Everyone seems to have a cell phone with them at all times now. We carry them everywhere. It’s our lifeline.
It is almost terrifying how dependent most of us are on our cell phones. In fact, when I forget my cell phone, it almost feels like I forgot my pants at home.
Most people use them to call and text, but many others also use added data features. No matter how you use your cell phone, the least favorite part of everyone’s experience is the bill. You no longer have to live through that painful part of the month.
Cell phone bills can be really expensive if you sign up for the wrong plan. I mean ridiculously expensive. Some people literally pay hundreds of dollars a month to their cell service provider, but no one has to do that anymore! Here are some ways to get cheap and even free cell phone service.
Table of Contents
- Plans to Get Free Phone Service
- Plans to Get Very Cheap Cell Phone Service
- How to Get a Free Cell Phone
- Final Thoughts
Plans to Get Free Phone Service
Check out some of the options below to get a free or incredibly cheap cell phone plan.
1. FreedomPop’s Basic Plan
You will not have to pay a monthly bill with FreedomPop‘s Basic 500 plan. You will have to pay a one-time activation fee of $49.99 in order to start taking advantage of this mobile phone deal.
The plan includes 500MB of data, 500 texts and 200 minutes of calls. If you go over this allotment you will be charged, so make sure to keep track of what you are using.
FreedomPop also has a variety of relatively cheap plans with higher amounts of data. Be sure to look into that if you don’t think the free allotment will cover your needs.
Some of the cheap plans include deals such as:
- 2GB data for between $9.99 a month and $24.99 a month
- 5GB of data for between $14.99 a month and $34.99 a month
- 10GB of data for between $19.99 and $59.99 a month
The more months you pay up front, the cheaper the service. Check out their website to find out more about coverage with FreedomPop.
2. Cell Nuvo
You can have coverage for free through Cell Nuvo with no monthly payments. On the free plan, you will receive 2,500 credits for zero dollars.
These credits will transfer into texts, calls, and data. A text uses one credit. A minute of calling equals 10 credits and one megabyte of 4G LTE data equals 10 credits.
All of this for absolutely no monthly fee! It sounds almost too good to be true, but this is a legitimate way to have your phone bill cost you nothing.
This basic plan is called the Infinite plan. It is a really good place to look if you really need cell phone coverage, but you don’t know if you can afford it. Even if you can afford a cell phone service, free is always better.
Other Cell Nuvo Plans
The second option on Cell Nuvo is that Flex plan. It costs $19 a month, but you will get 5,000 credits instead of 2,500. By effectively doubling your credits, you will be able to talk, text and surf the web more. While this option isn’t free, it is still very affordable and a good option.
In addition to those base points, the company also has an app that you can download onto your smartphone. The more games you play on this app, the more credits you can potentially earn.
For any plan with Cell Nuvo, you will need to bring your own device to the plan. An example of a compatible device is the Moto E which costs around $40.
You also have the option to buy through their company, but that will likely be the more expensive route. They will put their SIM card into any phone you bring to the plan.
Cell Nuvo runs on multiple networks including Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint. That is great for you because you can pick the service that has the best coverage in your area (or areas you travel to frequently).
You could be saving a lot of money with this company.
3. FreeUP Mobile
FreeUP Mobile will give you one month of free service when you switch to their network. The plan you will receive is called the starter plan and it includes 500 minutes of calling or 500 texts and 100MB of data with nationwide coverage.
After your first month, you can continue on the start plan which costs $10 a month. Or you can upgrade to one of their more expensive plans.
Their most expensive plan is $40 and it includes unlimited talk, text, and data. There are a variety of options in between, so just choose the affordable option that works best for you.
In addition to their affordable plans, you can earn points through their app to make the plan even cheaper. Through the FreeUP rewards app, you can take surveys, shop online, refer your friends and redeem local offers to rack up reward points.
These points can be used towards your monthly bill. You can reduce your bill by a significant amount or even eliminate the bill through the rewards system.
It is a very unique way to get free or cheaper phone service, but it is worth a shot. Make sure the company has reliable service in your area before giving it a try.
Plans to Get Very Cheap Cell Phone Service
Ting is a cheap option if you know you can limit your cell phone usage. You only have to pay for what you use, so there is no overcharging for stuff you don’t even need. It seems like a very fair and economical way to use a phone service.
For example, if you know you will be tight on cash one month, then you can simply use your phone less in order to save some money for other things.
The number of lines, minutes, messages and data you use will be tracked on your phone so that you always know exactly what your phone bill will be. The current costs are $6 per line, $3 for 100 minutes, $2 for 100 texts, and $3 for every 100MB of data.
Again, you will only be charged for what you use. So if you don’t make any calls one month, you won’t be charged for minutes at all.
According to the Ting website, the average user only spends $23 a month on their cell service. That would be a huge discount for me, maybe it is for you too!
Ting has no contracts and you can cancel at any time. One huge plus is that you can make international calls and texts to over 60 countries at no additional charge.
5. Republic Wireless
Republic Wireless is a popular affordable cell phone service provider. They have a great reputation as a wifi based cell service provider because they have been around the longest. They have always done a really good job according to many users.
The cheapest plan on Republic Wireless starts at just $15 a month. For that $15, you will get unlimited talk and text. That is a great deal! If you need data, you have the option to buy it on an as-needed basis with the most basic plan. The cost is $5 per GB of data.
Republic Wireless does not require you to sign a contract and you can leave at any time.
You can bring your own phone. They seem to have very few restrictions on what kind of phone you can use on their networks.
6. Consumer Cellular
Consumer Cellular is a highly rated cell service provider. It has won the J. D. Power award for “Highest in Customer Service among Non-Contract Value Wireless Providers” four years in a row. Plus, it carries many of today’s top smartphones including the iPhone X.
The cheapest monthly plan you can get with Consumer Cellular is just $20. That will give you 250 minutes of calling, 250 MB of data and unlimited texting. If you happen to be an AARP member, then you will receive 5% off of your bill.
You do not have to sign a contract with Consumer Cellular, so you are free to leave your plan at any time. That kind of flexibility is important for many of us.
The cell service provided by Consumer Cellular is nationwide, so you can travel around the states and not lose your coverage. The company also has a 30-day risk-free guarantee. So if you are not happy with your first money, then you can simply cancel the service and try another.
7. Page Plus Cellular
At Page Plus Cellular, you can get a phone plan for just $12 a month. The plan is appropriately called “The $12.”
The plan comes with 500 minutes of calling, 500 text messages and 100MB of data. All of that for just $12!
You will need to be careful about staying within that allotment of minutes, texting, and data because the company will charge you automatically if you go over the limit.
Some examples of potential overcharges are .05 per minute over, .05 per text over, .10 per MB over, and .20 for international text messages. Just make sure you know the rules of the plan before you sign up.
Those little charges can add up and you don’t want to be stuck with a huge bill at the end of the month.
One thing to note about this $12 plan is that it is a 3G plan. You will not be able to bring a 4G device into this plan. There are many affordable 3G phone options, but make sure you like your options before signing up for this plan.
8. Project Fi
Project Fi is offered by a brand you already use every day, Google. The giant tech company is making its way into the phone service business through their Project Fi venture.
The plan starts at $20 for unlimited calling and texting. You can then add data as needed for $10 per GB. The company also offers bill protection, which stops charging you for data after you hit 6GB. You can continue to use data after that point, but you will no longer be charged.
The structure of data in this plan is great because some months you need data and other months you just don’t. The plan gives you the option of using unlimited data if needed, but you could also not use any data the next month.
I find this feature amazing because some months I might be traveling more and need the data for a variety of things, but other months I can just use wifi for the entire month. The plan feels like an unlimited data plan but without the insanely high price tag.
One thing to note about Project Fi is that you will have to buy a Google Smartphone at an unsubsidized price. At other carriers, they usually help to cover the cost of a phone in order to entice you for signing up for their monthly service. However, Google’s Project Fi does not do that.
For some of their phones, you do have the option of spreading out your payment over many months but these are still very expensive phones. It will be up to you whether a phone like that is worth the payments.
TracFone has an amazingly cheap plan for anyone who uses their phone infrequently. They have a plan for just $9.99, plus if you auto-refill your plan it will only be $8.99.
The plan only includes 30 minutes of talk, texts or data use. Although that is a seemingly small amount of time available, it is still a good deal if you do not need that much data.
It might even help you to stop using your phone so much. If you know your phone time is limited, then you are more likely to put it down.
TracFone has other plans with more options, so you can find a plan that will suit your needs. You will have to prepay for an airtime card, so make sure you get enough minutes at the time of your purchase.
Yes, I know. Sprint is not a discount phone service, but if you are looking for a plan with the best international rates then Sprint might be your cheapest option.
You can get a plan on Sprint for as little as $45 a month, which is relatively expensive. However, if you spend a ton of time traveling out of the country or call many international friends and family members other phone services might nickel and dime you until your bill is through the roof.
Sprint provides unlimited text and 2G data in many countries, plus only .20 per minute of talk. Compared to other wireless service providers, this international plan might be as cheap as it gets. It is worth keeping in mind if you plan on spending a lot of time out of the country.
How to Get a Free Cell Phone
All of the plans above are great options for free or cheap phone service, but you might be more interested in a free cell phone. You have many options when it comes to free cell phones. Free things are always good.
You might be asking yourself why there are so many free cell phone options. It is because certain carriers want you to sign up for their plan.
While you will have to pay a monthly fee for all of these plans, you’ll have a free cell phone. Thus, you’ll have to decide what is important to you.
You should always be aware that some carriers may seem like they are giving you a free phone, but you are actually just paying off over the course of a multi-year contract. Sometimes you might actually only be leasing the phone for a few years, which means that the phone was not actually free. Make sure to read through all of the details of your free phone and new service plan before you sign up.
If you are looking for a discounted phone instead of a free phone, then check out this article about the best places to find a used phone.
With that being said, there are plenty of legitimately free cell phones deals that you can use to your advantage. If a free cell phone is important, then keep reading to find out more.
1. Samsung Galaxy J3 Prime
You can get the Samsung Galaxy J3 Prime for free. That is a pretty amazing deal considering that the phone is worth almost $150. In order to get this phone for free, you will have to sign up for an unlimited plan with MetroPCS. The plan includes unlimited talk and text, but you will have to add data depending on the amount you use.
The phone itself seems to be a very good smartphone. It has some great features like a 5” HD display, a 13-hour battery life, a 5MP rear camera, a 2MP front camera, and a 16GB of storage. All of these features indicate that most of us would like this phone.
If you are looking for a free smartphone, then this might be the way to go.
2. Motorola Moto E4
The Motorola Moto E4 is another great free phone that you can claim. Again, it is MetroPCS that is willing to give you this great phone just for switching to their service.
The Moto E4 is a smartphone with a variety of good features including an 8MP rear camera, a 5MP front camera with a flash, water repellant coating, 16 GB of storage and a 5” HD display. The most exciting part about this phone is that it is water resistant, so if you spill something on it you do not have to be as worried about it. It could be the perfect phone for you if you spend a lot of time outside near the water.
You will have to sign up for an unlimited plan with MetroPCS, but the phone will be absolutely free. At an original price of $129, this free phone is a great deal.
3. LG Aristo 2
The LG Aristo 2 is perfect if you are looking for a phone with a great camera. If you are constantly taking pictures on your phone, then this is the perfect free phone for you. The rear camera has 13MP and the front camera has 5MP. Both of these will take amazing pictures of your favorite moments.
The other special features of this phone include a 5” HD touchscreen, 16GB of storage, and facial recognition for enhanced phone security.
The original price of this phone is $139, but you can get it for free by switching to MetroPCS.
4. LG K20 Plus
The LG K20 Plus is smartphone priced at $169, but MetroPCS will give it to you for free if you switch to their service. The best features of the phone include a 5.3” HD display, a 13MP rear camera, a 5 MP front camera and 32 GB of storage.
You can have all of those amazing features for free, just by signing up for certain MetroPCS plans. If you are looking to get a nice phone for free, then this might be your best option.
5. Assurance Wireless
Assurance Wireless is a Federal Lifeline Assistance program brought to you by Virgin Mobile for low-income families. You may qualify for a free cell phone based on income as well as if you are on certain public assistance programs, like Medicaid or Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).
Every phone service has its good and bad qualities, you will have to decide which service will work best for your lifestyle. Make sure to be realistic about your phone usage before you sign up for a plan, you don’t want to be trapped in a plan that will never work for you.
You likely use your phone all of the time. Try to choose a phone and a plan that will keep you happy, but not break the bank.
How will you be cutting your cell phone bill this month?