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High Packet Loss in the Evening Only

3: Seeker
3: Seeker

I've been having periodic packet loss for the last month or so at very specific times in the evening, and am at a bit of a loss on what to do.


To start off I'll explain that I live in a remote area, so I use a mobile SIM in a TP-Link router for household internet. The phone mast is quite literally at the bottom of the garden, so I've always had a very strong signal and quite fast speeds - enough for gaming and streaming simultaneously. I also have a number of smart devices around my home, including several Google Home devices and smart switches. Never had any issues in nearly 2 years with this setup.


Beginning at the start of December 2022, I noticed that I was getting very high packet loss (up to 30%, with higher spikes) while playing online. At these times my wife also noticed that YouTube, Netflix and iPlayer were buffering regularly or playing at low quality. We assumed at first that it would just be a temporary glitch, and left it at that.


After a few more nights I started investigating further. To start off I tried disconnecting our wifi boosters - no change. Resetting the router - no change. Comparing wired (PC) and wireless connections no  difference. After resetting everything and even trying the hotspot on my phone, I gave up. Give it a couple of weeks, I thought. It's the Christmas holidays, maybe the lines are just busier than usual.


Come January and with no further change, I used pingplotter to test our connection over a few days and the results have been quite interesting:Screenshot_20230118_084948.png

This is an example taken over a 48 hour period. My latency (black line) is very stable. The red bars show packet loss. What's interesting here is that every day, at 15:00 on the dot, the packet loss starts to rise. It peaks and drops again at 19:00, then rises sharply throughout the evening before tailing back to zero at 23:00.

This cycle repeats every day, without fail, near enough to the minute. And it's exactly the same whether I'm on a wired or wireless connection, and is also the same using the hotspot on my phone (and we've tried this with 2 different Vodafone SIMs).


Surely this must be some technical glitch on Vodafone's end? As I mentioned it only started beginning of December 2022, but the connection is unusable for gaming in the evening and streaming is also slow.


Is there anything more that can be done?

Thanks for any help :Smiling:

120 REPLIES 120

3: Seeker
3: Seeker

The issue was never resolved for me either. After many attempts through Vodafone support I was resigned to waiting for my contract to end, which it now has.

I've just switched to GiffGaff who use the same antennas as Vodafone. Same deal, £2.50 less a month than before, and it's rolling monthly rather than a fixed contract. And the issue has magically been resolved.

Just more evidence that it was Vodafone, not me or my equipment. I took out the old SIM, put in the new one, and now it's working. They just kept circling round saying it must be a problem on my end, even after showing them this forum and everyone here with the exact same issue happening at the exact same time. It beggars belief that they can't fix it.

Whats speed you getting on that giff gaff ? Is ping ok ? Are you gaming on it ? I am with smarty right now but download speed 1-3 mb its not enough for me.


Thank you in advance.

Yeah, I'm getting maybe 10 ping higher than with Vodafone but it's absolutely fine for gaming. I'm about 40 metres from the mast and the router is in direct line of sight, which helps!

This is why I was so desperate to get the packet loss fixed, any high latency gaming was a no go. Been playing a lot of Age of Empires, some games worked alright with a VPN (which fixed the PL but increased ping a lot). Now I can fire up Apex or another FPS and it's as good as it ever was before.

Over 100 replies and no responses from anyone at Vodafone addressing what is clearly a network-wide issue. Putting speed test screenshots over social media isn't going to cut it for this issue. 

Thank you for suggesting GiffGaff - LIFESAVER! I researched their rolling monthly 35GBP unlimited deal, and by the next day, I've swapped my simcards and the PACKET LOSS ISSUES HAVE INSTANTLY DISAPPEARED. (For anyone else out of Vodaphone contract, and looking to swap to another provider - google about STAC/PAC codes to bypass Vodaphone's 30-day cancellation notice period - and save on one extra billing cycle - at least I'm led to believe how that works)

I have never been so happy to report that my YOUTUBE ADS don't buffer anymore come 9pm.

2: Seeker
2: Seeker

Same problem still happening to me... What is even going on here I can barely use my wifi :Sad_face:

2: Seeker
2: Seeker

This is the absolutely unacceptable level of service you can expect from Vodafone



Community Manager
Community Manager

Hey @chrisb1983 So we can take a closer look into what's causing this for you and what we can do to help reduce this, please reach out to our broadband team by calling 191 from any Vodafone mobile number, or  0333 304 0191. You can also speak to to us via our Live Chat team.

It seems the issue is network-wide - look at all the many posts from different individuals on this thread. 

Thats the problem with community managers they just use generic canned replies and try and get you to converse with them outside public view to limit any damage to their PR. Its absolutely clear that this is a network wide fault that they are trying to brush under the carpet.