Virgin Media M250 Fibre Broadband

Last updated: 3 March 2024   By Julia Kukiewicz

Virgin Media's M250 fibre broadband deal offers average download speeds of 264Mbps.

M250 Fibre Broadband is now faster, but still offers highly competitive prices for an ultrafast plan.

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Router:

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M250 Fibre Broadband is Virgin Media's third fastest entry-level tier, replacing the previously titled M200 broadband after receiving a speed boost.

Customers can take Virgin Media M250 fibre broadband on its own for the cheapest price, or it can be bundled with Virgin TV and a home phone line.

However, the best value for money is arguably with the M250 Volt Fibre Broadband plan, which also includes the WiFi Max guarantee and a free mobile SIM with O2.

virgin media super speed
© Virgin Media

At a glance

Price £27
Setup cost Free (was £35)
Minimum term 18 months
Out of contract price £60 after 18 months
Annual price increase RPI + 3.9% from April 2025
Download speed 264Mbps
Upload speed 25Mbps
Usage allowance Unlimited
Router Hub 3 or Hub 4
WiFi guarantee 30Mbps for £8/mth
Parental controls Virgin Media Web Safe
Home phone Optional
Anytime calls £10/mth (inc. UK mobiles)
TV Optional: TV 360 or Stream
Pros Cons
Boosted from 213Mbps to 264Mbps download speeds Router provided can vary from Hub 4 or the older Hub 3
M250 Volt offers very good value for money Out of contract pricing can be expensive, so customers need to renew
Broadband-only plan is very cheap for 250Mbps+ speeds

Special offers

Package Broadband Monthly price Upfront price Contract term
M250 Fibre Broadband 264Mb average £29 Free 18 months
offer Offer: Reduced price: £29 per month + No setup fee (was £35)

Is M250 fibre broadband the right choice for me?

New and existing customers of Virgin's M200 broadband had their speed boosted from 213Mbps on average at peak times to 264Mbps at the start of November 2022, so this package is now faster overall.

Virgin Media's new M250 broadband is a mid-tier package, it offers value for money as an upgrade to M125, doubling the download speed for currently just 50p extra per month. Yet, with a smaller performance gain moving to M350, M250 offers better value for money.

M250 fibre broadband is best suited to:

  • Medium to large households, where two or more people are going online at the same time for gaming or streaming type activities
  • Setting up a home office, where a fast broadband connection is paramount
  • Creating and uploading content, including large photo and video files
  • Online gaming and streaming video content in HD or Ultra HD

Virgin Media suggest M250 should support larger households where ten or more devices are connecting at the same time, and it's certainly capable of streaming Ultra HD, and downloading large online game files.

M250 broadband can download a 1080p HD film in just over 3 minutes, and a 50GB online game file like PlayStation 5's FIFA 23 in under 30 minutes.

The best value option is M250 Volt Fibre Broadband with Weekend chatter, which bundles all the benefits of Volt, with a 6GB O2 mobile SIM plan, a home phone with inclusive calls to UK landlines at the weekends, and the WiFi Max guarantee worth £8 per month.

While the non-Volt M250 broadband only plan is the cheapest overall, adding Volt costs just £4.99 more per month, while Volt benefits are worth around £25 per month, so it's definitely worth considering.


What does M250 Fibre Broadband offer?

Virgin Media's M250 fibre broadband package has been available since it launched in 2015 as Vivid 200. At the time it was Virgin Media's fastest broadband speed.

The package has most recently seen a speed boost from M200 to M250, with customers now able to get average peak time download speeds of 264Mbps, up from 213Mbps.

Upload speeds were also boosted in November 2022, increasing from 20Mbps to 25Mbps.

M250 broadband comes with three main package choices:

Package Broadband Monthly price Upfront price Contract term
M250 Fibre Broadband 264Mb average £29 Free 18 months
offer Offer: Reduced price: £29 per month + No setup fee (was £35)
M250 Volt Fibre Broadband + Weekend chatter 264Mb average £33.99 Free 18 months
offer Offer: No setup fee (was £35) + O2 mobile SIM with 6GB data, unlimited minutes and texts (Ends 31/05/2024)
M250 Fibre Broadband + Weekend chatter 264Mb average £40 Free 18 months
offer Offer: No setup fee (was £35)

The cheapest way of getting M250 is by taking broadband without a phone line, with the home phone option costing considerably more, unless it's also taken with Volt.

M250 Volt Fibre broadband easily offers the best value for money however, costing just £4.99 more than the M250 broadband-only plan, but with all of the benefits of Volt, including a 6GB O2 mobile SIM plan with unlimited minutes, and a home phone line with free calls to UK landlines at the weekend.

Other Volt benefits include access to the whole home wireless network guarantee using up to three WiFi mesh boosters, double O2 mobile data, a free roaming bolt-on, and access to O2 Priority.

Lastly, M250 fibre broadband can be bundled with Virgin's TV services, either the new Stream TV package or the standard TV 360 option. We look at both in more detail below.


M250 Fibre Broadband and TV

Virgin Media M250 fibre broadband can be taken with either Virgin Stream TV or Virgin TV 360 services.

Here are the current Virgin broadband and TV 360 bundles with the M250 package:

Package TV Broadband Monthly price Upfront price Contract term
Bigger Combo bundle 190 362Mb average £40 Free 18 months
offer Offer: No setup fee (was £35)
Bigger Combo bundle + Sports HD 195 362Mb average £65 Free 18 months
offer Offer: £250 bill credit or a LG 43 inch TV + No setup fee (was £35) (Ends 27/05/2024)
Bigger Combo bundle + Movies 200 264Mb average £61 Free 18 months
offer Offer: £250 bill credit or a LG 43 inch TV + No setup fee (was £35) (Ends 27/05/2024)

The Bigger Combo Bundle includes M250 broadband bundled with Virgin's TV 360 platform, adding 190 TV channels along with a home phone line and free calls to UK landlines at the weekend.

The Bigger Combo Bundle is only £9 more per month than M250 broadband and phone, so offers good value for money considering the extra TV service included.

There are other options too, with customers able to take the Bigger Bundle + Sports HD, or the Bigger Bundle + Movies, where they can access even more premium Sky content.

Read more about the Bigger Bundle options here.

While all Virgin TV packages come with the latest Virgin TV 360 set-top box, the amount of content in each package varies and it's worth reading our full Virgin TV review to understand the differences.

Virgin Stream TV

Another option for M250 fibre broadband customers who want some TV content from Virgin on a more flexible basis is Virgin Stream.

Stream is a non-recordable set-top box that's provided on a contract-free basis. Customers are then able to add premium subscriptions on monthly rolling terms, including Sky Cinema, Sky Sports, and on-demand apps like Netflix and Prime Video.

Virgin Stream TV is only available to Virgin broadband customers and can be added during the checkout with Virgin M250 Fibre broadband deals.

Package TV Broadband Monthly price Upfront price Contract term
M250 Fibre Broadband + Stream 52 264Mb average £29 £35 18 months
offer Offer: Reduced price: £29 per month + Get 10% Stream credit back on every subscription you add to Stream

While the Stream box costs £35 upfront, there are no monthly subscription fees unless customers add premium packs or on-demand subscriptions on rolling monthly terms.

Two of the biggest selling points of Stream is that customers don't need an aerial to watch live Freeview channels, and all subscriptions paid via their Virgin bill get a 10% credit, so it's often one of the cheapest ways to watch Sky Sports or Sky Cinema.


M250 broadband vs M350 broadband

Virgin Media offers six different broadband speed options, so it's understandable customers may feel unsure which one is right for them.

M250 is the third fastest broadband package from Virgin, so it sits roughly in the middle of the pack, although it's considered one of the faster entry-level deals. Other options include M125, M350, M500 and Gig1.

In terms of pricing, this is how M250 looks side-by-side with M125 on the cheaper side, and M350 on the faster side.

Package Broadband Monthly price Upfront price Contract term
M125 Fibre Broadband 132Mb average £26 Free 18 months
offer Offer: Reduced price: £26 per month + No setup fee (was £35)
M250 Fibre Broadband 264Mb average £29 Free 18 months
offer Offer: Reduced price: £29 per month + No setup fee (was £35)
M350 Fibre Broadband 362Mb average £35 Free 18 months
offer Offer: Reduced price: £35 per month + No setup fee (was £35)

The pricing is usually a difference of £4 per month between each speed tier, yet current offers mean M250 is only 50p more than M125, and £7.50 cheaper than M350. While the boost in speeds from M125 to M250 is double, and the increase from M250 to M350 is now only around 37% faster.

It's worth bearing in mind the average download speed across the UK is currently around 69Mbps according to the latest research by Ofcom, so even M125 would be faster than most households currently receive.

Whether customers need to upgrade from M250 to M350 is likely to come down to how many people will be using the connection at the same time, as well as how many connected devices, like smart devices, are using the Internet in a home.

Where household devices exceed around ten, and when there is a real demand for multiple people to carry out bandwidth heavy activities at the same time, like online gaming and streaming in HD, customers may want to move up to M350. Otherwise, M250 is likely to be adequate for most homes.

Overall, M250 offers better value for money as an upgrade over M125, but larger and more demanding households may want to consider M350, or even M500 which is also currently on offer.

So, be aware, Virgin Media's pricing structure isn't static and tends to vary and favour certain packages from time to time, so it's always worth checking the latest pricing on our Virgin Media broadband deals page.


How does M250 compare to other providers?

Virgin Media's M250 package is fairly unique in terms of a speed range, as most rival options sit around the 200Mbps mark and so are somewhat slower. It's difficult therefore to find like-for-like comparisons on cost.

Package Broadband Monthly price Upfront price Contract term
M250 Fibre Broadband 264Mb average £29 Free 18 months
offer Offer: Reduced price: £29 per month + No setup fee (was £35)
Full Fibre 200 200Mb average £30 Free 24 months
offer Offer: £3 off for Vodafone pay monthly customers
Full Fibre 200 207Mb average £29.99 Free 18 months
offer Offer: Money off for 18 months
Full Fibre 220/30 220Mb average £39.95 £8.95 18 months
offer Offer: Loyalty Discount Club (worth £49.95)

Vodafone offer a full fibre broadband deal with 200Mbps average download speeds, but this currently costs £3 more per month than Virgin's faster deal, due to their low pricing.

Shell Energy Broadband also offer a Full Fibre 200 deal with 200Mbps average download speeds, although at the time of writing this is also priced just above M250 broadband-only.

Other equivalent speed plans include italk's Full Fibre 250, which costs £39.99 per month, and Direct Save Telecom's Full Fibre Max 220, which costs £39.95 per month.

Across the wider market, Virgin Media M250 is competitively priced, with deals from alternative providers like TalkTalk's Full Fibre 150 and BT's Full Fibre 100, offering slower speeds for more money per month.

Availability

One factor that may contribute to choosing between Virgin Media and another provider is whether their networks are available in your area.

Virgin Media currently passes more than 16 million properties in the UK, yet that's only 55% of homes. They are however actively expanding and aim to reach a further 7 million in the next three years. So, it's worth keeping an eye on our Virgin Media postcode checker.

If Virgin Media aren't yet available in your area, full fibre as a technology is being rolled out across the country via multiple companies including BT Openreach, but also independent smaller providers like Community Fibre in London and Hyperoptic.

The best way to check which broadband providers are available in your area is by entering your postcode on our broadband comparison page, which will return all of the packages available to you.

For more on the differences between Virgin broadband and their rivals, see our head-to-head guide to Sky or Virgin Media, this guide to BT vs Virgin Media, and this one on Hyperoptic vs Virgin.


How fast is Virgin M250 broadband?

In November 2022, Virgin M200 as it was previously named, was boosted by 50Mb, to the new M250 plan.

The speed boost was applied across the board for both new and existing customers already on M200 plans at no extra cost.

Virgin Media advertise average speeds for M250 that at least 50% of their customers actually receive during the busiest network times of 8pm to 10pm in the evening.

Average download speed between 8pm and 10pm Average upload speed between 8pm and 10pm
Virgin Media M250 264Mb 25Mb

M200 used to offer average peak time download speeds of 213Mbps, and 20Mbps upload speeds. So, the package is now approximately 50Mbps faster down, and 5Mbps faster up.

The most recent independent research into real world speeds experienced by customers and published by Ofcom in September 2023, was able to include this recent speed boost, so we can see real world figures for Virgin M250.

Average download speed between 8pm and 10pm Average download speed over 24 hours
Virgin Media 264Mb 267.20Mb 272.46Mb

However, even from this, we can see Virgin Media consistently deliver their advertised speeds both at peak times and over 24-hour periods.

Minimum guaranteed speed

Virgin Media are signatories of Ofcom's Code of Practice on Broadband Speeds, which means they commit to giving customers clear information on the speed of their service when they sign up, including a minimum guaranteed speed.

If a customer fails to experience the minimum guaranteed speed for three days in a row or more, and Virgin Media can't resolve the issue within 30 days of it being reported, the customer is free to exit their contract without penalty.

Overall, it's a commitment from broadband providers that they'll deliver what a customer has signed up to, and they won't lock customers into contracts where that's not happening.

Estimated download speed Minimum guaranteed speed
M250 Fibre Broadband 265 - 273Mbps 132Mbps

For M250, Virgin Media say the speed is likely to range between 265Mbps and 273Mbps. Ofcom research into speeds above, back up the fact most customers experience faster speeds than Virgin's given averages.

The minimum guaranteed speed for M250 is 132Mbps. That may sound low, but remember, it's a guaranteed minimum, so if you don't get that, you can leave the contract early.

Upload speeds

Upload speeds won't be noticed by most broadband users, but some activities use more upload bandwidth than others.

For example, video calling, online gaming, and uploading files to the cloud perhaps when working from home, or simply when backing up important files.

Virgin Media also boosted the upload speeds when M200 became M250, so they now offer 25Mbps average upload speeds at peak times.

Average upload speed between 8pm and 10pm Average upload speed over 24 hours
Virgin Media 264Mb 26.03Mb 26.12Mb

Looking at Ofcom's research again, we can be confident end users are experiencing the stated average speeds from Virgin.

However, that said, for people who upload speeds are really important, a full fibre provider that offers symmetrical upload speeds like Hyperoptic or Community Fibre, might be worth considering instead.

Reliability

We cover the reliability of Virgin Media broadband in-depth in our full review of their service, however we can look at some of the metrics that considered the M200 package specifically.

Virgin 264Mb BT 145Mb FTTP
Average web page loading speed (peak time) 405.99 88.04
Latency (peak time) 15.46 7.38
Latency under load 36.78 27.19
Daily disconnections (30 seconds or more) 0.10 0.11
Jitter downstream (peak time) 0.24 0.06

In comparison to BT's fibre to the premises (FTTP) 145Mb plan, Virgin Media didn't perform as well on any of the reliability metrics Ofcom looked at.

The figures in the table above (excluding disconnections) are measured in milliseconds, so the difference is unlikely to be noticeable for most users, however, the underlying performance does highlight a difference in the networks.

The results were also similar across all of the different Virgin Media speeds, so Ofcom's research found BT Openreach's full fibre service is more reliable than Virgin Media.

One of the issues facing Virgin's network is the fact that it mostly uses coaxial cable to connect homes to their fibre network, rather than full fibre all the way into a customer's home.

Virgin Media are in the process of upgrading their network to full fibre, but this isn't due to be completed until 2028. However, as it is already underway we may see improved reliability on M250 and other Virgin broadband packages in the future.


Virgin broadband router

Virgin Media provide either the Hub 3 or the newer Hub 4 with M250 Fibre Broadband.

Both branded routers are dual band and support up to the WiFi 5 protocol, or 802.11ac. They have four 1Gb ports for wired connections and 5 antennae for strong wireless signal around the home.

Hub 4 Hub 3
WiFi protocol 5 (802.11ac) 5 (802.11ac)
WiFi band Dual band Dual band
2.4Ghz band 3x3 11/b/g/n 2x2 11/b/g/n
5Ghz band 4x4 11ac 3x3 11ac
Ethernet 4 x 1Gb 4 x 1Gb
Antennae 4 4
Security WPA2 WPA2

Neither of these routers are the latest model Virgin offers, which they're currently reserving for customers on their Gig1 package. Also, we've heard a fair number of Virgin Media customers put the Hub into modem-only mode and use their own router for improved wireless performance.

WiFi guarantee

However, both Hub 3 and Hub 4 routers support Intelligent Mesh, and work with Virgin Media's WiFi guarantee, WiFi Max, that promises minimum download speeds of 30Mbps in every room in a customer's home or a £100 bill credit.

WiFi Max is free for Volt customers, or non-Volt customers can add the guarantee for £8 per month. It offers the provision of up to three mesh boosters, or WiFi Pods, that when plugged into an electrical socket can seamlessly boost the main wireless network around a home.

WiFi Max has just a 30-day rolling contract, so even if customers pay for it as an add-on, it's easily cancelled if they find it doesn't work as expected or it's no longer needed.

Virgin Connect app

Virgin Media customers, including those who take M250 broadband, get access to the Virgin Connect app, which is designed to help households manage their wireless signal around the home.

Virgin Connect app allows customers to:

  • Test the performance of their home wi-fi
  • Pause the wi-fi signal to specific devices
  • Resolve connection problems
  • Connect to Virgin Media wi-fi hotspots

Connect is a good wi-fi management app that makes it easier for households (and, in particular, families) to manage their home internet connections.

It works in conjunction with the WiFi Max guarantee too, allowing Virgin engineers to help determine whether or not the wireless guarantee is indeed working in every room.


Verdict: Is Virgin M250 broadband any good?

M250 broadband from Virgin Media is a great mid-tier package for households who want decent speeds and capacity, without breaking the bank.

The current special offer makes this package very good value for money as one of Virgin's cheapest broadband-only plans, and only 50p more than M125.

Since its recent upgrade from 213Mbps average speeds, to 264Mbps, it also offers even more value for money, bringing it closer in comparison to Openreach's full fibre 300 deals.

For those needing a home phone line, M250 Volt Fibre Broadband + Weekend chatter plan, also offers very good value for money and bundles M250 with a home phone line, Volt benefits and an O2 mobile SIM plan.

For households who want to consider trying Virgin TV, Stream is an excellent smart box that gives access to a range of premium packs and on-demand apps on a contract-free basis.

Overall, Virgin M250 is a solid package choice, it offers definitely value for money over downgrading to M125, and offers enough capacity for 10 or more devices to connect to the Internet at the same time.

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