If you’re a sports fan, a standard digital TV package may not cut it. Here’s how to choose a sports package that lets you watch all the action for less.
There are three digital TV providers that offer sports packages in Ireland:
All three let you add sports channels to their digital TV packages, but only Sky offer standalone TV deals.
Virgin Media or Vodafone don’t offer TV only sports packages so you’ll need to sign up to a broadband and TV bundle to get their sports plans.
You can also watch some live sport with an Amazon Prime Video subscription, including the Autumn Nations Cup.
The main digital TV sports packages in Ireland are:
Sky and Virgin Media also offer Sky Sports Mix and Sky Sports News for free with their TV packages, while some of their premium TV packages also include Eurosport 1 and 2.
Free to air channels like RTÉ, Virgin Media One and BBC also offer decent sports coverage.
This often comes down to the channels you want, but also consider the TV package as a whole. When you’re comparing TV deals, think about the:
Most sports channels offer a variety of live sports, but each has the rights to broadcast different events.
If you’re a fan of a specific sport, always check what’s on offer, below is a brief overview:
|Sport||Sky Sports||Sports Extra||Virgin Media Sport|
|Rugby||European Rugby Union, Rugby League||Champions Cup, Challenge Cup||Six Nations|
|Soccer||126 Premier League games, EFL, Carabao Cup, SPFL, La Liga, & Euro 2020 qualifiers||105 Premier League games||Champions & Europa League and Euro 2020 qualifiers|
|Golf||The Majors, European, PGA Tours & Solheim Cup||-||The Masters|
|Motorsports||Every Formula 1® practice, qualifying and race live||NASCAR, Moto GP||-|
|Others||Tennis, boxing, NFL, GAA and darts||Cricket & Boxing||French Open tennis|
This depends on what sports channels you want.
Many providers include their own sports packages with their TV bundles, but will then make you pay extra to add competitor channels. Here’s what each of the three providers offer:
Sky offers new TV customers the option to add Sky Sports for €20 per month for the first six months (then €40) or Sports Extra for €17 a month for the first six months (then €34). You can also add Sky Sports via your NOW TV package.
Virgin offers Virgin Media Sport for free to all their TV bundle customers with the option to add Sky Sports for €40 a month.
You can also sign up to the Virgin Media TV app for €20 a month to gain access to Virgin Media Sport.
Vodafone broadband and TV customers can add Sky Sports, BT/Premier Sport Pack, or both to their package for an additional charge.
Sky Sports is currently €20 per month for the first six months, and then goes up to €40 a month.
If you want all of the available sports channels, the cheapest option is Virgin Media.
Occasionally major sporting events come up that are not included in standard sports packages, common pay per view events include:
If you wish to view these pay-per-view events through your TV box, you will normally need to contact your TV provider to do so and will have to pay a once-off fee.
You don’t usually have to be a sports customer to order pay-per-view events, but you will need to have an active TV subscription.
Streaming content that you would normally have to pay for, including live sport is usually illegal and best avoided.
It only takes a few minutes to find a cheaper deal and start saving