Senior citizens have done incredible things for our country. From defending our freedom to creating jobs in the market to guiding their families through troubling times with experience, they have done quite a bit. The patient wisdom of our elders is invaluable.
Currently in our country, our wallets are thin. Extra cash is tough to come by for some of America’s residents and this includes the senior citizen population. For those who are still working menial jobs after retirement to pay the bills or for those who cannot afford to retire, communication and growth is essential.
Cell phones for seniors
Free cell phone plans are a way to alleviate stress on senior citizens and their families. Being able to communicate with those who can guide our seniors through the retirement process, to seek better paying wages so they can attain retirement or simply catching up with family and friends all derive from communication.
Is a cell phone plan is too complicated or too expensive? There are government programs in place to relieve this particular problem. If you or your senior citizen is eligible, Lifeline can provide a free cell phone and cell phone service plan.
The Lifeline Assistance program began by only providing landlines. In 2005, the program updated to include the anymore essential cell phone and cell phone service plan. Lifeline offers many different carriers and depending on the one you choose, the carrier will offer different cell phone models and service plans.
Within these different cell phone plans are a variety of upgrade options for a small fee. This gives the individual an abundance of options in addition to the free base plan.
How Lifeline can help
Lifeline is funded through the Universal Service Fund. These funds are collected from different telecommunications service providers in the nation. Lifeline was built to provide help to those who need a source of communication. Weather the communication be to family, employers or to authorities is case of emergency, Lifeline wants to be sure senior citizens have a way to contact the outside world.
Apply for Lifeline
Eligibility varies by state, but most qualifications are within the means of these points listed below:
- Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (Food Stamps or SNAP)
- Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
- Federal Public Housing Assistance (Section 8)
- Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)
- Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF)
- National School Lunch Program’s Free Lunch Program
- Bureau of Indian Affairs General Assistance
- Tribally-Administered Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TTANF)
- Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations (FDPIR)
- Head Start (if income eligibility criteria are met)
- State assistance programs (if applicable)
If you or your senior citizen have not received assistance from any of the programs above but have a monthly income below 135% of the national poverty line, you are qualified to receive a free phone and service plan, as well as peace of mind, from the Lifeline program.
Service providers and options
Service providers under the Lifeline government program are, but not limited to: Safelink Wireless, Assurance Wireless and Reachout Wireless. All Lifeline carriers offer worry-free cell phone service without fearing the unknown or not completely understanding strange contracts or charges. Safelink Wireless also allows its customers to purchase additional minutes if more than the initial 250 minutes are needed.
Safelink Wireless has such benefits as 250 free minutes every month including; local calls, long distance calls, texting and other features in addition to a free cell phone. Safelink Wireless’ service plan guarantees no contracts, no bills, no credit card checks or hidden fees. The plan also assures its customers, there will be no penalty for going over the allotted amount of minutes.
Safelink Wireless provides convenient ways for its customers to submit proof of eligibility documents, including a place to upload these documents straight to the website, from your own home. This makes it easy for low income families and senior citizens to finally get the cell phone they need to communicate.
Safelink Wireless also offers easy accessibility to your cell phone plan to make sure you’re provided with the best service available through the carrier. If you feel you are not receiving the best service to fit your lifestyle, Safelink Wireless has a group of 24 hour available help representatives if you or your senior has a question about the service plan or cell phone.
Assurance Wireless is the “Worry Free Way to Stay Connected.” All of their plans come with a text messaging option. Their plans also offer 250 free minutes for calls and an additional 250 free texts per month, similar to Safelink Wireless. Assurance Wireless provides more minutes and texts to be purchased and added to the plan or has unlimited plans available for those who would prefer no restrictions.
Assurance Wireless offers many different options for the convenience of their customers. This Lifeline carrier provides an abundance of information to customize and learn about your cell phone plan. Such articles of information available include; a program description, how to apply for the program, availability of service plans and cell phone models, frequently asked questions and your own personal availability status.
The Assurance Wireless website provides happy customer testimonials to assure authenticity and success of the program. The carrier has a specialized agent available through the website or by phone to answer any and all questions you or your senior may have about their cell phone or service plan. The Assurance Wireless agent will take as much time as necessary to resolve any current problems and answer questions you cannot resolve on your own.
Reachout Wireless is known for its user friendly capabilities, from its helpful customer service representatives to its website. On the website, there is an enlarged blue button titled: “Live Support” if you need to speak with a Reachout Wireless service representative. There are also plainly labeled tabs with clear instructions to make your time spent on the site informative and stress free. A woman appears on the right hand side of the website to guide you through the program’s options.
Minutes and texts that are unused from the plan “roll over” to the next month, so they are not wasted. Reachout Wireless customers are given the option to buy more minutes straight from the website. Once on the website, your are able to pay for and download additional minutes straight to your phone.
For elderly people or those who are new to the government paid cell phone program, consider Reachout Wireless as a strong contender for an easy to use service plan provider.