EE is now offering an unlimited data plan, from £34/month with 4G coverage and from £44/month with 5G coverage.
In the UK, EE is now offering unlimited data on their range of Pay Monthly handsets and SIM cards. Following in the footsteps of other mobile networks like Three and Vodafone, the new unlimited data plans allow you to download as much as you like without needing to worry about running out of data mid-month.
The new unlimited data price plans start from £34/month on a SIM-only basis, or from £44/month if you’d like access to faster 5G coverage. If you’re looking for a new handset on a Pay Monthly contract, unlimited plans start from £59/month (or from £64/month with access to 5G).
In this article, we’ll review EE’s unlimited data plans. We’ll start by looking at the unlimited data plans that are available, including what you’ll get on each one in terms of download speeds and Swappable Benefits. We’ll then see how EE’s unlimited data plans compare to rival mobile networks, before looking at the coverage available and how to keep your existing phone number.
EE Unlimited Data Plans
Unlimited Price Plans
In the UK, EE has now joined the list of mobile networks offering an unlimited data plan where you can download as much as you like. You can get unlimited data from £34/month at 4G speeds (or from £44/month for unlimited data at 5G speeds).
The following unlimited data SIM cards are available from EE:
- EE’s basic 4G unlimited data plan costs £34/month. You’ll get unlimited minutes, unlimited texts and unlimited data at up to 4G speeds.
- EE’s 4G Smart SIM costs £39/month. You’ll get unlimited minutes, unlimited texts and unlimited data at up to 4G speeds. You’ll also get 2 Swappable Benefits included.
- EE’s 5G Smart SIM costs £44/month. You’ll get unlimited minutes, unlimited texts and unlimited data at up to 5G speeds. You’ll also get 3 Swappable Benefits included.
Each of the SIM-only deals is available on a 12-month contract.
If you’d like a new smartphone and are happy to sign up for a 24-month contract, you can also get unlimited data on a range of handsets from EE. Prices start from £59/month for unlimited data at 4G speeds and from £64/month for unlimited data at up to 5G speeds.
If you have multiple lines on your EE account, you can also use the Data Gifting feature to share data with your family members. You’ll get a 100GB giftable data allowance on EE’s unlimited data plans (or 120GB if you choose a 5G Smart handset plan).
According to EE, all of their unlimited data plans are “un-throttled so you can access the fastest speeds that are available in the area”.
Regardless of which unlimited data plan you choose, you can access up to Category 9 LTE speeds on EE’s 4G mobile network. This can be up to 450Mbit/s, though average download speeds might be closer to 30Mbit/s in reality.
If you choose a 5G-ready unlimited data plan, you can also access EE’s 5G network on a compatible handset in areas where it has launched. Average download speeds on EE’s 5G network are about 100-150Mbit/s.
EE’s approach to unlimited data differs slightly from Vodafone. Vodafone offers unlimited data from £23/month but with speed limits on the lower-priced plans (up to 2Mbit/s on Unlimited Lite, up to 10Mbit/s on Unlimited and uncapped download speeds on Unlimited Max).
If you choose an EE Smart plan, you’ll receive a set of Swappable Benefits included in the price. There are normally two Swappable Benefits included if you choose a 4G Smart plan and three Swappable Benefits included if you choose a 5G Smart plan.
The Swappable Benefits on your unlimited data plan can be selected from the following list:
- Amazon Prime Video: An inclusive subscription to the Amazon Prime Video service (worth £5.99/month). This allows you to stream TV shows and movies, both on your smartphone and on other devices like your smart TV and laptop.
- BT Sport: An inclusive subscription the BT Sport mobile application. This allows you to watch the BT Sport 1, BT Sport 2, BT Sport 3, BT Sport/ESPN and BoxNation channels (with live streaming, on-demand playback and more). If you choose a 5G Smart plan, this also includes HDR streaming.
- Roam Further Pass: Use up to 15GB of your data allowance abroad in 5 countries outside Europe at no extra charge (the USA, Canada, Mexico, Australia and New Zealand).
You can change your Swappable Benefits up to once every 30 days. For instance, you can swap from an Amazon Prime Video or BT Sport subscription to the Roam Further Pass just before going away on a trip abroad. You could then swap it back once you return to the UK as the Roam Further Pass only delivers benefits when you’re abroad.
For customers not choosing an unlimited data plan, EE also offers three other Swappable Benefits (the Music Data Pass, Video Data Pass and Gamer’s Data Pass). These Swappable Benefits are not applicable when you choose an unlimited data plan as you already have unlimited all-purpose data for use in any application.
Fair Usage Limits
EE says their unlimited data plan is for “personal, non-commercial use only”. As such, they have implemented two main limitations to the service. There is also an additional restriction that applies when you travel abroad.
Firstly, it’s possible to use the tethering and personal hotspot functionality of your smartphone to share your unlimited data allowance with other devices. However, EE has limited this to a maximum of 12 devices as described in their terms and conditions:
Personal, non-commercial use only. If you regularly tether 12 or more devices, we will consider this non-personal use and have the right to move you to a more suitable plan.
In addition, any data usage above 1,000GB per month (1TB per month) will be considered commercial usage of the service. In this case, EE says they’d reserve the right to move you onto a business plan:
We will consider usage above 1000GB/month to be commercial use and have the right to move you to a business plan.
Finally, if you’re travelling abroad outside the UK, a data roaming limit of 15GB per month will apply. Within Europe, you’ll be surcharged at 0.6p/MB if you go over this 15GB per month limit.
Comparison to Alternatives
Besides EE, there are several other mobile networks also offering an unlimited data plan in the UK.
The cheapest unlimited data plan can normally be found on Three. On Three, you’ll pay as little as £20/month for unlimited data at up to 4G speeds. You’ll also get access to 5G coverage at no extra cost when it launches later this year.
Vodafone offers unlimited data plans from £23/month with access to both 4G and 5G coverage. On the cheaper plans from Vodafone, this is subject to download speed restrictions (up to 2Mbit/s on the Unlimited Lite plan and up to 10Mbit/s on Unlimited. You’ll need to pay £30/month for uncapped download speeds on 5G (this is Vodafone’s Unlimited Max plan).
The following table shows a side-by-side comparison of unlimited data plans that are currently available in the UK:
|To show you the most relevant plans, 15 similar but more expensive plans have been hidden. Tap here to show them.|
Virgin’s unlimited data plan also uses coverage from EE. However, it’s exclusive to customers who have a Virgin Media TV or home broadband connection. Download speeds are also restricted to 70Mbit/s when using EE’s network through the Virgin Media brand.
SMARTY offers unlimited data on a one-month rolling contract using coverage from Three. Meanwhile, giffgaff offers Always-On data using coverage from the O2 network (unlimited downloads with the first 40GB per month at full 4G speeds).
For more information and for a complete comparison, see our in-depth guide to unlimited data plans in the UK.
2G, 3G & 4G Coverage
EE offers 99% population coverage on their 2G, 3G and 4G mobile networks in the UK. This equates to roughly 90% geographical coverage, with EE aiming to increase this to 95% by the end of 2020.
Before signing up for an unlimited data plan on EE, we recommend using EE’s online coverage map to check the level of coverage available in your area.
Customers choosing a 5G-ready unlimited data plan from EE can access EE’s 5G network with a compatible 5G-ready smartphone. EE’s 5G network offers greater network capacity, faster download speeds and reduced latency compared to 4G.
At present, 5G coverage is available on EE in the following UK towns and cities:
|Now Live||41 towns and cities are live on EE 5G (November 2019)|
Ashton-under-Lyne, Belfast, Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Castlereagh, Chatham, Clifton, Coventry, Dudley, Edinburgh, Gillingham, Glasgow, Grays, Guildford, Hamilton, Harlow, Hoddesdon, Huddersfield, Kimberley, Kingston-upon-Thames, Leicester, Lichfield, Lisburn, Liverpool, London, Maidstone, Manchester, Milnrow, Oldham, Potters Bar, Rochdale, Romford, Salford, Solihull, Sutton Coldfield, Sydenham, Walsall, Watford, West Bromwich, Wolverhampton
|13 towns and cities planned|
Hull, Leeds, Newcastle, Nottingham, Sheffield (End of 2019)
Aberdeen, Cambridge, Derby, Gloucester, Peterborough, Plymouth, Portsmouth, Southampton (2020)
For more information, see EE’s web page about their 5G rollout. Alternatively, see our full city-by-city guide to the rollout of 5G in the UK.
Tethering & Personal Hotspot
Tethering or personal hotspot refers to the process of sharing your smartphone’s data connection with other devices (e.g. with your laptop or tablet).
On EE’s unlimited data plans, the use of tethering and personal hotspot is permitted. EE, however, puts an emphasis on this being for your “personal use only”. As such, there’s a limit of 12 tethered devices within the terms and conditions. If you regularly tether more than 12 devices, this would be considered “non-personal use”.
For more information, see EE’s full unlimited data terms and conditions.
On EE’s unlimited data plans, you can use up to 15GB of data abroad at no extra charge each month.
For most EE customers, the inclusive roaming offer covers 48 European destinations as listed on the EE website. Customers with the Roam Further Pass (one of EE’s Swappable Benefits) can also use this in 5 further countries outside of Europe (the USA, Canada, Mexico, Australia and New Zealand).
If you exceed the 15GB limit, a surcharge of 0.6p/MB applies when you’re travelling in Europe.
As of August 2019, EE says 4G roaming is available on 125 networks in 76 countries. On other mobile networks and in other countries, international roaming is typically restricted to 3G speeds.
Keeping Your Phone Number
If you’re leaving another mobile network to join EE on their new unlimited data plan, it’s a straightforward process to keep your existing phone number.
Start by ordering your new unlimited data plan from EE’s website. Once you’ve done that, you can request a PAC Code from your old mobile network. This can normally be obtained online or via a free text message.
After your new phone or SIM card arrives from EE, head over to this online form. Here, you can enter the PAC Code from your old mobile network. Once you’ve done this, your phone number transfer will normally be scheduled for the next working day.
For a step-by-step guide on moving your phone number to EE, please select your current mobile network from the drop down menu below: