Senior Cell Phone Plans Guide

cell phone plans
Seniors have a lot of choices when it comes to finding a good cell phone plan. Regardless of the company and plan, it is vital that the mobile connection between a senior and his contacts are reliable. In this article, we go over this topic and various factors to consider when choosing a cell phone plan for the elderly user.

To ensure the best experience, it is a good idea to give yourself a little time to compare and then pick the best one. At the end of the guide, there are also specific cell phone companies (eg. Great Call) and plans listed.

Choosing a Cell Phone Plan for Seniors – What to Consider

Good Reception of Mobile Signal

Of all the different considerations in choosing a mobile plan, perhaps the most important is the quality of mobile signal provided by the company. Different companies have different mobile signal strengths in varying locations. You have to first find out if the service carrier has good reception in the area where the senior lives or goes around.

Advertising

 

Service Reliability

Service reliability is of utmost importance in service plans, especially for seniors with medical conditions or those who are living alone. For ordinary individuals, having a bad signal and choppy calls can already be inconvenient. This problem is even more frustrating for seniors who could have hearing impairments.

What’s Included: Minutes, Text, Data

Another factor to consider is the list of service inclusions in the mobile plan. This list includes the number of text messages, minutes of voice calls, and mobile data that are can be ‘consumed’ per month. These entirely depend on the lifestyle of the senior.

Some seniors like to call and chat on their phone a lot, but many others hardly use their cell phone. If that describes you consider opting for a plan without too many frills to avoid paying for unused services. Some plan providers offer customizable cell phone plans based on their customer’s usage requirements. This usually makes it easier for the senior to save costs by lowering his or her desired text, call, and data limits.

Most plans these days have a fixed cost for unlimited talk and text, which means that you will be overpaying if your usage is very low. There many elderly customers who do not really need to have all the text and call minute allocations of even an average plan. Customizable plans from cell phone companies like Tracfone or Jitterbug make it possible for those who do not need unlimited type usage to pay less.

Some cellphone companies allow for family or friends to be added onto a plan with unlimited text and calling, and that shares a predetermined monthly high speed data allocation (Eg. 2 GB, 8 GB etc). For example, Verizon Wireless allows for new family members to be added onto a New Verizon plan (with limited data) for $20 for each new line of service. With Total Wireless, a $60/month plan can be split between 2 lines of service with unlimited talk, text and 15 GB total of high-speed data.

Advertising

 

Cost

Cost is a mainstay in the list of considerations for choosing any plan. Note that the cheapest is not necessarily the best plan especially if the reason for the lower cost is the limited reach and scope of services. The plan cost should be reasonable given the services provided and the plan inclusions.

Also consider options for pre-paid or pay plans. They are usually cheaper than regular post-paid plans. They also present no surprises – you pay for service upfront and there are no overage charges. The cost of whatever service used is simply deducted from their pre-paid ‘load’ credits.

Take note, however, that top up cards should be bought and loaded in order for the senior to use cell phone services. If there’s an emergency and the cell phone is not loaded, the senior will not be able to contact his caregiver or loved ones immediately.

Take a close look at the plan contract. Be aware of lock-in provisions and other liabilities that the cell phone services company might pass on to you. Check the overage charges and fees as well so you know what you could be charged with.

If you want to search out the right cellphone before buying a plan, check out our Senior Cell Phones Guide here. Keep in mind that not all provider plans will work with cell phones that are not sold through them.

Disclosure: This site receives referral compensation for purchases by linking to other websites. Learn More

The Best Cell Phone Plans for Seniors

Great Call

great call logo
GreatCall is the service provider for Jitterbug phones. The company provides cell phone plans and solutions targeted especially for the elderly. Recognizing that there are seniors who do not have the need for unlimited talk time, messages, and higher than average mobile data plans, GreatCall offers smaller plans priced less. Great Call plans will only work with their Jitterbug cell phones. These are phones specially designed for seniors.

Their basic plan provides a senior with 200 minutes of phone calls for $14.99 (before taxes and fees). For a higher price, additional mobile data and text messaging can also be included in the plan. For an extra cost, the plan provides customers with access to their 5Star Urgent Response service for 24/7 access to emergency assistance. Caregivers and loved ones can also make use of this service to receive updates regarding the health status of the senior listed in the plan.

Their plans are not the cheapest. However, their customizable usage plan offerings along with access to their 5Star emergencies monitoring and GPS location sharing makes it an attractive option. Click here for the full Great Call Jitterbug review >

Consumer Cellular

Consumer Cellular also provides plans that are especially geared towards helping seniors and their loved ones. Their basic senior plan provides unlimited texts, 250 minutes of call time, and 250MB of mobile data. Additionally, if the allocation is too much for the senior, the same data and minutes can be shared with a designated person.

Advertising

 

In case of they find the need to change their plan, Consumer Cellular provides the option for seniors to do so every month. Moreover, this plan is also connected to the American Association of Retired Persons or AARP. Seniors that are also AARP members are entitled to a 5% discount on Consumer Cellular plans.

TracFone

Tracfone company logo

Tracfone offers great mobile phone service for seniors starting at $20 for 90 days of service. It has no contracts, bills, or overages. Texts, minutes, and mobile data are can be ‘loaded’ by buying cards. Different cards have different prices and inclusions so seniors can choose which service would fit them best.

Additionally, it also features unlimited carryover. This means that the unused texts, minutes of calls, and mobile data are carried over to the new top up. These unused data will not expire until they are used. Click here for the full TracFone review >

Verizon Wireless

Verizon Wireless Logo

Verizon Wireless is the largest mobile operator in the US. Their network is highly rated in numerous industry surveys. With Verizon, customers are assured that they will be accessing the most reliable cellular connections over a large coverage area. Though there are numerous mobile operators today that rent network bandwidth from Verizon to power their own plans, it’s not quite the same experience as becoming a direct Verizon customer. The catch is that Verizon Wireless plans will cost more than some of the low cost prepaid providers out there. However, in recent years, they have added new plans that are competitively priced.

If you just need a single line, Verizon’s prepaid plans offer the best value. For $40 a month, there’s unlimited talk and text, and 3G of high-speed data. Another good option is their regular post-paid plan that costs $35 a month for an allocation of unlimited talk and text, and 2G of high-speed data. There is a cost of $20 per line of service, and you can add multiple lines of service to the same plan. For two people (two lines), it works out to a total of $75 per month, or $37.50 for each line of service. To learn more, visit Verizon Wireless.

Disclosure: This site receives referral compensation for purchases by linking to other websites. Learn More

Total Wireless

Total Wireless logo
Total Wireless also has plans that may be suitable for senior mobile users. Their plans work off the Verizon network. For $25 a month, the plan offers unlimited talk and text. You can subscribe to a higher level plan that includes data, or else purchase data cards for $10 (5 GB with carryover) each time. Although they do not offer smaller customizable plans, their costs are very reasonable starting at $25 per month. Their plan contracts are month-to-month so you can change your plan and even your service bundle as necessary.

There are flexible plans from reliable cell phone services companies that seniors can take advantage of. It would be good to go through all your options with your senior family member in order to get the most reasonably priced and value-packed plan. Click here for the full Total Wireless review >

Once you have decided on a cell phone plan that suits your needs, you can get a phone through the same company. Alternatively, you can purchase an unlocked phone if the service provider has a bring your own phone option. To learn more about shopping for senior cell phones, check out guide here.

Disclosure: This site receives referral compensation for purchases by linking to other websites. Learn More

 

 

Be Sociable, Share!

Speak Your Mind

*