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Cheapest Pay As You Go Plans in 2021

Compare the best pay as you go phone plans

Budget
1GB 4G/5G data
$10 per month
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Unlimited
Unltd 4G/5G data
$30* per month
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* $90 for 3 months Service
5G
2GB 4G/5G data
$11* per month
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* Extra 20% Off with code: MSP20
Cheap cell phone plans starting at $10/mo - Compare Now
Find the best phone plans in your area

Getting the cheapest pay as you go plan doesn't have to be hard work. At MoneySavingPro we're all about helping you find the cheapest plan to save you money.

MVNOs - Mobile Virtual Network Operators, have a variety of low cost pay as you go plans that are powered by the main US networks, but with monthly prices starting as low as $10.

We've broken down the best low cost carriers and their pay as you go plans below so you can find the best deal for you.u.

Tello SIM Card - Best cheap pay as you go plan - TelloTello SIM Card - Best cheap pay as you go plan - Tello
Minutes
Unlimited
Texts
Unlimited
Data
1 GB
Price
$10/mo
Editors Take
5 / 5
Plans
PlanMinutesTextsDataPrice

Tello Unlimited Talk & Text

Unlimited

Unlimited

0GB

$8

Tello 1GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

1GB

$10

Tello 2GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

2GB

$14

Tello 4GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

4GB

$19

Tello 6GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

6GB

$24

Tello 8GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

8GB

$29

Tello Unlimited Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

Unlimited

$39

Features
Benefits

Pros

  • 24/7 customer support

  • No contracts

  • Budget friendly family plans

Cons

  • No roaming

  • Coverage in rural areas

Benefits

  • Service on the nationwide T-Mobile network

  • Money-back guarantee on phones (no refunds on plans)

  • Prepaid - no contract, credit check, or activation fee

  • Bring your own phone or choose from a modest selection of new or refurbished devices

  • Keep your current phone number

  • Use of your plan data as a mobile hotspot through your phone is allowed

  • Use your minutes to call Canada, China, and Mexico

  • Minutes to other countries available as add-on

  • 24/7 customer service

Mint Mobile SIM Card - Cheapest unlimited pay as you go plan - Mint MobileMint Mobile SIM Card - Cheapest unlimited pay as you go plan - Mint Mobile
Minutes
Unlimited
Texts
Unlimited
Data
Unlimited
Price
$30/mo** $90 for 3 months Service
Editors Take
4.5 / 5
Plans
PlanMinutesTextsDataPrice

Mint Mobile 4GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

4GB

$15*

* $45 for 3 Months Service

Mint Mobile 10GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

10GB

$20*

* $60 for 3 Months Service

Mint Mobile 15GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

15GB

$25*

* $75 for 3 months Service

Mint Mobile Unlimited Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

Unlimited

$30*

* $90 for 3 months Service
Features
Benefits

Pros

  • Offers the latest phones with 0% finance

  • Prepay months in bulk for more savings

  • Reliable network coverage

  • Works with most GSM phones

Cons

  • No family plans

  • Minimum 3 months

Benefits

  • Operates on the nationwide T-Mobile network

  • 7-day money-back guarantee

  • Prepaid - no contract, credit check, or activation fee

  • Bring your phone or buy a Mint Mobile device

  • Keep your phone number

  • Using your phone as a mobile hotspot is permitted

  • Free calling to Canada & Mexico, affordable rates to 160+ other locations

  • Flat-rate international roaming available as an add-on feature

  • Customer service by phone on weekdays and weekends, 24/7 by virtual chat

Ultra Mobile SIM Card - Cheapest 5G pay as you go plan - Ultra MobileUltra Mobile SIM Card - Cheapest 5G pay as you go plan - Ultra Mobile
Minutes
Unlimited
Texts
Unlimited
Data
2 GB
Price
$11/mo** Extra 20% Off with code: MSP20
Editors Take
3.5 / 5
Plans
PlanMinutesTextsDataPrice

Ultra Mobile 250MB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

0.3GB

$8*

* Extra 20% Off with code: MSP20

Ultra Mobile 2GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

2GB

$11*

* Extra 20% Off with code: MSP20

Ultra Mobile 3GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

3GB

$16*

* Extra 20% Off with code: MSP20

Ultra Mobile 6GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

6GB

$22*

* Extra 20% Off with code: MSP20

Ultra Mobile 15GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

15GB

$24*

* Extra 20% Off with code: MSP20

Ultra Mobile Unlimited Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

Unlimited

$32*

* Extra 20% Off with code: MSP20
Features
Benefits

Pros

  • Simple account dashboard

  • Unlimited international talk and text

  • Nationwide coverage

Cons

  • Customer service

Benefits

  • Coverage provided on the nationwide T-Mobile network

  • Prepaid service - no contract, credit check, or activation fee

  • Bring your own compatible GSM phone or buy one from Ultra Mobile

  • Mobile hotspot use supported

  • Unlimited global texting and unlimited calling to 80+ countries

  • International roaming credits available in $5, $10, or $20 denominations

  • International plan tier comes with uTalk - a feature that gives you up to 1250 bonus minutes to your choice of 39 additional destinations

  • Customer service available by phone, email, and chat from 6am to 6pm every day

Ting SIM Card - Cheapest talk & text pay as you go plan - TingTing SIM Card - Cheapest talk & text pay as you go plan - Ting
Minutes
Unlimited
Texts
Unlimited
Data
0 GB
Price
$10/mo** $5 extra per GB
Editors Take
4 / 5
Plans
PlanMinutesTextsDataPrice

Ting Unlimited Talk & Text

Unlimited

Unlimited

0GB

$10*

* $5 extra per GB

Ting 1GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

1GB

$15

Ting 5GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

5GB

$20*

* $5 Off for 6 Months

Ting Unlimited Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

Unlimited

$25*

* $20 Off for 3 Months

Ting 12GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

12GB

$30*

* $5 Off for 6 Months
Features
Benefits

Pros

  • Simple plans for light phone users

  • Customer service

  • Nationwide LTE and 5G coverage

  • Good selection of handsets

Cons

  • Not for the data hungry user

Benefits

  • Offers coverage on both Verizon and T-Mobile

  • Prepaid service - no contract, credit check, or start-up fees

  • Bring your GSM or CDMA phone - most devices are compatible - or buy one from Ting

  • Keep your current number

  • Tethering/mobile hotspot allowed, speeds limited to 3G for GSM tethering

  • Use your plan minutes to call 60+ international locations

  • International roaming capability (at surcharged rates)

  • Extensive customer service hours by phone, chat, or email

Twigby SIM Card - Cheapest senior pay as you go plan plan - TwigbyTwigby SIM Card - Cheapest senior pay as you go plan plan - Twigby
Minutes
Unlimited
Texts
Unlimited
Data
3 GB
Price
$10/mo** 50% Off for 6 Months
Editors Take
4.5 / 5
Plans
PlanMinutesTextsDataPrice

Twigby Unlimited Talk & Text

Unlimited

Unlimited

0GB

$6.50*

* 50% Off for 6 Months

Twigby 1GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

1GB

$8*

* 50% Off for 6 Months

Twigby 3GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

3GB

$10*

* 50% Off for 6 Months

Twigby 5GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

5GB

$12.50*

* 50% Off for 6 Months

Twigby 10GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

10GB

$17.50*

* 50% Off for 6 Months
Features
Benefits

Pros

  • No hotspot/tethering charges

  • International calling and texting

  • 4G LTE coverage

  • Exclusive deals and discounts as a Twigby customer

Cons

  • Limited handset selection

  • Not for the data hungry

Benefits

  • Runs on both the Verizon and Sprint networks

  • 30-day money-back satisfaction guarantee on phones and plans (under 300 minutes, 300 texts, or 300 MB of data used)

  • Prepaid - no contracts, credit checks, or activation fees

  • Bring your CDMA device or choose from a modest selection of Twigby phones

  • Keep your own phone number

  • Use your phone and plan data as a mobile hotspot

  • Use your plan minutes to call Canada, China, and Mexico

  • Free international texting to over 180 countries

  • US-based chat support available weekdays 7am to 9pm CST and 10am to 6pm on weekends

Red Pocket SIM Card - Cheapest kids pay as you go plan - Red PocketRed Pocket SIM Card - Cheapest kids pay as you go plan - Red Pocket
Minutes
500
Texts
500
Data
0.5 GB
Price
$10/mo
Editors Take
4.5 / 5
Plans
PlanMinutesTextsDataPrice

Red Pocket 3GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

3GB

$10*

* 50% Off First Month

Red Pocket 500MB Data

500

500

0.5GB

$10

Red Pocket 10GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

10GB

$15*

* 50% Off First Month

Red Pocket 22GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

22GB

$20*

* 50% Off First Month

Red Pocket 50GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

50GB

$25*

* 50% Off First Month
Features
Benefits

Pros

  • Nationwide coverage

  • No contracts

  • Latest selection of phones

Cons

  • Account dashboard needs work

  • No 0% financing options on latest phones

  • Customer service

Benefits

  • Operates on all four networks - AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint, and Verizon

  • Prepaid cell phone plans - no contract, credit check, or activation fees

  • Bring your own GSM or CDMA device and keep your phone number

  • Mobile hotspot/tethering allowed with your plan data

  • Free international calling to 70+ countries

  • Customer service available in English, Chinese, Filipino, and Spanish via chat or phone

Good2Go Mobile SIM Card - Cheapest individual pay as you go plan - Good2Go MobileGood2Go Mobile SIM Card - Cheapest individual pay as you go plan - Good2Go Mobile
Minutes
Unlimited
Texts
Unlimited
Data
3 GB
Price
$10/mo** 50% Off for 3 Months
Editors Take
4 / 5
Plans
PlanMinutesTextsDataPrice

Good2Go Mobile 1GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

1GB

$7.50*

* 50% Off for 3 Months

Good2Go Mobile 3GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

3GB

$10*

* 50% Off for 3 Months

Good2Go Mobile Unlimited Talk & Text

Unlimited

Unlimited

0GB

$10

Good2Go Mobile 6GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

6GB

$15*

* 50% Off for 3 Months

Good2Go Mobile 10GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

10GB

$35

Good2Go Mobile 20GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

20GB

$45

Features
Benefits

Pros

  • 4G LTE coverage

  • No contract

  • No credit checks

Cons

  • No unlimited data options

  • No app interface

Benefits

  • Coverage on the nationwide AT&T & T-Mobile networks

  • Prepaid cell phone plans - no contract, credit check, or activation fee

  • Bring your own phone or buy a Good2Go Mobile phone

  • Mobile hotspot/tethering not supported

  • International calling to over 60 countries available as affordable plan add-on; calling to other countries via add-on calling card

  • Customer service available by phone 7am - 1am EST every day

US Mobile SIM Card - Cheapest pay as you go data plan - US MobileUS Mobile SIM Card - Cheapest pay as you go data plan - US Mobile
Minutes
0
Texts
0
Data
2 GB
Price
$10/moFree Starter Kit with code: MSPUSM
Editors Take
4.5 / 5
Plans
PlanMinutesTextsDataPrice

US Mobile Unlimited Talk & Text

Unlimited

Unlimited

0GB

$8

US Mobile 1GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

1GB

$12

US Mobile 5GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

5GB

$15

US Mobile 12GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

12GB

$20

US Mobile 18GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

18GB

$25

US Mobile 30GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

30GB

$30

US Mobile Unlimited Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

Unlimited

$45

Free Starter Kit with code: MSPUSM

Features
Benefits

Pros

  • Flexible, no contract plans

  • 24/7 customer service

  • 5G coverage available

Cons

  • No international calling

  • Phone selection

Benefits

  • Coverage on either the T-Mobile or Verizon network

  • Risk-free trial: Full refund within 14 days or before 1000 talk, text, or MB's is used

  • Prepaid - no contract, credit check, or activation fee

  • Bring your own GSM or CDMA phone or choose from a small selection of phones for sale

  • Keep your own phone number

  • Mobile hotspot use available as add-on option with unlimited data plans

  • International roaming plans available with eSIMs

  • Add-ons available for talk, text, and data, with rollover

  • 24/7 customer support

The best cheap pay as you go plans in October

Check Carrier Coverage

Cheap pay as you go plan benefits

We love Mobile Virtual Network Operators or MVNOs. If you're on the lookout for cheap cell phone plans, they're the best route to go down.

Want to stay on the same network, keep your phone and number, plus get greater flexibility?

Yep. You've got it. Forget the major carriers. Plans include everything you need, but come at a much better price with an MVNO.

  • Same great nationwide coverage: These cell phone carriers operate on the very same networks as the big four carriers.
  • Much lower prices: Save up to $600 per year on your cell phone plan. Why are MVNOs so much cheaper? They don't have the huge overhead and advertising costs the big guys do.
  • No contracts: Don't get trapped into a two-year agreement. Switch carriers when you decide to with a no contract phone plan.
  • Same cell phone service: Just because you're paying less, that doesn't mean you have to scrimp on features. Plans with unlimited everything are easy to find from these prepaid carriers. Usually, a low cost carrier plan comes with unlimited talk and text as standard, high speed data, and even mobile hotspot data features.
  • Keep your phone and number: You can bring your own phone and keep your phone number. No need to sign up for pricey device payments.
  • Customize your plan: You decide how much data you need. Choose to pay as you go, opt for unlimited or no data, minimal minutes, or unlimited talk text and data. Unlimited data plans come at a much better price with an alternative carrier. Pick the plan options that fit your budget - not the one your carrier thinks you need.
  • Great customer support: Smaller mobile providers are known for their attention to their customers. Stop feeling like an anonymous number getting lost in the crowd! Check out our carrier user reviews before switching.

Cheapest Verizon pay as you go plans

US Mobile 5GB data planFree Starter Kit with code: MSPUSM

Unlimitedmins

Unlimitedtexts

5 GB

4G/5G data

$15/mo

$3.00 per GB

Powered by: Verizon & T-Mobile

Verizon vs US Mobile Plan Comparison

Keep your Verizon phone, number & coverage: Save $780 per year

CarrierNetwork Coverage4G LTE DataPriceAnnual Cost
VerizonVerizon 4G LTEUnltd*$80/mo$960/yr
US MobileVerizon 4G LTE5GB$15/mo$180/yr
*Don't waste money on unlimited data - Avg. data usage is only 3-5GBSavings$65/mo$780/yr

See more of the cheapest Verizon pay as you go plans


Cheapest T-Mobile pay as you go plans

Mint Mobile 4GB data plan* $45 for 3 Months Service

Unlimitedmins

Unlimitedtexts

4 GB

4G/5G data

$15/mo*

$3.75 per GB

Powered by: T-Mobile

T-Mobile vs Mint Mobile Plan Comparison

Keep your T-Mobile phone, number & coverage: Save $660 per year

CarrierNetwork Coverage4G LTE DataPriceAnnual Cost
T-MobileT-Mobile 4G LTEUnltd*$70/mo$840/yr
Mint MobileT-Mobile 4G LTE4GB$15/mo$180/yr
*Don't waste money on unlimited data - Avg. data usage is only 3-5GBSavings$55/mo$660/yr

See more of the cheapest T-Mobile pay as you go plans


Cheapest AT&T pay as you go plans

Good2Go Mobile 3GB data plan* 50% Off for 3 Months

Unlimitedmins

Unlimitedtexts

3 GB

4G/5G data

$10/mo*

$20/mo

$6.67 per GB

Powered by: AT&T & T-Mobile

AT&T vs Good2Go Mobile Plan Comparison

Keep your AT&T phone, number & coverage: Save $690 per year

CarrierNetwork Coverage4G LTE DataPriceAnnual Cost
AT&TAT&T 4G LTEUnltd*$75/mo$900/yr
Good2Go MobileAT&T 4G LTE3GB$20/mo$210/yr
*Don't waste money on unlimited data - Avg. data usage is only 3-5GBSavings$55/mo$690/yr

See more of the cheapest AT&T pay as you go plans


Compare cheap pay as you go plans

CarrierNetworkMinutesTextsDataPrice
TelloT-MobileUnltdUnltd1GB$10
Mint MobileT-MobileUnltdUnltd4GB$15** $45 for 3 Months Service
TwigbyVerizonUnltdUnltd5GB$12.50** 50% Off for 6 Months
TingT-Mobile & VerizonUnltdUnltdUnltd$25** $20 Off for 3 Months
US MobileVerizon & T-MobileUnltdUnltd30GB$30Free Starter Kit with code: MSPUSM

Carrier coverage comparison

Which prepaid carrier is best for you? That depends on which network has the best coverage in your area.

Whether you go with a GSM carrier (T-Mobile and AT&T) or a CDMA carrier (Verizon) you'll enjoy national coverage, just like with the major carriers.

Network performance ratings

NETWORKOVERALLRELIABILITYSPEEDDATACALL
Verizon Coverage9596949694
AT&T Coverage9494959692
T-Mobile Coverage8688828982

Source: Rootmetrics

Find Cheap Cell Phone Plans in Your Area

Carrier customer service comparison

Concerned that low-cost carriers won't have good customer service? Don't be, on average MVNOs score much higher customer ratings than the big networks as you'll see in the comparison chart below:

CARRIERTRUSTPILOT USER RATING
Reach Mobile4.9
Tello4.6
US Mobile4.6
T-Mobile1.5
Verizon1.3
AT&T1.2

Pay as you go carriers list

AT&TT-MobileVerizon
Red PocketMint MobileTwigby
Good2Go MobileUltra MobileUS Mobile
Unreal MobileUS MobileTing
Pure TalkTingRed Pocket
h2o WirelessTelloReach Mobile
Cricket WirelessRed PocketSpectrum Mobile
Straight TalkGoSmart MobilePage Plus Cellular
Black WirelessRepublic WirelessTotal Wireless
Kroger WirelessSimple MobileXfinity Mobile
easyGO WirelessLycamobileCREDO Mobile
Optimum MobileSelectel WirelessAffinity Cellular
FreedompopBoost MobileGreatCall
Gen MobileWalmart Family Mobile
Wing
easyGO Wireless
Speedtalk Mobile

Cheap pay as you go phones

So what if you do want to upgrade your phone? It's all good - with a prepaid carrier you can save a ton of money by choosing one of a couple of great money-saving options:

  • Buy a new phone from the carrier: More and more MVNOs are offering a selection of affordable phones. Some even give you the choice of making device payments instead of paying all at once. We've gathered the best cell phone deals for you to compare all in one place.
  • Buy a refurbished cell phone: If you'd rather own your phone outright, compare refurbished phone deals to save over 50% on top models in great condition.

Best prepaid cell phone deals

ModelConditionMemoryCompatibilityPrice
Apple iPhone 11New64GBAT&T$499
Apple iPhone 11 MaxNew64GBAT&T$899
Apple iPhone 11 ProNew64GBAT&T$799
Apple iPhone 12New64GBT-Mobile$729
Apple iPhone 12 miniNew64GBT-Mobile$629
Apple iPhone 12 ProNew128GBVerizon$999
Apple iPhone 12 Pro MaxNew128GBT-Mobile$999
Apple iPhone 13New128GBT-Mobile$829
Apple iPhone 13 miniNew128GBT-Mobile$729
Apple iPhone 13 ProNew128GBT-Mobile$999
Apple iPhone 13 Pro MaxNew128GBT-Mobile$1,099
Apple iPhone SENew64GBT-Mobile$399

Cheap pay as you go plans FAQs

What is the cheapest pay as you go phone plan?

Low cost carriers like Tello, Reach Mobile, and Boost Mobile, offer some of the cheapest pay as you go cell phone plans. With prices starting as low as $10 per month.

Who has the best pay as you go plans?

It comes down to personal choice. MVNOs have a large selection of no contract cell phone plans to choose from that are affordable for all.

Is it cheaper to get a pay as you go phone?

Yes, a pay as you go phone plan is cheaper and gives you the flexibility of no contracts and only paying for what you need. A PAYG cell phone plan can save you money in the long run, and the freedom to change carriers or amend your plan if your needs change.


Recap

Pay as you go plans are a great way to save money on your cell phone bill and only pay for what you need.

Low cost carriers like Tello, Red Pocket Mobile, and Boost Mobile provide plans suitable for all budgets. And operating on the main US networks means you don't have to give up quality coverage. If you're happy with your handset, MVNOs make it easy for you to bring your own phone and save even more of those hard earned bucks.

Make sure to check the best cell phone coverage in your area to help you choose the perfect MVNO for you.

CarrierBest for...MinsTextsDataPrice
Tello SIM Card - Best cheap pay as you go planTelloBudgetUnlimitedUnlimited1GB$10/mo
Mint Mobile SIM Card - Cheapest unlimited pay as you go planMint MobileUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited$30/mo
Ultra Mobile SIM Card - Cheapest 5G pay as you go planUltra Mobile5GUnlimitedUnlimited2GB$14/mo
Ting SIM Card - Cheapest talk & text pay as you go planTingTalk & TextUnlimitedUnlimited0GB$10/mo
Twigby SIM Card - Cheapest senior pay as you go plan planTwigbySeniorsUnlimitedUnlimited3GB$20/mo
Red Pocket SIM Card - Cheapest kids pay as you go planRed PocketKids5005000.5GB$10/mo
Good2Go Mobile SIM Card - Cheapest individual pay as you go planGood2Go MobileIndividualsUnlimitedUnlimited3GB$20/mo
US Mobile SIM Card - Cheapest pay as you go data planUS MobileData only002GB$10/mo
Rob Webber
Rob Webber

Rob has 15+ years experience in the US and UK running price comparison sites for cell phone plans, smartphone deals, TV, and internet. He loves thinking outside of the box to build tools that empower consumers to make more informed decisions.