I want to watch the football, but I'm on a bit of a budget - what's the cheapest way to get Sky Sports? Which provider sells it at the lowest price?
Oliver M, via email
Our expert Kim says...
Sky Sports is the go-to service for fans of footie, cricket, rugby, and golf alike - but heaven knows it ain't cheap, and all the options get a bit complicated. Whatever way you get it, you'll be adding at least £22 onto your bill every month.
So what's the lowest cost, simplest way to get Sky Sports on your TV? Let's have a trawl through all the available packages.
A quick note: all prices in this article reflect the current costs at the time of writing. They'll almost certainly change - especially as providers often put out special offers that lop a few quid off packages with Sky Sports. The 'cheapest' way to get Sky Sports can vary at any time.
We recommend comparing packages with our comparison tool for the most accurate pricing. Tick 'Sky Sports' under the channel options, and you'll see everything you can get in your postcode.
For now though, here's a bit of guidance for what's really cheap and what's really worth it.
With TV only: Sky
If you want just a TV package with Sky Sports attached, the cheapest way to do that is through Sky.
It costs £22 a month to add two Sky Sports channels onto Sky TV; £26 a month to add three; or £27.50 a month to add the whole lot. You can chop and change which channels you subscribe to every single month, if you like.
Since Sky's base TV package costs £22 a month (plus setup costs), you can get the whole lot for £49.50 - or £44 a month if you only want, say, Premier League matches.
If you want Sky Cinema too, you can get the two services together at a rather nice discount - around a tenner or so.
Bear in mind, however, that this is the cheapest way to get Sky Sports without broadband included. Oddly enough, you can shave a hefty amount off your bill by going for a broadband plus TV bundle from another provider. You'll have to sacrifice those 300+ channels and top-notch Sky Q tech, but it does work out cheaper.
So really, the cheapest way to get Sky Sports is…
With TV and broadband: TalkTalk
TalkTalk TV with Sky Sports is very cheap indeed, though you can't get a TV package on its own - only bundled in with broadband and home phone. That's not too much of a problem if you want broadband too, of course.
Basic broadband and TV from TalkTalk costs £21.50 a month, plus setup costs. Adding the Sky Sports Boost to that costs £34 a month - making broadband, home phone, TV, and all Sky Sports channels £55.50 a month all in.
You don't get any other channels besides Freeview and Sky Sports - channel boosts cost a little extra - but generally speaking, it's the cheapest way to get Sky Sports with TV and broadband.
Alternatively, you can sign up to a NOW TV Sky Sports Pass, which you can watch through the YouView box you get with TalkTalk TV. It's technically cheaper than the TalkTalk Boost, costing a whopping 1p less per month (a 12p saving across the whole year!) - but most importantly, it has the advantage of letting you watch your sports from anywhere. You just need to get the app on your smartphone, tablet, or computer.
It's also worth mentioning that NOW TV's Combo deals - broadband, home phone, a TV box, and a Sports Pass - are TalkTalk's closest rival here. Depending on when you look, it could well be the cheaper option.
Without pay TV: NOW TV
Don't want a pay TV package at all? Your cheapest option for Sky Sports is to get a NOW TV Sports Pass.
These cost £6.99 for the day, £10.99 for the week, or £33.99 for the whole month, and you can get the app on TV boxes, smart TVs, web browsers, smartphones, tablets, and more.
Adding Sky Sports onto an existing pay-TV package is usually cheaper - at least with Sky, Virgin Media, TalkTalk, and BT (if you're happy with only two channels). However, a NOW TV Pass is the way to go if you've no interest in pay-TV at all, or if you can't add Sky Sports directly onto your current system - such as EE TV.
The Sky Sports Mobile TV app is actually the cheapest way to get Sky Sports full stop - though it's not necessarily the best.
A subscription to the app, which lets you watch live games and events, is ridiculously cheap: £5.99 a month for the basic pack (including Sky Sports Action, Arena, Premier League, and News channels), or £10.99 a month to get all the specialist channels as well.
There are some serious limitations here, of course. For starters, you can only watch it on your smartphone or tablet - you can't even cast or AirPlay it to your telly - and only a select number of devices even support it.
On the other hand, if you're happy to only watch sports on a mobile or tablet, it's amazing value.
A Red Entertainment plan from Vodafone will even let you grab a year's subscription for free. That's something to bear in mind if you're in need of a new mobile deal.