Serving wireless and mobile services to over 165 million people in the U.S.,1 AT&T is one of the largest telecommunications companies in the world. In recent years, there’s been a growing need for more variety, efficiency and affordability when it comes to cell phones and mobile plans for seniors. And with 91% of adults ages 51 and older consistently using some sort of technology to stay in touch with friends and family,2 I’m sure glad they did.
With unlimited mobile to mobile minutes and up to 500 nights and weekend minutes with no long-distance charges, AT&T offers a senior-specific mobile plan—Senior Nation Plan—to ensure that older adults have reliable cellular service at a more affordable rate. However, this basic plan only provides calling services and nothing more. They also offer discounted rates for those 65 and up! Something important to note early on is that AT&T does not manufacture phones that are specifically designed for seniors, like those carried by competitors such as Jitterbug, but they do offer all the largest names in cellular technology including Apple, LG, Samsung, etc. Read on to learn more about what AT&T brings to the senior wireless plan arena.
Wallet-Saving Perk: AARP and Veterans discounts (which aren’t a given with every carrier) can be applied to eligible AT&T wireless plans.
As I mentioned earlier, the Senior Nation Plan is the only AT&T plan that’s tailored to seniors 65 and over. Priced at a monthly rate of $29.99, which is a standard rate across the industry, here’s what you can expect to receive from the Senior Nation Plan:
Unlike senior plans from other carriers like T-Mobile and Consumer Cellular, AT&T’s Senior Nation Plan does require a 2-year cell phone contract. Unfortunately, the plan is only eligible if you’re using a basic cell phone. With over 40% of seniors owning smartphones today,3 AT&T limiting its senior plan to basic phones is not ideal but their senior-friendly discounts make up for it!
If you are 65 years of age or older, you may still be eligible to use your AARP discount4 for smartphone or tablet purchases. If the plan you want qualifies for these savings, you’ll take 10% off your monthly service charge and 15% off eligible accessories. Either way, you can collect these perks over the phone or at a local AT&T store5 near you.
Good To Know: For the Senior Nation Plan, additional minutes are only $0.45 each, which matches up with industry standards.
The discounts don’t end there! If you are 55 or older, and have a Florida address, you can qualify for the new AT&T Unlimited 55+ plan. AT&T advertises that it comes out to $60 for one line (and $80 for two lines) for unlimited talk, text, and data. You’ll also need to go into a store with a valid Florida ID in order to verify you’re a state resident and of the minimum age. Florida really keeps sweetening the deal for retiring in the sunshine state!
|Name||Advertised Pricing||Basics||More Details|
|Senior Nation Plan||$29.99 per month||+ 200 anytime minutes
+ Unlimited mobile to mobile calling nationwide
+ 500 nights and weekends minutes
|+ No roaming or long distance chargers (nationwide only) Additional minutes $0.45 each
+ Eligible for basic phones only
+ Includes voicemail, call forwarding, call waiting, conferencing and caller ID
|AARP Discount||Save 10% on monthly service charges on qualifying wireless plans||+ Also save 15% on eligible accessories||+ Some of their unlimited data plans6 for smartphones might be eligible for this discount|
|AT&T Unlimited 55+ (Florida Residents Only)||$60 per month for one line/$80 for two lines||+ Unlimited talk, text, and data (in the U.S. and Canada)||+ Free texting to 120 countries
+ Auto fraud blocking and spam risk alerts
+ Must verify Florida residency and age eligibility in store only
While AT&T has a total of 46 phone models available on their site right now,7 it’s important to remember that the Senior Nation Plan only works with basic cell phones, not smartphones. But we’ll cover our current favorite flip phone and smartphone below (don’t forget that AARP discount!) so you can compare all of your options. For more details on the best cell phones for seniors, check out our best cell phones for seniors page.
Touted as exceptionally durable, the retail price for the Sonim XP3 is a one-time fee of $189.99. The waterproof flip phone is compact with sleek designs like large back-lit buttons and boasts good call quality. It also comes with a camera to take pictures. Plus with 21 hours of talk time, you won’t have to charge your battery too often. For seniors who don’t need or want a smartphone, this is a jazzed-up flip phone with just the right amount of user-friendly features. Plus, the satisfying smack of flipping your phone shut after a call is also a great bonus here, but maybe that’s just me.
The Samsung Galaxy Note 10 is our current smartphone pick. Priced at a monthly rate of $31.67, this model is ideal for older adults who may or may not be familiar with the use of a smartphone. It’s large enough for older eyes and hands, but not intimidatingly oversized. Also waterproof, the Note comes with an S Pen for fun, easy screen-writing, along with a decent battery life. Plus, the camera quality on the Note will make you “ooh” and “aah.” Well, at least it did for me! If you want the next step up in phone technology without feeling like you’re carrying around a tablet, then this is a great choice for seniors with an easy-to-navigate menu and so much more.
With unlimited mobile to mobile calling, AT&T’s Senior Nation Plan is perfect for older adults who simply want reliable cellular service at an affordable rate that covers their basic mobile talk needs. Due to an increasing number of seniors that are starting to veer towards smartphone use, it would be nice to see AT&T offer a senior plan that includes discounts on data. Nonetheless, the extensive perks within the Senior Nation Plan for basic cell phones, along with the AARP discount for smartphones, show that AT&T strives to help seniors connect with family and friends without breaking the bank. For instance, the unlimited mobile to mobile calling element is a solid perk. Overall, the company is affordable, fair and competitive all for the sake of supporting a senior’s mobility, giving them the opportunity to embrace technology without too much hassle.
If you have a smartphone and do want to use an AARP discount, we’ve seen it eligible for the Unlimited Elite plan, which comes out to about $40 a month with the deal. This option includes 100 GB of premium data. A more basic unlimited plan would start at $35 a month, so seniors do get a pretty good break.
No, but you can find a model that works best for your age and your level of mobility as the company does offer an excellent selection. However, a bunch of medical alert systems do operate on the AT&T network.
Yes, only the original/main account holder needs to show proof that they are 65 or above. That’s good news for spouses who might have a bigger age gap.
Statista. (2020, March 10). AT&T number of wireless subscribers 2007-2019.
AARP. (2017, December). Technology Use and Attitudes among Mif-Life and Older Americans.
Pew Research Center. (2017, May 17). Technology use among seniors.
AARP. (2020). AT&T Signature Program.
AT&T. (2020). AT&T Stores Near You.
AT&T. (2020). AT&T unlimited on America’s best network.
AT&T. (2020) Pick you Phones.
Since graduating from Harvard with an honors degree in Statistics, Jeff has been creating content in print, online, and on television. Much of his work has been dedicated to informing seniors on how to live better lives. As Editor-in-Chief of the personal… Learn More About Jeff Hoyt