From water bills and energy costs to TV bills and streaming subscriptions, many products and services that we use on a daily basis have gone up in price, due to the cost of living crisis. According to The Guardian (opens in new tab), broadband, TV and mobile bills have increased by around £42 extra a year, which has made a lot of us re-evaluate how much we’re paying monthly and annually for these services.
As the majority of households around the world have a TV, it’s unlikely that a lot of us will be getting rid of our set, channels or streaming services anytime soon. As Deals Writer and Shopping Expert at T3, I’ve extensively covered how to save money on streaming services (opens in new tab) and today, I’m focusing on Virgin Media TV.
Virgin Media provides broadband, phone and TV services across the UK and while it does occasionally get beaten out by Sky TV, Virgin Media TV (opens in new tab) delivers thousands of live and on-demand channels, films, TV series, sports and streaming apps. Virgin Media TV has tons of package offers available that can help new and existing customers save money on their TV service.
To give you an idea of what you can find on Virgin Media TV and how you can keep your monthly costs down, I’ve looked into the best 5 ways to save money on Virgin Media TV, including bundle deals, Virgin Media Stream and the Virgin TV Go app.
1. Consider which Virgin Media TV package you want
If you’re thinking about signing up to Virgin Media TV, I’d first recommend looking into the package options available. Virgin Media TV packages (opens in new tab) come with Virgin broadband and a phone line as standard, so when you sign up with Virgin, you’re getting a full broadband, mobile and TV setup. If this isn’t something you want, you can talk to someone from Virgin about getting a TV only package or I’d suggest taking a look at the best Sky TV deals (opens in new tab).
Let’s start by having a look at the TV package options you can get. There are three options: Big Bundle, Bigger Bundle and Ultimate Volt Bundle. The Big Bundle comes with M50 Fibre Broadband, Talk Weekends and 100+ TV channels for just £33 a month on an 18 month contract. The Bigger Bundle offers M100 Fibre Broadband, Talk Weekends and 190+ TV channels at £57 a month for 18 months. Finally, the Ultimate Volt Bundle delivers Gig1 Fibre Broadband, anytime calls with an unlimited O2 SIM, 230+ TV channels and Netflix as standard for £85 a month on an 18 month contract. All packages come with a £35 set-up fee and the Virgin TV 360 box.
With Virgin Media TV, the channels you can find include your basic cable channels, access to streaming apps and you can watch new releases via the Virgin Media Store. You can also sign up to Sky TV packages (opens in new tab), including Cinema and Sports, plus you can sign up to BT Sports and Netflix too.
Now you know your options, it’s a good idea to take a look at not only the amount of TV channels you get but also your internet speed. I’d suggest starting with the Big Bundle or the Bigger Bundle. These two give a good amount of broadband speed and a huge amount of channels at relatively affordable prices.
2. Check out Virgin Media TV deals
Next, I’d recommend looking at Virgin Media TV deals. The great thing about Virgin Media TV is that you can find bundle or package deals whether you’re a new customer or an old customer, so you can save money before and during your contract.
So, what kind of deals can you expect to find? For new customers, the Virgin Media TV package deals (opens in new tab) page is where you’ll find offers tailored to new signups. You can find discounted prices for a certain number of months, and you can also get retail vouchers worth up to £200 and bill credits. For existing customers, check out the existing customer deals (opens in new tab) page where you’ll find offers on TV add-ons, for example, you can find lower prices on Sky TV packages and streaming services.
3. Switch to Virgin Media Stream
If you’re all about streaming, have a look at Virgin Media Stream (opens in new tab). Stream is Virgin Media’s streaming TV service that lets you mix and match your entertainment each month and you only pay for what you watch. When you sign up to Stream, you’ll get a Stream box delivered which plugs into your TV and voila, you get access to Sky Sports, Sky Cinema and other channels and apps like Netflix, YouTube, BBC iPlayer and more.
Stream was designed to help Virgin customers save money, so it’s definitely worth looking into, in my opinion. To get started, you pay a one-off £35 activation fee and there’s no monthly subscription from there. You’ll need to pay for Virgin Media broadband (starting at £25 a month), in addition to your streaming services, but you get everything in one place, including your bills and you’ll be paying less overall. As you can easily add and remove services, this helps keep costs down and means you can easily cancel and sign up to Stream if and when you want to. Virgin also gives you ‘Stream Credits’ which offers 10% off your final bill each month when you add to Stream. See our Virgin Media Stream review (opens in new tab) for more details.
4. Use the Virgin TV Go app and cut down on data
If you’ve read a few of my ‘how to save money’ guides, you can probably anticipate this next tip, but as always, it’s worth mentioning. The Virgin TV Go app (opens in new tab) is free to download and gives access to all Virgin TV channels on up to 5 devices, plus you can download content for offline streaming. If you like to watch TV as you travel to work or you have a trip coming up, I urge you to download TV series and films from Virgin Media TV before you set off. This massively minimises how much data you’re using (or wasting) and is a handy way to keep your monthly phone bill down.
5. Cancel for streaming services
Finally, if you’re not using Virgin Media TV channels and tend to favour streaming services, I’d suggest cancelling or downgrading your package and sticking to streaming. If you remove your TV package and just pick a Virgin Media broadband deal, you’re paying less each month and you’re still getting a good amount of content from the streaming apps you’re subscribed to.
If this is something you’re considering, have a look at NOW TV (opens in new tab). A NOW TV membership plan is much cheaper than a Virgin Media TV package and also has access to Virgin Media Player so you’re still getting Virgin TV content anyway. If you really want to cut back, there are plenty of free streaming channels to choose from including BBC iPlayer (opens in new tab), ITV Hub, All4, My5 and Pluto TV (opens in new tab). See the best streaming service deals (opens in new tab) for more ways to save money on TV and streaming apps.