Best Rural Internet Providers 2022

What is Rural Internet?

Rural internet consists of internet service providers that cater to residents of remote areas. These providers go where metro internet providers can’t specifically serve those in rural areas. There are plenty of great options for rural homes if you know what to look for. To help with your search, we break down the best internet options and what each provider has to offer you.

Top Rural Internet Providers

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Best satellite internet

Best satellite internet

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Best speeds in remote areas

Best speeds in remote areas

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Best pricing & perks

Best pricing & perks

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Best coverage in CA, FL & TX

Best coverage in CA, FL & TX

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Best in-home internet plans

Best in-home internet plans

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Best affordable rates

Best affordable rates

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Is Rural Internet right for me?

If you live in a rural or remote area where you have few to no options for internet service, then fixed

Rural internet is best for those living in remote areas with limited options and availability. It may be challenging to find reliable, high-speed internet when you’re far from the city, but there are more options than you might think. According to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), over 99% of people in the US have access to at least 2 providers near them.

If you live in a rural area, your likely choices include satellite, DSL, and fixed wireless internet. These types of internet have improved a lot over the years, with several ISPs offering plans with unlimited data, no-contract options, and remote availability. Compare top rural providers below to see what’s right for you.

Pros

  • Local customer support options
  • Unlimited data on most plans
  • 3+ internet providers available

Cons

  • Limited availability in some remote areas
  • Bad weather can affect internet performance

Find the Best Provider Near You

ProviderStarting PriceMax DownloadMax UploadData CapsFind Plan
HughesNet$44.99/mo.25 Mbps3 MbpsNoCheck Availability
Viasat$49.99/mo. – $149.99/mo.12 Mbps – 100 Mbps3 MbpsNoCheck Availability
CenturyLink$50/mo. – $65/mo.20 Mbps – 940 Mbps100 Mbps – 940 MbpsNoCheck Availability
FrontierLess than $49.99/mo. – $149.99/mo. w/Auto Pay & Paperless Bill2000 Mbps – Call for details2000 Mbps – Call for detailsNoCheck Availability
Windstream$19.99/mo. – $39.99/mo.100Mbps – 1000Mbps200Mbps – 50 MbpsNoCheck Availability
AT&T$55/mo. – $80/mo.300 Mbps – 940 Mbps300 Mbps – 940 MbpsNoCheck Availability
ProviderHughesNet
Starting Price$44.99/mo.
Max Download25 Mbps
Max Upload3 Mbps
Data CapsNo
Check Availability
ProviderViasat
Starting Price$49.99/mo. – $149.99/mo.
Max Download12 Mbps – 100 Mbps
Max Upload3 Mbps
Data CapsNo
Check Availability
ProviderCenturyLink
Starting Price$50/mo. – $65/mo.
Max Download20 Mbps – 940 Mbps
Max Upload100 Mbps – 940 Mbps
Data CapsNo
Check Availability
ProviderFrontier
Starting PriceLess than $49.99/mo. – $149.99/mo. w/Auto Pay & Paperless Bill
Max Download2000 Mbps – Call for details
Max Upload2000 Mbps – Call for details
Data CapsNo
Check Availability
ProviderWindstream
Starting Price$19.99/mo. – $39.99/mo.
Max Download100Mbps – 1000Mbps
Max Upload200Mbps – 50 Mbps
Data CapsNo
Check Availability
ProviderAT&T
Starting Price$55/mo. – $80/mo.
Max Download300 Mbps – 940 Mbps
Max Upload300 Mbps – 940 Mbps
Data CapsNo
Check Availability

Pricing, speeds, offers, and availability vary by service address and are subject to change at any time. Additional fees, taxes, and terms may apply. As of 05/19/2022.

HughesNet

top-providers

Best satellite internet

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  • Satellite internet
  • 2-year fixed pricing
  • No hard data caps

HughesNet internet offers high-quality satellite internet with fast speeds coast to coast. HughesNet offers broadband level speeds, data options, and availability virtually everywhere so you can live where you love and stay connected.

Things we like:
  • No hard data limits
  • Built-in WiFi
  • Price-lock guarantee
Things to consider:
  • Low upload speeds
  • Multi-year contract

Viasat

top-providers

Best speeds in remote areas

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  • Fast satellite internet
  • Ideal for rural areas
  • Up to 3x faster than DSL*

Viasat internet is HighSpeedOptions’ top choice for high-speed satellite internet. It offers speeds up to 100 Mbps and additional services you can bundle under one plan. Viasat is widely available, going where cable and fiber providers can’t.

Things we like:
  • Unlimited standard data
  • Fast rural internet option
  • Quick installation
  • Price-lock guarantee
Things to consider:
  • Price increases
  • Low upload speeds

Frontier

top-providers

Best coverage in CA, FL & TX

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  • Fiber & DSL provider
  • WiFi router included
  • Unlimited data included

Frontier internet plans are available in select areas of 25 states, with the best coverage in California, Florida, and Texas. Frontier offers high-speed internet and home phone services to keep you connected to your world.

Things we like:
  • Symmetrical fiber speeds
  • Free WiFi router rental
  • Unlimited data included
Things to consider:
  • No standalone TV package
  • Limited fiber availability

Windstream

top-providers

Best in-home internet plans

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  • Unlimited data
  • Rural availability
  • Free installations

Kinetic by Windstream is available in 18 states, with the best coverage in Georgia, Iowa, and Texas. Shop the best high-speed internet plans for fast, reliable internet that keeps the entire family connected.

Things we like:
  • Symmetrical fiber speeds
  • No data caps
  • No annual contracts
Things to consider:
  • No contract buyouts if you switch
  • Price increase

AT&T

top-providers

Best affordable rates

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  • Variety of plans
  • Wide availability
  • Fiber internet speeds

AT&T internet provides fiber internet up to 940 Mbps, streaming TV, and home phone.  Internet and phone services are available in 21 states, and DIRECTV STREAM is available nationwide

Things we like:
  • Reliable connection
  • Flexible plan options
  • Bundle with DIRECTV STREAM
Things to consider:
  • Data caps may apply
  • Mixed availability
Glasses Looking

Our Thoughts on Rural Internet

Rural internet is an excellent option for those seeking fast, reliable internet in remote areas. While your pace of life may be slower, your internet doesn’t have to be. Many rural providers offer internet plans with unlimited data and no-contract options to give you flexibility.

Rural Internet Simplified

Rural internet falls a bit short regarding overall speeds and data caps, but its low costs and wide availability make up for what it lacks. Below are the different types of rural internet:

DSL uses pre-existing cable lines to deliver internet service to homes. DSL offers fast speeds and protection against harsh weather.

Satellite internet is available virtually anywhere. Providers like HughesNet and Viasat offer competitive rates and unlimited data.

Fixed wireless is less common, but those with access benefit from lower latency and decent data rates.

Comparison of internet connection types

How We Evaluate

Between hidden fees and price hikes, finding the right internet plan can feel overwhelming. To help with your search, our team of internet experts evaluates ISPs on categories including performance, affordability, and customer satisfaction to provide you with the best options near you.

FAQ

Rural Internet FAQs

DSL internet and satellite internet offer comparable speeds. Both can deliver speeds up to 100 Mbps, however, DSL is usually more reliable than satellite for its grounded wire technology. Satellite internet is susceptible to service interruptions due to bad weather or faulty equipment, while DSL runs along grounded telephone lines that are protected from the elements.

If you decide to go with satellite internet, you may be able to get speeds from 25 Mbps to 150 Mbps in speeds. These speeds can support low to moderate internet usage like web browsing and occasional streaming. However, everyone’s needs are unique. The speeds you need will depend on your lifestyle.

Yes. DSL, satellite, and dial-up internet are the most common options in the country. DSL typically offers better data allowances, but Satellite internet is also an excellent option for broadband internet for rural areas thanks to its wide availability.

There are many reasons why your internet might be slow – location aside. Check out our guide on reasons for slow internet and how to fix them.

If you’re still not finding what you’re looking for, don’t worry. Here are a few alternative options for rural broadband you can also consider exploring.

  • Mobile Hotspots – For an added fee, some mobile carriers offer WiFi hotspots that can be used for an internet connection at home. It can work as a convenient solution for light internet users and tends to be a cheaper alternative to satellite or DSL internet. Just make sure your mobile provider supports your home address before paying up.

 

  • Dial-up – While some have put this option out to pasture, it’s still a decent and cheap internet connection if you plan to live an unplugged lifestyle that needs only to check emails or browse the web. Similar to DSL internet, dial-up internet utilizes telephone lines to deliver service to homes. However, dial-up speeds are usually less than 1 Mbps, making it the very last option we’d recommend using.