Competition in the wireless broadband market is fierce. The big broadband providers are pushing wireless broadband because it means bigger profits for them. For by using wireless technology, they don’t have to pay to provide their services over fibre networks belonging to other companies.
And for consumers, this increased competition means lower prices. But why pay for cheap wireless broadband, when you can pay for cheaper wireless broadband? Canstar looks at what’s on offer, and the cheapest wireless broadband in New Zealand.
Why get wireless broadband?
Before we get to the cheapest wireless broadband, you may need to consider if wireless broadband is right for you. When it comes to speeds, wireless tends to outpace the old ADSL connections. But, it can’t compete with VDSL, and it really can’t compete with fire.
Whereas a standard fibre connection is currently around 300/100Mbps, 4G wireless is only somewhere around the 30/15Mbps mark…
But if fibre isn’t an option, and it still isn’t for rural parts of the country, then wireless broadband may be your best bet for bringing reliable internet to your home. Or, if you’re on a budget, it could be right for you. As wireless plans can be significantly cheaper than fibre ones.
Some things you may want to consider before committing to a wireless broadband plan are:
- Modem – a retailer will provide a modem either at an upfront cost or with a plan. It’s worth noting that retailers typically stipulate that the modem can only be used at the customer’s nominated location. So, if you plan on moving, it’s important to contact your retailer.
- Flexible or fixed-term plan – plans may range from flexible month-to-month plans to fixed-term plans, such as 12-month plans. If you choose a fixed-term plan, it’s worthwhile keeping in mind the process and fees that will apply in the event of its early termination.
- Data caps – Is it unlimited broadband, or is their a cap?. Always confirm what will happen once a cap is reached, and the cost of extra data.
- Home phone – some plans are available with the option to include a home phone.
- Account management and monitoring – what sort of online account management and monitoring tools are provided? For instance, keeping track of data usage may be important if you’re consistently close to your data caps.
- Incentives – are retailers offering any additional incentives, such as discounts, the ability to bundle alongside a phone plan, signing on rewards, or even subscriptions to streaming services?
Cheapest wireless Broadband: what’s on offer?
Below we have listed all the wireless broadband plans on offer in New Zealand. It’s important to note, that a large share of providers do not offer wireless broadband.
If you’re interested in finding the cheapest fibre broadband, click here.
Vodafone states that its two wireless broadband plans come on 12-month contracts and include a free modem, though a delivery fee applies. 4G Wireless has average download/upload speeds of 27/15Mbps while 5G speeds are not listed, with speed testing still underway.
Unlimited 5G Wireless is only available at select locations.
|Unlimited 5G Wireless||Unlimited||$79|
- $10/month discount if you already have a Vodafone pay monthly phone plan
- Vodafone’s rewards scheme
- Unlimited plans are SuperWifi eligible (on a 24-month contract)
Spark offers four open-term wireless broadband plans, with one 5G plan available (subject to location). All 4G plans are listed as having average speeds of 29/17Mbps
Modem’s are not included on 4G plans, and cost an additional $106.20 applies. Max Wireless includes a free Spark Smart 5G modem.
|Everyday Wireless||4G Unlimited||$65|
|Max Wireless||5G Unlimited||$80|
- Signing on reward of a $50-$200 gift card
- Free Netflix on Max Wireless plan
- Basic wireless includes free landline (additional $10 on all other plans)
Skinny’s home wireless broadband plans use the Spark 4G network. You can choose to sign on for a 12-month contract or be on an open-term. On a 12-month term, the modem is included ($199 on an open term contract).
- Save an extra $10 per month if you have an eligible Skinny mobile plan
- First month free
- 30-day satisfaction guarantee
Trustpower’s home wireless broadband plans use the Spark 4G network.
Trustpower offers a range of discounts when you bundle your broadband with power, or power and gas, on a 24-month contract.
- Home phone line for an additional $10 per month
- Broadband is half-price for the first 12 months when new customers sign up on eligible Power and Broadband bundle
- Choose one of five free Samsung appliances upon sign-up
2degrees has two wireless broadband plans, both powered by its 4G network. You can choose from either 300GB or 600GB of data. A modem is an additional $299 on an open plan, or free on fixed 12-month term. $15 delivery fee applies to both.
|300GB Wireless 4G||300GB||$65|
|600GB Wireless 4G||600GB||$75|
- $10 discount per month when the plan is linked to an eligible 2degrees pay monthly mobile plan
- First two months free on a 12-month contract
- 30 day risk-free guarantee
*Further information on pricing can be found at individual retailer websites. This should be used as a starter guide and not considered an actual quote. Prices valid 03/03/22.
Compare broadband providers with Canstar
For a clearer picture of broadband providers in NZ, Canstar Blue rates all the providers in the market annually. We survey thousands of broadband customers and ask them to score their providers across categories including Value for Money, Network Performance and Customer Service.
Canstar Blue’s 2021 review of NZ internet providers compares NOW, 2degrees, Bigpipe, Contact, MyRepublic, Nova Energy, Orcon, Slingshot, Spark, Stuff Fibre, Trustpower and Vodafone, and awards the best our 5 Star rating:
^ By clicking on a brand or 'details' button, you will leave Canstar Blue and be taken to either a product provider website or a Canstar Blue NZ brand page. You agree that Canstar Blue NZ’s terms and conditions apply (without limitation) to your use of this service,to any referral to a product provider from our website, and any transaction that follows. Canstar Blue may receive a fee for referring you to a product provider. See How we are funded for further details.
Canstar Blue NZ Research finalised in April 2022, published in May 2022.
See Our Ratings Methodology
The table above is an abridged version of our full research, so to find out more about NZ’s best broadband providers, just click on the big button below:
About the author of this page
This report was written by Canstar Content Producer, Andrew Broadley. Andrew is an
experienced writer with a wide range of industry experience. Starting out, he cut his teeth working as a writer for print and online magazines, and he has worked in both journalism and editorial roles. His content has covered lifestyle and culture, marketing and, more recently, finance for Canstar.