Most UK mobile networks now offer an unlimited data plan, allowing you to download as much as you like. We compare unlimited data plans in the UK.

Whether you’re a heavy smartphone user or whether you just want the reassurance of never running out of data, most UK mobile networks now offer an unlimited data plan.

At present, it’s possible to get an unlimited data plan from ten UK mobile networks: BT Mobile, EE, giffgaff, iD Mobile, O2, SMARTY, Three, Virgin Mobile, Vodafone and VOXI. On all of these plans, you can stop worrying about how many gigabytes you’re using as you’ll never run out of data again in the middle of the month.

As a cheaper alternative to unlimited data plans, you can also consider a zero-rated data plan that gives you unlimited data for use on certain services. These are available in the form of EE’s Swappable Benefits, Three’s Go Binge, Virgin Mobile’s Data-Free Messaging and VOXI’s Endless Passes.

In this article, we’ll review and compare your options for an unlimited mobile data plan in the UK.

Overview of Unlimited Data Plans

Unlimited Data Plans

In the UK, there are currently ten mobile networks offering an unlimited data plan:

Mobile Network Monthly Price Unlimited Data Plan Limitations & Restrictions
BT Mobile £25/month No Limits Only available if you have Halo (BT’s flagship fibre broadband plan). 50GB data roaming limit.
EE £34/month Unlimited Data A fair usage policy of 1000GB per month applies. Maximum of 12 devices using tethering & personal hotspot. 50GB data roaming limit.
giffgaff £25/month Always-On Data 4G speeds are only available on the first 80GB per month. After this, speeds are restricted to 384kbit/s between 8am-midnight. 20GB data roaming limit.
iD Mobile £21/month Unlimited Data No fair usage policy, but for personal use only.
O2 £33/month Limitless Data A fair usage policy of 650GB per month applies. Maximum of 12 devices using tethering & personal hotspot. 20GB roaming data limit.
SMARTY £20/month Unlimited Data A fair usage policy of 1000GB per month applies. 20GB roaming data limit.
Three £18/month All-You-Can-Eat Data No fair usage policy, but commercial usage isn’t permitted. Roaming data limit of 20GB in Europe and 12GB in the rest of the world.
Virgin Mobile £32/month Unlimited Data Only available to Virgin Media TV and Broadband customers. Roaming data limit of 17.7GB.
Vodafone £22/month Unlimited Data Speed restrictions apply to the Unlimited Lite (2Mbit/s) and Unlimited (10Mbit/s) plans. Unlimited Max has uncapped speeds. 25GB roaming data limit.
VOXI £35/month Endless Data “Excessive usage” or commercial usage of endless data is not permitted. 25GB roaming data limit.

It’s possible to get unlimited data with 5G coverage on BT Mobile, EE, O2, Three, Vodafone and VOXI. The other four mobile networks offer 3G and 4G coverage (giffgaff using coverage from O2, iD Mobile and SMARTY using coverage from Three, and Virgin Mobile using coverage from EE).

Normally, Three has the cheapest available unlimited data SIM cards in the UK. They currently charge £18/month for a SIM card with unlimited data and offer 99.8% population coverage on 4G. Customers with a compatible 5G smartphone can access 5G coverage in 66 UK towns and cities.

In the following table, we’ve compared the cheapest available unlimited data plan on each UK mobile network. To see a full list of all unlimited data plans, tap the link at the bottom of the table.

NetworkMinutesTextsDataMonthly
Cost
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£18.00
12 months
SmartyUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£20.00
1 month
iD MobileUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£21.00
1 month
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£22.00
24 months
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
2Mbps max
£22.00
24 months
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£24.00
1 month
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£24.00
12 months
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
2Mbps max
£24.00
12 months
giffgaffUnlimitedUnlimitedAlways-On£25.00
1 month
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£26.00
1 month
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
10Mbps max
£26.00
24 months
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
10Mbps max
£28.00
12 months
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
2Mbps max
£28.00
1 month
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£30.00
24 months
Virgin MobileUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£32.00
12 months
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
10Mbps max
£32.00
1 month
O2UnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£33.00
18 months
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£33.00
12 months
EEUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£34.00
12 months
O2UnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£35.00
12 months
VOXIUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£35.00
1 month
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£37.00
1 month
EEUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£39.00
12 months
EEUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£39.00
12 months
To show you the most relevant plans, 15 similar but more expensive plans have been hidden. .

Zero-Rated Data Plans

As an alternative to the unlimited data plans above, you can also choose a zero-rated data plan. This gives you unlimited data, but only for use on certain selected services:

Mobile Network Zero-Rated Data Plan Services Included
EE Swappable Benefits Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, MTV Play, TV Player and BT Sport (Video Data Pass). Apple Music, Deezer and Tidal (Music Data Pass). Pokémon Go, Harry Potter: Wizards Unite, FIFA and Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes (Gamer’s Data Pass).
Three Go Binge Netflix, Snapchat, Apple Music, TV Player, Deezer and Soundcloud.
Virgin Mobile Data-Free Messaging WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger and Twitter.
VOXI VOXI Endless Passes Snapchat, Instagram, WhatsApp, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Viber and Facebook Messenger. Video and music providers available at extra cost.

In the rest of this article, we’ll review each of the unlimited data plans and zero-rated data plans in more detail.

Unlimited Data Plans

At present, you can get an unlimited data plan from 10 UK mobile networks (BT Mobile, EE, giffgaff, iD Mobile, O2, SMARTY, Three, Virgin Mobile, Vodafone and VOXI):

BT Mobile

On BT Mobile, you can get a No Limits SIM card for £25/month if you have Halo, BT’s flagship fibre broadband package.

Halo is available from an extra £3/month above the cost of your normal BT Broadband plan and gives you access to tech support at home along with an upgraded BT Smart Hub 2 router and BT’s Keep Connected promise. You’ll also unlock the ability to buy the following “No Limits” SIM card with unlimited data and access to 5G:

NetworkMinutesTextsDataMonthly
Cost
BT MobileUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£25.00
12 months

If you’re not currently a BT Halo customer, you’ll need to sign up for Halo at the same time as ordering your BT Mobile No Limits SIM card. A 12-month contract applies on your BT Mobile SIM card but a longer 24-month contract may apply to the broadband service.

On BT Mobile’s No Limits SIM card, there is no fair usage limit for the service. This is confirmed in BT’s help centre:

Is there a fair usage policy for BT Mobile?
There’s no fair usage policy. So when we say “unlimited”, it truly is unlimited.

The only exception to this is if you’re travelling abroad to another European country that’s part of BT’s Roam Like Home offer. In these 47 European Roam Like Home destinations, you’ll only be able to use 50GB of data abroad at no extra cost.

Source: BT Website: No Limits on Halo
Tariff Information: BT Mobile Website

EE

On EE, unlimited data is available from £34/month (£39/month if you’d like access to 5G).

The following table shows a list of EE’s unlimited data plans. On the more expensive 4G Smart and 5G Smart plans, you’ll get inclusive Swappable Benefits. For instance, you can choose inclusive Amazon Prime Video, access to the BT Sport app or the Roam Further Pass (inclusive roaming in 5 countries outside of Europe).

TariffMinutesTextsDataMonthly
Cost
4G SIMUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£34.00
12 months
4G SmartUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£39.00
12 months
5G SmartUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£39.00
12 months

There are three key restrictions on EE’s unlimited data plans. Firstly, there’s a fair usage limit of 1,000GB per month, above which EE reserves the right to “move you to a business plan”. Secondly, tethering and personal hotspot usage is limited to a maximum of 12 devices. Thirdly, a data roaming limit of 50GB per month applies when you’re travelling abroad outside the UK.

If you’re using the Data Gifting feature on an EE Family account, you’ll be able to gift 100GB of data to other users on your plan (or 120GB if you’re on a 5G handset plan with unlimited data). See our full guide to EE’s unlimited data plans for more detail.

Source: EE Website
Tariff Information: EE Website

giffgaff

giffgaff is a low-cost sub-brand of O2 offering 3G and 4G coverage from the O2 network. Unlimited downloads are available on giffgaff’s £25 goodybag which comes with unlimited minutes, unlimited texts and Always-On data:

NetworkMinutesTextsDataMonthly
Cost
giffgaffUnlimitedUnlimitedAlways-On£25.00
1 month

With Always-On data, you’ll get 4G download speeds on the first 80GB of data usage each month. After this, your speeds will drop down to a maximum of 384kbps between 8am and midnight each day. This is a little bit slower than 0.4Mbit/s and is equivalent to a basic 3G connection. The download speed reduction may stop you from steaming online video but shouldn’t prevent you from browsing the internet or using instant messaging services.

Because of the large speed reduction after the first 80GB per month, giffgaff’s Always-On data isn’t that suitable for very heavy data users. It is, however, a good option if you’re mainly looking for peace of mind about never running out of data in the middle of the month. It’s also available on a one-month rolling basis with no credit check required. Prior to the 26th February 2020, only the first 40GB of data each month was at full-speed 4G.

Customers travelling abroad to another European country can use up to 20GB of their Always-On data allowance each month. Beyond this, a surcharge of 0.36p/MB will be charged against your Pay As You Go balance on giffgaff.

For more information and for a full in-depth review, see our guide to Always On data and giffgaff’s £25 goodybag.

Source: giffgaff Website
Tariff Information: giffgaff Website

iD Mobile

iD Mobile is the own-brand mobile network from the Carphone Warehouse. Offering 3G & 4G coverage from Three, iD Mobile offers the following unlimited data plan for £21/month:

NetworkMinutesTextsDataMonthly
Cost
iD MobileUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£21.00
1 month

iD Mobile haven’t published a fair usage policy for their unlimited data plan, but their terms and conditions state the plan is for “personal use only”. You’ll need to undergo a credit check when joining the iD Mobile network.

Source: iD Mobile Terms and Conditions
Tariff Information: iD Mobile Website

O2

O2 offers unlimited data, or what they call “limitless data”, on a range of Pay Monthly handsets and SIM cards. You can currently get an unlimited data SIM card from £33/month with the lowest prices being available on an 18-month contract:

NetworkMinutesTextsDataMonthly
Cost
O2UnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£33.00
18 months
O2UnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£35.00
12 months

There are several fair usage limits worth being aware when getting unlimited data from O2. The most important is their 650GB per month fair usage limit. In addition, the use of tethering and personal hotspot is limited to only 12 devices. If you exceed these limits twice in a six-month period, O2 says they “reserve the right to transfer you to a more suitable plan”. If you’re travelling outside the UK to another European country, you can use up to 20GB of data abroad in O2 Europe Zone countries.

For more information, please see our full review of O2’s unlimited data plans.

Source: O2 Website: Unlimited Plan Terms
Tariff Information: O2 Website

SMARTY

SMARTY is a low cost sub-brand of Three, offering SIM-only deals on a one-month rolling basis. For £20/month, SMARTY’s unlimited plan comes with unlimited minutes, unlimited texts and unlimited data.

According to SMARTY, tethering and personal hotspot usage are included in the plan and there are no speed restrictions for using too much data. There is, however, a usage cap of 1,000GB per month. There’s also a fair usage limit of 20GB per month when you’re using your mobile phone abroad in Europe:

Our Unlimited plan is the only 1-month tariff available that’s open to everyone and has no speed restrictions (unlike another plan out there). Tethering and personal hotspot use is also included as standard on the plan.

We have set a usage cap at 1,000GB. When tested, using a mobile for every minute of every day only used around 1,000GB in a month. Setting this cap helps us to identify any commercial use of our services, which is not permitted by our terms and conditions.

SMARTY offers 99% population coverage, using 3G and 4G coverage from Three.

NetworkMinutesTextsDataMonthly
Cost
SmartyUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£20.00
1 month

Source: SMARTY Blog Post
Tariff Information: SMARTY Website

Three

On Three, numerous 5G-ready unlimited data plans are available (sometimes also referred to as all-you-can-eat data plans). Three’s unlimited data plans currently start from £18/month. Prices vary based on the contract length you choose.

On Three, there are no fair usage limits for unlimited data usage in the UK. However, it’s important to know that commercial usage of the service is not permitted:

Use of our services for commercial, resale or fraudulent purposes isn’t allowed under our Terms for Three Services, so we do reserve the right to monitor any unusual activity that may indicate that this is happening to identify and prevent such non-permitted use.

A fair usage limit does apply when you’re using your mobile phone abroad in a Go Roam country. You can use up to 20GB of data abroad in other European countries and up to 12GB of data abroad outside of Europe.

The following table shows SIM-only plans with unlimited data from Three:

NetworkMinutesTextsDataMonthly
Cost
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£18.00
12 months
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£22.00
24 months
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£24.00
1 month
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£24.00
12 months
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£26.00
1 month

As well as getting an unlimited data SIM card, you can also buy a smartphone from Three with unlimited data on a 24-month contract. Three also offers a 4G home broadband service with unlimited data.

Prior to September 2019, Three had a fair usage policy of 1,000GB per month (1TB) on their unlimited data plans. They’ve confirmed that this fair usage policy no longer applies on their plans:

If you have Unlimited Data as part of your package or with an Add-on, there are no hidden caps or limits when using your device within the UK. Unlimited Data lets you use the internet to your heart’s content, without worrying about hefty bills.

Use of our services for commercial, resale or fraudulent purposes isn’t allowed under our Terms for Three Services, so we do reserve the right to monitor any unusual activity that may indicate that this is happening to identify and prevent such non-permitted use.

Prior to October 2018, Three’s unlimited data plans had a restriction on tethering. During the time period this restriction was in place, it was only possible to use up to 30GB of data through tethering each month. This restriction has now been removed for all new and existing customers as a result of Ofcom’s net neutrality rules.

Source: Three Help: What is unlimited data?
Tariff Information: Three Website

Virgin Mobile

On Virgin Mobile, an unlimited data plan is available but this is exclusive to customers who have Virgin TV and broadband at home. You’ll pay £32/month for a plan with unlimited minutes, unlimited texts and unlimited 4G data:

NetworkMinutesTextsDataMonthly
Cost
Virgin MobileUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£32.00
12 months

According to Virgin, there are no restrictions on “tethering, throttling, speed restrictions or caps”. Download speeds of up to 70Mbps are available on Virgin Mobile using 4G coverage from the EE network.

If you’re using your Virgin Mobile unlimited data SIM card in Europe, a fair usage policy of 17.72GB per month currently applies.

Source: Virgin Media Website
Tariff Information: Virgin Media Website

Vodafone

Vodafone offers a selection of unlimited data plans from £22/month with access to 5G coverage in areas that support it.

When choosing an unlimited data plan from Vodafone, you’ll need to decide on the maximum download speed of your plan. The cheapest £22/month Unlimited Lite price plan gives you download speeds of up to 2Mbit/s. Meanwhile, the £26/month Unlimited plan is capped at 10Mbit/s download speeds and the £30/month Unlimited Max plan has uncapped speeds.

There’s no fair usage policy on Vodafone’s unlimited data allowance, except that it needs to be “for your personal and non-commercial use”. You can use up to 25GB of data each month when travelling abroad as part of Vodafone Global Roaming.

Until the 1st April 2020, Vodafone is offering the first 6 months half price on their 24 month unlimited data plans. This means you can get Unlimited Lite for £11/month, Unlimited for £13/month and Unlimited Max for £15/month. After the first 6 months, the monthly price will revert to the original amount.

NetworkMinutesTextsDataMonthly
Cost
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
2Mbps max
£22.00
24 months
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
2Mbps max
£24.00
12 months
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
10Mbps max
£26.00
24 months
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
10Mbps max
£28.00
12 months
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
2Mbps max
£28.00
1 month
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£30.00
24 months
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
10Mbps max
£32.00
1 month
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£33.00
12 months
VodafoneUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£37.00
1 month
To show you the most relevant plans, 6 similar but more expensive plans have been hidden. .

Vodafone’s unlimited data plans are also available on a 12-month contract or on a 30-day rolling contract. You can read our in-depth review of Vodafone’s unlimited data plans for more information.

Source: Vodafone Website
Tariff Information: Vodafone Website

VOXI

VOXI is the low-cost sub-brand of Vodafone, offering endless data for £35/month.

On VOXI’s endless data plan, you’ll get unlimited data with up to 5G download speeds. You’ll also get unlimited minutes and unlimited texts included:

NetworkMinutesTextsDataMonthly
Cost
VOXIUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£35.00
1 month

According to their terms and conditions, VOXI says they “reserve the right to suspend or throttle the service if we have reason to believe that the SIM card is being used for commercial purposes, fraudulently or is having an adverse impact / damaging our network in any way”. The amount of data you can use abroad at no extra charge is also limited to 25GB per month.

There’s no need to undergo a credit check when joining VOXI. The endless data plan works on a one-month rolling prepaid basis.

Source: VOXI: Terms and Conditions
Tariff Information: VOXI Website

Other UK mobile networks don’t currently offer an unlimited data plan. However, you might be able to get a very large data allowance (for instance, up to 100GB of data per month on some networks).

Zero-Rated Data Plans

Zero-rated data plans give you unlimited data, but only for use on selected apps and services. This can make them a cheaper alternative to unlimited data plans:

EE Swappable Benefits

Customers choosing an EE Smart Pay Monthly plan will receive up to three “swappable benefits” included in their plan. Typically, there’s either one or two swappable benefits included with 4G plans and either two or three swappable benefits included with 5G plans.

The following data passes can be selected as a swappable benefit to give you unlimited zero-rated data for use on certain services:

  • Video Data Pass: Unlimited data for use on Netflix, YouTube, BBC iPlayer, Amazon Prime Video, MTV Play, TV Player and BT Sport.
  • Music Data Pass: Unlimited data for use on Apple Music, Deezer, Tidal and Spotify.
  • Gamer’s Data Pass: Unlimited data for use on Twitch, Pokémon Go, Harry Potter: Wizards Unite, FIFA Mobile and Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes.

The following EE Smart SIMs include swappable benefits from £25/month:

TariffMinutesTextsDataMonthly
Cost
4G SmartUnlimitedUnlimited60GB£25.00
18 months
4G SmartUnlimitedUnlimited100GB£30.00
18 months
4G SmartUnlimitedUnlimited40GB£32.00
12 months

If you’ve already used up the inclusive swappable benefits on your plan, you can buy the Video Data Pass for an extra £8.99/month. The Music Data Pass and Gamer’s Data Pass are available for an extra £7.99/month. See our full review of EE Smart Plans for more information.

Source: EE: Swappable Benefits for EE Smart
Tariff Information: EE Website

Three Go Binge

Three offers an inclusive service called Go Binge to all customers with a Pay Monthly plan with at least 12GB of data per month. This gives you unlimited data for use on six applications: Netflix, TV Player, Snapchat, Soundcloud, Deezer and Apple Music. Usage of these six services is “zero-rated” so doesn’t count towards your normal download allowance.

NetworkMinutesTextsDataMonthly
Cost
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited12GB£10.00
12 months
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited12GB£12.00
12 months
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited12GB£14.00
24 months
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited12GB£16.00
12 months
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited100GB£18.00
24 months
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited30GB£18.00
24 months
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited12GB£19.00
1 month
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited30GB£20.00
12 months
ThreeUnlimitedUnlimited30GB£24.00
1 month
To show you the most relevant plans, 6 similar but more expensive plans have been hidden. .

For more information, please read our full review of the Go Binge service.

Source: Three Website: About Go Binge
Tariff Information: Three Website

Virgin Mobile Data-Free Messaging

On Virgin Mobile, data-free messaging is available to all customers with a 4G Pay Monthly plan. Usage of WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger and Twitter are zero-rated so you can message as much as you like without worrying about how much data you’re using.

The following table shows 4G price plans from Virgin Mobile with data-free messaging:

NetworkMinutesTextsDataMonthly
Cost
Virgin Mobile500Unlimited500MB£6.00
12 months
Virgin Mobile1,500Unlimited1GB£7.00
12 months
Virgin MobileUnlimitedUnlimited3GB£8.00
24 months
Virgin Mobile1,500Unlimited8GB£9.00
12 months
Virgin MobileUnlimitedUnlimited5GB£10.00
24 months
Virgin Mobile5,000Unlimited3GB£10.00
12 months
Virgin MobileUnlimitedUnlimited8GB£12.00
24 months
Virgin Mobile5,000Unlimited4GB£12.00
12 months
Virgin Mobile5,000Unlimited6GB£13.00
12 months
Virgin MobileUnlimitedUnlimited10GB£14.00
24 months
Virgin Mobile5,000Unlimited8GB£15.00
12 months
Virgin Mobile5,000Unlimited100GB£16.00
12 months
Virgin MobileUnlimitedUnlimited20GB£16.00
24 months
Virgin MobileUnlimitedUnlimited30GB£18.00
24 months
Virgin Mobile5,000Unlimited15GB£18.00
12 months
Virgin MobileUnlimitedUnlimited100GB£20.00
24 months
Virgin Mobile5,000Unlimited25GB£20.00
12 months
Virgin Mobile5,000Unlimited40GB£23.00
12 months
Virgin Mobile5,000Unlimited50GB£25.00
12 months

Source: Virgin Mobile: Data-Free Messaging
Tariff Information: Virgin Media Website

VOXI Endless Passes

VOXI is Vodafone’s low-cost sub-brand, offering 30-day rolling plans from £10/month. On all of VOXI’s price plans you’ll get “endless social data” included. This gives you zero-rated data for use on Snapchat, Instagram, WhatsApp, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Viber and Facebook Messenger.

You can add a VOXI Video Pass for £7/month, giving you zero-rated data for use on Netflix, YouTube, Amazon Prime Video, DisneyLife, My5, TVPlayer and UKTV Play.

Alternatively, the VOXI Music Pass is available for £5/month, giving you zero-rated data for use on Spotify, Apple Music, TIDAL, Deezer, Amazon Music Unlimited, Amazon Prime Music, SoundCloud, Primordial Radio and Napster.

The following table shows 30-day rolling plans on VOXI with endless social data:

NetworkMinutesTextsDataMonthly
Cost
VOXIUnlimitedUnlimited6GB£10.00
1 month
VOXIUnlimitedUnlimited15GB£15.00
1 month
VOXIUnlimitedUnlimited60GB£20.00
1 month
VOXIUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited£35.00
1 month

Source: VOXI Plans
Tariff Information: VOXI Website

Occasionally, other mobile networks may choose to zero-rate selected apps and services on a promotional basis. For instance, EE offers zero-rated data for Apple Music during the six month free trial that’s available on all Pay Monthly plans.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which mobile networks offer unlimited data in the UK?
The following mobile networks currently offer unlimited data in the UK:
What’s the best value unlimited data deal?
Normally, the best value unlimited data deals can be found on Three. They currently offer unlimited data for £18/month, though prices vary based on the contract length. On Three, you’ll get unlimited data with no fair usage limits. There’s 99.8% 4G population coverage and 5G coverage at no extra cost if it’s available in your area.
Will I get 5G coverage with unlimited data?
The following mobile networks offer unlimited data with 5G coverage:
  • BT Mobile (BT Halo broadband customers only)
  • EE (5G Smart plan required)
  • O2 (5G plan required)
  • Three
  • Vodafone (Speed restrictions apply on Unlimited Lite and Unlimited plans)
  • VOXI
Is there a fair usage policy on unlimited data?
It depends on the mobile network. Normally, it’s stated that unlimited data is for your personal use only. In addition, there are sometimes further limitations and restrictions which are detailed within this table. If you’re travelling abroad to another European country, there is normally also a limit on how much data you can use.
What’s the difference between unlimited data and zero-rated data?
An unlimited data plan can be used with any app or service, whereas a zero-rated data plan only works with a given list of services (e.g. certain instant messaging or video streaming apps).

More Information

For more information on specific unlimited data plans, please see the BT Mobile, EE, giffgaff, iD Mobile, O2, SMARTY, Three, Virgin Mobile, Vodafone and VOXI websites.

For more information about zero-rated data offers, see the EE, Three, Virgin Mobile and VOXI websites.

Your Comments 53 so far

We'd love to hear your thoughts and any questions you may have. So far, we've received 53 comments from readers. You can add your own comment here.

  • When tethering, it mentions a 12 device limit. Is that 12 devices tethering from the connection concurently at the same time?

    • Hi John,
      Great question! EE’s unlimited data plans have a limit of 12 devices through tethering. I’m not sure exactly how this is defined (e.g. 12 devices concurrently or otherwise). This is the exact wording in their terms and conditions:
      “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.”
      I’d definitely welcome any feedback from other readers of this website who have used an unlimited data plan on EE.
      Ken

  • Hi Ken, This is my first time of coming across your blog. It sounds great. I’m in the process of shopping around for more data as I need the extra for listening to my online trainings while working nights shifts. You’ve empowered me to make a better judgement. Thank you so sooo much. You are doing a fantastic job. Well done.

  • Hi There,

    Just moved from city centre to outskirt. I was used to having Virgin Media fibre ~165Mbps. But now the BT open reach cabinet my home is connected to is full and there is no plan to roll out any improvements unfortunately. The ADSL alternative would give me up to 17Mbps.

    I work from home, as a web developer, so heavy data transfer / video conference, this is my prerogative.
    On a side note, I sometimes download games and use Netflix.

    So I cannot afford not having a fast connection.

    I bought a Huawei B535, put a SMARTY Unlimited Data sim, but speed reaches ~30 Mbps.
    Is there a way to improve my connection apart from buying the antenna you recommend (https://kenstechtips.com/index.php/mobile-broadband-antennas).

    I read on some ISP forum topics people can select the LTE band in there Huawei B525, but it seems impossible with the B535.

    Also, would I get any restrictions based on the Smarty T&Cs ? I read they have a fair use of 1000GB, and I am afraid I might easily reach it.

    Do you have any advices?
    Thanks,
    Dan

    • Hi Dan,
      Thanks for your comment. It’s really difficult to say what would improve the download speeds you get – this really depends on whether the download speeds are being limited by the coverage you can get, or by the available capacity on your nearest mast. To start with, I’d recommend testing out different placements for your router (ideally near an upstairs window and facing in the direction of your nearest mobile mast). It may also be worth testing out some different mobile network SIM cards (in case other mobile networks will give you better coverage) or testing out an external antenna as you say.
      With regards to the fair usage limit on unlimited data SIM cards, SMARTY does indeed have a 1,000GB threshold which they use to flag up commercial usage of the service. There’s more information here on the fair usage policy on unlimited data SIM cards in the UK.
      Hope this helps,
      Ken

  • Hi Ken,
    Can I just use a pay-as-you-go 1 SIM card from Vodafone in a MIFI device – mobile WI-FI device, without my Pay-as-you-go SIM from Vodafone being suspended or disconnected?
    Thanks

    • Hi there,
      Yes. It should now be possible to use the Pay As You Go 1 SIM card in any device. Ofcom’s net neutrality ruling in 2018 prevented mobile networks from restricting the type of device that a SIM card could be used in. Therefore, it shouldn’t be a problem using a smartphone SIM card in your MiFi.
      Hope this helps,
      Ken

  • Is there a website which predicts 4G data speeds you’re likely to get at a postcode? Vodafone comes close and reckons “up to 60MB” at my location. All of them, including Ofcom, only show coverage – not predicted speeds like a broadband checker would.

    I know this type of measurement should be taken with a pinch of salt (probably won’t include mast contention for example), but this type of info would be incredibly useful as 4G home broadband becomes more common.

    The only way I can think of is get a SIM for each network and test it, which is a pain as you can imagine.

    • Hi Michael,
      Thanks for your comment. Sadly, there aren’t any websites that I’m currently aware of allowing you to do this in a semi-useful way. Like you say, Vodafone does offer an estimated data speed range on their own coverage checker. However, EE, O2 and Three don’t have the same functionality so it isn’t really comparable across different networks.
      Some third-party companies like OpenSignal have tried to build something themselves by crowdsourcing data from people who have their app installed. However, I don’t think this data is very useful as the sample size is far too small.
      I think the biggest issue here is that data speeds can vary massively even inside of a postcode. For instance, you might see a big differences in download speed even within your own home (e.g. placing the router in a different room or having an external antenna). For this reason, trial-and-error is probably still the best way of comparing speeds across mobile networks (and definitely testing out different placements of the router in your home).
      Ken

  • Thomas O'neill said:

    Hi Ken I have been reading your comments and replies for about a month since I have been using AI Cube on three network. And it’s probably one of the best for comments and replies and most enjoyable with sensible comments and answers

    The one on Dave moving to rural Scotland usb dongle from Huawei – you’re right I live outside Glasgow and used a dongle about a year ago and had problem after problem. Recently I got AI Cube on 3 network and it works fine the Huawei b525 will work perfectly well as know someone who uses it near me so good advice ken.

    Was also reading about content blockage. I thought 3 was doing the same with me and went straight to web based management page and now it works perfect so a big thank you I also downloaded the Netgear Analytics free app play store it works on any device and is really good and use on my android box it’s a big help as you know WiFi is unpredictable and walk around the house with my phone for best spots living room etc.

  • Hi there,
    This seems to be the go to place for this kind of info, very informative & helpful with sorting out the sim options so far…

    I’m moving to rural Scotland, i think the max data vodafone is the best bet for coverage & usage & i think i know how to set this up but wanted to check with an expert !

    Need to keep it cheap, so can i use my existing router (TP link VR400), buy an unlocked dongle (Huawei E3372 on amazon £35 ?) and just insert the data sim into the dongle, the dongle in to the router & away we go ? Its going to get some heavy use but pretty static so i dont think a mifi type is an option and dont really want to pay out for a pricey new router.

    Thanks in advance.

    • Hi Dave,
      Thanks for your comment, and for the kind words about the website! You ask a great question. Assuming the Huawei E3372 dongle works with the TP-Link VR400, this should probably be fine (though you’ll need to check their documentation to see whether this is the case).
      However, if at all possible, I would strongly recommend you to buy a new 4G router – something like the Huawei B525. You’ll find it gives far better performance & speeds than a cheap USB dongle. There’s also the ability to connect an external antenna which can make a really big difference in rural areas with weaker coverage.
      Hope this helps,
      Ken

      • Hi Ken,

        Thanks for the reply.
        Well the setup works fine, sadly Vodafone does not.

        The coverage map and mast positions suggest it should but somehow their max sim is capping at 5-7mbs on 4g (it is the max available speed one).That’s the same via dongle or putting it in my phone. It does increase if I limit it to 3g, get 15mbs then.

        Which seems odd as EE whose mast seems to be same line of sight and just 20 nearer gives 60-70mbs.

        Thanks again.

        • Hi Dave,
          That’s pretty bizarre it caps out at 5-7Mbit/s. Is there an issue with capacity on your nearest Vodafone mast? One alternative you could explore is EE’s £34/month unlimited data SIM card. It’s £4/month more expensive than Vodafone, but this might be worth it if you’re able to get far better speeds. You’ll have to keep an eye out for their fair usage limit however, which prevents you from regularly tethering more than 12 devices.
          Ken

          • Hi Ken,

            Back to hopefully draw upon your words of wisdom once again.

            So I have been happily using the above dongle with an unlimited EE £34pcm. Moved to another remote area, same set up, now have the odd, perhaps daily, every other day, disconnect, where the connection just goes. A router reset clears this up fine. Its just a pain in the backside.

            Now im in sight of the nearest mast now, only 300m away, router is in an upstairs window looking at it. Generally get a steady speed 30bps on speedtest (not expecting any more really).
            Id hazard a guess these resets are the limitations of the router/dongle setup ?

            Only other possibility i could think of is fair usage, we hit it hard, soul source of tv, streaming etc. But then a quick reset wouldnt solve that ?

            Just wanted to check your opinion before looking at upgrading hardware as oppose to network hopping.

            Cheers,

            Dave.

          • Hi Dave,
            Thanks for your comment and hope you’re keeping OK in the current situation!
            Based on what you’ve described, this potentially sounds like it might be a hardware limitation/issue. I wouldn’t expect fair usage capping or throttling to be resolved by something like restarting your router. Rather, I wonder if the dongle might have just been pushed a bit harder than it’s designed to work (a dedicated 4G home broadband router should give better performance than a small pocket sized dongle).
            Ken

  • I’ve been using a SMARTY Unlimited SIM in my home 4G router with quite acceptable performance, but noticed lately that they appear to be blocking game and application downloads to my Xbox (which otherwise has good connectivity when using it to browse, stream movies, etc.) I presume they’re able to do this by monitoring traffic connections similar to how they block certain websites with their adult filter.

    Any idea if other networks do this, or whether I should explore asking SMARTY to remove my content blocks?

    • Hi Sam,
      Thanks for your comment. According to SMARTY’s website, they don’t have any data shaping or throttling in use. Therefore, I’m not sure if this is the culprit that’s causing an issue for you. It might be worth double-checking to make sure all content blocks are removed from your SIM card, as this is sometimes be over-aggressive and can block other services as well.
      Ken

  • We’re buying a rural property that BT offer max 8mb. Nearby is a EE mast. Speed check on 4g 68mb. No brainier to go 4g. Already have a MiFi unit do I just change plan to unlimited?

    • Hi Chris,
      Thanks for your comment. It definitely sounds like 4G broadband might be the way to go here! I’d personally recommend changing to a mains-powered router as you’ll get much better performance compared to a battery-powered mi-fi. You can either get a 4G home broadband package like 4GEE Home, or you can buy an unlocked 4G router for your existing SIM card.
      Hope this helps,
      Ken

  • Hi, looking at getting a EE 4GEE home router to replace snail pace and falling over BT fixed broadband – rural property. EE will charge me £50 per month for 18 months incl the router for 500GB per month or I can buy an unlimited sim off them for £34 per month over 12 months and buy the router for £130 from BT. Surely they offer the same but the latter is better value?

    • Hi Andrew,
      Thanks for your comment. EE only introduced their unlimited data plans last week, and unfortunately these haven’t yet filtered through to 4GEE Home. In theory, I think it should be possible to do what you’re suggesting, but do be aware of the tethering limit on this plan (no more than 12 devices can be tethered or connected to your router). In addition, you’ll also miss out on the 5GB data boost from 4GEE Home (though to compensate, you do get a 100GB giftable data allowance from EE’s unlimited plan that can be transferred to other accounts like your mobile phone SIM card).
      Ken

  • If I visit the UK for 2 weeks at a time, how may I acquire unlimited data, with modest text & calls within the UK? Which is the best plan & carrier for this?

    • Hi Olivia,
      Thanks for your comment. As a visitor to the UK, you’re probably looking for a Pay As You Go SIM card that doesn’t require credit checks. Your options on Pay As You Go are essentially giffgaff and Three, though I’d normally recommend giffgaff for visitors to the UK. You can pay £25 for an unlimited data allowance lasting for up to one month (though download speeds are reduced to 384kbps once you’ve used 40GB per month). Three have unlimited data for £35/month on Pay As You Go, but they don’t offer international delivery and may require you to use a UK card to top-up (unless you top-up in person at a store).
      Hope this helps,
      Ken

      • Olivia Anne replied:

        Yes. Thank you. However, I am unclear if there is phone and text, even if limited, and unlimited data. I had a Tesco card, and probably had £20 top ups 8 to 10 times and still had no connectivity periodically! So, I’m less concerned with the cost than I am the ability to STAY connected. I will be in the UK for about 15 days in all.

        • Hi Olivia,
          Yes, you’ll get unlimited minutes and unlimited texts included in both packages – albeit, only local phone calls within the UK.
          Ken

  • Hi, what is the best unlimited data plan if the purpose of the phone is to keep in touch using the simplest video messenger services(not texting) like WhatsApp and Facebook. This is a question to help set up a non-phonme user for first time so everything including handset has to be simplest and cheapest – but still work

    Thanks in advance

    • Hi Jan,
      Thanks for your comment. To be honest, it’s probably unlikely that you’ll need an unlimited data plan for basic usage of WhatsApp, Facebook, etc. For more information, see my guide to mobile download limits. Saying that, if you do want an unlimited data plan for the additional peace of mind, I’d definitely have a look at the deals listed above. Three currently offer unlimited data from £20/month (with half price for the first 6 months). Alternatively, Virgin have data-free messaging, so usage of WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger will not count towards your download allowance.
      Hope this helps,
      Ken

  • Mark Skinner said:

    Hello everybody, Just want to let you know of my experiences with Three. I live in a very rural area and landline broadband only delivers approx 1mbps!, so, for the last year I have had Three unlimited data,texts,calls, originally was £27, then they reduced it to£22 after I complained they were lying about 4g coverage ,i only get 1or2 bars on 3g, but it is truly unlimited and unlimited Hotspot, I use an iPhone SE as my hotspot device and run our 2 ipads,laptops and smart tv for streaming Netflix etc, it drops out now and again but still miles better than landline broadband which used to drop out for days!, the only downside is that Three customer service is just beyond disgraceful, I threatened to cancel my contract and they agreed to reduce my monthly bill to £17 – but they have not done this and I am now in the middle of a complaint with them about this as they need to credit me some money but their Indian? Call centre is staffed by a bunch of liars, I have a separate “house” phone/mobile which is with SMARTY (Owned by Three and on the 3 network but with English speaking support staff who actually reply to your emails!), this costs me only £5 per month for unlimited texts and calls, I do not use data on this phone so they reduce the £6.25 monthly bill to £5 – NO CONTRACT REQUIRED WITH SMARTY !, so, my wife has just ordered an Unlimited data/calls/texts/Hotspot SIM from smarty for £18.25 per month, NO CONTRACT REQUIRED – MONTHLY! and we will just take the early cancellation hit from our 3 contract (3 months left), which will actually be worth it just to get away from their disgraceful customer service, so, getting rid of 3 but staying with them at the same time! So, suggest you all consider SMARTY! If anybody has any questions I would be only too happy to answer if I can! P.s. this is a great site btw, well done!

    • Hi Mark,
      Thanks for your kind feedback, and for sharing your experiences of using Three for home broadband 🙂 I agree that the unlimited data deal from SMARTY is currently great value, given it’s presently discounted to £18.25/month.
      Whilst you might want to cancel your Three contract a bit early, I would advise against doing this if you’re at all able. They’ll charge you a hefty early exit fee, which is equivalent to paying for another 3 months (less a small 20% discount). Given you’ll need to pay for those three months anyway, I’d at least try to use the service rather than paying them and getting nothing in return! You can then cancel your Three contract at a later date through the PAC Code or STAC Code process without needing to talk to anyone in their call centre.
      Ken

      • Mark Skinner replied:

        Like I said in my post ,SMARTY is owned by Three and on the Three network, so it is as good as Three, like I said, I only get 1/2 bars of 3g which is still miles better than the 1mbps landline broadband would give me.

  • Hi

    I would like to add my personal experience regarding Virgin unlimited contract, even though they state in their advertising “truly unlimited” the back haul team will disconnect your data connection you if you consistently use about 800gig a month.
    When i was with them there was no fair use limit in the terms and conditions and when this was pointed out to customer services and also reminding them i was on a truly unlimited contract it made no difference as they kept stating i was using to much data. The UK customer services is very poor and is based abroad.
    Others have said they have had no issue but “truly unlimited” it is not and if i had more time i would of complained to the Ofcom aswell as the ASA.

  • Firstly I have to say that this is a truly epic site. I am as impressed with it as much as Techmoan (for dashcams etc.) which is saying something!
    Outstanding job, Ken, quite outstanding. I hope that you derive financial benefit from the site either directly or indirectly. Perhaps you should set up a ‘tip jar’.

    I would really appreciate any thoughts on this deal:
    https://www.fonehouse.co.uk/basket?type=simonly&productId=119&tariffId=1790&giftId=109&dealTypeId=2
    It gives £192 cashback on the £30/month Vodafone Unlimited Max service (as in max speed available).

    My circumstances are that I am in a rural location with an 8Mb/s FTTC connection. But I have 4 holiday cottages on site, so this doesn’t go very far.
    I have just (this minute) purchased a Huawei B525 and now I need a provider for the SIM. Unfortunately, I don’t get a good connection to Three BUT my Voda 4G connection is pretty good giving >40Mb/s

    So, my questions (to Ken or anyone else with relevant experience) are:
    a) Will a regular SIM (as opposed to data only) work OK? Having spent a fair amount of time on this site, the answer appears to be ‘yes’, but I just wanted to make sure.
    b) Does the cashback deal (above) sound reasonable? Not asking for any guarantees of course, just an opinion.

    Once the router is set up with a SIM, I will use homeplugs (internet over mains power cables) to distribute the signal between the cottages.

    If this setup works, it will save me from having multiple rubbish landlines which are both slow and expensive. Specifically, one £30/month SIM giving 40Mb/s compared with two £27/month landlines giving 8Mb/s each.

    • Hi Simon,
      Thank you so much for your kind feedback, and so sorry for the massive delay in getting back to you!
      a) Yes, a regular SIM card will work just fine in your Huawei B525 router. It used to be the case last year that you could only use these SIM card in a smartphone, but Ofcom put an end to that with their ruling on net neutrality (specifically, making sure that “restrictions on the devices in which a SIM can be used” were no longer imposed). You should now, therefore, be able to use any SIM card in any device.
      b) The deal sounds reasonable to me (though I think it has probably expired since you posted your original question). I haven’t had much first-hand experience with Fonehouse, but assuming it works, this is a pretty decent discount in my opinion!
      Good luck with setting it all up!
      Ken

    • Hi Pete,
      That’s fantastic news! We’ll get an article up soon to review these new 5G plans from Vodafone.
      Thanks again for the heads up on this.
      Ken

  • John Murray said:

    What I see with most of these is they all bar Giff Gaff want paying by credit card and not by Top Up. Those bundles are only payable by credit card. Then with Three they charge a higher price if you buy the bundle as Add On.

    • Hi John,
      You’re absolutely right. SMARTY requires you to have a credit card or debit card saved onto your account, which will be charged automatically every month. You can, however, disable the automatic renewal of that bundle at any time. Three allows you to top-up with credit and to convert that credit into a one-month bundle, but it will cost £35 for you to do this.
      Ken

  • How can OFFCOM go after three for net neutrality with regards to tethering and not the other players.
    I don’t see how Three giving all their customers unlimited data with no tethering limits is sustainable.
    I can understand them giving unlimited data to their mobile broadband customers who by nature may require high data usage, but giving it to everyone with a phone with no restrictions on tethering or personal hotspots is bound to have a detrimental effect on their service.
    Already my 4g data speed is becoming more and more erratic averaging 0.1 to 4.5 mbps and jumping to 25 to 45 mbps in a small pre-dawn window.
    I suspect them giving everyone unlimited data with no real relevant limits is the reason why.
    How do they hope to sustain this. No other player is doing it this way…

  • How come OFFCOM is targeting three for net neutrality regarding tethering but not the other players.
    Three is going to become unusable with them offering everyone unlimited data.
    I would understand if an unlimited option was available to their mobile broadband customers but with them giving it to everybody with a phone and the removal of tethering I don’t see how this is sustainable.
    My mifi 4g speeds are extremely erratic these days averaging from 0.1 to 4.2 mbps and I suspect this is the reason why.
    What kind of strategy is this. Nobody else is doing it this way….

  • Any thoughts Ken, on using an unlimited data plan as a sort of proxy for WiFi? Maybe using a dedicated MiFi device or even a phone as a hotspot… If say one wants the flexibility, not being tied into a long broadband contract etc? Speed of connection 4G mobile data vs. Broadband Wifi? What do you think?

    • Hi Craig,
      Many thanks for your comment. Typically, you’ll be able to use an unlimited data plan through tethering or portable hotspot on your other devices (e.g. your laptop or tablet). However, speeds are slowed down after the first 9GB/month on giffgaff and tethering is limited to 30GB/month on Three. Therefore, these tariffs might not be a very good replacement for your normal home broadband/wi-fi service.
      There are some mobile broadband tariffs designed for use in the home – for instance, Three’s HomeFi which gives you 40GB of data for £24/month or Relish which gives you unlimited data from £20/month if you’re living in Central London. Both of these can be a good replacement for home broadband if you’re in an area with good coverage & if the data allowance is enough for you.
      Ken

  • I noticed today that ID network have stop doing unlimited unless its a typo ob the Carphone warehouse site now dropped to 10gb for £20

    • Hey there,
      A massive thank you for the heads up about the iD Mobile offer. We’ve now removed it from this page as they’ve dropped the tariff down to 10GB per month.
      Thanks again,
      Ken

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