Consumer Cellular Review – Affordable Cell Plans Tailored to Needs

Consumer Cellular is an affordable prepaid and postpaid cell phone service provider known for offering customized plans to meet each customer’s unique needs. With no contracts, no overage fees, and excellent coverage through AT&T and T-Mobile networks, Consumer Cellular provides exceptional value, especially for seniors and light data users not requiring unlimited plans.

This comprehensive Consumer Cellular review covers plan options, phones, network coverage, customer service, and more to help you determine if their cell service is right for your budget and usage needs.

Overview of Consumer Cellular’s Cell Phone Plans

Consumer Cellular does not have one-size-fits-all cell phone plans. Instead, you can customize a plan based on your monthly talk minutes, text messages, and data usage needs. Some key things to know:

No Contracts

There are no contracts. You have the flexibility to change plans anytime or cancel service at your discretion.

Monthly Plans

Pick the number of talk minutes starting from 250 minutes up to unlimited. Add text messages as needed, then choose data in increments from 250MB up to 30GB per month.

Affordable Rates

With talk starting at $15/month, Consumer Cellular offers very reasonable rates, especially for light data users. Taxes and fees are included in the advertised monthly price.

Per Minute Rates

If you use more minutes or texts than your plan allotment, per minute overage rates apply vs costly overage fees.

Group & Family Discounts

Save 25% per line for two lines or 30% per line for 3 or more lines on the same account. An excellent value for families.

No Hidden Fees

What you see is what you get. No activation fees, no overage charges. Taxes and regulatory fees are included in the monthly price.

Hotspot Data

For an extra $5/month you can add hotspot capability and share your data allowance with other devices.

International Options

Add calling to Mexico, Canada, or other countries for just $5-10 more per month. Or pay by the minute.

Plan Options and Pricing

Let’s take a deeper look at Consumer Cellular’s plan options and pricing.

Talk Minutes, Texts, and Data Allowance

You have complete flexibility to choose the number of monthly minutes, texts, and data that meet your needs.

Monthly Minutes

  • 250 minutes – $15/month
  • 500 minutes – $20/month
  • 750 minutes – $25/month
  • 1,500 minutes – $30/month
  • Unlimited minutes – $40/month

Text Messages

  • Pay per text message – $0.05 per text
  • 250 texts – $5/month
  • 500 texts – $10/month
  • Unlimited texts – $15/month

Data Allowance

  • 250MB – $5/month
  • 1GB – $10/month
  • 3GB – $20/month
  • 5GB – $30/month
  • 10GB – $40/month
  • 30GB – $65/month

Sample Individual Plan Costs

Here are some sample customized monthly plans for individual lines:

  • 250 minutes, 250 texts, 250MB data – $25/month
  • Unlimited minutes, texts, and 5GB data – $85/month
  • 500 minutes, unlimited texts, and 1GB data – $35/month

The prices above do not include multi-line or other discounts.

Multi-Line Family Plans

Consumer Cellular offers excellent discounts for shared family plans with two or more lines.

  • 25% discount per line for two lines
  • 30% discount per line for 3 lines
  • 30% discount per line for 4+ lines

So for example, two lines with unlimited calls, texts, and 1GB of shared data would cost $60 per month per person after the 25% discount.

A family of four with similar unlimited plans would pay just $50 per line per month after the 30% multi-line discount.

International Call Packages

For an additional $5-10 per month, you can add international calling packages:

  • Mexico Plan – $5 per month for unlimited calls to landlines and cell phones in Mexico
  • Canada Plan – $10 per month for unlimited calls to Canadian numbers
  • World Plan – $10 per month for discounted per minute calling to landlines in over 70 countries

Without a package, international calls are billed at reasonable per minute rates.

Taxes and Surcharges

There are no hidden fees with Consumer Cellular. All taxes and surcharges are included in the advertised monthly price for each plan. There are no extra activation, access charges, or regulatory cost recovery fees.

Phones Offered and Bring Your Own Device

Consumer Cellular offers a solid variety of the latest phones from top brands. You can also bring your own compatible device.

Phones Offered for Sale

You can purchase popular phones from Consumer Cellular, including:

  • iPhone models – iPhone 14, iPhone 13, iPhone SE
  • Samsung models – Galaxy S22, Galaxy S21, Galaxy A13
  • Simple flip phones – Doro, Alcatel, Kyocera
  • Smartphones for seniors – Doro 7050, iPhone SE

Phones are offered at reasonable prices compared to most carriers. All device purchases are made upfront, with the option to pay in monthly installments for some models.

Bring Your Own Phone

If you have an unlocked GSM compatible phone, you can simply swap the SIM and keep your phone number to activate it on Consumer Cellular’s network. This includes most unlocked:

  • Android phones
  • iPhones
  • Google Pixel models

Make sure your phone is unlocked and supports 4G LTE bands 2, 4, 5, and 12 used by Consumer Cellular.

You can check here to see if your current phone is compatible with their service.

Coverage Map and Carrier Networks

Consumer Cellular offers coverage nationwide across AT&T’s and T-Mobile’s networks. With access to both networks, its coverage is extensive reaching over 99% of customers.

AT&T Network

The AT&T network covers much of the eastern and midwestern regions, plus Alaska and parts of California. You get access to AT&T’s fast LTE network and 5G coverage.

T-Mobile Network

In the western half of the country and other regions, Consumer Cellular uses T-Mobile’s network with LTE and nationwide 5G access.

Coverage Map

You can view Consumer Cellular’s coverage map showing AT&T and T-Mobile combined network access here.

Their coverage spans all states with LTE 4G connectivity and growing 5G availability. More limited coverage may exist in some rural locations.

Nationwide vs No Roaming Restrictions

By default, service is restricted if roaming off the main AT&T and T-Mobile networks. For full unrestricted nationwide coverage with roaming allowed, you can pay an extra $5 per month.

Activation Process and Customer Support

Activating service and getting help from customer support is quick and convenient.

Simple Activation Process

You can easily activate cell service online or over the phone in about 10 minutes. Just select your plan, phone, and payment method to get started.

US-based Customer Service

Consumer Cellular’s award-winning customer service team is based in the US. You can get assistance by live chat, email, phone, or schedule an in-store appointment.

Help is available 24/7 for billing questions, changing plans, troubleshooting issues, activating a new phone, and other support needs.

In-store Support Option

You can also get setup assistance at Target store locations with Consumer Cellular representatives available on-site. This makes the process easy for those who prefer in-person support.

Unique Features and Perks

Along with flexibility and affordability, Consumer Cellular offers some useful features and perks:

Cell Phone Protection

Get up to two claims per year for a low $7 monthly fee to cover repair or replacement costs if your phone is damaged or stolen.

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AARP Member Discounts

If you are an AARP member, you get 5% off any Consumer Cellular plan. Just provide your AARP number when signing up for service.

Referral Rewards

Refer friends to join Consumer Cellular and you can earn account credits for each successful referral. These credits help lower your monthly bill.

Lift to Caregivers

This service lets caregivers or family members manage the cell phone account for seniors or relatives through a consumer portal. Helpful for monitoring usage and payments.

Consumer Cellular Plans FAQs

Does Consumer Cellular offer unlimited data plans?

Yes, you can customize a plan with unlimited talk, text and unlimited 30GB of high-speed data each month. However, for most light users, a smaller data allowance results in the lowest price.

What happens if I go over my plan minutes or data?

You will never pay costly overage fees. Any minutes or data used above your plan amounts are billed at reasonable pay per use rates. For minutes, it’s $0.25 per minute. Data overage is $0.005 (half a cent) per MB used.

Can I bring my own unlocked phone?

Yes, you can activate most unlocked GSM phones on Consumer Cellular’s network. Unlocked iPhones and Android devices are compatible. Just swap in a Consumer Cellular SIM card.

How is Consumer Cellular’s coverage?

With access to both AT&T and T-Mobile’s networks, Consumer Cellular provides extensive nationwide LTE and 5G coverage reaching over 99% of customers. Check their coverage for your area.

Does Consumer Cellular offer family plans?

Yes, you can set up shared family plans at excellent discounted multi-line rates. Save 25% per line for 2 lines or 30% per line for 3+ lines. All lines share minutes, texts, and data allowances.

Is Consumer Cellular Right for You?

Consumer Cellular caters to budget-conscious individuals, especially seniors, who want flexibility, excellent coverage, and outstanding customer service.

Some key takeaways on their cell service:

  • Customized plans to fit your unique needs
  • No contracts and affordable rates
  • Reliable coverage on AT&T and T-Mobile networks
  • US-based support and helpful resources for seniors
  • Light data users get the best value
  • Bring your own phone option available
  • Easy setup online, over the phone, or at Target stores

The flexibility to tailor a plan based on your usage, with no overage fees or hidden charges, makes Consumer Cellular worth considering. Their award-winning customer service provides an added benefit.

Overall, Consumer Cellular delivers exceptional value for light data users who want customized and affordable cell plans minus contracts.

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