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Internet Discounts Guide for Senior Citizens

By Paula Novo
September 28, 2020

Are you a retiree looking for low-cost internet options for seniors that fit within your budget? We’ve done extensive research to bring you the best deals and offers around. Our Internet Discounts Guide for Senior Citizens will help you:

  • Confidently select an internet plan that’s right for you and your budget
  • Take advantage of special offers and discounts available to seniors
  • Negotiate for fair pricing and consistent service from your internet service provider (ISP)

 

Introduction

Whether to save time or money, the internet solves more problems than we realize sometimes. From shopping for groceries online to visiting with extended family over video chat, staying connected is essential for individuals who can no longer drive or travel far. Use this guide to confidently select an internet plan geared toward seniors. It includes:

 

Internet Options for Seniors

According to a 2019 study conducted by Statista, nearly three-fourths (73%) of adults in the United States aged 65+ currently use the internet. Due to this high demand for affordable internet, programs and providers have initiated budget-friendly options for senior citizens and low-income households.

The Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) Lifeline Program is a key part of these efforts. Created in 1985 to make phone and internet services accessible to low-income households, Lifeline is a program that helps ISPs nationwide to provide discounted services to qualifying individuals. Many internet providers offer joint Lifeline plans or basic internet packages that cater to elderly consumers on a tight budget. Below are the top four internet discounts for senior citizens.

Spectrum Internet™ Assist

Previously known as Time Warner Cable, Spectrum is a leading provider in the U.S. that offers Spectrum Internet™ Assist. For just $14.99 per month, eligible customers can enjoy high-speed internet with no contracts and unlimited data to keep you constantly connected.

What's Included:

  • Internet service for $14.99/mo.
  • Download speeds up to 30 Mbps
  • Option to add In-Home WiFi for an additional $5/mo.
  • No Data Caps
  • No Contracts

 

Requirements:

  • Must be 65 years of age or older
  • Installation fees and equipment fees apply
  • One household member must be a recipient of Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or participate in the National School Lunch Program (NSLP)

 

Xfinity Internet Essentials 

Also known as Comcast, Xfinity is well known for its Xfinity Internet Essentials plan specifically for seniors. Eligible customers aged 62+ get internet speeds up to 25 Mbps in select areas with in-home WiFi and no credit checks required. Now, that’s a deal we can get behind.

What's Included:

  • Internet service for $9.95/mo., plus tax
  • Download speeds up to 25 Mbps
  • In-Home WiFi included
  • No Contracts
  • No Credit Checks

 

Requirements:

  • Must be 62 years of age or older
  • Must reside in Comcast service area
  • Must receive some form of federal or state public assistance

 

AT&T Access

Serving both rural and urban communities, AT&T is the largest internet provider in the U.S. which means it’s likely you live within its service area. In particular, seniors with fixed or low incomes should consider capitalizing on AT&T Access, AT&T’s most affordable internet plan. For just $10 per month, qualifying customers get speeds up to 10 Mbps, in-home WiFi, and a generous data allowance to keep you connected.

What's Included:

  • Internet service for $10/mo.
  • Monthly data allowance between 150 GB - 1 TB, based on your internet type and speed
  • Download speeds up to 10 Mbps
  • In-Home WiFi included

 

Requirements:

  • Must reside in AT&T service area
  • One household member must participate in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), also referred to as Food Stamps

 

CenturyLink Internet Basics

CenturyLink partners with FCC Lifeline to provide CenturyLink Internet Basics. This internet plan is especially popular for seniors who need assistance. CenturyLink offers free basic internet training and internet security tools, so you’re always protected and in the know.

What's Included:

  • Internet service for $9.95/mo.
  • Speeds up to 1.5 Mbps
  • Access to free basic Internet Training
  • Norton Security Suire anti-virus protection

 

Requirements:

  • Must meet eligibility requirements for FCC Lifeline Program
  • Requires a minimum 12-month contract for internet service
  • Installation fees and equipment fees apply

 

Cheap Internet Plans

While some providers don’t offer plans solely catered to seniors, most do offer low-cost options that are kind to your wallet. Here is a list of the top 10 internet providers in the U.S. with cheap internet plans. 

 

Frontier FiOS 50 Plan at $29.99/mo.*

Frontier offers a competitive starter plan for $29.99/mo. that comes with speeds up to 30 Mbps on their 100% fiber-optic network. This connection type delivers faster speeds overall, supports more connected devices, and provides the greatest home coverage available today.

Frontier
Speeds up to 50 Mbps
100% fiber-optic network
No data caps

 

Cox Internet Starter 10 Plan at $29.99/mo.*

This starter package is priced at a low $29.99/mo. for budget shoppers and low internet usage alike. With speeds up to 10 Mbps, this plan can easily support light web browsing and email checks.

Cox
Speeds up to 10 Mbps
12-month contract
1.25 TB/mo. data allowance

 

Optimum Starter Plan at $25.00/mo.*

This internet plan starting at $25.00/mo. offers speeds up to 20 Mbps and no data caps or contracts. You can get connected in as little as two days with Optimum.

Optimum
Speeds up to 20 Mbps
Contract Buyouts
Unlimited data

 

Windstream Kinetic 15 at $19.99/mo.*

Windstream's starter plan is just what some people. Reasonably priced at $19.99/mo., Windstream offers internet speeds up to 15 Mbps, which is great for checking emails regularly and browsing your favorite websites.

Windstream
Speeds up to 15 Mbps
Unlimited data
No annual contracts

 

CenturyLink Price for life Starting at $49.00/mo.*

With nationwide availability, CenturyLink offers a competitive starter plan for $49.00/mo. that includes speeds up to 100 Mbps. This is enough speed to support 1-3 persons and occastional guests that request WiFi access.

CenturyLink
Speeds up to 100 Mbps
Price for Life Guarantee
No annual contracts

 

EarthLink HyperLink Starting at $49.95/mo.*

EarthLink HyperLink packages are packed with bonus features and ultra-fast internet speeds to fit most lifestyles. You can enjoy speeds up to 30 Mbps for just $49.95/mo. without worrying about data caps or speed throttling.

EarthLink
Speeds up to 30 Mbps
Unlimited data
No contracts or rate hikes

 

AT&T Gig Starting at $49.99/mo.*

While this rate only lasts for a 12-month contract, you can enjoy blazing-fast internet gigabit speeds up to 940 Mbps when you choose AT&T. Not only can this package support your internet needs, but it can support your child and grandchildren when they come to visit as well.

AT&T
Speeds up to 940 Mbps
12-month promotional pricing
Unlimited data

 

Spectrum Internet Starting at $49.99/mo.*

This starter plan offers speeds up to 200 Mbps for just $49.99/mo. that is great for a 1-3 person household. Spectrum's nationwide availability makes it the first choice for many.

Spectrum
Speeds up to 200 Mbps
12-month contract
Unlimited data

*Prices and speeds vary depending on your location and are subject to change at the provider’s discretion.

 

Additional Ways to Save

girl-putting-money-in-piggy-bank-smiling

Whether you currently subscribe to an internet service or want the most bang for your buck, there are several additional ways to save aside from finding internet options for seniors. Internet plans and pricing may seem fixed, but you can use these helpful tips to ensure you always get the speeds and services you pay for.

Use Your Own Equipment

Some providers require customers to use their equipment for services, however, there are also plenty who don’t. Try finding a provider that allows you to use your own compatible equipment and waive the monthly rental fee. While you’ll pay a higher initial cost to purchase an affordable router outright, you will save money in the long run.

Potential Savings: $5-$15 per month

Negotiate

A little bargaining could go a long way in saving you money if done right, so always try to negotiate. It may seem like internet prices are firm, but many times, providers offer matched pricing or special discounts to seniors. If you find out your neighbor pays less than you for the same service, receive a discount on a mail flyer, or see competitors offering lower prices, tell your sales representative. And don’t forget to always ask questions if you don’t understand an added cost or the fine print of your service. The worst thing they can say is, “No.” 

Potential Savings: $100-$200 per year

Shop Around

When you need cheap internet, sometimes your best bet is to shop around. Most internet providers increase prices after a set promotional period, causing your bill to double if not triple at times. To avoid busting your budget, consider changing internet providers at the time of your contract change. Introductory prices for first-time subscribers are usually lower and may come with no contracts at all. Remember, though, that this is not a long-term solution to budget shopping, but rather a way to find the right provider for you. One that doesn’t include constant price hikes.

Potential Savings: $200-$800 per year

Sign a Contract

Internet providers who boast about their “no contract” plans appear like great offers, but be wary of these deals. Without a contract, your provider has the ability to increase your bill whenever they want. Internet contracts guarantee that your monthly bill will remain the same for a set period of time, and it may even offer a lower price compared to non-contract plans. Always ask your sales representative if they offer contracts, and if so, how long their term periods extend. This is one way you can create your own internet options for seniors.

Potential Savings: $100-$200 per year

Watch Your Data Usage

Typically, providers with data caps charge an additional fee when you exceed your data usage. These charges can range anywhere form $5-15 per 50 GB of data you exceed on your plan, with total overage fees coming in as high as $100/mo. if you’re not careful. You can avoid these fees by either monitoring your monthly data usage closely or upgrading your data allowance to better suit your digital lifestyle.

Potential Savings: $10-$100 per month

Downgrade Your Internet Plan

You may have to sacrifice some speed with this route, but downgrading your internet plan can significantly reduce your monthly payment and save you hundreds of dollars in the long run. Most providers offer a wide range of speeds, so you always have options.

Potential Savings: $10-$60 per month

Speak Up About Poor Service

If you ordered a 65” TV online and received a 50” TV instead, you would return the wrong item and request a refund or replacement. In the same way, if you pay for internet speeds up to 50 Mbps and regularly experience slower speeds, you should contact your provider to notify them of your poor connection. If you’re unsatisfied with your internet, be sure to speak up about the sub-par service to request technical support. In addition to remedying your issue, they may even offer a coupon or extra discount to make up for it.

Potential Savings: $0-$150 per year

Check Availability

birds-eye-view-of-suburban-neighborhood

When all else fails, ask a friend or family member to assist you in your internet search. Internet options for seniors shouldn’t blow your budget, and luckily there are plenty of great options available to senior citizens today. To shop affordable and reliable internet service available near you, enter your zip code below for current deals.

 

Enter your zipcode to see providers near you

Written By
Paula Novo

Paula began her career in the telecom space, writing on all things tech for 3+ years. With a degree in Advertising from The University of Texas at Austin, Paula’s passion for connecting with consumers is unparalleled. Beyond that, Paula is considered a Jane-of-all-trades who loves DIY projects, attempts to cook Thai food, and photographs brands in her spare time.

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