Free Cellphone Program Now in More States!

Discussion in 'Chit Chat' started by TeaBisqit, Mar 20, 2009.

  1. TeaBisqit

    TeaBisqit Member

    The new government program for a FREE cellphone and FREE 42 minutes per month for low income people is now available in more states. This is a government sponsored program in partnership with Tracfone. It's like foodstamps for the phone :D

    If you qualify for foodstamps, you qualify and if you are low income but don't get foodstamps, you should still qualify. They do it by income. If you are on SS, you pretty much qualify.

    You get a free cellphone. You get free 42 minutes per month. The minutes carry over to next month if you do not use them. Long Distance, Roaming, and Text messages are included. The program is for one year, then you have to reapply. They send you something when you are close to expiring.

    The application is very easy to do. They want Social, home address, phone, how many people are in your household, and proof of your low income. All you need to send them is a copy of your SS letter and if you are on other low income programs, just copies of those award letters. That's it.

    To check if the program is available in your state, go to:

    You can also call:

    The program is now available in the following states:
    * Florida
    * Georgia
    * Massachussets
    * Michigan
    * New York
    * Tennessee
    * Virginia
    * Pennsylvania
  2. 3gs

    3gs New Member

    thanks tea for info. this is a great idea. wish my state was listed but as I live in UT it probably wont unless its a federal program. They love to dump on the poor and disabled here.

    But there are times a cell phone would be nice-emergencies and driving.
    possible to put on fibro board also?[This Message was Edited on 03/20/2009]
  3. TeaBisqit

    TeaBisqit Member

    It's a government program and they will expand into all states in our country. Just keep checking back on it every few months. You can also call the 800 number and ask when they think they will get to your state.

    I didn't put it on the other forums cause it just seemed more like it belonged here. You can paste it somewhere else if you like.
  4. 3gs

    3gs New Member

  5. TeaBisqit

    TeaBisqit Member

    I got the new Safelinkwireless phone today. It came with a free charger! And it works. I am so thrilled to have a cell I don't have to pay for. We can add more minutes if we like, but you do have to pay if you do that. But they said they are going to make special Safelinkwireless phone cards we can buy, probably at a reduced price. I used up two minutes just setting up my voicemail. But I'm going to save up my minutes from now on. This phone is just for emergencies.
  6. TeaBisqit

    TeaBisqit Member

    My brutally honest review of this phone and the program.

    They sent me a Motorola like the one pictured on their homepage. It's small. It's made in China and you cannot read the serial on the battery because the print is so tiny. But you can check the serial from the phone's menu. The buttons are insanely tiny. Like, you might need to use a pen to push them and I'm having a hard time with it. Considering this program is for the poor and disabled, you would think for disabled people's consideration or the elderly that they would give a phone with large buttons? Really. I am amazed at the lack of thought on that. The phone does have backlighting, but it's not all that helpful with the tiny buttons. You do have put the battery in yourself.

    They sent me a free charger with it. Also made in China and poor quality. I hope it lasts.

    The phone does not have a camera built in, nor does it have a voice recorder built in. They do not let you transfer your minutes from your new phone to a current Tracfone of your own, which I do have, so if you have a phone with those features, you are out of luck.

    There were NO instructions on how to know what your new cell phone number is. And my phone refused to even display it. I had to call my own landline and get it off my Comcast account. Then I called Tracfone and someone (from India) helped me to program the phone so it finally did display the cell number. I guess they don't bother to test these phones before sending them out. In fact, the instructions, what little there are of them, seem to assume that you already know all there is to know about using a cell or a Tracfone. Another poorly thought out thing for the disabled, elderly or poor. They do give you a Tracfone manual, but it too, didn't really explain enough or do it in a simple manner.

    Voicemail would not setup using their instructions of pressing and holding the 1 key. I had to dial the cell's own number and do it that way. And, I used up two minutes just doing that.

    Seeing as how you only get forty-two minutes, and it takes you a few minutes to setup your voicemail, that's not a whole lot of minutes per month. You are allowed to add minutes, if you buy them from Tracfone. They are going to make new Safelinkwireless Tracfone cards to buy, supposedly at a discount, we shall see. In the meantime, it's full price, but you can use bonus codes with that.

    The phone comes with a few useless tiny games and it does have a calendar and a very useful calculator program. Has a standard clock and phonebook.

    The phone model is NOT a flip style. I am not crazy about that. I prefer the flip style to protect it. And they do not give you anything to put the phone in to protect it. If you want a cell phone holder for your bag, you must buy one from somewhere.

    And they do not give you a car charger, cause you know, poor people aren't supposed to have a car. You can buy a charger separately. Same can be said about the forty-two minutes, poor, disabled and elderly people are not supposed to have friends or need to call many doctors and wait on hold during the month.

    I would say, for emergencies, it's great. And you can call 911 from it at any time, even if you have used up your minutes. The minutes roll over if you want to save them up. You can use it for long distance and roaming.

    The phone must be charged like any other cell. As long as you remember to do that :D

    You must reapply yearly before your time runs out. They said they will remind you.

    You are supposed to keep the phone on during the first three days of the month so it automatically downloads your new monthly minutes. If you don't, there's an easy code to put in to get them.

    I think it's a wonderful program, I just think they did not put alot of thought into it. And they really did not think about the people who would actually be using these tiny phones with tiny buttons. And with the small amount of minutes, you can't use it in place of your landline or other cell. As I mentioned above, if you have numerous doctor's appointments and test results and have to be on hold, watch how fast the minutes get used up. My advice is to either shell out some money and put a few hours onto it, or just save this for emergencies.

    Yes, we should be grateful we got a free cell and free charger and free minutes. I am. I just wish they had put more thought into the program. Basically, I think of it as foodstamps for the phone. Not enough to live on, but a small help.

    And there you have my brutally honest opinion. Politically, it is bugging me that it's all made in China and you have to call India for help. All I kept thinking was how bad our economy is, and how our people need these jobs. I would feel better if it was made in our own country and we were calling tech support here. But that's just my opinion.

    Get the phone, it's free. If you only use it for emergencies, it is worth it.