Is John Lewis Broadband any good?

John Lewis isn’t just a place to buy lamps any more. The fancy department store also offers basic, straightforward broadband and home phone packages at prices that aren’t half bad.

Formerly known as Greenbee and Waitrose broadband, this provider gives you simple options that won’t send your head in a spin, but it does throw a couple of extras thrown in to sweeten the deal.

What can I get from John Lewis Broadband?

John Lewis offers broadband and home phone with a few options to pick and choose from.

Your broadband options are:

All include unlimited downloads, so you never have to worry about hitting a usage cap, and a free email address. You’ll also get BullGuard - basic PC security that gives your computer a firewall, spam filter, antivirus software, and so on.

Bear in mind that John Lewis Broadband manages web traffic. That means you’ll always have a stable connection, and things like VoIP and gaming are prioritised, but you may see slower speeds for certain tasks at peak times. Read more about web traffic management.

Once you’ve picked your broadband, choose a call plan to go with it:

  • Evening and Weekend - the standard line rental choice included in a John Lewis package, which gives you inclusive calls to UK landlines at evenings and weekends
  • Anytime - includes anytime calls to UK landlines
  • Anytime and International - includes anytime UK calls, along with 300 monthly minutes to 35 international destinations
  • Mobile bolt-on - add this to an Anytime or Anytime and International package, and you’ll get inclusive anytime calls to mobile numbers too

‘Evening’ counts as 7pm-7am, and all those inclusive calls can only last 60 minutes - so remember so hang up when you reach the 59 minute mark and call back again.

International gives you calls to 35 top destinations worldwide, which includes the likes of Australia, Ireland, France, the USA, and, for some reason, Christmas Island.

All packages include some basic calling features (voicemail, caller display, and 1471) with the option to add more for an extra fee - including anonymous call reject, call waiting, call divert, and so on. You can even pick a few to bundle together and save a bit of dosh.

What’s good about John Lewis Broadband?

  • Straightforward packages that won’t confuse you with too many options
  • Line rental is excellent value, and cheaper than most other home phone providers
  • Wide availability
  • Superfast fibre optic broadband is available
  • Unlimited downloads included as standard
  • Evening and weekend calls included as standard too
  • Basic security included, in the form of BullGuard for your PC
  • Good reputation for customer service

What’s bad about John Lewis Broadband?

  • Choices are limited compared with some providers
  • Not the fastest broadband around - Virgin Media and Hyperoptic offer faster speeds, for example
  • Only available as a broadband and phone combo - can’t get either of them just on their own
  • Manages web traffic, so your speeds may slow for some tasks
  • Not quite as cheap as some providers - TalkTalk or Plusnet, for instance, may offer better value
  • Missing a lot of inclusives that other providers offer, such as Wi-Fi hotspot access and cloud storage

Switching to John Lewis Broadband

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Frequently Asked Questions

  1. How do I switch broadband provider?

    The process of changing your broadband provider is actually pretty straightforward. First, you put your postcode into our impartial comparison tool. We’ll display the broadband, phone and TV deals available where you live, and then you can use our search filters to narrow down the options and find the perfect package for your household. Finally, you sign up with your new provider online. They’ll contact your existing provider and take care of everything else for you (unless you're switching to or from Virgin Media).

    The actual switch should be virtually seamless, and in the vast majority of cases it is. Your new broadband provider will send you all the stuff you need to get set up, like a new wireless router and/or TV set-top box.

  2. Which broadband provider’s the best?
    There’s no straightforward answer to this one, as the broadband provider that’s best for you might not be the right choice for everyone. It depends on your budget, what’s available where you live, and how much you want from your broadband package. For example, if you’re bundling with TV, Sky has the biggest range of channels overall and because it’s delivered by satellite you can get Sky TV just about anywhere. However, Sky is one of the more expensive broadband providers, so it isn’t right for everyone’s budget. When you’re thinking of switching, take the time to weigh up the costs and benefits of all the packages available.
  3. Why can’t I get fibre optic broadband?
    Superfast fibre optic broadband is slowly making its way across the UK as part of a nationwide roll-out part sponsored by the government. Currently, around 80% of the country has access. You can use our postcode checker to see whether fibre optic broadband’s reached your area yet. That's the most likely reason why it's not available to you, but it could also be due to living in a rural area, in an awkwardly-placed property, or just too far away from a street cabinet.
  4. How long does it take to switch broadband?
    When you sign up to a new provider, they’ll contact your existing one and request a transfer of your service. The only exception is when you're switching to or from Virgin Media, in which case you'll have to call and cancel. While switching times vary depending on the type of package, it shouldn’t usually take more than 10 working days. It can take longer if you don’t currently have a phone line, as an engineer will need to come out and install one for you.