Madasafish broadband review

julia kukiewicz
By Julia Kukiewicz

madasafish broadband

Madasafish: stupid name, good broadband? We find out by assessing prices, speeds and extras in our full review.

Madasafish - the only ISP to be named after an underwater denizen with issues - has been quietly ticking along in the broadband background for many, many years now.

The provider has long been owned and managed by Plusnet broadband and, earlier this year, appeared to indicate that it would soon stop operating as a separate brand altogether.

As we update this review, however, that hasn't happened and it even still appears to be possible to sign up as a new customer, though as Madasafish's broadband deals grow ever more ancient it's hard to see why you'd want to.

Madasafish broadband deals

Each has identical ADSL up to 6Mb speeds, the only difference is the download usage cap and, of course, the price. Here they are in brief:

5GB is the very lowest usage allowance and still offers a fair amount of download allowance. After all, 5GB should allow you to download around the equivalent of 100 CDs.

However, it's unlikely to be suitable for those who enjoy a daily sit down in front of BBC iPlayer or for homes that happen to be addicted to YouTube.

20GB or 50GB should be enough for moderate web users. However, check our guide to usage to see which activities are likely to drain an allowance.

All Madasafish broadband packages include a free static IP address, a free wireless router and no setup fees.

Line rental

With Madasafish line rental - which is significantly cheaper than BT's - the provider throws in free evening and weekend calls in the form of their Talk Free home phone package.

Their Talk Anytime plan is only £5 a month extra (BT's is £4.99).

Partnered with Plusnet

As we noted above, it is important to keep in mind that Madasafish is merged with Plusnet (who are in turn owned by BT broadband) and, in fact, Plusnet manage all their day to day operations. Madasafish continues to operate as an independent brand but it's more or less different in name only.

Plusnet are a pretty good provider themselves and offer faster speeds and unlimited downloads for less than Madasafish are charging.

Read more about Plusnet in our full review here.

Other fish in the sea

Madasafish were a great little ISP but they're really winding down now and there are other fish in the sea offering a lot more for less.

Madasafish prices have stayed stable while other deals have fluctuated: as a result, their broadband is now more expensive than the cheapest providers, although line rental is less for pay monthly customers.


13 April 2016
Bryan Knight

It seems Plusnet have reduced the performance of Madasafish to the point that it is no longer functioning.
The servers are dropping out before you even have time to complete a single sentence e-mail or check through to sent mail etc.
I have been contacting tech service for 2 weeks now and they admit there is a problem.
They tried to connect my old <a href=";cuid=2412393" rel="nofollow noopener"></a> madasafish onto the plusnet email system and that worked for about 10 minutes.
Lucky I have gmail to fall back on while they either sort this or until I just get bored and move on!

16 September 2015
Philip Pyke

I have a BT land line and pay line rental to BT. If I join PlusNet they charge &pound;16.99 a month line rental, so I'd be paying twice for the same line.

15 October 2014

It is an absolute joke that Madasafish have stopped allowing CGI or PHP scripts on their servers, thus making it very poor in my opinion. I will be transferring to another host.

1 October 2014
David Godfrey

As with Robert, I started last century with Globalnet and that has continued to be our email and website address. On the whole it has been OK, but the purchase of a new TV (and return home of a son) has triggered alarming bills. Unlike Plusnet Madasafish don't offer unlimited broadband. If Madasafish is absorbed then I guess there is no reason why we shouldn't keep Globalnet while changing to a better tariff, for now it seems to be a useful way of making big profits from long term customers.

9 May 2014
Robert Clay

I've been with MAAF since they took over Globalnet eons ago. Always found them good, and was completely taken aback this morning when checking their website from work for webmail to find as of the end of this month they are becoming (or at least flying under the flag) of Plusnet. What that will mean to me is not apparent at this time ... :-/

9 May 2014
Choose team

Yeah they've been owned by Plusnet for years now but it looks like they might be withdrawing the Madasafish brand - sad!

3 March 2014

We have been very pleased with Madasafish and love the name! MAAF was one of the very few providers who understood Macs and could sort stuff out easily for us. Bit confused by the downloading stuff though as it can be very pricey indeed. We would move to PlusNet but sadly that would mean changing all our names etc and not sure we want to go through all that. However we do want to move over to the new system and not sure MAAF will do this. PlusNet do. So we will have to see.

19 September 2013
Robert Avery

I have had excellent reliability and service from initially freenetname a little later MAAF (took over freenetname) since 1998 - however the service whilst solid is dated.

No unlimited download option, we always go over the 50Mb limit which can make it expensive at peak time, such as school holidays. The webmail is clunky and the 100Mb message limit ludicrously low by today's standards. I've taken this up a few times and the suggestion is to forward emails to Hotmail or Gmail, hardly a solution.

The biggest issue is download speeds. After an issue that was dealt with excellently by support staff where my speed went sub 1Mb it's back to the 4Mb I've consistently had over recent years, however, the Plusnet average in my area is 21Mb.

It's looking to be a struggle to stay with them with these limitations... I'm a little tied as I use my domain name for business although I'm sure there are ways to change that - just a faff!

9 October 2012
Bill Ward

My experiences of MAAF support are very different from the 'excellent customer service' that you refer to. This may be because they are good at dealing with a simple fault but appalling at dealing with any that can't be fixed with just 1 or 2 contacts. I've just had a fault ticket that had 17 different support staff and took more than 2 months to resolve. A couple of days after it was 'resolved' a new fault developed which, after a few days, was fixed principally because other people in the road had lost their phone lines. This fix lasted 3 days, MAAF then told me that a fault I knew nothing about had been fixed - this made absolutely no difference to the new problem so when I queried this I was told that another fault had now been found and that BT would fix it in 10 days or so.

This has been the worst but not the first example of very poor support that I've had from MAAF and the only reason for staying with them is that I haven't got round to dealing with the problems that will be caused when I lose my e-mail address.

The problem, at least in part, is that their is no continuity for any call that lasts for more than a few contacts. Each contact seems to be picked up by whomever is available and after a few of these they don't bother to read the entire history of the problem. There is apparently no monitoring by any more senior staff to pick up on problems that drag on for too long and nobody takes ownership of a problem - it's more a case of using the quickest standard response and getting rid of the customer as quickly as possible.

It even extends to MAAF sending me an e-mail after a problem was cleared which appeared to be asking me to provide 'feedback' on their service. Unfortunately the e-mail was blank - just the header - so I replied to it asking what was I supposed to do. There was no answer.