TerraCom Wireless is another player in the free wireless phone arena. They participate in the government Lifeline program and offer free cell phones along with 250 minutes of free talk time to qualified individuals. Currently (as of December, 2012) they provide free cell phone service in Arkansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Oklahoma, Texas and Wisconsin.
If you don’t live in one of the states listed above, visit their sister site TerraCom Online. TerraCom Online offers low-cost phone service to those who qualify.
Qualifying for TerraCom’s Free Cell Phone
The qualification criteria may vary slightly state, but if you participate in one of the following government assistance programs, you are eligible:
- Temporary Assistance to needy Families (TANF)
- Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
- Food Stamps
If you’re unsure whether or not you qualify, go to the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) website and complete the pre-screening questionnaire. USAC is a not-for-profit company that administers the Lifeline Program under the oversight of the Federal Communications Commission. Their site also provides a host of valuable information about the Lifeline Program.
You can apply for service by visiting the TerraCom website and completing the online application. They provide an upload page where you can upload proof of eligibility. Once you are approved, monitor your mailbox for receipt of the phone.
Stolen or Lost Phones
TerraCom does not accept responsibility for lost or stolen phones. They do not send free replacements. What they offer instead is a discount on a new phone. As long as you have phone service through Terracom you may purchase a replacement or upgrade at a discounted price.
The 250 talk minutes do not rollover from month to month. If you don’t use all of the minutes, you forfeit them. If, however, the 250 minutes is not enough, you can purchase additional airtime and text time. To do so visit a local retailer, visit their website, or call them at 1-877-524-2260.
If you live in Oklahoma, you can purchase unlimited talk time for $4.58 per month (plus tax and fees). This is available under the Oklahoma Lifeline Unlimited Plan. There is also the Oklahoma Lifeline 1000 Plan that provides 1000 talk minutes and 1000 text messages for the price of $1 per month. Neither the talk time or text minutes carry over from month to month. You must use them or lose them.