Most Affordable Senior Phone Plans
How We Chose the Most Affordable Senior Phone Plan
We identified the top 10 senior phone plans and narrowed it down to 5 of our favorites based on a number of criteria. We looked at affordability, service, ease of use, response times, and other factors to rank the most affordable senior phone plan on the market. Take a look at the senior phone plans we have deemed the best of the best.
The basic health and safety package costs $19.99 a month. It includes 24/7 5Star monitoring and brain games. A preferred package costs $24.99 monthly and features the GreatCall Link app and urgent care for medical answers anytime. The $34.99 ultimate package further includes product replacement and the personal operator service for help finding addresses, getting a Lyft ride and much more.
A health and safety package gets you steep discounts on your phone plan. For example, unlimited talk, text and data cost $40 per month. However, if you use the phone infrequently, you might opt for 100 talk minutes ($5 a month), 500 texts ($3) and 100 MB of data ($2.49). If you subscribe to a preferred or ultimate health and safety package, you get unlimited texts.
What if you don’t want a health and safety package? No problem. You get high-value service starting at $14.99 a month for 250 talk minutes. The cost for 500 texts is still $3, and the cost for 100 MB of data remains $2.49. Unlimited talk, text and data cost $59.99. There are many ways you can mix and match the different options. For instance, 1,000 minutes cost $19.99, 1,000 texts cost $5, and 1 GB of data costs $10 for a total of $34.99.
Seniors are limited to two phone choices, but that is so each phone has emergency alert buttons. The phones themselves are high-quality. GreatCall is an excellent choice for seniors who want high-value phone plans plus 24/7 emergency monitoring.
If you exceed the limits of your free plan, you’ll get a $15 “upgrade.” However, you can avoid the upgrade by turning off automatic top-ups.
FreedomPop offers several paid plans as well as individual services such as Premium Voice ($3.99 a month). It enables you to make a traditional cellular call if you’re in an area with a weak data signal.
Paid plans start at $24.99 a month for 2 GB of data and unlimited talk and text. You can pay for 12 months at once, which comes out to paying about $9.99 a month. The highest data plan is 10 GB, and paying monthly costs $59.99. Pay for 12 months at one time, and the monthly equivalent becomes $19.99.
FreedomPop’s free plan may be a smart choice for two groups of seniors. The first group has no use for cellphone data and doesn’t need much in the way of talk and text. Members of the other group do pretty much all of their phone use at home on WiFi networks. The free plan is mostly for “just in case.”
The free plan isn’t for everyone, but it can serve as a valuable lifeline for many seniors. Meanwhile, heavy data users should avoid FreedomPop.
The Senior Nation plan costs $29.99 a month before taxes, surcharges and fees. If you exceed your minutes allowance, each additional minute is 45 cents.
Prepaid plans start at $30 a month with AutoPay. You get up to 1 GB of data, data rollovers from month to month, and unlimited talk and text. Another offering gives you up to 8 GB of data for $40 a month. For $50 with AutoPay, you can get unlimited data.
The Senior Nation plan may fit the bill for seniors who have basic phones they use for talking. It isn’t the best deal, but it is low maintenance. Otherwise, seniors who need (or want) AT&T service should explore the affordable prepaid offerings.
Fifteen dollars a month gets you unlimited talk and text, though taxes and fees tack on a bit more to the bottom line. You can add 1 GB of data at a time for $5. This can be recurring or on an as-needed basis (like once every three months). If you want, say, 2 GB of data a month, you pay $25 ($15 for unlimited talk and text, and $10 for data). For 5 GB, you pay $40.
If you opt to pay for one year at a time, unlimited talk and text costs $150, the equivalent of $12.50 per month. Two GB of data is $250, or the equivalent of $20.83 a month.
Republic Wireless is a great option for seniors who enjoy talking and texting along with some data usage. However, you can purchase up to 15 GB of data per month. That’s bound to get costly for heavy data users. These seniors are better off looking elsewhere for unlimited data plans.
Unlimited 55+ costs $50 a month for one line. For two lines, it’s $70 ($35 per line). The prepaid plan with 2 GB of data and unlimited talk and text starts at $40 a month with AutoPay.
Unlimited 55+ is a smart option for seniors who use a lot of data and who enjoy streaming video. Of course, if you’re already a Sprint customer, you won’t be able to enroll. Otherwise, $40 a month is still a decent deal for Sprint service and up to 2 GB of data a month.
Phone plans come in many variations, some more affordable than others. Senior plans tend to cost about $10 to $30 less than equivalent plans for younger people.
Affordability also means getting value for your money. Some seniors prefer to have a bare-bones plan with a small amount of talk and text, no data needed. Other seniors want unlimited everything. Bare-bones seniors might make do with a free plan such as that offered by FreedomPop. Otherwise, seniors can get a bare-bones plan for no more than $15 to $20 a month.
Seniors who want lots of data (or unlimited data) may have to pay up to about $60 to $65 a month before taxes and surcharges. Some carriers offer discounts for multiple lines.
Affordable senior phone plans may be for either smartphones or flip phones. Meanwhile, prepaid plans aren’t senior plans per se, but they offer no surprises at a low cost. You can usually bring your own phone, purchase one or lease one.
Companies such as GreatCall offer health and safety packages, but they are not the default with phone plans. If you do opt for this type of plan, you can get 24/7 emergency monitoring along with standard callphone service.
Many affordable plans include unlimited talk and text. Plans that are even cheaper cap how many minutes you can talk and how many texts you’re allowed to send. Some plans include certain amounts of data or unlimited data. These plans cost more but are still relatively affordable.
First, there’s the phone itself. A simple flip phone can be had for a pretty low price, perhaps $35 to $100. A smartphone, especially a new one, can run into the hundreds of dollars. However, it’s possible to buy a used or refurbished smartphone for $200 or less. GreatCall even sells new senior-friendly smartphones for about $150. Its flip phone costs $100. If you decide on a pricey smartphone, you can usually make monthly payments to make the cost more affordable. Optional phone insurance is another possible charge.
Most senior plans don’t require contracts or charge cancellation fees. Do expect activation fees, though. You may also be charged if you exceed your caps on talk, text or data.
As touched on above, some carriers let you add a second line for a low price. Seniors such as a married couple looking for two individual plans should explore options such as Sprint’s Unlimited 55+.
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