Top 5 Pre-Paid Cellphone Plans
Prepaid cellphone plans used to be exclusively for customers with bad or no credit only. Speed dial to 2021 and prepaid plans are just as common or more so than contract plans. Why are prepaid cellphone plans so popular? What are the top 5 prepaid cellphone plans for 2021?
There are pros and cons to every prepaid cellphone plan. It is also important to understand the pricing of each and what features are included for the money. Read ahead for information on the top 5 best prepaid cellphone plans for 2021 today.
PrePaid vs. Contract CellPhone Plans
Prepaid cellphone plans were initially for people with bad or no credit when they first came out. Prior to the advent of prepaid plans, contracts were required to even purchase cellphone service at all. This was because cellphones were fairly new and the costs of using them became quickly expensive. Cellphone service providers treated their plans similar to a utility bill and required customers to remain under contract for a minimum of two years at a time or pay heavy buy-out penalty fees.
Some cellphone users today still prefer contract plans. Many others grew tired of being forced into commitments at higher prices while their cellphone providers were offering significantly lower prices to new customers only. The rapid expansion of the physical cell phone market accelerated the increase in popularity of prepaid plans, while simultaneously changing contract plans as well. In today’s market, most contract plans involve the leasing of brand new expensive cell phones wrapped into the price of each monthly bill. Contract plans also require a credit check and occasional deposits for approval. PrePaid plans require no credit checks. It is not possible to lease phones or get financing on the latest hot model cellphones when using a prepaid plan. Prepaid plans are no less effective than contract plans, however, and are almost always the cheaper option.
Pros, Cons & Prices of the Top 5 PrePaid CellPhone Plans for 2021
The top 5 prepaid cellphone plans for 2021 all have pros and cons setting them apart from one another. There are a wide variety of benefits among them, however, not the least of which includes affordable pricing. The top 5 prepaid cellphone plans for 2021 including pros, cons and prices are:
1. Mint Mobile
Mint Mobile offers unlimited talk/text, 5G or 4G LTE service and 3gb of data for $15 per month. It’s most popular plan is its $30 per month unlimited plan, which also includes free international calls to Mexico and Canada and a 5gb mobile hotspot. Mint Mobile will port in your old number and bring your own phone as well.
Pros of Mint Mobile prepaid plans include:
- One of the cheapest unlimited plans available.
- Wi-Fi Text & Calling.
- 3-in-1 SIM kit.
Cons of Mint Mobile prepaid plans include:
- Plans purchasable in 3month increment minimums.
- Lowest prices only available to new customers.
- Piggybacking off T-Mobile causes deprioritization of network speeds.
2. AT&T Prepaid
The AT&T Prepaid plans offer reasonable prices and solid coverage. AT&T has been a mainstay in the cellphone market since its inception making its prepaid services trusted among consumers. The AT&T 15gb Data Plan costs only $40 per month with autopay. The $30/month prepaid plan provides 5gb of data with autopay. All plans include unlimited talk/text.
Pros of AT&T prepaid plans include:
- Data rolls over every month so you never lose what you do not use.
- Plans work in Mexico and Canada.
- Coverage is solid.
Cons of AT&T prepaid plans include:
- No prepaid 5G coverage.
- Attempts to bill autopay 1-2 days prior to due date every month.
- Customer service is occasionally inadequate.
3. Verizon Wireless PrePaid
Verizon Wireless consistently offers some of the top cellphone services in the industry. This remains true for its prepaid plans as well. The Verizon 15gb Prepaid Plan costs $45 per month after a $5 autopay discount. The plan includes unlimited talk/text features and a whopping 15gb of data. Verizon’s extensive LTE network ranks first in speed among all carriers as well.
Pros of the Verizon 15gb Prepaid Plan include:
- Large amount of data allotment each month.
- LTE hotspot.
- Additional discounts for long-term customers.
Cons of the Verizon 15gb Prepaid Plan include:
- Occasional network congestion causes data speed throttling.
- Slightly more expensive than other carriers.
- Customers report of billing errors and being overcharged for phones.
The FreedomPop brand might not be the best known in 2021 but its under-the-radar service plans provide some of the cheapest options for senior cellphone users and budget-consumers alike. FreedomPop literally provides 200 free minutes of talk time, 500 free texts and 200mb of data in its Basic 200 plan every month. Extra minutes, text and data amounts are purchasable for as little as $9.99 per month and unlimited talk/text features start at $15 per month.
Pros of FreedomPop prepaid service include:
- Sells modern cell phones at fifty percent or below MSRP value.
- International coverage in twenty-five countries and expanding.
- Perfect for new cellphone users or budget consumers.
Cons of FreedomPop prepaid service include:
- Fremium business model encourages add-on purchases at additional costs.
- Does not support Apple iOS.
- Voice calls routed via internet (VoIP) with free and basic services.
5. Boost Mobile
Boost Mobile previously piggybacked off Sprint, a company not known for having great coverage. Boost is now owned by Dish and currently provides quality, reliable coverage at sensible prices. Boost Mobile Unlimited plans cost between $35 and $60 per month. The Boost Mobile $50 Unlimited plan is its biggest seller, however. Data plans include 4G LTE up to 35gb used. Speeds are subsequently throttled beyond 35gb. Talk/text are both unlimited as well.
Pros of Boost Mobile Unlimited prepaid service include:
- 12GB mobile hotspot.
- Walmart Customer Exclusive plan doubles 4G LTE data for free.
- Rates are reduced when adding other lines.
Cons of Boost Mobile Unlimited prepaid service include:
- Caps streaming video resolution at 480p.
- Additional restrictions on music and gaming streaming speeds.
- Text messages sometimes lag in delivery.