WeCompare Unlimited Data Broadband Plans and Fair Usage

Mar 22 . 4 m

Unlimited broadband and Fair usage policy

WeCompare Unlimited Data Broadband Plans

Do you remember that feeling you get when the pesky notification goes off, altering us to the data limit on our mobiles? Stressful, right? While we’ve often heard the buzzword “unlimited” in the telecoms industry, what exactly does unlimited mean for broadband?

Everyone loves a limitless deal, which is why unlimited broadband plans are the most popular amongst Irish households. WeCompare will help you navigate the fine print and why providers have fair usage policies in place.

What is Unlimited Broadband, and What Does it Mean?

Unlimited by definition is not limited or restricted in terms of number, quantity, or extent. So our immediate reaction is one of comfort. We can do whatever we want online, whenever, and download as much as we please! Yet, when it comes to broadband, is unlimited really unlimited? This is where a provider’s fair usage policy comes in, which acts as a cap to protect from over usage and is unique to each company.

What is a Fair Usage Policy?

A fair usage policy, or FUP, is a data limit imposed by your Internet Service Provider. Most providers set these limits to ensure that customers use their broadband in moderation, especially during peak times. A FUP will ensure that all users on the network receive the same speed. Moreover, sluggish speeds as a result of the bandwidth, or bottleneck traffic, are reduced. Should users consume an above-average quantity of data, the speeds on their network will be negatively affected. 

Depending on your provider’s contract terms, your connection may be throttled, blocked or you may incur extra charges. While some Irish mobile providers still have a fair usage policy in place, most national broadband providers have eliminated the data cap on broadband plans, making them truly unlimited.

For example, Virgin Media‘s fair usage policy highlights that their broadband plans are for residential use only, and anyone who exceeds 500GB per month may be subject to additional charges.

How Much Data is Enough?

Here is the million-dollar question. It all comes down to the number of people within your household and the type of user they are. If someone works or follows lessons online from home, the requirements will be substantially higher than someone who uses the internet for banking and social media.

Take gamers, for instance. If you are serious about your games on Twitch, then you are likely streaming in high quality. However, you can reduce your consumption by reducing the quality of the stream.

Have a look at the chart below for a breakdown of the data consumption consumed per hour based o the quality of the video.

Streaming usage on Twitch

Most gamers won’t want to sacrifice the quality, but it is important to understand the differences to ensure that you never go over the limit.

eir’s Broadband Usage Allowance

eir’s fair usage policy depends on the bundle that you choose. Nevertheless, you can rest assured with eir‘s unlimited fibre broadband plans. They are subject to 1TB or one terabyte of data per month. That’s one thousand gigabits of data!

1TB = 1000GB = 1,000,000Mb

Vodafone, Pure Broadband, and Imagine’s unlimited broadband plans all boast a fair usage policy of 1TB per month. You will be notified if you surpass the terabyte of data, and if it happens consistently, you may be subject to additional charges.

How much is Sky Unlimited Broadband’s Fair Usage Cap?

If you are a Sky fan, you can save big on their triple-play packages. No one does TV like Sky, and their Superfast unlimited broadband, phone, and TV plans start from just €55.00 per month.

Another reason to consider switching to Sky is that Sky’s Ultrafast broadband plan with speeds of up to 500Mbps has a data cap of 2TB or two terabytes of data per month. That’s more than 1200 hours of streaming on Twitch per month, perfect for a household full of gaming fanatics!


The safest way to ensure that your household doesn’t go over your data cap is to go for an unlimited broadband plan. Save yourself the headache of comparison shopping because WeCompare brought the best broadband deals to you right here!


Zoe Theofilou