Internet is a need of today, but also quite costly. Not everyone is fortunate enough to afford internet services. But you will be relieved to know that you can actually get free government internet for low-income people! Wondering how? Read further to know the best ways to get free internet at home.
Through the new government internet program – the Affordable Connectivity Program and the Lifeline Assistance Program, low-income eligible households can get reduced or free internet services from the government. You can save as much as $30.00 to $75.00 per month on your monthly internet bills through ACP and around $9.25 to $29.25 monthly through Lifeline program.
Free Internet from the government for low-income families
Yes, it is possible to get free government Internet service programs for low-income families, students, and households through ACP and Lifeline Programs. Internet Service Providers like Spectrum, Mediacom, Optimum, Cox, Eagle Communications, Frontier, etc., participate in ACP to offer free internet services for low-income needy people.
Lifeline Assistance Program
The government introduced the Lifeline assistance program in the year 1985 to help low-income families get access to Information and Communication Technology. The free government Lifeline internet program provides free high-speed internet data along with other needs, such as free talk and text messages, to eligible low-income households.
Low-income people who are below or at 135% of the poverty guidelines or participating in any of the government assistants programs such as Medicaid, SNAP, Social Security Income, etc., are eligible to apply for a lifeline-free internet program. Thus, you can get free internet with food stamps EBT program as well.
You can go to the official website of the lifeline that has been mentioned below and apply to get benefits such as free or discounted monthly service plans that include high-speed internet and more features.
- Website: https://www.fcc.gov/lifeline
- Contact: (888) 225-5322
Affordable Connectivity Program
If you are wondering, ‘How do I get free WiFi with no money?’, then one of the best solutions you have is to apply for the affordable connectivity program and get a free high-speed internet connection as well as smart devices that support internet connectivity such as smartphones, tablets, laptops, computers, and more.
Through ACP, You can get huge discounts on high-speed internet connectivity. Furthermore, you can also get free internet access along with cable, satellite internet connections, wireless, and so on.
This program of you up to a $30 discount on internet and monthly cell phone service plans, whereas this amount is $70 for qualifying tribal lands. Apart from this, you can get up to a $100 discount on tablets, smartphones, laptops, computer desktops, etc. You can apply for this program through the link mentioned below.
- Website: https://www.fcc.gov/acp
- Contact: (877) 384-2575
How to get free WiFi at Home for low-income people?
Given below is a list of all the companies and places that offer free internet Wi-Fi connections or cheap low-cost internet for low-income families. You can get free internet assistance from any of the below mention sources.
|Companies that offer free internet WiFi||Contact/Website||Features offered|
|Spectrum Internet Assist||
|Optimum Advantage Internet||
|Xfinity Internet Essentials||
|Astound Broadband Internet||
|Mediacom Internet Connect2Compete||
|Access by AT&T||
|PCs for People||
Eligibility to get Free Internet from Government for low-income people
To be eligible for free or discounted internet services from the government, one must meet any of the below-mentioned criteria.
Your household income must be less than or equal to 200% (130% for lifeline program) of the federal poverty guidelines.
Be a participant in any of the below federal assistance programs:
- Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
- Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
- National School Lunch Program (NSLP)
- Public Housing (HUD)
- Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)
- Other federal assistance programs
Companies that offer Free Internet Services at no cost
Given below is detailed information about Companies that offer Free Internet Services at no cost or reduced cost to eligible low-income families. You can compare the features of all these companies and see which ones are available in your area to get free internet at home.
These also include some of the Cheapest or low-cost Internet Service Providers in 2023. You can see how to apply for phone companies free broadband Internet or WiFi connections.
One of the best internet broadband companies that have offered free high, quality, and low-cost internet services for over 2 decades now.
This broadband service provider has a free dial-up connection plan through which you can get an hour per month of high-speed internet data for free of cost. You can even get a free mobile plan of up to 200 MB of internet per month for free.
NetZero has been a lot of people’s savior as the company has been providing internet connection since the time majority of the Internet service providers required credit card for installation of free internet services.
Although it has now transitioned almost completely to in normal internet service provider, it still offers ‘free dial-up internet access’ for low-income families.
You cannot exactly use the dial-up service for streaming videos online or playing online games as the speed is quite low, but it is still useful as you can get speeds between 28.8 Kbps to 56 Kbps.
Another limitation that comes with net zeros’ free dial-up internet plan is that you will get only 10 hours per month of online time. This can be quite a restriction for many of us, but when we compare it to the paid internet service plans, this seems to be quite a decent deal.
On the brighter side, as of now, NetZero is also giving a special offer to its customer by providing them the first month of free Norton 360’s all-in-one protection for cyber security and safety.
You can get multiple-layer protection for your devices through a VPN that can keep your connections secure and check identity theft. The first month of this program will be free, but if you do not cancel the plan before the end of your free period, then you will be charged for it.
You can get more information about the NetZero free internet service plan on their official website, linked below, or by directly contacting them at the number mentioned.
- Website: https://www.netzero.net/
- Contact: 1-800-NETZERO
Freedom Pop is yet another virtual wireless network that offers free and low-cost internet services for low-income households and free internet services for senior citizens. They claim to be the world’s first 100% free mobile plan provider, along with providing other services like free home broadband and free wireless internet.
Note that their free internet plan can provide you with a speed of up to 1 Mbps only and may be quite slow. So, if you are someone who uses the internet heavily, then this free internet service plan might not be the best option for you. However, with their paid plans, you can upgrade your internet speed to 25 Mbps.
The best part about Freedom Pop is that it is a participant of the Affordable Connectivity Program, and thus, you can also get other benefits apart from the ones mentioned above, such as FREE Unlimited talk, text, 10GB of high-speed data, Exclusive discount on tablet,s and more.
You can also bring your phone and simply transfer your number to this service provider. Go to their official website mentioned below to get more information on free internet plans for low-income people.
- Contact: (424) 317-9266
Spectrum Internet Assist
Spectrum Internet Assist offers free government internet service to low-income families who are eligible for it. This internet service provider is a participant of the Affordable Connectivity Program, and through it, they offer internet at no cost to low-income people.
Spectrum Internet Assist is an affordable internet plan for low-income families who meet the eligibility criteria for this particular program.
With this ISP, you can get other features as well, such as in-home WiFi service, Free modem, and Security Suite, etc. They do not require users to sign any contracts, hidden charges, or data caps.
You can easily apply for Spectrum Internet Assist, provided that you are eligible for the program. Go to the link mentioned below and enroll online on their platform for no-cost internet services. You will be required to submit certain documents to prove your eligibility for the program.
- Contact: (855) 870-1311
Optimum Advantage Internet
Yet another internet service provider that helps you stay connected with your close ones and the world, in general, is optimum advantage internet services. With this internet provider, you can get high-speed internet of up to 50 Mbps at a very affordable price.
This ISP is known among customers for its speed and reliability. You get to experience fast speed. They are also popular among the crowd for transparency in their plans at affordable prices and no hidden charges. They also have a 60-day money-back guarantee on certain plans.
Eligible households can get internet services for free from optimum advantage internet. If you apply for the affordable connectivity program and qualify for the same, then you also qualify for the optimum advantage free internet for low-income people. After your approval for this program, you can get free internet with a $30 monthly credit.
Not just that, households with students who reside in New York City and attend a New York City public school or are a recipient of the National School Lunch Program can get free or discounted internet services. Seniors aged 65 or above are eligible too. In fact, veterans or recipients of Federal public assistance or SSI are eligible as well.
Their general plans start from $14.99 per month, and there are no data caps. You get free installation as well as free WI-FI router with this plan. And the best part is that you can cancel it anytime without any risk.
Although they offer wired connections of up to 50 Mbps, the speeds may vary at times. Also, you will have to meet the eligibility criteria to opt for this plan. You can check detailed information on their official website, linked below.
There are further certain criteria that one must meet in order to receive the benefits from optimum internet. You will have to submit a valid US Postal service address while applying for the program.
Not being a subscriber of optimum internet within the last 60 days, not having an outstanding balance with optimum, and living in an area where optimum internet services are available are some of the essential requirements of this program.
- Website: https://www.optimumadvantageinternet.com/
- Contact: (844) 358-3147
Suddenlink Internet/Optimum Internet
Recently Suddenlink has been renamed as ‘Optimum.’ This revamped service provider is well known for offering 300 Mbps fiber internet for just $40 per month without mobile plans and only $30 per month with mobile plans. These plans also include the equipment.
You can even get free 300 Mbps fiber internet if you qualify through the Affordable Connectivity Program. By participating in the Federal Government assistance program, optimum offers a subsidy of up to $30 per month to eligible households to pay for their internet services. New as well as current optimum customers can apply for this program.
They offer one of the best government internet programs for low-income. Just note that this service is unavailable in all areas, and the Wi-Fi speeds might differ. You can check the eligibility for and availability of this program on their official website, which we have linked below.
Optimum claims a 99.9% reliability with no requirement of obligations such as annual contracts. They even claim to have a faster download speed than AT&T Nationwide.
- Website: https://www.optimum.com/
- Contact: 844-933-1112
Xfinity Internet Essentials
One of the few internet service providers that offer free government internet service, Xfinity internet essentials. With the Xfinity Internet Essentials service provider, you can get free home internet which will also be fast and reliable.
Their internet plan will cost you 9.95 per month. The best part is that this would not require any animal contract or hidden charges. You will also get free equipment with this program.
In collaboration with the Affordable connectivity program, you can get internet service for free from Xfinity. You can easily apply for this program from the official website of Xfinity, which we have linked below. You can also check for your eligibility and application on their website.
Talking of the particular requirements that one must meet in order to apply for Xfinity internet Essentials free government internet program, you must live in an area where Xfinity internet services are available.
You should not have had Xfinity internet within the last 90 days. You also should not have any outstanding debt to Xfinity, which is less than a year old.
By qualifying for government assistance programs like the housing assistant, SNAP, SSI, Medicaid, and National School lunch program, or applying to the affordable connectivity program, you can easily get Xfinity free government internet for low-income people.
- Website: https://www.internetessentials.com/
- Contact: (855) 846-8376
Astound Broadband Internet
You can get free government internet for seniors with the Astound Broadband Internet service provider of up to 300 Mbps internet speed at just $24.99 per month. This amazing plan also comes with a free $100 gift card, free installation, and a free modem.
This service provider is dedicated to helping underprivileged communities stay connected with their close ones affordably. As a result of which, they provide low-cost, reduced, or free internet services for low-income eligible people through the affordable connectivity program.
By enrolling in the affordable connectivity program, eligible households can get a discount of up to $30 per month on the Astound Broadband Internet Service. Their internet plans are available on any current broadband service plan that is offered in your particular area.
To check your eligibility for the program and availability in your area, you can go to the official website of astound, linked below. All you will have to do is enter your address and zip code to see what services are available in your locality.
The process is quite simple. After applying for the program and entering your details, such as address and zip code, depending on your eligibility will qualify for it. Then the internet service provider will contact you, and you can choose your internet plan to get up to $30 off on your monthly internet bill.
- Website: https://www.astound.com/internet/
- Contact: 1.800.427.8686
Mediacom Internet Connect2Compete
Through its Connect2Compete program, Mediacom offers low-cost internet services to eligible households at just $9.95 per month for a high-speed internet plan.
This program was initiated particularly for low-income families with K-12 students to connect to internet services and bridge the digital divide to the extent possible.
This internet service provider also collaborates with the ‘EveryoneOn’ well-known non-profit organization, which we will talk about later in this post, to make home internet accessible and affordable to the less fortunate people.
You can get up to 10 MBPS for $9.95 per month, free internet with free equipment, free installation, Wi-Fi modem with no deposit or contract.
In order to be eligible for Mediacom’s free internet service, you must have at least one student in your home studying in grades K-12. Mediacom services should be available in your area.
Or you should have at least one child participating in the free or reduced-price School lunch program.
In particular, Mediacom requires that you do not have any outstanding bills at this service provider or any unreturned equipment. You should also not be a current Mediacom internet user and should not have subscribed to their Internet Services within the last 90 days.
- Website: https://mediacomc2c.com/
- Contact: 855-904-2225
Frontier- free government internet service
Another popular internet service provider that can help you get internet for free from the government is Frontier. You can visit the official website of Frontier linked below and directly apply for the affordable connectivity program to get internet for $0 per month. You can also check if you qualify for their program on the same link.
It is pretty simple to apply for ACP through Frontier internet service. You can go to the link below and apply for the program easily through the automated process using Facebook Messenger, which helps you with every step of the application process.
You can then check if you have been approved to receive assistance through ACP. Upon approval of your application, you can select the internet plan that suits your needs through Frontier services.
- Website: https://frontier.com/
- Contact: 844-912-1548
Access by AT&T
AT&T is one of the most well-known and reliable internet service providers that also participate in the ACP program to offer low-cost internet service for eligible households. They provide internet plans of over 100Mbps speed for up to $30/mo.
There are no hidden charges or contracts nor any annual fees to apply for this program. You can check for eligibility on their official website, which we have mentioned below, or contact customer support for any assistance that you need.
- Website: https://www.att.com/internet/access/
- Contact: (888) 717-1080
Similar to Mediacom, Cox, too, offers a government-assisted low-cost or free internet service program for low-income families and needy people through their Connect2Compete initiative.
You can get internet for just $9.95 per month for a household with at least one child studying in grades K-12. To apply for this program, no credit check or social security number is required.
- Website: https://www.cox.com/
- Contact: (855) 222-3252
Lastly, Eagle Communications offers free internet services and discounts on internet plans for as low as $9.95 per month for eligible families. The requirement to apply for this program is quite similar to the ones we mentioned above.
The household must have a K-12 student or a K-12 student receiving the National School Lunch Program benefits. The area you reside in must have the services offered by Eagle Communications.
- Website: https://eaglecommunications.net/
- Contact: 615-278-9896
Non-profit organizations that offer free internet for low-income people
Here are some of the Non-profit organizations you can approach to get free internet services for low-income families who do not qualify for free government internet programs.
PCs for People
PCs for People is a popular organization working in the area of Technology that offers low-cost computers, laptops, tablets, etc., along with affordable or free Internet Services for needy people.
You can get affordable internet solutions for free from PCS for people, as this organization also participates in the Affordable Connectivity Program funded by the Federal government.
Not only refurbished computers and laptops but eligible customers can also get free high-speed internet services at low cost. They also provide digital skills Training and Technical Support to try and bridge the digital divide.
- Website: https://www.pcsforpeople.org/
- Contact: 651-354-2552
Another non-profit organization working in the sector of technology to empower people with digital tools and resources and, at the same time, reduce e-waste is Human-I-T. They strongly focus on the problems of the digital divide and e-waste.
Similar to the Internet service providers mentioned above, this non-profit entity also collaborates with the Affordable Connectivity Program to provide free ACP internet plans and high-speed internet at low cost to eligible households.
- Website: https://www.human-i-t.org/
- Contact: 1-888-391-7249
EveryoneOn is one of the most popular non-profit entities that has connected more than 1,000,000 people to the internet since 2012 now. They have also provided digital skills training to thousands of participants out there in just a couple of years.
- Website: https://www.everyoneon.org/
- Contact: 877-789-9889
Places that offer free WiFi for anyone
Given below are some of the most common places that offer free WiFi for anyone, and you will be able to get free internet at any of these places all the time.
- Colleges/Universities – A majority of them offer free WiFi for students.
- Local Public library – Free and Low-Income internet service for families, seniors, and students.
- Major cities – Cities like California, San Fransico, NYC, etc., have free Public WiFi that can be accessed by anyone.
- Public Places – Places like cafes, Restaurants, Hotels, etc., generally have free WiFi for their customers. You can check nearby places you often visit to get free internet.
- Asking your Neighbour – Never a bad idea to seek help from your neighbor.
- WifiFreeSpot.com – A website that offers a listing of locations that offer Free Wi-Fi in the US State-by-State. You can use it to find the nearest free WIFI to get free internet.
Frequently Asked Questions
Given below are some of the most commonly asked questions about how to get free internet services for low-income families. Looking for ways to get free or low-cost internet, you might come across various questions. So here we have answered a few of them for you.
How do I get free high-speed internet at home?
To get free high-speed internet at home, you can apply for the lifeline and affordable connectivity program, that of huge discounts of up to $30 per month on monthly internet service bills.
You can use NetZero.com or freedompop.com to get free and low-cost internet. Internet service providers such as Synergy, spectrum, sudden link, Optimum advantage internet, Xfinity internet essentials, etc., also provide low-cost or free internet for low-income people.
How can you get free internet through the government?
The government runs two very popular Federal government assistance programs – the Lifeline Assistance Program and the Affordable Connectivity Program through which eligible households can get reduced or free internet from the government.
If you are a participant in any of the Federal assistance programs like SNAP, SSI, Medicaid, etc., or have an income at or below 130% of the Federal poverty guidelines, then you will be eligible to get free internet from the government.
How do I find free internet near me?
A lot of colleges, universities, educational institutions, public libraries, public places such as phase and restaurants, etc., have free public WiFi that can be accessed by everyone.
You can find such free Wi-Fi hotspots and get free internet near me. You can also ask a neighbor who has a Wi-Fi connection for a password if you are in need of the internet.
You can also benefit from websites such as NET Zero OR Freedom Pop and government emergency assistance programs such as the affordable connectivity program to get free internet at home.
How can students get free internet?
Most colleges and Universities provide free Wi-Fi for students enrolled in that particular University. College students can access free Wi-Fi at public hotspots such as libraries, cafes, restaurants, etc.
If you are eligible for programs like the National School lunch program, then you can apply for free government internet services through popular ACP participating ISPs such as Spectrum, Optimum, Access by AT&T, Xfinity Internet, and so on.
It is quite common to wonder, ‘Will the government pay for my internet?‘. Many people come to us with this query, and to finally answer all your related questions on how to get free internet for low-income people, here we have tried to give as many details as we could.
Internet, indeed, has become one of the essential necessities of human lives. It does act like a doorway to a plethora of opportunities, including but not limited to education, employment, healthcare, and so on.
The government realizing the significance of internet services and bridging the digital divide between those who can and those who cannot access internet services, has introduced federal assistance programs like the Affordable Connectivity Program and the Lifeline Assistance Program.
Many Internet Service Providers, like Suddenlink internet, Xfinity Internet Essentials, Access by AT&T, Spectrum Internet, etc., participate in the Lifeline and ACP programs to provide low-cost internet for low-income people. Many times, eligible households can even get free internet services for low-income families.
Certainly, there are other ways, too, using which you can get free internet if you do not qualify for ACP or Lifeline. These include – using free WiFi at Public Libraries, Universities, cafes, Restaurants, etc. You can always ask your neighbor for a WiFi password in case of an urgency to use the internet, and so on.
We hope that the article helped you in getting information about the various best ways to get internet for free. In case you have any questions or got anything relevant to share with us, feel free to let us know in the comment section below, and we will get back to you as soon as possible.
Charlotte Moore is a technology expert with a background in internet services. With years of experience in the industry, Charlotte has developed a deep understanding of all things tech. In her free time, she enjoys reading about the latest advancements in the field and exploring new ways to help low-income communities access essential technology. Her passion for both technology and helping others shines through in her writing, making her a valuable contributor to any publication. When she’s not working, Charlotte can be found lost in a good book or brainstorming new initiatives to support those in need.
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