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Broadband data cap relief because of COVID-19

Spark has announced that because of COVID-19 it will help its customers stay connected as they transition to new ways of working, learning and connecting through the initiatives below:

  • Removing overage charges for customers who are on data-capped broadband plans so they won’t have to worry about paying extra to stay connected. This applies to both small and medium business and consumer customers;

  • For the next 60 days Spark will waive late payment fees and will not terminate service for customers experiencing financial hardship during the COVID-19 pandemic. If our customers are experiencing hardship, they should call 128 to discuss their individual circumstances and available options.

These measures will be introduced on Monday 23 March 2020 for an initial 60 day period to ensure Spark customers stay connected.

Vodafone NZ and 2degrees have now also removed data caps on all residential, small and medium business plans until the end of June as it joins its peers in responding coronavirus-driven surge in working-from-home.

As well as Spark, Vocus (owner of Slingshot, Orcon and Flip) had already made the same move.

Of the five players who dominate most of the market, Trustpower was the only one not to move on unlimited data. A spokesman said the company was still assessing its options. He noted, "The vast majority of our customers are already on uncapped plans."

Like the other players, Vodafone's unlimited data move applies to fixed-broadband, but the telco says it will proactively encourage onto its customers on to its new "endless data" mobile plans, which at the entry-level ($40) are only 1 cent more per month than a capped plan, and zero-rate any traffic to Government-guided education and health sites to support responses to Covid-19.

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