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Best Phone Plans for Military & Veterans in 2021

Compare the cheapest phone plans for military & veterans

Check Coverage

If you're one of the brave men and women who serves - or has served - their country in a military capacity, you already know to be on the lookout for retailers that offer military discounts. But did you know that you can also get a break on your cell phone bill?

All major wireless carriers offer some form of military discount. Even better - some of the smaller, cheaper carriers also offer a military discount on their already great rates.

Keep reading if you want to find out where to get the best prices on wireless service for active-duty military personnel and veterans, plus how to get the best deal on your smartphone!

Tello SIM Card - Best prepaid plan for military - TelloTello SIM Card - Best prepaid plan for military - Tello
Minutes
Unlimited
Texts
Unlimited
Data
1 GB
Price
$7.50/mo*
* 25% Off for 6 Months
Editors Take
5 / 5
Plans
Plan Minutes Texts Data Price

Tello Unlimited Talk & Text

Unlimited

Unlimited

0GB

$6*

* 25% Off for 6 Months

Tello 1GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

1GB

$7.50*

* 25% Off for 6 Months

Tello 2GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

2GB

$10.50*

* 25% Off for 6 Months

Tello 4GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

4GB

$14.30*

* 25% Off for 6 Months

Tello 6GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

6GB

$18*

* 25% Off for 6 Months

Tello 8GB Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

8GB

$21.80*

* 25% Off for 6 Months

Tello Unlimited Data

Unlimited

Unlimited

Unlimited

$29.30*

* 25% Off for 6 Months
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 - Best unlimited data plan for military - Mint MobileMint Mobile SIM Card - Best unlimited data plan for military - Mint Mobile
Minutes
Unlimited
Texts
Unlimited
Data
Unlimited
Price
$30/mo*
* $90 for 3 months Service
Editors Take
4.5 / 5
Plans
Plan Minutes Texts Data Price

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

Red Pocket SIM Card - Best cheap plan for military - Red PocketRed Pocket SIM Card - Best cheap plan for military - Red Pocket
Minutes
500
Texts
500
Data
0.5 GB
Price
$10/mo
Editors Take
4.5 / 5
Plans
Plan Minutes Texts Data Price

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

US Mobile SIM Card - Best tablet data plan for military - US MobileUS Mobile SIM Card - Best tablet data plan for military - US Mobile
Minutes
0
Texts
0
Data
2 GB
Price
$10/mo
Free Starter Kit with code: MSPUSM
Editors Take
4.5 / 5
Plans
Plan Minutes Texts Data Price

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 military cell phone plans in September

Check Carrier Coverage

Military phone plan benefits

Did you know you can cut your wireless bill by over half just be going with a low cost carrier? These mobile providers are called MVNOs, which stands for Mobile Virtual Network Operators. You've probably already heard of a few of them, like Boost Mobile and Mint Mobile.

These carriers buy up extra space on the major networks - AT&T, T-Mobile, and Verizon - and resell it at a discount. MVNOs can afford to give you better rates because most of them operate completely online and do not spend the big bucks on marketing as the major wireless carriers do. The best part is that college students can get service on the same great networks for half the cost.

As a student, you want to save money but you also need a reliable wireless service. MVNOs are the ideal solution.

  • Cheaper prices by up to 50% or more

  • Service on the same networks as the major carriers

  • Custom plans let you pay only for what you need

  • No credit checks and no contracts

  • Easy to bring your own phone and keep your number

  • Great customer service

  • Convenient and fast online signup

T-Mobile vs Mint Mobile Plan Comparison

Keep your T-Mobile phone, number & coverage: Save $600 per year

Carrier

Network Coverage

4G LTE Data

Price

Annual Cost

T-Mobile

T-Mobile 4G LTE

Unltd*

$70/mo

$840/yr

Mint Mobile

T-Mobile 4G LTE

10GB

$20/mo

$240/yr

*Don't waste money on unlimited data - Avg. data usage is only 3-5GBSavings$50/mo$600/yr

Military phone plan features

  • 4G LTE data speeds: Since MVNOs operate on the big four cellular networks you'll pay less without sacrificing speed. More and more are adding 5G coverage all the time so you can expect high-speed data.

  • Unlimited talk and text messaging: Finding a new unlimited plan has never been easier. Virtually all small carriers include unlimited text and calls in their plan options. Compare cheap talk and text plans with or without data.

  • International calls to Canada and Mexico: International calling is a must for many people. Luckily MVNOs offer some of the best international phone plans, with free calling to certain countries like Canada and Mexico, and discounted rates on others.

  • Multiline discounts: Low-cost carriers also offer some of the cheapest family cell phone plans, with multi-line discounts.

  • Wi-Fi calling: This feature is handy when you're out of your service area, allowing you to make calls over the internet instead of on your cellular connection.

  • Tethering/hotspot data: Many low-cost carriers allow you to use your phone as a hotspot. Pick an MVNO with the best mobile hotspot plans so you can share your mobile hotspot data with other devices.

  • HD video streaming: Just like the big guys, some MVNOs offer HD video streaming and some don't. Read the fine print to find the option you want.

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

NETWORK

OVERALL

RELIABILITY

SPEED

DATA

CALL

Verizon Coverage

95

96

94

96

94

AT&T Coverage

94

94

95

96

92

T-Mobile Coverage

86

88

82

89

82

Source: Rootmetrics

Find Cheap Cell Phone Plans in Your Area

Cheapest carriers for military by network

Military phone plan types

  • Unlimited data plans: Looking for unlimited talk text and data? Alternative carriers have got you covered. Data hungry users looking for unlimited plus plans can save serious money by switching to one of the cheapest unlimited data plans. Not sure how much data you need? Check out our data usage calculator.

  • Family phone plans: Need four lines or more? Many MVNOs offer group plans. Compare the cheapest family phone plans so you can pick and choose what each family member needs.

  • Bring your own phone plans: BYOP plans are the norm with smaller carriers. Compare cell phone prices and get a great deal to go with your cheap cell phone plan!

  • Talk & text only plans: Don't need data? No problem - compare cheap talk and text plans. Bonus, you'll save a ton of money if you're not paying for data!

  • Tablet data plans: Find the cheapest data plan for your tablet or iPad.

Military phone plans comparison

Carrier

Network

Minutes

Texts

Data

Price

Ultra Mobile

T-Mobile

Unltd

Unltd

2GB

$11** Extra 20% Off with code: MSP20

Mint Mobile

T-Mobile

Unltd

Unltd

4GB

$15** $45 for 3 Months Service

US Mobile

Verizon & T-Mobile

Unltd

Unltd

12GB

$20Free Starter Kit with code: MSPUSM

Tello

T-Mobile

Unltd

Unltd

Unltd

$29.30** 25% Off for 6 Months

Good2Go Mobile

AT&T & T-Mobile

Unltd

Unltd

1GB

$7.50** 50% Off for 3 Months

Switching to a cheaper carrier

It's never been easier to switch. Let's break it down.

  1. Customize your plan. Whether you're looking for a truly unlimited plan, or in the market for something more basic, choose a plan to suit your cell phone needs.

  2. Prepare to make the switch. Make sure your old bills are paid up and your phone is unlocked. If you're getting a new device, transferring data from one to another is simple. Even if you're going from an iPhone to Android, and vice versa.

  3. Set up your new plan. Keep your current carrier account open until your number has ported over. Once you're sure your new plan is up and running, cancel your old account. If you've got a new device with your Tello plan, it should be ready to use when it arrives. If you're bringing your own phone then you'll need to follow the instructions with the new SIM card kit that Tello will send to you in the post.

Cheap cell phone companies list

AT&T

T-Mobile

Verizon

Red Pocket

Mint Mobile

US Mobile

Good2Go Mobile

Ultra Mobile

Red Pocket

Unreal Mobile

US Mobile

Reach Mobile

Pure Talk

Tello

Twigby

h2o Wireless

Red Pocket

Spectrum Mobile

FreeUP Mobile

Metro by T-Mobile

Net10 Wireless

Boom! Mobile

Consumer Cellular

Page Plus Cellular

Black Wireless

GoSmart Mobile

Total Wireless

Kroger Wireless

Republic Wireless

Xfinity Mobile

easyGO Wireless

Simple Mobile

CREDO Mobile

Optimum Mobile

Lycamobile

Affinity Cellular

Freedompop

Selectel Wireless

GreatCall

Boost Mobile

Walmart Family Mobile

Gen Mobile

yahoo! Mobile

Wing

Ting

easyGO Wireless

Speedtalk Mobile

Best cell phone deals for military & veterans

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.

Compare the cheapest cell phone prices

Model

Condition

Memory

Compatibility

Price

Apple iPhone 11

New

128GB

AT&T

$549

Apple iPhone 11 Pro

New

64GB

AT&T

$599

Apple iPhone 11 Pro Max

New

64GB

AT&T

$699

Apple iPhone 12

New

128GB

AT&T

$779

Apple iPhone 12 mini

New

64GB

T-Mobile

$729

Apple iPhone 12 Pro

New

128GB

Verizon

$999

Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max

New

128GB

T-Mobile

$1,099

Apple iPhone SE

New

64GB

T-Mobile

$399

Apple iPhone XR

New

128GB

T-Mobile

$549


Military phone plans FAQS

What is the military discount for Verizon?

Verizon offers discounts on their unlimited plans, if you're purchasing a plan directly with Verizon, however the cheapest one starts at $60 a month. Verizon MVNOs offer cell phone plans at a discounted rate as standard, plus some MVNOs offer to put your service on hold if you're deployed.

What is T-Mobile's military discount?

Offering a couple of plans with a military discount, starting from around $55 a month. With a T-Mobile MVNO, although there's no discounts the plans are half the price starting from $10-$15 a month. Plus some MVNOs allow you to suspend your account for a period of time if you're deployed.

Who offers the best military discounts?

If you're looking for a cheaper cell phone plan to save money, then an MVNO offers discounts on it's plans as standard. Powered by the main three US networks you'll receive nationwide coverage and a choice of all the same features.


Recap

A couple of final tips:

  • Always ask about cell phone plan discounts for military personnel, regardless of which carrier you're with.

  • Remember that most carriers will suspend service at no charge if you're deployed out of the country.

  • You may save more money by comparing cell phone plans from MVNOs.

  • Buy a refurbished phone to save hundreds more.

  • Sell your old phone for cash.

Carrier

Best for...

Mins

Texts

Data

Price

Tello SIM Card - Best prepaid plan for militaryTello

Prepaid

Unlimited

Unlimited

1GB

$10/mo

Mint Mobile SIM Card - Best unlimited data plan for militaryMint Mobile

Unlimited

Unlimited

Unlimited

Unlimited

$30/mo

Red Pocket SIM Card - Best cheap plan for militaryRed Pocket

Budget

500

500

0.5GB

$10/mo

US Mobile SIM Card - Best tablet data plan for militaryUS Mobile

Tablet Data

0

0

2GB

$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.

The best prices on the best networks