Sky Revamps Subscriptions: The End Of 18-Month Contracts

This post may contain affiliate links*

Brace yourselves, Sky fans: As of today, new customers signing up for Sky’s TV, broadband, or combined bundles will be locked into longer minimum-term contracts.

The company has increased its contract length from 18 months to 24 months – which carries with it both pros and cons for new subscribers.

Sky says this move was made “to align with the wider broadband market”, and while many providers have indeed moved to 24-month contracts, some – like Virgin Media – still offer 18-month contracts.

The good news is that Sky Glass and Sky Stream subscribers will still have the option to choose a rolling 31-day contract, so those who managed to snag a discounted price will now be able to keep that discount for 24 months instead of 18, which could be a silver lining.

On the other hand, if you opt for the minimum-term 24-month contract, you’ll enjoy a cheaper monthly price, but you’ll be locked in for a full two years.

Sky Glass with movies hero
Sky Glass

Sky Q (and broadband) customers, however, do not have a rolling contract option, so they’ll have to accept the longer lock-in term if they wish to join – while also seeing annual price increases even when you’re still under contract.

For those considering Sky Glass or Sky Stream, it’s worth remembering the recent price hikes that took effect earlier this year.

The Sky Ultimate package, which includes Sky Entertainment channels, Netflix Standard with Ads, and Freeview-over-broadband, now costs £31/month on a rolling contract and £28/month on a minimum-term 24-months contract.

However, as is often the case, Sky is offering several limited-time discounts on Sky Glass and Sky Stream’s content – see below for the full details.

Sky Glass And Stream’s Pricing Explained

Sky Stream (see my review), a 4K streaming box (also referred to as the “puck”), has been a major turning point for Sky since its introduction – in more ways than one.

Sky Stream on table
Sky Stream

Unlike Sky’s old-school boxes (such as Sky Q), Stream doesn’t require a satellite dish. Instead, it uses broadband to stream TV shows (including a selection of Freeview channels), positioning itself alongside the likes of Amazon Fire TV, Roku, and Google’s Chromecast in the streaming device market.

Sky Glass (see my review) works in much the same way, and is also based on broadband – but it’s a full 4K TV set with a QLED HDR display and a built-in Dolby Atmos soundbar with six speakers.

With Sky Glass, customers need to first buy the TV itself (by paying outright or via instalments) and then pay for the content on top. With Sky Stream, customers get the box as a loan – and then only pay for the content.

A major difference between Stream / Glass and Sky Q, is that Sky Stream and Glass do not require a long-term contract. The basic contract is a rolling 31-day agreement that you can cancel at any time without penalty charges.

However, a 24-month contract option (which used to be 18 months) is also available, which can lower your monthly subscription costs.

As of now, the basic content package for both Sky Stream and Sky Glass users is the Sky Ultimate plan, which includes a variety of Sky Entertainment channels, Freeview, and Netflix’s standard ad-supported plan.

Sky Ultimate content
Sky Ultimate

On top of that, subscribers can add additional paid content plans, such as Sky Cinema, Sky Sports, Sky Kids, and TNT Sports, along with 4K and Dolby Atmos capabilities, fast-forwarding through adverts, and the “Whole Home” option for multi-room viewing – and all of these incur extra monthly charges.

Sky’s New 24 Months Contract: Weighing the Impact

The move from 18-month contracts to 24-month contracts offers new customers both advantages and disadvantages, depending on their specific situation.

If you’ve secured a good deal with Sky at a discounted rate, you’ll now be able to enjoy that discount for an extended period of 24 months, as opposed to the previous 18 months.

However, with the TV and broadband markets changing rapidly, a lot can change in 18 to 24 months, and you’ll be “stuck” with the service you signed up for (and its current price), for a longer duration.

The whole point of TV cord cutting is to have more flexibility – sign up for one streaming service one month, then cancel and sign up for something else the next – or even cancel them all if money is tight.

If you commit to a 24-month contract, you’re locked in.

Furthermore, even if you’re under contract, Sky is likely to raise prices every year around March or April, a practice that has unfortunately become commonplace among broadband and pay-TV providers.

By committing to a 24-month contract, you’ll potentially face TWO in-contract price increases (the exact timing of these increases will depend on when you signed up, of course).

So, to sum up, the rolling contracts on Sky Stream (and Glass) are probably best for most people (assuming you want a Sky subscription), as they give you more flexibility. 

However, if you’re quite certain you’ll stay with Sky for more than a year, the 24-month contract is worth looking into, as you’ll be paying less.

Regarding these changes, a Sky spokesperson told Cord Busters: “The standard length of Sky TV, Sky Broadband and NOW Powered by Sky contracts have changed to 24 months, extending the in contract benefits we know our customers value.

“These changes apply to new or re-contracting customers – those who are currently in contract will remain on their existing term until it ends.”

Sky Stream June 2024 Discounts

Along with the contract-length change, Sky is offering – as of today – several limited-time discounts on Sky Stream’s prices (for new customers).

It’s worth mentioning that some of these deals are only available via special promotional links, available from certain affiliate partners and comparison sites.

Luckily, we’re allowed to extend these offers to you.

So, these are your options as of this writing – these are all for the 24-months minimum term contract:

It’s worth noting that we’ve seen bigger discounts in the past, but it’s always impossible to tell whether past discounts will return or not.

Also, as mentioned, remember that prices may (and likely will) change during this period, and go up every year around March/April.

If you want to get Sky Stream with the rolling 31-day contract, you can currently get Sky Ultimate (with Netflix) for £25/month (instead of £31) – for up to 24 months (but you can cancel anytime).

Sky Glass Offer: 3 Free Months

If you’re also looking into Sky Glass – the full TV set from Sky – it’s currently available with 3 free months of Sky Ultimate, which we’ve seen before.

Sky Glass on cabinet

Once the three free months are up, the price (for Sky Ultimate) goes up to either £28/month on the long-term contract, or £31/month on the rolling contract.

Also, remember – with Sky Glass, you’re also paying for the TV set, either upfront or in instalments (which will continue even if you unsubscribe from Sky – as you’re basically paying back a loan for the TV).

Want to hear more about TV and streaming deals and updates? Subscribe to our free newsletter.

4 thoughts on “Sky Revamps Subscriptions: The End Of 18-Month Contracts”

  1. I dumped SKY last year when they upped their prices and offered no new deal. Best thing I have done, now I have a deal on Prime for 3 months at £4.99, will cancel when the deal ends. I have Netflix with ads and ITVx premium I paid a year up front for £49…..I have had deals on Apple and Paramount and can go back at any time.
    I still don’t know why I paid SKY hundreds of pounds, it really shows when I am now saving £500 a year and have not missed SKY at all.
    With 24 months contracts and an industry that is super competitive, SKY maybe committing commercial suicide.

  2. I left sky a couple of years ago as they couldn’t offer me a good deal to stay and being hit by the increase x 2 for each second contract. So that 8% + inflation in contract. 18 months was to long never mind 2 years. I can see people leaving in droves as they won’t except anything but the lowest price to stay for 2 years.


Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

man watchin streaming tv on tablet

Get Cord Buster's Free UK TV Streaming Cheatsheet


Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Get TV And Tech News

Get Bonus Streaming TV Guide