Virgin Media Gig1 Fibre Broadband

Last updated: 1 March 2024   By Dr Lucy Brown, Editor

Gig1 is one of the UK's fastest widely available broadband plans, with average download speeds of 1,130Mb per second.

Competitive pricing and one of the fastest download speeds in the UK, makes Virgin's Gig1 broadband plan hard to beat.

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Virgin Media Gig1 fibre broadband is the provider's fastest tier and offers average download speeds of 1.13Gb per second at peak times.

Upload speeds have recently been boosted from 52Mb to 104Mb per second on average, putting it in line with full fibre deals on the Openreach network.

Gig1 is available across Virgin Media's entire network of over 16 million premises, and can be taken on its own or bundled with calls and TV.

virgin media hub 5

At a glance

Price £39
Setup cost Free (usually £35)
Minimum term 18 months
Out of contract price £78 after 18 months
Annual price increase RPI + 3.9% from April 2025
Download speed 1130Mbps
Upload speed 104Mbps
Usage allowance Unlimited
Router Hub 5
WiFi guarantee 30Mbps in every room
Parental controls Virgin Media Web Safe
Home phone Optional
Anytime calls £10/mth (inc. UK mobiles)
TV Optional: TV 360 or Stream
Pros Cons
Competitively priced for new customers Slower latency rates than full fibre
One of the fastest widely available broadband speeds Upload speeds aren't symmetrical and limited to just 104Mbps
Free 30Mbps WiFi guarantee High out of contract pricing means customers must recontract
Includes WiFi 6 enabled router

Special offers

Package Broadband Monthly price Upfront price Contract term
Gig1 Fibre Broadband 1.13Gb average £41 Free 18 months
offer Offer: Reduced price: £41 per month + No setup fee (was £35)

Who is Virgin Media Gig1 best suited for?

Virgin Media Gig1 fibre broadband is a gigabit-capable connection that's ideal for larger households, or homes with multiple occupants who all want to get online at the same time to carry out different activities.

It's ideal for supporting multi-user environments where people love to:

  • Game online
  • Stream HD and Ultra HD quality TV and films
  • Video calling in HD and UHD
  • Download large files very quickly, such as Xbox or PS5 games, or 4K films
  • Working from home

Gig1 is currently on offer for just £39 per month, making it a great deal right now as one of the cheapest gigabit deals in the market.

It's also only £6 per month more expensive than the next package down, M500, so customers looking at that plan may also want to consider switching up to Gig1.

Customers who take Gig1 get Virgin Media's latest WiFi 6 enabled router, the Hub 5, and a free whole home WiFi guarantee called WiFi Max, which is worth £8 per month. WiFi Max works with the Hub 5 to promise customers download speeds over wireless of at least 30Mbps in every room.

Volt bundles from Virgin Media usually offer the best value for money, and Gig1 Volt bundles a home phone line, UK weekend calls and a 6GB O2 SIM for £10.99 extra per month.

Overall, Virgin Media's Gig1 broadband is likely to satisfy even the most demanding Internet users.


What does Gig1 broadband offer?

Virgin Media Gig1 offers average download speeds of 1,130Mb per second, and is the provider's fastest broadband plan.

Here is the latest pricing:

Package Broadband Monthly price Upfront price Contract term
Gig1 Fibre Broadband 1.13Gb average £41 Free 18 months
offer Offer: Reduced price: £41 per month + No setup fee (was £35)
Gig1 Volt Fibre Broadband + Weekend chatter 1.13Gb average £51.99 Free 18 months
offer Offer: No setup fee (was £35) + O2 mobile SIM with 6GB data, unlimited minutes and texts
Gig1 Fibre Broadband + Weekend chatter 1.13Gb average £58 Free 18 months
offer Offer: No setup fee (was £35)

Virgin Media Gig1 is available as a standalone broadband-only package, as well as bundled with a home phone, with Volt benefits, or with Virgin Media TV, which we look at below.

At the time of writing, Gig1 is cheapest for new customers taking the plan on a broadband-only basis, with a home phone line costing an extra £19 per month. However, it's also possible to get Gig1 with a home phone line in the Volt bundle, which is cheaper at just £10.99 more per month than the broadband-only option.

Anyone with an O2 mobile plan at home already should consider Volt as it doubles data on all household O2 plans as well as including a free 6GB SIM. Read more about Volt benefits.

Gig1 first launched in October 2019, and is now available nationwide across the entire Virgin Media network, since they completed their network upgrade at the end of 2021.

As of May 2023, new and existing Gig1 customers will also see a speed boost to uploads from 52Mb to 104Mb per second.

Gig1 + calls

While Gig1 broadband can be bundled with a digital voice line and free UK weekend calls, it's currently somewhat cost prohibitive to do so.

Gig1 broadband + phone costs £19 more per month than the broadband-only package. That's basically the same as Virgin's standard price for line rental, although it has been subsidised to attract customers to the Gig1 Volt bundle.

Customers who take line rental, can also choose to add a call plan from the following options:

Call plan Includes Monthly price
Weekend & evening chatter Calls to UK landlines and UK mobiles 7pm to 7am during the week and all weekend £5
Anytime chatter Calls to UK landlines and UK mobiles at any time £10
International anytime chatter Calls to UK landlines and UK mobiles at any time, plus calls to 50 destinations worldwide £15

Those who use their home phone regularly are likely to save money with an inclusive call plan, compared to paying for calls on a pay as you go basis. Out of allowance calls are currently charged at 24 pence per minute, plus a 24 pence connection charge.


Gig1 broadband + TV

Customers who take Gig1 fibre broadband can also bundle Virgin Media TV, which will often work out cheaper than taking the services separately.

It's possible to choose from the following bundles:

Package TV Broadband Monthly price Upfront price Contract term
Gig1 Fibre Broadband + Stream 52 1.13Gb average £41 £35 18 months
offer Offer: Reduced price: £41 per month + Get 10% Stream credit back on every subscription you add to Stream

Gig1 customers who want a cheaper TV option, can look to Virgin Media's new Stream service, which costs just £35 upfront and has no monthly fee, other than for channel packs customers choose to add.

For example, it's possible to add packs including Essential Entertainment, Sky Sports HD (& UHD), TNT Sports, Disney+, Sky Cinema HD, and more recently, Paramount+ and Apple TV+.

Customers pay on a monthly rolling contract basis and get a 10% bill credit added for any subscriptions that aren't already discounted.


How does Virgin Media Gig1 compare?

Over 78% of homes now have access to gigabit broadband as of end-2023, and an increasing number of homes can choose from more than one full fibre network.

However, Gig1 fibre broadband currently has the widest availability, and so customers may well find themselves considering Virgin Media for gigabit speeds.

Here's how the plan compares on price:

Package Broadband Monthly price Upfront price Contract term
Gig1 Fibre Broadband 1.13Gb average £41 Free 18 months
offer Offer: Reduced price: £41 per month + No setup fee (was £35)
Gigafast Broadband 900Mb average £41 £5 18 months
offer Offer: WiFi Max just £3/mth + (£5 refundable setup fee for new customers if applicable)
Full Fibre 910 + Super WiFi 6 910Mb average £46 Free 24 months
offer Offer: Power Hub with WiFi 6 + Super WiFi 6 Booster + Automatic 4G Broadband Back-Up + £3 off for Vodafone pay monthly customers + Up to £100 of your leaving fees covered when switching to Vodafone Broadband
Full Fibre 900 944Mb average £49 Free 18 months
offer Offer: Free setup and P&P

While gigabit broadband is becoming more competitive, few gigabit deals are cheaper than Virgin Media's Gig1, although Vodafone and Sky have similarly priced deals.

One thing to mention with Vodafone however, is their cheaper standard plan comes with a WiFi 5 router and no whole home WiFi guarantee, while Pro II is more comparable to the services offered with Virgin Media Gig1, but costs £10 extra per month.

Sky also offer a competitive gigabit deal with their Gigafast package, although customers will have to pay extra for the WiFi Max add-on which includes a WiFi 6 router and mesh boosters, like Gig1 does.

Other providers including TalkTalk and Plusnet, also offer competitive gigabit-capable deals, with TalkTalk Full Fibre 900 priced at £49 per month, while Plusnet's gigabit plan is currently priced at £50.99. BT's Full Fibre 900 plan is also more expensive at £57.99 per month.

For these prices, only Sky and Vodafone include a phone line, with all others opting to provide data-only lines as standard. Although as with Virgin Media, BT customers can take a home phone optionally, whereas Plusnet and TalkTalk don't even provide the option.

Virgin Media has the fastest average download speed compared to other gigabit plans, and they've also recently boosted the average upload speed to be more in line with rival options at 104Mb per second.

There are other reasons customers may choose Gig1 from Virgin over an alternative provider as well, including the option to bundle Stream TV, as well as the free WiFi guarantee of 30Mbps download speeds in every room, and the Hub 5 router which supports the latest WiFi 6 protocol.

That said, competing providers, like Plusnet and Sky, offer better customer service and arguably a more reliable connection with full fibre to the premises.

Overall however, it's likely availability will be the biggest deciding factor, but it's easy to see, Gig1 is competitively priced amongst its rivals.

Read more about how Virgin Media compares with Sky, against Hyperoptic, and next to Community Fibre in these head-to-head guides.


How fast is Virgin Media Gig1 broadband?

Virgin Media Gig1 broadband offers average download speeds of 1130Mb per second at peak times, and recently boosted average upload speeds of 104Mb per second.

Advertised average speeds need to be received by at least 50% of a provider's customer base during the peak hours of 8pm - 10pm in the evening.

This means Gig1 is 186Mbps faster on average than the UK's second fastest broadband plan, which is offered by TalkTalk's Full Fibre 900 connection with 944Mbps average speeds.

Real world speed tests

Ofcom's most recent research into broadband speeds, published in September 2023, included Virgin Media's Gig1 package for just the second time.

They had an independent panel base of 100 customers for the Gig1 plan, and reported on download speeds and upload speeds, as well as on reliability metrics like disconnections, latency and jitter.

Average download speed between 8pm and 10pm Average download speed over 24 hours
Virgin Gig1 1115.38 1137.08
BT Full Fibre 900 919.10 925.69

Ofcom reported Virgin Media's Gig1 package delivered real world speeds in-line with their advertised 1.13Gbps, although the speed did drop marginally during peak times.

In comparison to BT's Full Fibre 900 plan, Virgin Media Gig1 is delivering speeds almost 100Mbps faster in these real world tests.

Upload speeds

Gig1 upload speeds were 52Mb per second on average up until the end of May 2023. They've now been doubled to 104Mb for both new and existing customers free of charge.

Ofcom's speed research was undertaken when the average upload speed was 52Mb, so we can expect real world speeds to now be faster.

Average upload speed between 8pm and 10pm Average upload speed over 24 hours
Virgin Gig1 51.98 52.20
BT Full Fibre 900 109.60 109.97

However, despite this boost, Virgin Media uploads are still noticeably slower than those of symmetrical broadband connections offered by networks such as Community Fibre and Hyperoptic, where uploads are as fast as downloads.

BT Openreach resellers offer asymmetrical upload speeds like Virgin Media, but are slightly faster at around 110Mb per second on average.

Virgin Media are in the process of upgrading their entire network to full fibre, with symmetrical speeds offered by using XGS-PON technology, however, while some areas are now going live, this isn't due to be completed until 2028.

Speed guarantees

Virgin Media are committed to Ofcom's Code of Practice on Broadband Speeds, which means they'll give customers a minimum speed guarantee when they sign up, and if they fail to deliver this, the customer is allowed to leave their contract penalty free.

Virgin Media provide a minimum speed guarantee of 565Mb per second on their Gig1 package.

Estimated download speed Minimum guaranteed speed
Virgin Media Gig1 1076 - 1139Mbps 565Mbps

Gig1 customers should receive download speeds of 1.13Gb on average at peak times, however if a customer's broadband speed does fall below the minimum guaranteed speed for three consecutive days or more, and Virgin Media are unable to resolve the issue within 30 days of reporting the problem, then they should be able to exit their contract.

Virgin Media Gig1 customers also benefit from the provider's WiFi Max guarantee added to their service for free. WiFi Max promises minimum speeds of 30Mb per second in every room in a customer's home or a £100 bill credit.

It's one of the best WiFi guarantees available on the market, and Gig1 customers get it for free.

Reliability

Virgin Media is one of top three providers for reliability, primarily due to their low fault records and fast fault resolution times.

However, looking at other reliability metrics, such as latency, jitter, and daily disconnections, Virgin Media's network doesn't perform as well as Openreach fibre to the premises connections.

Latency (milliseconds) Jitter (milliseconds) Daily disconnections (30 seconds+)
Virgin Gig1 15.80 0.33 0.08
BT FTTP 900Mb 6.93 0.03 0.10

The slower response times of Virgin Media's network is largely due to their use of coaxial cable to connect the last mile to a customer's home. However, as mentioned, they're also investing £2 billion a year into upgrading their entire network to XGS-PON and full fibre to the premises by 2028, which will bring them in line with their competition.

Read more about how Virgin Media broadband performs in our full review.


Hub 5 router

Virgin Media Gig1 broadband comes with the provider's latest Hub 5 router.

The Hub 5 was first released in late 2021 to existing customers, and has become available more widely on the Gig1 plan throughout 2022. However, it's currently still only available with Gig1 broadband, with customers on other plans getting either the Hub 3 or Hub 4.

Virgin Media's Hub 5 router uses the latest WiFi 6 protocol, or 802.11ax standard. It also supports intelligent mesh technology so the wireless network can easily be extended using WiFi boosters.

It's one of the best routers provided by broadband companies with their packages, and offers dual band WiFi channels with three 1Gb Ethernet ports, and one 2.5Gb Ethernet port.

Here are the specifications of the Hub 5 router:

Virgin Media Hub 5
WiFi protocol 6 (802.11ax)
WiFi band Dual band
2.4Ghz band 3x3 11/b/g/n
5Ghz band 4x4 11ax
Ethernet 1 x 2.5Gb, 3 x 1Gb
Antennae 5
Security WPA3

Overall, the Hub 5 is much more powerful than both the Hub 3 and Hub 4 which existing Virgin Media customers may be used to. In addition, it beats many of the routers provided by other broadband companies.

Virgin Media WiFi Max

Gig1 broadband comes with Virgin Media's WiFi Max guarantee for free. It's worth £8 per month, and offers customers up to three WiFi Pods, or boosters, to help extend their wireless network seamlessly around their home.

The WiFi Max guarantee promises customers receive at least 30Mbps download speeds in every room in their home, or they'll give them a £100 bill credit.

Customers can request up to three WiFi Pods to help alleviate any weak signal areas, which simply plug into a power socket and extend the same main network.


Where is Gig1 available?

Virgin Media started rolling 1Gb broadband out across their network in 2019, but it took them until the end of 2021 to finish the network upgrade.

Gig1 is now available to all homes across the entire Virgin Media network of over 16.1 million premises, roughly 55% of homes.

Project Lightning is also fast adding properties to their network, and Virgin Media say they'll have added another 7 million homes by the end of 2026.

Find out if you can get Virgin Gig1 in your area with our Virgin Media postcode checker.


Verdict: Is Virgin Media Gig1 any good?

Most people who've experienced gigafast broadband will tell you it's good, and Virgin Media Gig1 is no different.

It's best suited to larger homes or where multiple occupants want to get online at the same time without being slowed down by someone else's usage.

We also now know from independent research carried out by Ofcom, that Virgin Media Gig1 customers are receiving those headline speeds at peak times.

The best features of Virgin Media Gig1 include:

  • It's one of the cheapest gigabit broadband deals in the UK
  • The Hub 5 router supports the latest WiFi 6 protocol
  • Gig1 customers get a whole home WiFi guarantee, which promises minimum download speeds of 30Mbps in every room or a £100 bill credit
  • The average download speed of 1.13Gbps at peak times is the fastest widely available speed in the UK

However, there are some downsides to Gig1 broadband, which include:

  • Latency rates are slow in comparison to the Openreach FTTP network, which might bother some gamers. Virgin's fibre network upgrade will no doubt seek to resolve these issues in the longer term.
  • Virgin Media don't have the best track record for customer service, especially compared to customer service heroes like Sky.

Overall, for people living in Virgin Media enabled areas with large households or lots of occupants, Gig1 fibre broadband is definitely a good choice, however the best value for money may be found when it's bundled with Volt and Stream for those who also want a premium TV service.

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