COVID-19 FAQs from Viasat

Answers to questions about Viasat and Viasat service during the COVID-19 crisis


Dear Media:

As we have all experienced, the last few weeks have been extraordinary, as communities around the world deal with the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic. We recognize more than ever our role to keeping communities, families and friends both connected and informed.

We have reced a number of media inquiries about our network, our service and its capabilities and what we are doing to help our customers. We hope the below Q&A addresses some of these questions. We also encourage media to reach out to our PR team with any questions. We can be reached at:

General statement: At Viasat, we recognize this is an unsettling time for many of our customers—and we are working hard to ensure an optimized network—as many of our customers turn to the internet first to gain information and updates, as it relates to COVID-19. We are evaluating various options to ensure our customers’ needs are met and the network can provide maximum uptime. Viasat’s technology enables us to optimize bandwidth and speed across our network and provide customers continued access to their internet service. From a consumer standpoint, this results in having greater flexibility to use additional available bandwidth as desired—especially during the day.

Will I have to pay late fees if I get behind during this time?

No. Viasat has pledged, along with many other internet service providers, to waive any late fees for any residential or small business customers because of their economic circumstances related to the coronavirus pandemic. That pledge is in effect for 60 days starting March 13.

Do Viasat employees get a discount on Viasat equipment?

One of the benefits of being a Viasat employee, is that we get to enjoy a ‘family rate’ for service. This will remain in-place for any employee that would want to leverage the service during this time.

Are Viasat employees working from home?

At Viasat, employee health is a top priority. We have taken a number of precautionary actions to limit potential exposure to the coronavirus across our global campuses – from establishing flexible schedules and work-from-home strategies to instilling travel restrictions, encouraging social distancing, deep cleaning workspaces, raising employee awareness and supporting good hygiene practices.

Any potential discounts during this time?

We are evaluating different options to ensure our customers can stay connected during this time. If we make adjustments, we will inform all of our customers via email, social and other PR activities.

Will customers receive a higher bill due to current increased usage due to the COVID-19 outbreak?

At Viasat, our team is working hard to assess ways to modify our network to help customers during this unprecedented time. However, at this time, residential customers on our legacy plans may wish to purchase more data if they have reached their monthly data limit. We will continue to update our customers as well as this page as activities and plans evolve.

Should we expect to see any potential increase in speeds on your service?

We are evaluating different service plans options to ensure our customers can stay connected during this time. If we make adjustments — in plans or speeds — we will inform all of our customers via email, social and other PR activities.

Will you change the price for buying extra data?

Viasat’s unlimited data plans do not have hard data caps and we do not require customers on these plans to pay additional fees for extra usage. The way our unlimited data service plans work – is that if we have additional available bandwidth in any given beam, we enable our customers to access additional bandwidth. We expect more customers will be online during the day – and they will have access to use the capacity, as available.

Residential customers who are not on an unlimited data plan may wish to purchase more data if they have reached their monthly data limit. Please see here for tips to manage your data usage.

Will you make any changes to monthly data or speed limits that are applied after customers use a set amount of data?

To ensure all of our customers have reliable internet access, we employ network management practices to prevent any subscriber from placing a disproportionate demand on network resources during times of heavy usage, and we encourage customers to move toward less in-demand hours.

Offering high-speed data with no limits would impact the experience for the vast majority of customers. It is more important than ever to have our network management practices in place so that more of our customers have the ability to access what is most important to them.

We have some tips to help you get the most out of your service – like limiting gaming and streaming and enabling the Video Data extender if you are on a plan with a data allowance. For great data saving tips for everyone, regardless of what plan you’re on, please view this help article.

If you are planning network changes, will they be the same for all versions of your service, or will they apply differently depending on the plan or which generation of satellite is being used?

Our customers and their experiences — especially at this critical time — are extremely important to us. We will continue to ensure maximum network uptime and that critical applications, including email and web browsing, function as normal across all plans and satellite systems. We want our customers to accomplish the things that matter most to them online, while they are at home during this time.

Are you planning any coronavirus-related network changes to assist customers?

Our primary goal is to ensure our customers have reliable access to the internet. We are closely monitoring the coronavirus situation so that we can deliver the best internet service possible, with the most premium features, to all customers on our network. For example, we are currently looking at our traffic management policies to ensure the highest quality of service as we expect more customers on the network throughout the entire day. Finally, if there is bandwidth available on our network, we allow customers to use that additional bandwidth, resulting in higher speeds.

Does your network have enough capacity to accommodate a big surge in data traffic?

Our satellite and ground technology enable us to make network adjustments to meet dynamic traffic needs. We are working hard to access and forecast new usage and behavior models based on anticipated work-from-home and remote education needs, and then address network capacity and customer thresholds to meet network usage spikes and increased demand.