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Best prepaid family phone plans in 2024

The key to finding the best value prepaid plan for your family is all about leveraging the competitive rates offered by low-cost carriers. You'll get the same coverage for a fraction of the cost without hidden fees and price hikes. Here are the most affordable providers to consider.

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Fed up with the endless loop of steep fees and convoluted invoices from the big three?

As they celebrate their ballooning profits and prep for another wave of rate hikes, one vital detail slipped their minds: your power as a discerning consumer.

Drawing on a decade of deep-dive experience in the mobile sector, I've meticulously evaluated 30 alternative providers and over 100 phone plans to cut through the clutter for you.

To save you time, I have excluded carriers that:

  • Only offer unlimited data plans
  • Only advertise multi-line prices
  • Have confusing phone bills with unexpected fees
  • Lure customers with "free" phones
  • Constantly try to upsell additional lines
  • Bundle plans with unnecessary subscriptions
  • Need loads of small print to explain their offers
  • Want you to go to a store
  • Need a commission-based salesperson
  • Reward customer loyalty with increased prices

And guess what? All of these cost-efficient options tap into the same premium networks you already rely on.

From casual surfers to data-heavy users, I've identified the top-tier and best value prepaid family plans across all networks, highlighting the one that stands out for overall sheer value.

The decision-making power is squarely in your corner. Ready to explore?

Best prepaid family plans on T-Mobile

These are the top 3 plans from low-cost carriers with T-Mobile coverage to consider.

Cheap T-Mobile plan

Tello 2GB plan

Image of cell phone with Tello
  • T-Mobile coverage
  • Unlimited talk and text
  • Instant eSIM activation
2GB
data
$10/line
5 Read our Tello review
$780 in annual savings

Best family plan on T-Moble

Mint Mobile 15GB plan

Image of cell phone with Mint Mobile
  • T-Mobile coverage
  • Unlimited talk and text
  • Instant eSIM activation
15GB
data
$15/line*
$20/mo
See at Mint Mobile

*$45 for 3 Months

4.2 Read our Mint Mobile review
$675 in annual savings

Best unlimited plan on T-Mobile

Tello unlimited data plan

Image of cell phone with Tello
  • T-Mobile coverage
  • Unlimited talk and text
  • Instant eSIM activation
Unlimited
data
$25/line
5 Read our Tello review
$600 in annual savings

How T-Mobile compares

The table below demonstrates that choosing the Tello unlimited data plan would save you $600 per year compared to buying an unlimited data plan from T-Mobile directly.

T-Mobile T-Mobile coverage at a fraction of the cost
See at Tello See at Mint Mobile
*$45 for 3 Months
See at Tello
T-Mobile 4G & 5GT-Mobile 4G & 5GT-Mobile 4G & 5G
Unlimited data
*not unlimited
Unlimited dataUnlimited dataUnlimited data
$75/line$10/line$15/line*$20/mo$25/line
$900/yr$120/yr$225/yr$300/yr
1.4 on Trustpilot
4.6 on Trustpilot
2.9 on Trustpilot
4.6 on Trustpilot
Annual savings$780/yr$675/yr$600/yr

Best prepaid family plans on Verizon

These are the top 3 plans from low-cost carriers with Verizon coverage to consider.

Cheap Verizon plan

Twigby 2GB plan

Image of cell phone with Twigby
  • Verizon coverage
  • Unlimited talk and text
  • Instant eSIM activation
2GB
data
$5/line*
$15/mo
See at Twigby

*$5/mo for 1st 3 Mths

4.4 Read our Twigby review
$750 in annual savings

Best family plan on Verizon

US Mobile 10GB plan

Image of cell phone with US Mobile
  • Verizon coverage
  • Unlimited talk and text
  • Instant eSIM activation
10GB
data
$15/line*
See at US Mobile

*$180 for 12 Mths Service

5 Read our US Mobile review
$720 in annual savings

Best unlimited plan on Verizon

US Mobile unlimited data plan

Image of cell phone with US Mobile
  • Verizon coverage
  • Unlimited talk and text
  • Instant eSIM activation
Unlimited
data
$15/line*
$29/mo
See at US Mobile

*30 Day FREE Trial

5 Read our US Mobile review
$594 in annual savings

How Verizon compares

The table below demonstrates that choosing the US Mobile unlimited data plan would save you $594 per year compared to buying an unlimited data plan from Verizon directly.

Verizon Verizon coverage at a fraction of the cost
See at Twigby
*$5/mo for 1st 3 Mths
See at US Mobile
*$180 for 12 Mths Service
See at US Mobile
*30 Day FREE Trial
Verizon 4G & 5GVerizon & T-Mobile 4G & 5GVerizon & T-Mobile 4G & 5G
Unlimited data
*not unlimited
Unlimited dataUnlimited dataUnlimited data
$75/line$5/line*$15/mo$15/line*$15/line*$29/mo
$900/yr$150/yr$180/yr$306/yr
1.2 on Trustpilot
4.4 on Trustpilot
4.7 on Trustpilot
4.7 on Trustpilot
Annual savings$750/yr$720/yr$594/yr

Best prepaid family plans on AT&T

These are the top 3 plans from low-cost carriers with AT&T coverage to consider.

Cheap AT&T plan

Red Pocket 1GB plan

Image of cell phone with Red Pocket
  • AT&T coverage
  • Unlimited talk and text
  • Instant eSIM activation
1GB
data
$10/line
4.1 Read our Red Pocket review
$780 in annual savings

Best family plan on AT&T

Boost Mobile 5GB plan

Image of cell phone with Boost Mobile
  • AT&T coverage
  • Unlimited talk and text
  • Instant eSIM activation
5GB
data
$15/line*
4 Read our Boost Mobile review
$720 in annual savings

Best unlimited plan on AT&T

Boost Mobile unlimited data plan

Image of cell phone with Boost Mobile
  • AT&T coverage
  • Unlimited talk and text
  • Instant eSIM activation
Unlimited
data
$12.50/line*
$25/mo
See at Boost Mobile

*50% Off 1st Mth

4 Read our Boost Mobile review
$612.50 in annual savings

How AT&T compares

The table below demonstrates that choosing the Boost Mobile unlimited data plan would save you $612.50 per year compared to buying an unlimited data plan from AT&T directly.

AT&T AT&T coverage at a fraction of the cost
See at Red Pocket See at Boost Mobile See at Boost Mobile
*50% Off 1st Mth
AT&T & Verizon 4G & 5GAT&T & T-Mobile 4G & 5GAT&T & T-Mobile 4G & 5G
Unlimited data
*not unlimited
Unlimited dataUnlimited dataUnlimited data
$75/line$10/line$15/line*$12.50/line*$25/mo
$900/yr$120/yr$180/yr$287.50/yr
1.3 on Trustpilot
4.4 on Trustpilot
1.3 on Trustpilot
1.3 on Trustpilot
Annual savings$780/yr$720/yr$612.50/yr

Best overall value prepaid family plan

Tello unlimited data plan

Image of cell phone with Tello
  • T-Mobile coverage
  • Unlimited talk and text
  • Instant eSIM activation
Unlimited
data
$25/line
5 Read our Tello review
$600 in annual savings

Big wireless: Big prices, big profits, little value

Astoundingly, the average phone bill is $155 per month. Meanwhile, 38 million Americans live in poverty, and the government cut funding to the Affordable Connectivity Program, which was assisting 22 million low-income families with subsidized internet and cell phone service.

At the same time, the big three spent January celebrating record profits and multi-billion dollar shareholder dividend payouts while simultaneously announcing yet more price hikes.

So, big wireless continues to raise prices, and the government drops assistance to those in need. However, you do have options, so the power is in your hands.

Take back control of your phone bill

A big wireless unlimited plan will cost you $1,600 extra over the next 3 years compared to getting the same service from an MVNO.

A big wireless unlimited data plan will cost you $2,700 over the next 3 years for just 1 line. In comparison, unlimited plans from a low-cost carrier over the same period would cost only $900.

So, buying directly from Verizon, T-Mobile, or AT&T is now 3 times more expensive for the same coverage. This does not include fees and taxes or future price hikes.

Why is it so much more expensive to buy the same service directly?

With big wireless, you pay for multi-billion dollar ad campaigns, stadium sponsorships, and thousands of stores with commission-based salespeople - all these expenses are passed onto you to maximize profits and dividend payouts.

With this next generation of MVNOs, you switch online and just pay for phone service.

Cut your phone bill, not your coverage

These low-cost carriers offer a great alternative with transparent pricing, a range of customizable data plans to fit your needs, and higher-rated customer service.

You can keep your phone, number, coverage, and most importantly, your money!

Even better, it's quick and easy. You can complete the entire switching process online in minutes with an eSIM-compatible phone.

So, now is the time to re-evaluate your options, take back control of your phone bill, and free yourself from price hikes forever!


Compare the cheapest prepaid family cell phone plans

Carrier Data Monthly Price Annual Price Savings
Tello 2GB $10/line $120/yr $780/yr See at Tello
Mint Mobile 15GB $15/line*$20/mo $225/yr $675/yr See at Mint Mobile
*$45 for 3 Months
Tello Unlimited $25/line $300/yr $600/yr See at Tello

Check out our prepaid family cell phone comparison to find the best deal.


How to choose the best value prepaid carrier for families

  • Which network powers your family's daily discoveries? Whether it's the wide-open spaces of suburbia or the quiet nooks of rural life, connectivity is a must. Luckily, value-driven carriers offer access to the same vast 5G & 4G LTE networks as the industry giants. According to the latest Opensignal 5G Experience report from 2023, T-Mobile leads the pack in 5G coverage. Selecting an MVNO on your preferred network guarantees no drop in connection quality.
  • Curious about your family's data usage? Despite the industry push for unlimited plans, you might be pleasantly surprised to learn your household's actual usage is quite modest, thanks to residential Wi-Fi and community hotspots. The average monthly data usage is under 10GB. Budget-friendly providers design plans that align with your true consumption, often revealing that your family's data needs are lower than anticipated.
  • Is hotspot access a must-have for your clan? From supporting homework sessions on the move to streaming favorite shows during long trips, the ability to tether is indispensable for modern families. Rest assured, hotspot capabilities come standard, although the specifics can vary across plans and carriers, keeping you a mere tap away from the digital world.
  • Worried about costs? Traditional family plans can quickly escalate to $75-90 per line, but savvy households can uncover MVNO offerings from $5-35 per line, securing significant savings without compromising on quality.
  • Pondering the number of lines your family requires? Move beyond the restrictive packages of major networks, which often promote deals for four lines. MVNOs excel in providing adaptable, single-line pricing with the bonus of multi-line discounts, ensuring that everyone, from the youngest members to the elders, stays connected affordably.
  • Considering your device options? We understand the goal is to maximize savings. MVNOs support you in bringing your own device, freeing you from the cycle of constant upgrades. If you're in the market for new tech, you'll find budget-friendly choices with zero-interest payment plans.
  • On the hunt for deals or promotions? Bypass the intricate and often misleading offers of the big players. MVNOs opt for clarity with their straightforward promotions, ensuring you grasp exactly what's on the table - no hidden surprises.
  • Thinking about perks or add-ons? The temptation of "complimentary" subscriptions or trial services from major brands can be strong, but it's wise to evaluate whether these benefits genuinely serve your family or will merely inflate your bill. Opt for perks that truly fit your family's lifestyle, avoiding superfluous costs.
  • Need international calls? Staying connected with family and friends around the globe is essential, not a luxury. Numerous MVNOs include complimentary international calling to a variety of countries, an important feature for families whose loved ones span the continents.
  • Keeping an eye on the littles? Many MVNOs offer parental control features that enable parents to supervise their children's phone usage and data consumption. You can set data limits, restrict access to particular apps or websites, and even track your child's location. These capabilities are available either as part of plans or can be configured in your cell phone's settings.

Check out our prepaid family phone plan comparison to help find the best deal.

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Prepaid family phone plans FAQs


Recap: What is the best prepaid phone plan for families?

As the big three press forward with their relentless rate increases, it appears they're more focused on boosting their bottom lines than meeting actual consumer needs. In an era where the cost of essentials like food and utilities is on the rise, understanding the value of every dollar is crucial for families.

Thankfully, there's a beacon of hope when it comes to managing your family's cell phone bills. Choosing the right carrier can grant you the same quality of service you're accustomed to but at a significantly reduced cost. Imagine the potential of trimming up to $600 annually from each line with a cheap prepaid family plan.

For families poised to find a more budget-friendly alternative, making an informed choice is key. That's why I recommend our detailed cell phone plan comparison tool, designed with your family's needs and financial health in mind.

Family plan guides

How we choose the best carriers and plans

To select the best carriers and plans, MoneySavingPro's team of experts evaluated over 30 different carriers.

Carriers were rated in five categories, with a star rating from 1-5, with 5 stars being the best. We then calculate the overall star rating using the five categories:

  1. Value for money: We compare carriers based on price, features, benefits, and promotions. It's not just about the lowest price but getting the most bang for your buck.
  2. Coverage: We look at network 5G and 4G LTE coverage across the US. We use coverage maps to determine service availability and data speeds in urban, suburban, and rural locations.
  3. Customer experience: We take into account items such as current user experience, website and app usability, ease of switching, and customer service in terms of availability, channels, and satisfaction ratings.
  4. Transparency: We assess whether carrier pricing is clear and straightforward. We examine the fine print to check for hidden fees, confusing terms or conditions, and misleading offers to ensure upfront, honest prices and advertising.
  5. Range of choice: We evaluate the diversity of plan options to determine if they fit the individual needs of all customers.

Read more about our carrier ratings methodology and our editorial process.

We regularly update our comparisons. Updating cell phone plans weekly and our content monthly to ensure we are showing the latest and most accurate information.

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