Setting up phone lines and broadband in London

Contrary to popular opinion, the process of setting up a phone account and broadband connection in London can be fast and efficient.

If there is an existing phone line connected to any property, then establishing an account with BT is remarkably simple and extremely fast. I have just ordered my new phone line account and broadband package with BT and everything will be active from the day after I move for good. I even get my wireless hub posted to my address. So essentially the landline is active within 2 days of ordering and the broadband connection is available within 5 days of ordering, including all hardware. Telstra in Australia was nowhere near as fast.

However, setting up mobile broadband in London is remarkably tricky and expensive, and virtually impossible unless you are prepared to pay £100 for one of the providers’ modems. Come with your own broadband USB modem and you have no chance at all. You can get a pay-as-you-go SIM card but it will only show you sites that are accessible on a mobile phone. So in other words, it’s useless. It’s also extremely expensive, starting from a minimum £30 per month. Some providers charge an extraordinary £2.35 per *megabyte*.

In comparison, I can get free calls to local service providers, free internet calls, 5Gb monthly limit and 8Mb/s broadband speed plus digital television and personal video recorder with a landline and wireless broadband package for about £30/month (and only £20/month for the first 6 months). That includes everything – calls, line rental, broadband internet, BT Vision.

That’s about A$67 a month for *everything*. Taking in to account my former monthly landline rental, calls and broadband package, let alone my basic subscription TV package, that’s one hell of a lot less than I was paying at home in Brisbane. I have to say, I’m extremely impressed.

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