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FTTP/Cityfibre. Traffic shaping suspected. Poor download speeds during evenings. MUCH better on VPN

3: Seeker
3: Seeker

Dear Vodafone,


It is time you admit that you are applying traffic shaping on your internet connection during the evenings.

I have always wondered why some traffic goes through better than other in the evenings.

I have done extensive testing in the past few days and I have come across to the below findings:

Internet connection speeds drop down to miserable 2-3 megabits download during the evenings / peak time. Upload though goes well and I'd say it is intact.

So I have done some testing. I have connected to different VPN providers to the servers nearby in the UK as well as abroad as far as Iceland and Lithuania.

And guess what - Over the VPN I get 200+ mbps results, immediately as I drop out from VPN and do the test on a clean line I again get those miserable few megabits.

Now if you are technical enough you must understand the irony here.

Going through VPN channel always should give you lower speeds as extra hops and conditions involved in the traffic/equipment. However when on VPN, speed test results are always better. Always, not sometimes, but always. And considerably much better than having connection without being wrapped up in VPN.

This indicates only one thing - QOS/Traffic shaping is in place with Vodafone during peak times.

Tell me, Vodafone, please, why when I am paying for 900mbps I am getting the service of a few megabits during peak times? And please, keep that rubbish to yourself when you start stating - oh it is probably your router, your Wi-Fi and so on. No it is not! I know it is not. I am getting exactly the same results on wired connection using Vodafone or any other router. To be precise your router is a piece of junk that is good for grandmas who watch BBC iPlayer and send three WhatsApp messages a day. I am and advanced user, a technician in fact, with 20+ years of IT support under my belt. 

It is not my router to blame, not my corporate grade wireless access point, not even cheap Vodafone router to blame, it is the policies that Vodafone has set on the back end to shape the traffic during busiest periods.

And it is not fair. I am paying for 900mbps service, yet during evenings I get 300 times slower speeds than I am paying for. Even daytime I rarely reach anything more than 500mbps, it doesn't really bother me that much as I consider speeds above 100mbps acceptable and I simply have no patience to call your India-based call centres and speak to so called "experts" who read from the script, have little to no actual knowledge, and won't deviate from script that they read from the knowledge-base and give a pre-defined answers from templates.


Explain this please, how is this fair, and how is this a good value for money that I am paying? I am actually considering leaving Vodafone, at least when I had broadband over copper line I was getting consistent speeds 24/7. Heck, even with 3 mobile 4G connection I had better speeds than with you guys! 

I see no reason why I should be utilising VPN in order to increase my internet browsing experience. It is an extra expense as well as extra burden that I have to go through in order to reach acceptable connection speeds.


Three days ago, in the evening I was trying to download 5 gigabyte Windows 10 ISO file from Microsoft, I was getting estimated time of download of 7 hours over 900mbps FTTP line. Makes sense? - Thought so, it does not make sense to me either.


Feel free to reach out to me for troubleshooting if you are brave enough to deal with me, I promise you, I won't go easy on you, but I promise to be reasonable and respectful. However I won't take your nonsense and won't accept that it is something to do with my equipment, because I know it is not the equipment.. It is not, and I know, period!

I have done plenty of testing internally, I have tested my independent wireless AP throughput over local network and I have amazing results as long as Vodafone is not in the picture. Anything routed through Vodafone internet link is rubbish unless I wrap that device that is reaching out to the internet to VPN. 

I really don't enjoy having to jump through the hoops just to have something that should be provided to me already because it is a contractual obligation. I expect the service to be delivered as per contract, not some lame excuses from cheap labour agent somewhere in India who has no idea what he is talking about.


So to sum this up:


From 18:00 onwards to around 22-24h connection speeds drop dramatically to miserable few megabits, sometimes if lucky 30-40mbps, never goes above 100. 

No difference if Vodafone or other independent router / access point used, connection still rubbish.

When on VPN, then connection is much better - going to 200-300mbps speeds.

Outside those hours connection speeds are much better, good enough not to complain about. 

I work from home supporting different timezones and working during evenings is a challenge due to this issue. I certainly have an impact on my work performance due to this.


My equipment/plan:


Cityfibre FTTP 900mbps.

Draytek Vigor 2925 router

Ubiquiti Unifi UAP-nanoHD.

Location: Aberdeen


To add a cherry on top of this cake: it is not only me that is having this issue here in Aberdeen. There are 3 more of us (and I can provide their details on request) who are subscribed to Cityfibre/Vodafone FTTP service and we all are having exactly the same issue during evenings. We all live in different areas of the city, so the problem is city-wide, not only to specific area within the city. 

Please get this sorted rather than ignore or give silly answers claiming it is our equipment. It is not. I know it, and you know it too. Time to call things as they are. 


Best regards,



145 REPLIES 145

3: Seeker
3: Seeker

Although I am using original Vodafone router as I don’t need extra features that others might need for network customisation, but I have just done some testing over VPN and I can concur to the original poster - speeds are way better over VPN channel than they are through clean Vodafone connection. I think you just hit a jackpot here proving that Vodafone are actually throttling / applying traffic shaping to their connection over the evenings. You just caught Vodafone with their pants down.
Not happy. How about remuneration Vodafone? For all the patience and the hassle and evenings ruined without proper broadband?

Drop the Evening Express a message on Facebook. I have and I think they will do an article on this if enough people report it. I've just sent them the link to you post.

Thanks edwingcameron, I have dropped Evening Express FB message. Name and shame Vodafone. 

Community Manager
Community Manager

Good morning @Martynux 

Thank you for taking the time to let us know what's been happening - I do understand your frustration about not getting the service you expected. 

We'd really need to look into this further, to see what checks have been done so far - please come and speak to my team on social media, so we can take a look. 
If you include a link back to your post, my team will be able to read through it and you won't need to repeat yourself. 

@edwingcameron please can you also come and speak to my team over social media, so we can look into your speed issues too. 

@Amanda you don't seem to understand. 


I paid £180 to terminate my contract with BT early to join Vodafone city fibre only to receive nothing but substandard speeds in the evening and evidence of throttling.


Simply directing users to social media is not helpful. Investigating and fixing the issue is. Evidently I am not the only one with problems. Alot of people in Aberdeen are.


I have no had to cancel my Vodafone contact and get BT back in. So no internet for 2 weeks. But it's not like I could do anything with my Vodafone gigaslow internet.


Over 13 days I must have called and spoke to 8 different people at Vodafone all who gave me different reasons for slow speeds and no solutions.


On the 13th day I terminated contract.

@edwingcameron - I completely understand your frustration and we want you to have the best connection available. We've asked you to come and talk to us through Social Media, for security reasons. This is as we don't have access to your account on the Community here, so we're unable to do further checks here. 



I don't mean to take over every thread on this forum. Or come across as rude. But why are you asking this chap to get in touch so you can do tests? Have you had a chance to catch up with all the other recent posts on this forum? All experiencing the same issue? At the same time? Do you think it's slightly strange that after a national outage, you are now getting issues reported by so many people. All with the same symptoms? 


What possible tests can you do for an individual, when many are suffering the same fate?


Can you enquire internally at Vodafone to understand what is affecting so many frustrated customers and come back to the forum with a statement outlining what is being addressed and the timeline for the problems to be solved? 


Please don't insult us even more by asking to carry out checks on individual accounts. 


Also, perhaps you don't have the authority to seek a statement from those higher up at Vodafone? If not can you pass this request up through your line managers in order that a statement is provided? 

16: Advanced member
16: Advanced member

If the many people reporting the current slow evening speeds are getting no help from Vodafone support, what good will going via the social media team do?

You have been chasing up the bad routing problem on this thread: for ages, and nothing has happened.

I really do think the constant prompts to use social media are a complete waste of time.

Edit: I suspect the slow speeds and the routing problems are down to the same reason. Botched network upgrades.

Community Manager
Community Manager

@Swine  – Each case is different, one thing that might be affecting one person may be different then another. We need to check all troubleshooting has been completed in full.

If we notice a pattern, then this is when we’ll take the examples and log them to our Support Teams.

Even when we’ve done this recently, we do find that not all users posting provide us with the examples we need.

If you’d like my team to help. Then please reach out through Social Media.

@Jayach  – it’s a shame you feel this way. I do understand your frustration as I know that the other threads been ongoing for a while. It’s taken longer than planned, due to us initially not receiving enough actual examples. Even though we could see how many users were posting on the Community, not many initially got in touch with us.

We’ll let you know on the thread as soon as we’ve an update.