on Wednesday, September 26th, 2012 | Comments Off on Free Cell Phones for the Elderly (Yes, This Includes Seniors Too)
Many people with elderly parents or even seniors themselves want to know if there is such a thing as free cell phones for the elderly. And the answer is yes! When the Ronald Reagan administration made it possible during the 1980s for everyone to have access to landline phones (from the working poor to the senior on SSI and/or Medicaid), no one would have ever thought that nearly 30 years later that wireless would essentially replace most landlines. And that the Life Line Phone program that this president essentially enacted would be mostly for wireless.
And for good reasons: Wireless has changed the landscape of everything. It has done away with the fixed/wired phone. Wireless phones give seniors and elderly people much more of a sense of independence and creates a better sense of communication when some isolation may exist. And access to wireless devices for those 55+ gives their grown children a better sense of security knowing that if their parent or older loved one required immediate service and attention; they would get it with a wireless phone.
But wireless phones are expensive. Maybe the devices have gotten cheaper. You know the handsets that you pick up every day to use on a wireless network. And it’s true that most believed that with data coming along, that voice would be made cheaper. And in many cases, voice services with wireless providers have gotten cheaper. But there is a catch. The catch is that now voice rides most data infrastructure today- so has the ability to talk on a cell phone gotten cheaper? Yes and No. Data is now so bundled as a service. Voice is now the new data (ie, Voice over IP). And the fact remains that the average mobile phone bill soars still between 50-60 dollars every month.
So what can a senior or elderly person do to get a free cell phone?
Call places like: Safelink, Reachout, Budget Mobile and Assurance Wireless. I’ll put the phone numbers at the end of this article. Because if you are elderly and living on a fixed income, you typically qualify.
You may wonder what would be included? Well there are a ton of options that comes with a free cell phone.
One, you get a free cell phone. It’s typically not the latest phone with all the bells and whistles. Typically it’s a new or gently used phone that does voice and text. Many seniors don’t even text so it’s great to know that the phone you will receive will enable you to see the phone to make basic calls.
Most of the programs also allow you to text for free and even roll over unused minutes. But it’s important to note that you will have to apply every year to stay eligible and eligibility is handled at the state level. Typically for seniors and elderly you only need to be on Medicaid or SSI. And the real beauty is that you only need to be on ONE of the many programs. But like previously noted most elderly people on a fixed income are on at least ONE government program or state aid.
Here are the numbers:
Safelink Customer Service: 1-800-Safelink
Assurance Customer Service: 1-888-898-4888
Reach Out Mobile Customer Service 1-877-870-9444
Budget Mobile Customer Service: 1-888-777-40074
There are even some state specific free mobile phone companies. But the above are the major ones for seniors. Remember, there are free cell phones for the elderly out there. And the major 4 companies including: Safelink, Assurance, Reach Out and Budget Mobile are a good place to start.