HOUSEHOLDS with a slow broadband connection can get up to £4,500 in free cash to install faster internet.
As many of us now work from home at points during the week, a steady internet connection is pretty important.
But many in rural areas often find their connection cuts out or becomes very slow.
The Gigabit Broadband Scheme provides vouchers to houses in these areas across the UK.
It launched in 2018 to help people struggling with slow internet speeds.
More than 114,000 vouchers worth more than £225million have been issued to tackle the problem.
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Those who received them can put them towards paying for the installation of a gigabit-capable connection – the fastest speed available.
Now, new vouchers worth more than double the original amount are available for those in rural areas across the UK.
Claimants could originally get up to £1,500 but that was increased to £4,500 at the start of this year.
Eligible households can apply for the cash which will help cover the cost of a gigabit-capable connection.
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How do I apply for the Gigabit Broadband Voucher Scheme?
The vouchers will be available to homes and businesses in rural locations where existing broadband speeds are below 100Mbps and where there are no plans to improve the network either privately or by the government.
To qualify, you also need to be part of a group project of two or more homes and/or businesses who will combine their vouchers, so you cannot do it just for your own home.
You'll need to check that your postcode falls under the eligible areas.
You'll also need to fall under one of the following:
- Existing broadband speeds are less than 100Mbps
- A gigabit capable network isn’t likely to be built to that area commercially in the near future
- There is no government-funded contract planned or in place to improve the network already
There is an online postcode checker available on the Gigabit Broadband Voucher Scheme website.
The vouchers will only be available through a supplier that is registered with the scheme, which you can find out once it goes live.
The postcode search will list suppliers that are active in your area.
Your chosen supplier will be able to advise and support your eligibility and guide you through the process.
Once you find a registered supplier, you can apply through them and they will request a voucher.
If approved, your supplier will start working on the connection and once completed the government will check if the service is live and functioning.
Many of us work from home during the week, especially since the pandemic.
And as the cost of living rises, many of us will be looking for extra support in a bid to cut costs.
On top of that, broadband providers announced a raft of price hikes for people across the country.
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