Assurance Wireless is the fastest-growing company in the Lifeline Assistance Program. The company currently operates in 35 states and Washington DC and is completing a year of rapid expansion, which has already seen it bring its business to 4 new states. They are clearly far from finished, as recent reports suggest that they will soon be approved to offer phones in the most-populous state of them all, California, The company was founded in 2009, and is a subsidiary of Virgin Mobile USA. The company was formed to assist those eligible for free government phones under the Lifeline Assistance Program. The company continues to serve this segment, and as they have no other customers, has concentrated on improving the service they bring to their Lifeline customers.
The company not only has made rapid expansion (with indications for more) in the area that they serve, but they have also expanded their product offerings. Many companies that provide free phones, offer only talk minutes as part of their basic packages. Assurance Wireless offers a bit more.
What kind of phone do I get with Assurance Wireless?
Once you are approved for a free phone from Assurance Wireless, the company will send out one of a few types of basic phone models. The most common type that Assurance has used recently is the Kyocera Jax. If an Assurance Wireless client wants a better phone, they may, for a fee, purchase one of several other Virgin Mobile phones, as most of them will work on Assurance Wireless. However, Android and Blackberry phones, even if issued by Virgin Mobile, cannot be used for Assurance Wireless Service.
The company does not usually offer upgrades, but from time to time they have offered different models for purchase. If and when the company offers upgrades, we’ll let you know
What plans does Assurance Wireless offer?
Assurance Wireless is the only company that offers free government cell phones that also gives free text messages as part of their basic plan. They have one free plan and several that require a monthly payment. The plans are as follows:
- Basic Plan – Customers receive 250 talk minutes and 250 text messages. This plan is at no cost to the customer.
- For just $5 a month, customers receive 500 talk minutes and 500 text messages.
- For $20 a month, customers receive 1000 talk minutes and 1000 text messages.
- For $30 a month, customers receive unlimited talk minutes + unlimited text messages and an unlimited data allowance
For customers who would prefer to pay as they go, Assurance Wireless offers add-ons at the following rates:
Can I access the internet on Assurance Wireless?
Yes, you can. Assurance Wireless has several plans for accessing the internet, however they are NOT cheap. The company offers a pay-as-you-go rate of $1.50/Mb, or you can purchase packages of 5MB for $5, 10MB for $10 and 50MB for $20.
By far, the best deal is paying $30 for the unlimited, talk, text and data, as the prices for a la carte data plans are quite high.
How do I Put Money on my Assurance Wireless Phone?
Customers of Assurance Wireless can add money to their phones by purchasing virtual cards online, paying with PayPal, a credit or debit card. you never have to leave your house to purchase more time for your phone. Customers can also add money by purchasing Virgin Mobile Top-up cards. The top-up cards are available at many stores such as Wal-Mart, Target, Radio Shack, Rite-Aid and others. They come in denominations from $10 to $60.
How do I qualify for an Assurance Wireless phone?
Applicants can usually qualify for a free Assurance Wireless phone if they participate in a government assistance program, or in some states, have a household income that is lower than a percentage of the Federal Poverty Guidelines. Each state that Assurance Wireless operates in has different qualifying criteria for the people of that state and some states do not allow applicants to qualify on the basis of income. However, most states do allow their citizens to qualify under the following programs:
- Food Stamps/ SNAP
- Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
- Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF)
- Federal Public Housing Assistance (Section 8)
- Low-Income Energy Assistance Program (LIEAP)
- The National School Lunch Program’s Free Lunch Program (NSL)
How do I get an Assurance Wireless phone?
We’re glad you asked! Click on our Assurance Wireless Application page. There you will see the qualifying information for all of the states where the company offers service. There you will be able to see if you qualify for service in your state and you will be able to download an application for a free phone.