Straight Talk Wireless is a prepaid cell phone service provider that’s owned by Tracfone. With plans beginning as low as $30 per month, you may be able to save money by making the switch.
I checked out the details of Straight Talk Wireless’s plans to help you decide whether or not you should try out this low-cost service provider. In this article, I’ll share six of the most important things to know before you switch.
What To Know Before Signing Up for Straight Talk Wireless
Straight Talk Wireless is a solid competitor among low-cost cell phone plans. Owned by Tracfone Wireless, which was recently acquired by Verizon Wireless, Straight Talk is now under the same Verizon umbrella as Total by Verizon and Simple Mobile.
Straight Talk Wireless also offers a prepaid home internet service in addition to 10 different prepaid wireless phone plans ranging from 30 days to a full year. Plans cost as little as $30 per month, but that price is available only for flip phones (not smartphones). For smartphones, plans begin at $35.
Straight Talk runs on the Verizon Wireless network, which means you’ll likely have great coverage if Verizon’s service is strong in your area.
I checked out the details of Straight Talk Wireless’s plans, coverage and more. I’ve also compared Straight Talk Wireless to different available phone plans and service providers to help you determine whether or not you should make the switch.
Table of Contents:
Below, you’ll find more information about Straight Talk Wireless including what plans are available, how reliable the service is and whether or not you should consider it as your mobile carrier.
1. Plans and Pricing
As of December 2022, Straight Talk Wireless offers 10 different prepaid wireless phone plans. Each of these plans is completely prepaid, which means you’ll never have to worry about overage charges.
In 2021, Verizon Wireless bought Tracfone, which owns Straight Talk Wireless. That means if you sign up for a new plan with Straight Talk Wireless, you’ll be on the Verizon Wireless network.
Straight Talk offers monthly cell phone service plans as well as 90-day, 180-day and 365-day options. Prices for monthly plans range from $30 to $90 per month. The annual plan costs $495, which works out to be $41.25 per month. However, I recommend signing up for a 30-day plan first to make sure Straight Talk’s service will work for you. For example, the basic phone plan is for flip phones only and does not work with smartphones.
Keeping that in mind, I’ve listed information on each plan below including its regular price, autopay discounts, and what you’ll be getting for your money.
|Basic Phone Plan||$30||30 Days||50% more data||1,500 minutes||Unlimited||100MB|
|Bronze Unlimited||$35||30 Days||$34 per month||Unlimited to U.S., Canada and Mexico||Unlimited||- First 10GB data at high speeds, then unlimited 2G speeds
- 5GB hotspot data
|Silver Unlimited||$45||30 Days||$42.50 per month for three months||Unlimited to U.S., Canada and Mexico||Unlimited||- First 10GB data at high speeds, then unlimited 2G speeds
- 5GB hotspot data
|Gold Unlimited||$55||30 Days||$50 per month for three months||Unlimited to U.S., Canada and Mexico||Unlimited||- First 10GB data at high speeds, then unlimited 2G speeds
- 15GB hotspot data
|Unlimited International||$60||30 Days||$59 per month||Unlimited nationwide and international calling||Unlimited||- First 10GB data at high speeds, then unlimited 2G speeds
- 5GB hotspot data
|Platinum Unlimited||$65||30 Days||$60 per month for three months||Unlimited nationwide and international calling||Unlimited||- First 20GB data at high speeds, then unlimited 2G speeds
- 20G hotspot data
|2-Lines Unlimited||$90||30 Days||None||Unlimited to U.S., Canada and Mexico||Unlimited||- First 10GB data at high speeds, then unlimited 2G speeds
- 15GB hotspot data
|Extended Unlimited||$130||90 Days||None||Unlimited nationwide||Unlimited||- First 10GB data at high speeds, then unlimited 2G speeds
- 5GB hotspot data
|Extended Unlimited||$255||180 Days||None||Unlimited nationwide||Unlimited||- First 10GB data at high speeds, then unlimited 2G speeds
- 5GB hotspot data
|Extended Unlimited||$495||365 Days||None||Unlimited nationwide||Unlimited||- First 10GB data at high speeds, then unlimited 2G speeds
- 5GB hotspot data
While the table above shows all of the wireless phone plans and pricing available at Straight Talk Wireless’s website, know that there are other places you can shop for Straight Talk service. You may even be able to find a better price from a reseller like eBay or Walmart.
2. Network Coverage
Previously, Straight Talk Wireless worked with all of the major cell phone service providers’ networks. However, because of the 2021 acquisition, if you sign up as a new customer, you’ll have access only to Verizon’s network.
To see if you’ll have coverage with Straight Talk Wireless on Verizon’s network, you can check the coverage map online.
When you visit the Straight Talk Wireless website, you’ll be able to enter your ZIP code and choose your current provider. I recommend selecting Verizon regardless of who your current carrier is because that’s the service that Straight Talk provides access to now. In fact, you can also check Verizon Wireless’ coverage map online to get a more comprehensive understanding of coverage in your area.
3. Data Speeds
Data is one of the biggest concerns that people have when switching to a prepaid carrier. If you’re currently paying for an unlimited data plan from one of the major three cell phone service providers, you may be wondering if Straight Talk Wireless will be able to meet your data needs.
Straight Talk Wireless does not offer unlimited high-speed data with any phone plan. Instead, its unlimited plans include a set amount of high-speed data before deprioritization kicks in. At that point, speeds will be throttled to as low as 2G speeds.
Most Straight Talk plans come with 10-20GB of high-speed, prioritized data before slower speeds. However, even after you’ve hit your monthly high-speed data allotment, you will still technically have unlimited data until the end of your prepaid plan cycle.
Here’s what Straight Talk Wireless’s website says about data speeds and prioritization:
Where the network is lightly loaded, a Straight Talk customer will notice little, if any effect from having lower priority. This will be the case in the vast majority of times and locations.
At times and at locations where the network is heavily loaded in relation to available capacity, however, a Straight Talk customer will experience increased latency during a data session, particiularly if the customer is engaged in a data-intensive activity.
Straight Talk’s website also says that, when network loading decreases or if a customer moves to a location that is less heavily loaded in relation to available capacity, the latency associated with a customer’s data connection (data speeds) will improve. Of course, actual availability, coverage and speeds will vary.
You can check out Straight Talk Wireless’s full terms and conditions online. Additionally, you can check out the full selection of plans on the Straight Talk Wireless website.
4. Activation Process
If you decide to make the switch to Straight Talk Wireless, the first thing you’ll need is a compatible phone and SIM card. To make sure your phone is compatible, it needs to be unlocked. If it is, you can choose “Keep your own phone” when you activate your service. You may also choose to shop for a new phone through Straight Talk Wireless or buy an unlocked phone online.
After that, you can choose whether you want to keep your existing phone number or get a new one. Then, you can enter your existing number (if you want to keep your number) or your ZIP code.
Next, you’ll choose which type of SIM you want: a physical SIM card or an eSIM. You can order a physical SIM card online for $0.99 from Straight Talk Wireless. Once you add the SIM card to your shopping cart, you’ll be able to follow the prompts on the screen to select a plan, enroll in auto-refill (optional) and enter your payment and shipping information to check out.
In addition to ordering one online, you can also purchase a Straight Talk Wireless SIM card and prepaid plan at a variety of retailers including Walmart.
To learn more about how to activate your phone with Straight Talk Wireless, check out the FAQ page online.
5. Phone Selection
Most people who switch to Straight Talk Wireless will want to keep their existing phones. This is one of the best ways to save money when switching to any new cell phone service provider. If you have an unlocked device, you can check your phone’s compatibility here.
If you are looking to buy a new phone, know that Straight Talk Wireless offers a large selection. In December 2022, Straight Talk Wireless had 96 phones available online including smartphones and basic phones.
You won’t find the newest smartphones available at Straight Talk Wireless; however, you will find options beginning as low as $4.99! For that price, you can get a reconditioned Alcatel MyFlip phone.
A few top sellers include the iPhone SE 2nd Generation for $149.99, the Samsung Galaxy A13 5G for $99.99 and the Samsung Galaxy A03s for $49.99. Compared to other budget Android phones, these are great prices!
You can check out the full selection of phones available from Straight Talk Wireless online. Before you purchase a phone from Straight Talk, be sure to compare prices. Check out this article on the best places to buy unlocked phones to find the best deals.
6. Customer Service
There are two ways that you can contact a representative at Straight Talk Wireless.
To start an online chat, click the “Chat With Us” button on the contact page or click the small chat bubble in the bottom-right corner of Straight Talk’s website on your computer, tablet or smartphone. Online chat is available every day from 8 a.m. to 11:45 p.m. ET.
If you’d rather speak with a representative over the phone, you can call Straight Talk Wireless at 1-877-430-2355 any day between 8 a.m. and 11:45 p.m. ET.
I reached out to Straight Talk Wireless via online chat and over the phone to see how long I’d have to wait. Online, I was connected to a representative instantly. Over the phone, I was connected to a representative after about a minute.
If you’re an existing Straight Talk Wireless customer, you can also text 611611 to check your balance, get refills and more.
For more on how to contact Straight Talk Wireless, visit the website.
If you’re thinking about switching to Straight Talk Wireless, I recommend checking out the coverage in your area first. You can do this by visiting the Straight Talk Wireless website and entering your ZIP code to see the coverage map. You can also visit Verizon Wireless’s website and follow the same steps to get a more comprehensive overview of the service in your area.
Straight Talk runs on Verizon’s network, so if Verizon has a strong signal in your area, then Straight Talk Wireless could be a great way to get reliable service without having to pay for a Verizon postpaid plan. However, other prepaid carriers on Verizon’s network may offer better deals. For example, Visible offers unlimited data on Verizon Wireless’ network for $30 per month.
If you think you want to switch to Straight Talk, I recommend trying out a 30-day plan first. Then, if the service works for you, you may consider a 90-day, 180-day or 365-day plan. That will give you time to test out the service in your area, and if there are any issues, you aren’t out the full price of a plan with a longer service period.
You can buy a SIM card online or in-store at many popular retailers. If you do decide to make the switch, be sure to check out this guide that we put together to take you step-by-step through the process.
If you’re still looking for the best fit, you can find more options in our guide on the best cell phone plans and deals available now.
Have you tried Straight Talk Wireless? Let us know in our Clark.com Community or check out the latest conversations around cell phones.