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Best Budget Cell Phone Plans – August 2023: From $5/Month!

Discover the Best Cheap Cell Phone Plans for August 2023. Our extensive research brings you the lowest monthly costs and best value options. Choose from various plans tailored to your needs, whether you prefer single-line, cheap unlimited, or family plans. We recommend prepaid carriers for the best bang-for-the-buck and flexibility and address common concerns in our FAQs section. For more choices, explore our main cell phone plans page and compare it with Verizon and AT&T offerings.

Check out the top cheap cell phone plans:

  1. Mint Mobile – best value
  2. Visible – best-unlimited data
  3. – cheapest option
  4. Ultra Mobile – best pay-as-you-go
  5. – great Verizon alternative
  6. Pure Talk – great AT&T alternative
  7. Boost Mobile – great T-Mobile alternative

Top Cheap Cell Phone Plans in the US

Here is a brief breakdown of each option, including important information such as monthly fees, data limits, and network coverage.

Best Value Cheap Cell Phone Plans

1. Best Value Cheap Cell Phone Plans

Mint Mobile | T-Mobile Network | 3-12 Month Contract | 5 – Unlimited Data | $15 – $25/Month

Looking for an affordable and valuable cell phone plan? Look no further than Mint Mobile! Our top choice, Mint Mobile offers flexible pricing that lets you choose plans for three, six, or twelve months upfront, with cheaper overall costs for longer commitments. Although you pay more upfront, the value is unbeatable. And in 2023, Mint Mobile increased data allowances on all plans without raising prices, making it even more appealing. For just $20 per month, the 15GB plan (previously 10GB) is an excellent choice, offering generous data, 5G speeds, and mobile hotspot capability. With its attractive price, diverse options, and valuable features, Mint Mobile is an outstanding choice for most users.

Best Unlimited Cheap Cell Phone Plans

2. Best Unlimited Cheap Cell Phone Plans

Visible | Verizon Network | 1 Month Contract | Unlimited Data | $30 – $45/Month

Are you in search of an affordable unlimited data plan? Consider checking out Visible’s latest wireless plans. The standard plan now costs $25/month after a $5 price reduction and includes unlimited data, talk, text, and mobile hotspots. For quicker data access, the Visible Plus tier is available at $40/month and comes with 50GB of wide-band 5G data that remains fast even during network congestion. Visible, a subsidiary of Verizon, provides budget-friendly alternatives for unlimited plans.

3. Cheapest of the Cheap


Tello is a recently established MVNO carrier that provides a customizable plan with affordable options. Our preferred choice is their unlimited data plan, which is now available for only $29/month, down from the previous price of $39/month. This puts it among the most reasonably priced options on the market.

4. Verizon Coverage


If you’re looking for affordable prepaid options with top-notch Verizon coverage, Twigby is an excellent choice. They have three different plans, with the cheapest starting at $15 per month for unlimited texts and calls, as well as 2GB of data. New users can take advantage of an introductory offer where they can get 50% off for the first three months, making it a very attractive alternative to Verizon. Twigby’s unlimited data plan is now available for just $35 per month, which is a great alternative to Visible Wireless.

AT&T Coverage

5. AT&T Coverage

Pure Talk | AT&T Network | 1 Month Contract | 3GB – Unlimited Data | $20 – $65/Month

Finding cheap AT&T alternatives is rare among prepaid carriers, but Pure Talk stands out with flexible data options. Enjoy the first month at half-price as an introductory offer. Their phone shop page offers various cheap iPhone deals, with savings of up to $250 for new customers on devices like the iPhone 14

T-Mobile Coverage

6. T-Mobile Coverage

Boost Mobile | T-Mobile Network | 1 Month Contract | 1GB – Unlimited Data | $8.33 – $60/Month

Spoiled for choice with cheap cell phone plans on T-Mobile‘s network, Mint Mobile and Tello are excellent options. Boost Mobile, however, competes closely with Mint and Visible, offering an unlimited data plan for just $25/month (cheaper than Mint by $5). Note that Boost’s 5G data speed caps at 30GB (Mint offers 45GB) and lacks a mobile hotspot unless you opt for the $40/month plan. Still, Boost is a great value option.

Best Pay-as-You-Go

7. Best Pay-as-You-Go

Ultra Mobile | T-Mobile Network | 1 Month Contract | 100Mb Data | $3/Month

For light users, consider Ultra Mobile’s pay-as-you-go SIM card. Just $3/month gets you 100MB of data, 100 texts, and 100 minutes of call time. Additional usage is charged at 3 cents/minute or MB and 1 cent/text, making it an extremely affordable option. Tello also offers a similarly fantastic pay-as-you-go plan.

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(image credit: Future)

How to Save Money with Cheap Cell Phone Plans?

  1. Switch to a smaller carrier: Cheap plans save money compared to bigger carriers like AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile. Smaller carriers like Visible offer prepaid alternatives at a fraction of the cost.
  2. Cut out what you don’t need: Reduce data if you mainly use WiFi. Many plans offer unlimited talk and text, so cutting data can lead to significant savings.
  3. Review plan usage and avoid data upcharges: Understand your data, talk, and text needs to avoid overage charges. Check the fine print for any upcharge possibilities.

Who has the Best Coverage?

All featured cheap cell phone plans use Verizon, AT&T, or T-Mobile networks. Check coverage on carrier websites with zip codes or location maps.

How Are These Plans So Cheap?

Smaller carriers (MVNOs) piggyback on major carriers’ networks, avoiding infrastructure costs. They offer cheaper plans due to lower overheads. While there might be de-prioritization during high traffic, the savings outweigh the disadvantages for most users.

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