How Much Should I Be Paying for High-Speed Internet?

Ways to avoid getting ripped off on your internet bill

  • Best price for cable internet
    Xfinity Connect More
    • Wide availability
    • Low price
    • Data caps
    • Price: $40.00/mo.*
    • Speed: 100 Mbps
  • Best price for fiber internet
    Verizon Fios Internet 300/300
    • Superfast speeds
    • Lowest fiber price
    • Limited availability
    • Price: $39.99/mo.
    • Speed: 300 Mbps
  • Best price for gigabit internet
    Google Fiber 1 Gig
    • No extra fees for install or equipment
    • Unlimited data
    • Limited availability
    • Price: $70.00/mo.
    • Speed: 1,000 Mbps
  • Best price for DSL internet
    CenturyLink Simply Unlimited Internet
    • Wide availability
    • Unlimited data
    • Slower speeds
    • Price: $50.00/mo.§
    • Speed: Up to 100 Mbps

The average internet bill costs $64 per month.1 But internet plans come in a range of prices, and how much your own internet costs per month depends on a few crucial factors—including what internet speed you need, what’s available in your area, what type of connection you have (be it fiber, cable, DSL, or satellite), and what additional fees you have to pay.

Below, we’ve detailed how much each internet type costs on average per month and why. We’ll also show you how to find the best internet plans for your dollar.

Want affordable internet?

Use your zip code below to see what money-saving options are available in your area.

What to know when buying internet

Monthly price and speed are often the primary concerns when deciding which internet service to order. But a few other important factors can impact your monthly Wi-Fi costs. Here’s a breakdown of what to consider when deciding how much you should pay for internet service.

How to pay less for internet

If you’re looking to save money on your internet bill, here’s a quick rundown of tips and tricks. Read on farther down this page for more detailed explanations.

How much does internet cost per month?

Internet typePriceMax speedAvailability (for % of US population)*Get it
Fiber$29.99–$299.95/mo.5,000 Mbps (5 Gbps)42%View Plans
Cable$19.99–$125.00/mo.1,000 Mbps (1 Gbps)89%View Plans
DSL$39.99–$59.95/mo.100 Mbps88%View Plans
5G$25.00–$149.99/mo.1,000 Mbps (1 Gbps)N/A**View Plans
4G LTE$25.00–$100.00/mo.100 MbpsN/A**View Plans
Fixed wireless$35.00–$249.00/mo.100 Mbps66%View Plans
Satellite$30.00–$169.99/mo.100 Mbps100%View Plans

The type of internet connection you have is the most significant factor in how much you should be paying for your Wi-Fi plan. Internet type determines the kinds of internet speeds you can get and has a big impact on the overall quality of your service.

You don’t want to pay too much for bum service—a trend that’s all too common, as a startling 42% of Americans recently reported being unsatisfied with the price of the internet they’re getting.3 Still, you also don’t need the most high-tech service if it’s out of your budget.

Pro tip:

Take a speed test to figure out how fast your internet is right now. If you need a connection with more firepower, consider switching to a faster connection type like fiber.

Test My Speed

Internet cost and availability

Usually there’s only a handful of internet providers available in any given area; some rural areas have only a single provider. So no matter where you live, you’ll be limited to a set number of internet plans, prices, and download and upload speeds.

Want to know what type of internet plans you can get in your area? Run a search with your zip code to get a rundown of available Wi-Fi plans and how much they cost.

Internet cost and extra fees

Along with the monthly fee on your bill, you’ll also have to consider extra costs for things like installation, modem rental, and sales tax. These fees are sometimes tucked away in the fine print of an internet provider’s bill, so make sure to look into how much these will cost before you sign up.

There are some ways to reduce your extra fees—or get rid of them entirely. Here are a few suggestions:

How to save on extra internet fees

  • Shop for deals and promotions that waive installation costs. We keep track of the best internet deals each month from major internet providers nationwide.
  • Buy your own router. You can save money on rental costs by buying your own modem and router
  • Sign up for a gigabit internet plan. Some providers will waive installation and modem rental costs for gigabit customers.
  • Get Google Fiber. A Google Fiber plan folds extra costs into the total bill—you’ll get no monthly surprises and no annual price hikes.
  • Try out 4G or 5G home internet. Neither T-Mobile Home Internet nor Verizon 5G Home Internet charge for installation or equipment rental.

Pro tip:

Looking to buy your own modem and router? We have lots of recommendations, whether you need a long-range router or a router for streaming and gaming. Our favorite overall is the Google Nest Wi-Fi Mesh System, thanks to its long range and easy use.

Internet cost and government subsidies

If you’re concerned about the cost of your internet bill, you can look into government subsidies to help lower the price. The Biden Administration recently announced an effort to provide eligible Americans with internet service at no cost through partnerships with major internet providers and the government’s Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP).2

The ACP provides $30 per month toward a household’s internet bill, and in recent months 20 major internet providers agreed to adjust their speed and pricing tiers to allow for plans that don’t cost qualifying users anything once they’ve implemented the monthly stipend.

To qualify, someone in your household must be enrolled in certain social programs: Lifeline, SNAP, WIC, National School Lunch Program, and others. Or you can qualify based on your income.

Pro tip:

Read our guide to getting affordable internet to find other programs that can lower your monthly Wi-Fi bill.

Internet cost and price hikes

Internet providers often seek to attract new customers by offering low “promotional” prices on their internet packages—only to hike up the monthly price when the promo period ends (usually after 12 months). This is a common practice with cable, fiber, and satellite internet providers.

Sometimes price hikes aren’t a big deal. But, in other cases, the price hike buried in the fine print can turn a very cost-effective plan into a complete rip-off. When you’re signing up for new internet, we recommend taking the following precautions to make sure a seasonal price hike won’t bust your wallet in half.

How to deal with internet price hikes

  • Look at the fine print. See if there are price hikes buried in your bill and do some number crunching to make sure the price will still be worth it.
  • Try to get a no-contract internet plan. That way, you can cancel your plan without paying early termination fees when the price goes up
  • Negotiate with customer service. When you’re getting close to the end of your 12-month honeymoon period, give your provider a call and push for a new deal.
  • Switch to an internet provider like Google Fiber that gives you flat rates with no price hikes hidden in the fine print.

Pro tip:

Find out how to lower your internet bill—there are lots of things you can do!

Internet cost and data caps

Internet providerData capOverage feeGet it
350 GB/mo. (fixed wireless), 1 TB/mo. (Internet up to 75 Mbps), unlimited (fiber plans)$10/50 GB
Xfinity 1.2 TB$10/50 GB
Cox Communications 1.25 TB$10/50 GB
Mediacom 200 GB–6 TB$10/50 GB
10–50 GB (followed by internet slowdown)N/A
12–300 GB (followed by internet slowdown)N/A
Frontier NoneN/A
CenturyLink NoneN/A
Windstream NoneN/A
Spectrum NoneN/A

Verizon 5G Home Internet
T-Mobile Home Internet
Starry Internet
Starry Internet

Many providers put a cap on the amount of internet data you can use per month—going over can lead to extra charges on your bill. But not all providers do this.

If possible, avoid overage fees and speed slowdowns by picking a plan that gives you unlimited data.

Pro tip:

We’ve got all the details on which internet providers have data caps. Learn which ones do and which ones don’t—because knowledge is power.

Internet cost and annual contracts

Depending on your internet plan, you may be required to sign an annual commitment with your provider. This means you’ll have a contract that renews every year. To cancel your service early, you’ll need to pay early termination fees (ETFs)—usually $10 to $12 for each month you have left on your bill.

Annual contracts probably won’t be a big deal for you if you’ve been with the same provider for a long time and haven’t had any issues. But they can be really inconvenient if you move around a lot or have a provider that delivers subpar service.

Thankfully, some internet providers offer Wi-Fi plans with no annual contracts. You can sign up for service and cancel any time afterwards without needing to pay those dreaded ETFs.

We recommend going with a no-contract provider if one is available in your area; otherwise, just be prepared to pay out some extra moolah if you want to break your contract early.

Best no-contract internet plans

PlanPriceTypeDownload speedGet it
Google Fiber 1 Gig$70.00/mo.*Fiber1 Gbps (1,000 Mbps)
Xfinity Prepaid Internet$45.00/mo.Cable50 Mbps
Cox StraightUp Internet$50.00/mo.§Cable25 Mbps
CenturyLink Simply Unlimited Internet$50.00/mo.DSL100 Mbps
Astound Broadband powered by RCN 300 Mbps Internet$14.99–$25.99/mo.**Cable300 Mbps

The plans above all give you internet service with no annual contract required. These are hardly the only options out there. If you’re curious to know more, run a search with your zip code below to find which no-contract internet providers are available in your area.


Author -

Peter Holslin has more than a decade of experience working as a writer and freelance journalist. He graduated with a BA in liberal arts and journalism from New York City’s The New School University in 2008 and went on to contribute to publications like Rolling Stone, VICE, BuzzFeed, and countless others. At, he focuses on covering 5G, nerding out about frequency bands and virtual RAN, and producing reviews on emerging services like 5G home internet. He also writes about internet providers and packages, hotspots, VPNs, and Wi-Fi troubleshooting.

Editor - Cara Haynes

Cara Haynes has been editing and writing in the digital space for seven years, and she's edited all things internet for for five years. She graduated with a BA in English and a minor in editing from Brigham Young University. When she's not editing, she makes tech accessible through her freelance writing for brands like Pluralsight. She believes no one should feel lost in internet land and that a good internet connection significantly extends your life span.