If you are over 50 and have an AARP membership, you qualify to enjoy a discount if you opt to use Consumer Cellular as your prepaid cell phone provider.
Consumer Cellular offers the usual no contract, risk-free service. They boast a 100% satisfaction guarantee within the first 45 minutes of cell phone use or 45 days of coverage (whichever comes first). They also offer low-priced cell phones.
Consumer Cellular Service Plan Pricing
Pricing plans range from $10 a month to $60 a month. Each plan offers various talk-time minutes. AARP members receive a 5% discount so the plans range from $9.50 to $57. Long distance is included in the monthly fee as long as the calls are made within the US.
Consumer Cellular offers a Family Share plan which costs $10 monthly ($9.50 for AARP members) for each additional cell phone line.
Available Cell Phones
Currently Consumer Cellular offers 5 cell phones ranging in price from -$10 (yes, that’s a minus $10) to free to $60. The -$10 phone is the Motorola C168 (they actually pay you to take the phone). The free phone is the Motorola W220d and the top of the line ($60 phone) is the Motorola KRZR K1. AARP members also get a 30% discount on some cell phone accessories.
Consumer Cellular phone service comes with voicemail, call forwarding, call waiting and 3 way calling. However, if you’re looking for text messaging, the standard rate for text messaging is 10 cents per message (or .095 AARP discount). If you tend to be a heavy texter, you should purchase one of their text messaging packages that range from $2.50 a month for 100 messages to $20 a month for 1,000 messages. Unfortunately, they don’t seem to offer an unlimited text messaging plan.
Coverage Area Map
Update: Consumer Cellular is not a Prepaid Company. The following email was received from Consumer Cellular on 7/16/2009:
Just so you know Consumer Cellular is not a prepaid company. They do perform a credit check and bill you monthly after you use the service. On another note, the phones have been updated. They’re shown on the website. I’m not sure, if you keep your site updated or not, but I just thought I’d let you know.