Best Cheap Cell Phone Plans In 2023
While the US has three major carriers – AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon – they aren’t always the cheapest. You see, phone plans are mostly split into two categories, prepaid and postpaid. Prepaid is where you pay for your service before you use it, Postpaid is paying for it after you get the service. Naturally, prepaid normally has no credit check, while postpaid does.
The other big difference is that postpaid generally offers more features, and they also get priority on the network. This is important in areas that are very congested. Typically, postpaid customers get priority, followed by the carrier’s own prepaid customers and then MVNOs.
So, I’ve said all that to say that you can be spending a lot less on your phone bill every month. And we are here to show you the best cheap phone plans that are currently available.
The best cheap cell phone plan
Our pick for the best cheap cell phone plan goes to Mint Mobile. There’s a good chance that you’ve heard of them before. They’ve done quite a few popular commercials with Ryan Reynolds (who has a stake in the company).
Mint Mobile is our pick for the best cheap phone plan because you can get service for just $15 per month. Now there is an asterisk there. As Mint Mobile has you pay 3 months at a time, so you’re paying $45 for three months of service (which equals $15 per month). That’s still a fraction of what you’d pay at the big carriers though.
Mint Mobile offers unlimited talk and text along with 4GB of data (on 5G and 4G LTE networks) here for $15 per month. There are other plans that offer 10GB, 15GB and unlimited data (unlimited will slow after 35GB per month).
It’s also important to note here that Mint Mobile runs on T-Mobile’s network.
The cheapest phone plan
Believe it or not, there are plans that are even cheaper than Mint Mobile, and that would be b. You can actually get a plan that is as low as $5 per month. Which offers 500MB of data and no call minutes. But the more popular plan will be $10 which is 1GB of data and unlimited minutes.
Tello lets you choose how many minutes you want, this is good for those that don’t talk on the phone much. And also your data. Which includes 500MB, 1GB, 2GB, 5GB, 10GB and Unlimited. Unlimited talk, text and data will cost you $29. Which is not bad at all.
Tell Mobile runs on T-Mobile’s network as well.
The best plan running on AT&T’s network
All of the carriers have their own MVNO’s these days, and AT&T has Cricket, which is a really impressive MVNO.
Cricket has plans that start at just $30 per month. This includes 5GB of data and unlimited talk and text. Plans go up to $60 for unlimited data and 15GB of mobile hotspot. You can also get just unlimited data (without a hotspot) for $55 per month. Customers on Cricket’s most expensive plan also get HBO Max (with ads) included for free. So it may be worth it to spend that extra $5 for the more expensive unlimited plan.
As mentioned, Cricket does run on AT&T’s network. And unlike some of the other MVNOs out there, Cricket will get priority since AT&T owns it as well.
The best plan running on Verizon’s network
Visible is an interesting MVNO (owned by Verizon). It markets itself as an app, and not as a carrier. Because it uses eSIM, it is super easy to switch over and get started with Visible. And because it uses Verizon, that means that you can bring over virtually any unlocked phone to use on Verizon’s network.
Visible has two plans, Visible and Visible+. The regular Visible plan is $30 per month and only includes the basics. That’s unlimited talk, text, data and hotspot. The caveat on the hotspot is that speeds are limited to just 5Mbps. You’ll also get unlimited talk and text to Mexico and Canada.
Visible+ offers all that, plus a bit more for $45 per month. You also get 5G Ultra Wideband (that’s C-Band and mmWave). As well as unlimited talk, text and data roaming in Mexico and Canada, International calling from US to 30+ countries and International texting from US to 200+ countries. So those that travel a lot or have families in other countries in North America, the Visible+ plan is worth the price.
These prices all come with taxes and fees included too.
The best plan running on T-Mobile’s network
Finally, we have Metro by T-Mobile. Also owned by T-Mobile, as you might expect from the name. This is formerly MetroPCS, and finally renamed to Metro by T-Mobile a couple years ago.
Metro by T-Mobile has three plans available, all of which are unlimited. Starting at $40 per month. And if you’re eligible for the Affordable Connectivity Program, you can get up to $30 off.
The first unlimited plan is $40 per month and gives you unlimited talk, text and data. As well as access to T-Mobile Tuesdays, Scamshield and a 1-year subscription to Vix.
Next up is a $50 per month plan which includes everything from the cheaper plan, but you get 5GB of hotspot data, and 100GB of Google One storage. Finally, there’s the $60 per month plan, which includes everything from the cheaper $50 plan, but hotspot data is bumped up to 15GB, and you also get Amazon Prime included. Which is a really big deal.
Of course, Metro by T-Mobile runs on T-Mobile’s network and does get access to its full 5G network.