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Best holiday home internet deals

Missed out on Black Friday and Cyber Monday? You can still find bargains for your broadband connection.

We get it. You're burnt out after being on the hunt for great discounts on the newest phones, biggest TVs, most clever toys or the glitzy new doodad you saw on YouTube. You might still be seeking out the best holiday deals available. But don't sleep on the deals coming from the internet service providers in your area. Those ISPs probably aren't top of your mind, but should be. This is a sneaky-good time to score a deal on internet service. How can you take advantage of all the great smart home gifts you just bought if your internet connection is lousy? 

When we chatted with EarthLink CEO Glenn Goad for our deep dive on how to negotiate with your ISP, he passed along several insights. Most important? Be prepared. 

"It's a great time for promotions, offers and incentives," Goad said, pointing out how the arrival of new competitors like Starlink and the emergence of new technologies like 5G have forced ISPs to go big to win customers or even keep hold of existing ones. 

"But," he added, it's "also a time where you may not get the hand-holding or the time you want to research." 

That's where we can help. ISP deals might not be on your radar, but they're definitely on ours. Whether you currently have a data cap you want to shed or perhaps are looking for a plan with a little more download speed, we may be able to point you to a deal that makes sense for you.

One little disclaimer. We say it all the time with our ISP reviews, but it bears repeating: There may be a provider out there with a seemingly perfect plan for your household but said ISP is not available at your address. It can be frustrating. But with the expansion of satellite internet service and 5G home internet options, your choices may slowly but surely begin to expand.

Here's our list of remaining Cyber Week/holiday broadband deals. 

Top holiday broadband deals

Frontier Communications

Frontier got into the game early with an offer that went live on Halloween. It emphasizes its Gig service by offering a $200 reward card for new customers. Also, exclusive to Gig customers, it will include an Eero Pro 6 mesh router for a whole-home Wi-Fi experience for no added charge. 

This deal features a three-year price lock and a one-year contract.

Read our Frontier review.

 

RCN

RCN kicked off its holiday season on Nov. 15, 2021, with several limited-time promotions in different metro regions.

RCN offers its 400Mbps plan for $40 a month and free professional installation for those who order online in the Chicago market. Also, with select plans and speeds, RCN will include HBO Max free for three or 12 months (depending on the plan purchased). 

Consumers in the Washington, DC area will see an RCN offer of 300Mbps for $30 a month, plus free professional install and one free month of service. 

Read our RCN review.

 

Viasat

Viasat has unveiled a holiday promotion that offers new customers who order Silver, Gold and Platinum plans a free Echo Dot (3rd gen) smart speaker with Alexa. This offer is available in select markets and runs through the end of the year.

Read our Viasat internet review.

 

Ry Crist/CNET

Xfinity's Cyber Week sales offer gives new Gigabit customers a $200 Visa Prepaid Card once you sign up with a one-year term agreement. The promotion is not available in all areas.

Read our Xfinity internet review.

 

Holiday internet deals FAQs

Are the holidays really the best time to get broadband?

It could be. While many sales experts agree that May to October -- moving season -- is the prime window to find great sales and incentives on internet service, some ISPs are hopping on the holidays to extend special promos and offers beyond their recurring monthly deals.

What makes for a good internet deal?

That will differ for each household, but one good way to determine value is to look at the cost per megabit per second. For example, you might jump at a 100Mbps plan for $20 per month and skip the 500Mbps plan for $40 per month. That's $20 a month more!

However, when you look at the cost per Mbps, it's 20 cents per Mbps for the 100 plan and just 8 cents per Mbps for the 500 plan. Suppose you have several users in your household and multiple smart devices throughout the home. In that case, you'll notice the performance difference in having the 500Mbps plan versus having to settle for the 100Mbps option.

Lastly, don't sleep on the value of promotional perks. If a plan offers you free HBO Max, that's a savings of $15 a month or $180 a year. As more and more of us cut the cord on cable and lean on streaming services, that's an excellent value.

Are there internet promotions I should avoid during the holidays?

We would suggest staying away from services that require you to enter into a term agreement. To sign one means you often have to pay a stiff penalty if you decide to end service before the end of the contract. Thankfully, more and more ISPs are giving up the idea of long-term contracts. But if a holiday deal requires that you sign a long-term agreement, make sure you have no other options -- or already know and like the provider -- before signing on the dotted line.

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