Frontier Internet Review

Frontier is your go-to DSL internet provider if cable or fiber isn’t available where you live.

Frontier

Price: $49.99–$149.99/mo.*✝#‡§||
Fiber speeds: 500–2,000 Mbps
Data cap: No cap
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Provider star ratings are based on user reviews and our independent customer satisfaction survey.

Our Frontier internet review

Frontier’s DSL internet has you covered in terms of availability if you live in a rural area without cable or fiber internet access. But if you can get Frontier’s fiber, go with that instead. You can get a serious boost in speed for the same price you pay for DSL or cable internet.

 Pros

  • Affordable DSL plan
  • Availability in rural areas

 Cons

  • Added fees
  • Limited fiber availability

Are you a current Frontier customer wanting to submit a review? Leave your feedback on Frontier’s customer review page and see what other customers say.

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Compare Frontier internet plans and pricing

PackagePriceSpeedTypeView on Frontier site
Frontier Internet$49.99/mo. w/Auto Pay & Paperless Bill*N/ADSLShop Plans
Frontier Fiber Internet 500$49.99/mo. w/Auto Pay & Paperless BillUp to 500 MbpsFiberShop Plans
Frontier Fiber Gig$74.99/mo. w/Auto Pay & Paperless Bill#Up to 940 MbpsFiberShop Plans
Frontier Fiber 2 Gig$149.99/mo. w/Auto Pay & Paperless BillUp to 2,000 MbpsFiberShop Plans

Frontier speeds: What’s best for you?

You don’t need a lot of speed to stream video, stream music, or play games online. But all that streaming can add up when multiple people download all that data simultaneously. The 500 Mbps plan is great for homes with around four people; it gives you enough room to stream, surf, and download game updates without disrupting everyone’s day. Speeds over 500 Mbps are ideal for running a business from home and livestreaming.

Use our How Much Speed Do I Need? tool to see your household’s ideal internet speed before investing in a high-speed Frontier plan.

Frontier data caps

Frontier does not enforce data caps, so no worries there.

Is Frontier internet available where you live?

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Our favorite plan:

The Frontier Fiber Internet 500 plan is cheap and offers plenty of speed for a family of four. But it requires a one-year contract, and Frontier guarantees the price for 12 months only (though you may not see a post-promotion price hike).

Frontier provides DSL internet in rural areas, but it expects to reach 10 million homes with fiber internet by the end of 2025. Get Frontier’s fiber if you can—it’s more reliable than cable or DSL and has symmetrical speeds. The 500 Mbps plan is an excellent deal compared to Spectrum’s 500 Mbps offered at the same price, which doesn’t have symmetrical speeds.

Even if Frontier DSL internet serves your area, it still might be unavailable to you. An issue with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) prohibits Frontier from signing up new customers if a high number of users share the same networking infrastructure in a service area.6 These users clog up the network and cause slower-than-advertised speeds.

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Frontier ongoing deals and promotions + bundles

Get a $200 Visa Reward Card, a free Eero Wi-Fi router and extender, an activation fee waiver, and a 3-year price guarantee on service when you sign up for a qualifying internet plan.

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Frontier internet fees

Cost
Equipment Fee
  • No charge for DSL modem or wireless gateway
Installation Fee
  • Free pro install*
Other Fees
  • $85.00 DSL activation fee
  • $10.00 disconnect fee
  • $9.99 equipment fee for extra devices
  • $5.00/mo. no AutoPay fee
  • $2.99/mo. paper bill fee
  • $6.99/mo. internet infrastructure surcharge
  • $1.50 pay-in-person fee
  • Up to $10.00 pay by phone convenience fee

Frontier currently doesn’t charge an activation fee for fiber, and if you order service online, Frontier waives the professional install fee too. Frontier’s paper bill fee is new to the list, so be sure to get your bill digitally if you want to save $36 each year. Also, try to avoid paying your bill through an authorized agent—human interaction requires an added fee.

Frontier internet installation, equipment, and contracts

Frontier normally charges $74 for professional installation, but it’s waiving that fee if you order service online. Frontier does not offer a self-install option.

Frontier equipment

If you get fiber, Frontier may use existing cable TV lines along with a compatible gateway and an adapter. You’ll receive the Amazon Eero 6 mesh networking kit if you get the Fiber 500 or Fiber Gig plan or a Wi-Fi 6E-capable Sagemcom system if you get the Fiber 2 Gig plan.

Frontier internet contracts

Frontier does not require a contract for its DSL service, but you must sign a one-year contract with its fiber service.

Frontier internet customer ratings

Overall RatingReliability RatingCustomer Service RatingSpeed RatingPrice Rating
Frontier customer satisfaction rating3.983.503.833.733.77
Average rating*3.8/53.4/53.9/53.8/53.7/5

Frontier didn’t have enough respondents to rank on our 2021 customer satisfaction survey, so we listed the 2020 customer satisfaction scores instead. Frontier’s highest rank during that year was for app satisfaction, landing sixth of 15 internet providers. It ranked ninth out of 15 in overall customer satisfaction, falling behind rivals Xfinity, Spectrum, CenturyLink, and several others.

See what other Frontier customers are saying

Tell us about your experiences with Frontier. Fill out our Customer Review form to let future customers know what to expect. Plus, you can read what other customers have to say.

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Frontier vs. the competition

SpeedPriceCustomer rating*Order online
Frontier Up to 500–2,000 Mbps$49.99–$149.99/mo.†‡§||N/AView Plans
Spectrum Up to 200–1,000 Mbps (wireless speeds may vary)$49.99–$89.99/mo. for 12 mos.#3.6View Plans
Xfinity Up to 50–3,000 Mbps$19.99–$299.95/mo.**3.5View Plans
Optimum Up to 300–5,000 Mbps$30.00–$165.00/mo.††||||3.6View Plans
CenturyLink Up to 100–940 Mbps$50.00–$65.00/mo.‡‡§§3.5View Plans

 

For the most part, Frontier DSL competes with Xfinity, Spectrum, and Optimum cable internet. Frontier has four million fiber connections as of May 2022, so the chances of finding Frontier’s fiber-to-the-home service are slim for now. Fiber internet is just scarce in general, so DSL and cable internet may be your only landline options.

If we compare gigabit plans, CenturyLink has the lowest starting price of the bunch. Xfinity offers the most bang for your buck with its Gigabit Xtra plan at $70 per month for up to 1,200 Mbps.

But keep possible price hikes in mind. Optimum’s plan is cheaper than Spectrum’s at first but costs $25 more once the promotional period ends. Meanwhile, Frontier idles at a flat $74.99 per month for at least three years.

Read our full reviews of Frontier vs. its main internet competitors

Is Frontier internet right for you?

Frontier is your go-to, contract-free DSL internet provider in rural areas. It mainly competes with CenturyLink in this space and serves as an alternative if cable internet from Spectrum, Xfinity, or Optimum doesn’t reach your home. The price is on par with other DSL providers—even slightly cheaper than AT&T’s DSL service.

Frontier’s fiber is a different story. The prices are great and don’t automatically increase after the promotional period ends, but you must sign a one-year contract. It’s hard to find right now, but Frontier promises better availability soon as it swaps out telephone lines with fiber connections. So get fiber if you can, especially if you crave Frontier’s fast 2,000 Mbps speeds.

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FAQ about Frontier

What is Frontier Communications?

Frontier is mostly a DSL internet provider that began as the Citizens Utilities telephone company in the 1930s. Frontier acquired Verizon’s landline assets in 2009, including DSL lines and some FiOS fiber. Since then, Frontier has slowly expanded both networks through acquisitions, but DSL is currently Frontier’s primary business, serving over eleven million locations across 25 states.5

Frontier’s fiber is still extremely limited. The company announced four million fiber connections to homes and businesses as it conveniently launched its Fiber 2 Gig plan on February 22, 2022.1 Frontier expects to reach 10 million fiber connections during its Wave 2 expansion—some of which will be upgrades from current DSL lines—by 2025.2

What are the best routers for Frontier internet?

You don’t need a specific router for Frontier’s DSL internet or its two slower fiber plans. All modern routers have a gigabit internet input port that connects to the modem or fiber ONT. We recommend getting a Wi-Fi 6 router because it provides faster wireless speeds, better data management, and better multi-device support.

Frontier’s Fiber 2 Gig plan requires a router with a 2.5 Gbps WAN port or two gigabit Ethernet ports you can link together for a single internet connection. TP-Link’s Archer AX11000 and Archer AX90 are two good examples, but be sure to check out these guides for additional router recommendations:

Why does Frontier now have a printed bill fee?

The new printed bill fee is the result of rising costs, according to Frontier.3 You can eliminate the monthly charge by signing up for paperless billing in your Frontier account.

Why does Frontier charge an internet infrastructure surcharge?

Frontier imposes this charge to cover maintenance and “other costs” associated with the network infrastructure. Frontier needs these additional funds to help support increased usage and bandwidth.4

What types of equipment does Frontier use?

Here’s all the equipment Frontier lists at the time this review was published:

DSL Fiber Internet 500 and Fiber Gig Fiber 2 Gig
  • ARRIS NVG448BQ (VDSL2, ADSL2+)
  • ARRIS NVG448B (VDSL2, ADSL2)
  • ARRIS NVG443B (VDSL2, ADSL2)
  • ARRIS NVG468MQ gateway (with MoCA support)
  • ARRIS MEB1100 MoCA adapter (for coax installs only)
  • Amazon Eero 6 mesh networking system
  • Sagemcom 5950 Wi-Fi 6E System

Methodology

Our HighSpeedInternet.com editorial team bases our analyses on customer input from our annual customer satisfaction survey, results from our speed test tool, and proprietary internet provider data on speeds and pricing. To strengthen our research, we look closely at provider contracts to get hard-to-find information on price hikes, data caps, and extra fees, and we keep tabs on the latest news reports and online reviews. When applicable, we also rely on our personal experiences testing these services.

Sources

  1. Frontier Communications, “Frontier Becomes the First and Only Major ISP to Deliver Network-Wide 2 Gig Fiber Service,” February 22, 2022. Accessed May 17, 2022.
  2. Frontier Communications, “Frontier Communications Accelerates Fiber Build Out to Reach 10 Million Locations by End of 2025,” August 05, 2021. Accessed May 17, 2022.
  3. Frontier Communications, “Frontier Billing: Frequently Asked Questions.” Accessed May 17, 2022.
  4. Frontier Communications, “Understand My Bill: Taxes and Surcharges.” Accessed May 17, 2022.
  5. Frontier Communications, “Frontier First Quarter 2022 Results,” May 6, 2022. Accessed May 18, 2022.
  6. Federal Trade Commission, “FTC Takes Action Against Frontier for Lying about Internet Speeds and Ripping Off Customers Who Paid High-Speed Prices for Slow Service,” May 5, 2022. Accessed June 1, 2022.