differ depending on the provider you end up picking. Some can get you up and running in a day, while it can take a week to a month with others. All providers have their timing, but you need to be clear about how long it will take them to get your connection done.
Knowing this can help you plan properly, especially if you are using it for a business.
Picking a broadband provider doesn’t have to be complicated, once you know the right questions to ask. Or what to look out for when comparing service providers. These six questions are a great start when hunting for a new broadband service provider, and help ensure you don’t sign a contract with a low-quality provider or snake oil salesman.