Vodafone has launched an unlimited data plan with both 4G and 5G coverage from £23/month. Customers can choose from Lite, Standard or Max download speeds.
Vodafone has launched three new unlimited data plans with access to both 4G and 5G coverage. Available from £23/month on a 12-month contract, the unlimited data plans will also give you unlimited minutes and unlimited texts included.
For customers, the main difference between the three unlimited data price plans is the maximum download speed you’re able to obtain. The maximum speed is 2Mbit/s on Unlimited Lite, 10Mbit/s on Unlimited, and the fastest available speeds on Unlimited Max.
In this article, we’ll look at Vodafone’s unlimited data plans in more detail, including what you’ll get on each one and the difference between the download speeds available. We’ll also look at how Vodafone’s unlimited data plans compare to the rest of the market before looking at the coverage available and how to keep your existing phone number.
Vodafone Unlimited Data Plans
From the 10th July 2019, unlimited data is available on Vodafone from £23/month. The new unlimited data plans allow you to download as much as you like, with no hidden limits or fair usage policies.
If you have a 5G-ready smartphone, and if you’re in a Vodafone 5G coverage area, you’ll also be able to access Vodafone’s new 5G network. However, the maximum download speeds you can obtain will depend on your plan:
- Unlimited Lite (from £23/month) gives you download speeds of up to 2Mbit/s.
- Unlimited (from £26/month) gives you download speeds of up to 10Mbit/s.
- Unlimited Max (from £30/month) gives you the fastest available speeds on Vodafone. In theory, this can go up to 1Gbit/s (1,000Mbit/s) but more realistically, it’ll be around 150-200Mbit/s on 5G or about 25-35Mbit/s on 4G).
There’s no fair usage policy on the unlimited data allowance, except that it needs to be “for your personal and non-commercial use”.
Unlimited Lite vs Unlimited vs Unlimited Max
The following table shows a summary of the key differences between Vodafone’s Unlimited Lite, Unlimited and Unlimited Max price plans:
|Unlimited Lite||Unlimited||Unlimited Max|
|Monthly Price (12 month contract)
|Monthly Price (30 day contract)
|Download Speed||Up to 2Mbit/s||Up to 10Mbit/s||Full-speed 4G & 5G|
(12 month only)
(12 month only)
|Inclusive EU Roaming||✔||✔||✔|
|Inclusive non-EU Roaming||✘||✘||✔ 29 destinations|
|Roaming Data Allowance||25GB||25GB||25GB|
You can add an Entertainment package to the Unlimited or Unlimited Max price plans for an additional £6/month. This will give you access to Amazon Prime Video, NOW TV, Sky Sports Mobile TV or Spotify Premium. You’ll also get 100 UK-to-EU minutes added if you buy an Entertainment plan.
The key difference between Vodafone’s unlimited data price plans is the maximum download speeds you’re able to access on each one.
According to Vodafone, the three unlimited data price plans are designed for different types of usage:
- Unlimited Lite (up to 2Mbit/s) is designed for browsing and social media, messaging, e-mail and online music streaming.
- Unlimited (up to 10Mbit/s) is designed for streaming HD-quality videos, sharing photos, making video calls and streaming single player games.
- Unlimited Max (with the fastest available speeds) is designed for super-fast downloads, streaming video in Ultra HD (4K) quality, multiplayer gaming on-the-go and tethering to multiple devices at the same time.
Which Plan Should I Choose?
If you’re looking to benefit from the high speeds available on 5G, we’d recommend choosing the £30/month Unlimited Max price plan. This is the only plan that allows you to access the fastest available speeds.
With the cheaper Unlimited Lite and Unlimited price plans, you’re still able to benefit from the increased capacity and lower latency of 5G technology. However, the increased download speeds of 5G will not be available to you.
In our opinion, the £26/month Unlimited price plan (up to 10Mbit/s) should be fast enough for almost everything you’d want to do on your smartphone. For instance, you only need around 5Mbit/s to watch iPlayer or Netflix in high definition. You can therefore save quite a bit of money by choosing this plan if you don’t actually need the faster speeds offered by Unlimited Max.
The £23/month Unlimited Lite plan only offers up to 2Mbit/s. This should be fine for everyday browsing and messaging but it’s unlikely you’ll be able to watch HD video without regular buffering and pauses.
Comparison to Alternatives
Besides Vodafone, there are numerous other UK mobile networks also offering an unlimited data plan.
The best value options are normally found on Three and SMARTY, both of whom offer unlimited data at full 4G download speeds. SMARTY offers a one-month rolling deal whereas Three offers Pay Monthly contracts of between 1 and 24 months in length.
giffgaff offers Always-On data with unlimited downloads, but full 4G speeds are only available on the first 40GB per month. After this, your download speeds are restricted to a maximum of 384kbit/s (around 0.4Mbit/s) between 8am and midnight each day.
Virgin Mobile also offers an unlimited data plan with speeds of up to 70Mbit/s available on EE’s 4G network. This is exclusive to customers who have a Virgin Media TV or home broadband connection.
The following table shows an overview of unlimited data plans that are currently available in the UK:
For more information, please see our in-depth comparison of unlimited data plans in the UK.
2G, 3G & 4G Coverage
Vodafone offers 99% population coverage on their 2G, 3G and 4G network in the UK. Before signing up for their unlimited data service, it’s worth double-checking to make sure there’s coverage in your area. You can do this by entering your postcode on Vodafone’s online coverage map:
With 4G coverage, you can normally access download speeds from Vodafone of around 25-35Mbit/s. A more accurate forecast of download speeds in your area can be found on Vodafone’s online coverage map (just click on the Data speed info button once you’ve entered your postcode).
Our full guide to the coverage on Vodafone has more in-depth information about this topic.
If you have a 5G-ready smartphone and live in a 5G-enabled area, you can access Vodafone’s 5G network using one of their unlimited data plans.
Vodafone’s 5G network is currently available in the following UK towns and cities:
|Now Live||32 towns and cities are live on Vodafone 5G (November 2019)|
Bebington, Birkenhead, Birmingham, Bolton, Bootle, Bristol, Cardiff, Droylsden, Eccles, Gatwick, Glasgow, Horwich, Huyton-with-Roby, Isle of Scilly, Lancaster, Liverpool, Llandudno, London, Manchester, Mangotsfield, Newbury, Paisley, Penarth, Plymouth, Prestwich, Salford, Solihull, Stoke-on-Trent, Stretford, Wallasey, Warrington, Wolverhampton
|6 towns and cities planned|
Blackpool, Bournemouth, Guildford, Portsmouth, Reading, Southampton (End of 2019)
If you’re not able to access 5G coverage on your phone, you’ll still be able to access 2G, 3G and 4G coverage from Vodafone.
Tethering & Personal Hotspot
Tethering or personal hotspot refers to the process of sharing your mobile phone’s internet connection with another device (e.g. with your laptop or tablet).
On Vodafone’s unlimited data plans, it’s possible to tether and to use personal hotspot without any restrictions. This means you can share your unlimited data allowance with other devices.
One thing that’s worth remembering is that your download speeds will be shared across all tethered devices. For instance, on the 10Mbit/s unlimited data plan, it might only be possible to stream HD-quality video on two devices at one time (as a HD-quality video stream uses around 5Mbit/s). If you regularly use the personal hotspot feature on multiple devices, it might be worthwhile choosing the Unlimited Max data plan.
For more information, see our full guide to tethering and personal hotspot usage in the UK.
On Vodafone’s unlimited data plans, you can use up to 25GB of your data abroad each month.
For the Unlimited Lite and Unlimited price plans, roaming is included at no extra cost in 48 European Roam-Free destinations. In another 104 Roam-further destinations, you can pay £6/day to use your UK allowance.
With the Unlimited Max price plan, you’ll get Vodafone’s Global Roaming Plus service included. This gives you inclusive roaming in 77 destinations, including most of Europe, the USA, Canada, Mexico, Australia, New Zealand and more.
According to Vodafone, they offer 4G roaming in more destinations than any other network. At the time of writing, 4G roaming is available in 137 destinations. 5G roaming will also be launching this summer for customers travelling to Germany, Italy and Spain.
Keeping Your Phone Number
It’s a straightforward process to keep your existing phone number if you’d like to move from another mobile network to Vodafone.
You should start by ordering your new unlimited data SIM card from Vodafone. Once you’ve done that, contact your old mobile network to ask for a PAC Code. This is a nine-digit code that authorises the transfer of your phone number to Vodafone.
Once your unlimited data SIM card arrives in the post from Vodafone, place it inside your mobile phone. You can then give your PAC Code to Vodafone. They’ll schedule the transfer of your phone number once you’ve done this, normally for the next working day.
For a step-by-step guide on transferring your phone number to Vodafone, please select your current mobile network from the drop-down menu below:
For more information on Vodafone’s unlimited data plans, please see their official website.