Broadband affordability index | A global comparison
Access to high-speed broadband is becoming a necessity in today's digital age. It’s how we stay connected and get information. It underpins economic growth and provides access to vital services like education and healthcare.
Our comprehensive new study has highlighted that access to affordable broadband is not a given for everyone globally.
We compared high-speed internet bills to average wages to determine a broadband affordability rating for 132 countries worldwide.
The results provide valuable insights into the current state of global broadband affordability. Our hope is that the research encourages policymakers to challenge the status quo and ultimately improve access to affordable high-speed internet for all.
Internet as a % of salary
How to use the map
Countries are colour-coded to highlight their broadband affordability at a glance. Simply hover over a country to see a pop-up box that shows their broadband affordability (monthly internet costs as a percentage of salary) and their worldwide ranking (out of the 132 countries included in the research).
Why some countries don’t have data
Countries with populations less than 50,000, no reliable exchange rate or not enough responses were excluded from the study. For more detail, including the list of countries excluded, see methodology.
World’s most affordable internet*
World’s least affordable internet*
(*) Based on our broadband affordability rating which is reported monthly high-speed internet access costs as a percentage of average salary. For more detail, see methodology.
Global snapshot | Broadband affordability
- Worldwide, people spend 3.81% of their salary on high-speed internet access.
- Europe has the most affordable internet in the world. Europeans spend just 1.72% of their salary on their monthly broadband bill.
- Asia, the Americas and Oceania have similar levels of broadband affordability at 3.31%, 4.48% and 4.65% respectively.
- Africa has the least affordable broadband in the world. African people spend 13% of their wages on internet bills.
Europe has come out on top of the regional broadband affordability index. Residents of Europe spend 1.72% of their salary on their internet bill. It’s the most affordable high-speed internet of any region in the world. The highly developed country-by-country broadband infrastructure likely drives this ranking.
Asia has the second most affordable internet in the world. People in Asia spend 3.31% of their monthly salary on high-speed broadband, which is close to the global average of 3.81%.
Broadband affordability in the Americas and Oceania is quite similar. The Americas ranked third (using 4.48% of salary on internet connectivity), and Oceania ranked fourth (4.65%).
The affordability for Asia, the Americas and Oceania is likely lower than in Europe because they contain countries with more challenging geographies or economics.
Africa has the least affordable internet in the world. African people spend 13% of their income accessing high-speed broadband. This is not surprising given the low level of broadband infrastructure in many African countries results in mobile broadband being the default internet access.
|Region||Internet as a % of salary|
Sub-regional snapshot | Broadband affordability
Broadband affordability is relatively consistent across Europe, but it’s slightly less affordable in Southern Europe than in Western, Eastern or Northern Europe.
Access to affordable internet varies dramatically across Asia. The most affordable internet is in south-eastern Asia (where internet costs 1.83% of salary), and the least affordable is in central Asia (40.46%).
North America enjoys more affordable internet at 3.04% of salary compared to Latin America and the Caribbean at 4.97%.
Broadband is far more affordable in Oceania if you’re in Australia or New Zealand (1.42% of salary) rather than in the Pacific Islands, particularly Melanesia (13.87%).
Although still expensive by global standards, internet is more affordable in Northern Africa (9.74% of salary) compared with sub-Saharan Africa (13.43%).
|Region||Sub Region||Internet as a % of salary|
|Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||4.97%|
|Oceania||Australia and New Zealand||1.42%|
Countries with the most affordable broadband
Hong Kong is the world's most affordable country for broadband, where residents spend just 0.73% of their salary on high-speed broadband. The next most affordable countries are Singapore, Denmark, Finland and Switzerland.
Internet as a % of a salary vs. country
Countries with the least affordable broadband
The world’s least affordable country for broadband is Turkmenistan. Residents can spend 93.26% of an average salary to access high-speed broadband, putting it out of reach for many. The next least affordable countries are Equatorial Guinea, Papua New Guinea, Malawi and Uganda.
Internet as a % of a salary vs. country
World broadband affordability | Country-by-country ranking
The global broadband affordability index ranks the 132 countries included in the study by the percentage of a typical salary that people would have to spend to get a high-speed (60Mb) broadband connection each month.
- Asian tech supercentre Hong Kong has the most affordable internet in the world, just outperforming Singapore, which came in 2nd.
- Scandic nations Denmark and Finland ranked 3rd and 4th for global broadband affordability.
- Switzerland rounded out the worldwide top 5 and is the most affordable nation for broadband in Europe, beating France, ranked 9th in the world.
- Fiji was a surprise entrant in the top 10, ranking as the 10th most affordable country worldwide for broadband.
- The UK ranks 22nd overall, on a par with peers like Japan, Australia and New Zealand. It lags behind European powerhouses Switzerland, France and Germany in the rankings, though there’s little between them in terms of the affordability rating.
- The US is way down the list in 32nd place, outperformed by most of its economic competition. It’s in a similar position as Ireland and Hungary and is outranked by China.
- Some of the bigger global economies didn’t perform as well as expected in the study. Portugal ranked 53rd, BRIC powerhouse Brazil ranked 77th and Egypt ranked way down in 97th.
|World ranking||Country||Region||Sub Region||Internet cost||Average salary||Internet as a % of salary|
|1||Hong Kong||Asia||Eastern Asia||£17.93||£2,442.15||0.73%|
|12||Guadeloupe||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£47.16||£3,586.85||1.31%|
|20||New Zealand||Oceania||Australia and New Zealand||£43.25||£3,058.18||1.41%|
|22||United Kingdom||Europe||Northern Europe||£30.84||£2,166.06||1.42%|
|24||Australia||Oceania||Australia and New Zealand||£42.75||£2,989.35||1.43%|
|29||Martinique||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£31.61||£1,888.09||1.67%|
|32||United States||Americas||Northern America||£56.77||£3,210.50||1.77%|
|46||Saudi Arabia||Asia||Western Asia||£56.30||£2,084.18||2.70%|
|48||Puerto Rico||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£44.53||£1,534.47||2.90%|
|51||Cayman Islands||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£113.22||£3,732.34||3.03%|
|56||Saint Lucia||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£33.85||£927.97||3.65%|
|59||French Guiana||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£51.73||£1,351.70||3.83%|
|62||Bosnia And Herzegovina||Europe||Southern Europe||£18.56||£472.00||3.93%|
|63||Chile||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£22.30||£539.00||4.14%|
|67||South Africa||Africa||Sub-Saharan Africa||£41.80||£990.54||4.22%|
|68||Barbados||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£43.07||£1,009.16||4.27%|
|69||North Macedonia||Europe||Southern Europe||£13.12||£303.00||4.33%|
|70||Mexico||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£21.66||£485.95||4.46%|
|73||Uruguay||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£30.12||£644.85||4.67%|
|76||Sri Lanka||Asia||Southern Asia||£5.22||£105.00||4.97%|
|77||Brazil||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£14.71||£293.95||5.00%|
|78||Saint Vincent And The Grenadines||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£38.81||£761.28||5.10%|
|84||Panama||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£31.46||£515.11||6.11%|
|85||Paraguay||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£14.98||£243.25||6.16%|
|86||Antigua And Barbuda||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£46.77||£746.36||6.27%|
|87||Trinidad And Tobago||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£40.47||£629.25||6.43%|
|88||Costa Rica||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£41.40||£630.04||6.57%|
|91||Peru||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£22.42||£314.54||7.13%|
|95||Colombia||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£17.14||£228.23||7.51%|
|96||Ecuador||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£31.89||£414.43||7.69%|
|98||Jamaica||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£36.92||£449.55||8.21%|
|99||Burkina Faso||Africa||Sub-Saharan Africa||£29.18||£347.27||8.40%|
|101||Grenada||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£69.81||£748.26||9.33%|
|107||Guatemala||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£46.33||£430.05||10.77%|
|109||El Salvador||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£31.57||£283.28||11.14%|
|113||Guyana||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£34.93||£280.57||12.45%|
|116||Dominica||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£52.25||£346.01||15.10%|
|117||Bolivia||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£48.78||£314.91||15.49%|
|122||Haiti||Americas||Latin America and the Caribbean||£131.57||£646.31||20.36%|
|130||Papua New Guinea||Oceania||Melanesia||£183.01||£222.09||82.40%|
|131||Equatorial Guinea||Africa||Sub-Saharan Africa||£228.97||£261.68||87.50%|
How we calculated the global broadband affordability index
We compared the average reported monthly high-speed internet bill with the average wage for people from 132 countries to work out the cost of internet as a percentage of salary.
Reported monthly high-speed internet bill and wages by country: a robust and comprehensive international survey dataset included over 700,000 people from 162 countries reporting their wages and monthly high-speed internet bill (60Mb or more, unlimited data, cable/ADSL).
Currency normalisation: we used the UK HMRC’s January 2023 exchange rates to convert from native currency to GBP.
Cleansing for statistical reliability: we excluded countries with small populations (under 50,000), no reliable exchange rate or too few responses.
Data validation: we compared the cost of a general basket of goods for each country to validate salary and internet cost data reliability.
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