Which Internet Service Providers Have Data Caps?

Internet providers may offer budget-friendly plans; however, most of them impose data caps. It means that you can’t exceed the limit or else, you will have slow speeds and overage charges on your bill.

We have compiled a list of major internet providers that offer unlimited data and those that have data caps:

Internet Providers without Data Caps

Internet Provider Connection Type Monthly Data Cap Overage Charges
Google Fiber Fiber Unlimited None
Astound Broadband Powered by RCN Fiber Unlimited None
CenturyLink Fiber, DSL Unlimited None
Verizon Fiber, DSL Unlimited None
Windstream Fiber, DSL Unlimited None
EarthLink Fiber, DSL Unlimited None
Verizon 5G Home Internet 5G Unlimited None
Optimum Cable Unlimited None
T-Mobile Home Internet 5G, 4G Unlimited None
Spectrum Cable Unlimited None
Starry Internet Fixed Wireless Unlimited None


*Offers and availability are subject to change and may vary by location.

Internet Providers with Data Caps

Internet Provider Connection Type Monthly Data Cap Overage Charges
Xfinity Cable 1.2 TB $10/50 GB
AT&T Fiber, DSL, fixed wireless 1 TB per month (Internet up to 75 Mbps), unlimited (Internet 100 up to 5 Gbps), 350 GB per month for fixed wireless $10/50 GB
Cox Communications Cable 1.25 TB $10/50 GB
HughesNet Satellite 10 GB-50 GB (with a slow internet) None

*Offers and availability are subject to change and may vary by location.

How to Get Unlimited Data?

Most providers of DSL, cable, and satellite internet have data caps on their plans. You can sign up for a gigabit plan to get unlimited data. This way, you will get high-speed internet around 1,000 Mbps. For example, many fiber internet providers offer plans with unlimited data.

If you are looking for cable internet providers, Optimum Internet offers the best plans with unlimited data. So, you don’t have to worry about paying overage fees every month. Contact servicio al cliente de Optimum for more details.

How Much Data Do You Need for Working From Home or Studying Online?

For those who work from home or study online, you will need 600 GB of data per month to carry out your online activities. It may include tasks, such as uploading and downloading large files, attending or hosting Zoom meetings, communicating with coworkers or classmates, and even watching videos on YouTube.

Many internet providers offer up to 1 TB of data per month—that would be enough for those with up to four people at home using data for different online activities. If you live in a household with more than four family members, it is best to choose gigabit plans with high upload and download speeds to perform high-data activities.

Do You Need Unlimited Data?

If you are confused about whether you need unlimited data or not, you need to evaluate your speed needs and data limits based on your online activities. Here are some of the reasons why you will need an internet plan with more than 1 TB of data per month:

  • You regularly stream videos in 4K on Netflix, HBO Max, Hulu, etc.
  • You have five or more family members connected to the same network.
  • You or your family members regularly attend or host Zoom meetings.
  • You regularly live stream on social media.

What Happens If You Exceed Your Data Limit?

Exceeding the data limit adds overage charges to your internet bills. Most providers charge $10 for every extra 50 GB of data you consume per month. This way, you will be paying $50 even if you go over your data limit with just 1 GB.

Some satellite providers have soft caps—that means that they will not add overage charges to your bill if you go over your data limit. Instead, you will get internet slowdowns, which will only work for your basic online activities.

Ways to Avoid Going over Your Data Cap

You need to budget out your data usage per month and consume data within that limit to avoid going over your data cap.

Since regular tasks, such as checking emails, playing online games, browsing the web, and even streaming music do not consume much data, you need to consider the rest of your high-data activities.

Here is a breakdown of the most common internet activities and how much data is needed to carry them out:

Online Activity Data Usage
Streaming a music album 0.06 GB
Streaming a 2-hour movie in 4k 16 GB
Streaming a 2-hour movie in HD 4 GB
Streaming a 2-hour movie in SD 1 GB
Sending or receiving up to 25 emails 0.01 GB
Downloading an HD movie 4 GB

Our Verdict:

The best way to avoid data caps is to get internet plans with unlimited data. By doing so, you don’t have to worry about paying any overage fees or having internet slowdowns.


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Theresa Winfrey