Free & Low-Cost Internet Plans

To meet the needs of households with low-incomes, many Internet Service Providers (ISPs) offer discount broadband plans. With the launch of the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP), the number of low-cost offerings has increased rapidly and continues to grow.

While offering more affordable choices is positive, varying costs, eligibility, and quality of service can make it challenging for digital inclusion practitioners, let alone individual customers, to understand which plans meet their needs.

Which offers are included on this page?

We’ve included plans that provide home internet service for $30 per month or less, which are effectively free for households participating in ACP. Most plans have eligibility requirements linked to income or program enrollment, so we provide specific criteria for each plan.

Most plans were added after May 2022, when the Biden-Harris Administration announced that 20 ISPs would offer at least one high-speed internet plan with a minimum of 100 MB download for no more than $30 per month, with no additional fees or data caps.

Who is this page for?

This page is for anyone interested in learning about free and low-cost internet offers. We encourage individual consumers looking for low-cost internet to use EveryoneOn or the Universal Service Administrative Co. (USAC) page to find specific offers in your area.

ACP-Only Plans (Eligibility Requirements)

These plans are offered exclusively to Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) participants who use their ACP benefit to pay for the plan. With the $30 ACP benefit ($75 for Tribal participants) applied, these plans come at no cost to the customer.

In each of the tables below, click on the “+” symbol next to the provider’s name on the left-hand side of each table to expand more information. Click on the red, hyperlinked text to go to the plan’s homepage. The “Customer Alert” column describes our experiences with the ISPs and shows what information was incorrect or inconsistent.

ProviderPlanCost with ACP BenefitSpeed (Download/Upload)Service TypeAdditional Taxes and FeesService AreaOther NotesCustomer Alert
Allo CommunicationsALLO 100 Mbps Internet Service$0100/100FiberNoneMapNone
BreezelineInternet Assist Plus Plan$0100/10CableNoneMapModem lease and home networking fee are waived with ACPNone
ComporiumConnected Internet Program$0100/100Fiber, CableNoneMapACP verification must be done through a retail store, in person and with identificationNone
FrontierFrontier Fiber Internet 100 Mbps$0100/100FiberNoneMapFree installation and equipmentNone
Hawaiian Telcom100 Mbps Fiber Internet$0100/100Fiber$34.99 activation fee (customer may request a waiver)Map$34.99 activation fee - customer may request that the fee be waivedRepresentative of Hawaiian Telecom was unaware that this plan is active, and stated that it is not currently available. The 100 Mbps Fiber Internet plan, as advertised on Hawaiian Telecom's website, has been verified as active by NDIA, and is available for purchase (September 2022).
IdeatekIdeatek Essential Access$0100/100Fiber, Fixed WirelessNoneMap$10 equipment fee (customer may use their own router)None
Jackson Energy Authority - EPlus BroadbandEPlus Broadband Internet Package 100x100 Mbps$0100/100FiberNoneMapOnline or in-store application onlyNone
MLGCMLGC Low Cost 100/20 Mbps Internet Plan$0100/20Fiber, CableNoneMapNone
OptimumOptimum Online (300 Mbps)$0300/300Fiber, CableNoneMap100 dollar gift card available when signing up. Standard cost is $40/month. After ACP benefit is applied, Optimum covers remaining $10/month. 300mbs download speed not available in all areas.Optimum's representative failed to mention that, when purchasing the Optimum Online 300 Mbps plan and applying your ACP eligibility, customers must subscribe for unlimited phone service to qualify for this no-cost offer (September 2022)
Spectrum (Charter Communications)Spectrum Internet 100$0100/10CableNoneMapSpectrum Internet 100 promotion price (including WiFi) is $29.99/mo for 2 years; standard rates apply after 2 year promotional period. Standard rate for Spectrum Internet 100 is $59.99/month + $5/month wifi charge. After 2-year promotional period, monthly cost for ACP customers increases to $34.99 after ACP discount is applied.Spectrum representatives provided inconsistent information about which plans are only open to new customers vs new and existing customers - they shared incorrect information about both of their low cost plans. Spectrum Internet Assist is only open to new customers who meet eligibility criteria, while Spectrum Internet 100 is open to new and existing customers but requires ACP participation (September 2022)
VerizonFios Forward 300$0300/300FiberNoneMapCharge for router fee is waivedNone
Vermont Telephone CompanyACP “All In” Fully Funded Plan$0100/100Fiber, DSLNoneMapFree installation and activation. Router includedNone
Wow! Internet, Cable and TVACP Internet 100$0100/10CableNoneMapNone

Low-Cost Plans (Eligibility Requirements)

These plans are offered to customers who meet specific eligibility requirements. The eligibility criteria for these plans are often broader than those for ACP, and they do not require participation in ACP to qualify for the low-cost offer. This means that some customers who are not eligible for ACP may still qualify for these plans. Eligibility varies by plan, but is generally based on income, participation in other assistance programs (e.g., Head Start, TANF, LIHEAP), or being part of a target group (e.g., K-12 students, residents of housing authority-owned property). ACP participants may use their benefit to pay for these plans.

ProviderPlanMonthly Service CostCost with ACP BenefitSpeed (Download/Upload)Service TypeAdditional Taxes and FeesService AreaEligibility / Other NotesCustomer Alert
AT&TAccess From AT&T ($30)$30$0100/100Fiber, DSLNoneMapAccess from AT&T is a low-cost program for home internet access in the 21 states where they offer wireline home internet services to limited income households who participate in the:
  • Affordable Connectivity Program
  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI) for California residents only
  • National School Lunch, or
  • Have a household income below 200% of federal poverty guidelines.
All households that qualify and enroll with AT&T for ACP will also qualify for Access from AT&T.
AT&T representative stated that this plan was only available for customers applying with an ACP benefit - this is not true. Access From AT&T is available to customers who meet plan eligibility criteria, which includes ACP (September 2022)
Comcast XfinityInternet Essentials Plus$29.95$0100/10CableMapYou may qualify if you:
  • Qualify for programs like the National School Lunch Program, housing assistance, Medicaid, SNAP, SSI, Federal Pell Grant, and others
  • Live in an area where Comcast Internet service is available
  • Have not had Comcast Internet in the last 90 days
  • Households who owe money to Comcast may still qualify if approved by 12/31/22 https://www.internetessentials.com/apply 
None
Comcast XfinityInternet Essentials$9.95$0 (Additional taxes and fees may exceed ACP discount)50/10CableMapYou may qualify if you:
  • Qualify for programs like the National School Lunch Program, housing assistance, Medicaid, SNAP, SSI, Federal Pell Grant, and others
  • Live in an area where Comcast Internet service is available
  • Have not had Comcast Internet in the last 90 days
  • Households who owe money to Comcast may still qualify if approved by 12/31/22 https://www.internetessentials.com/apply
None
Cox CommunicationsConnectAssist Package$30$0100/3CableNoneMapUnlimited data will be removed after 12 months and 1.25TB data limit will apply.

ConnectAssist is available to households currently participating in one of the following programs:

  • SNAP
  • TANF
  • Head Start
  • WIC
  • Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)
  • certain Public Housing
  • Pell Grant, Veterans Pension
  • certain Tribal Programs
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
None
Cox CommunicationsConnect2Compete$9.95$0 (Additional taxes and fees may exceed ACP discount)100/3CableTaxes and fees may applyMap

Connect2Compete is available to households with at least one K–12 student who currently participate in one of the following programs:

  • National School Lunch
  • SNAP
  • TANF
  • Head Start
  • WIC
  • Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)
  • Public Housing
None
Human-I-THuman I-T Connect$15$0 monthly-/-Mobile Wireless$85 upfront modem feeMap$85 upfront modem fee. See Eligibility Criteria; Mobile wireless service, so speeds vary by location and coverage.None
OptimumOptimum Advantage Internet$14.99$0 (Additional taxes and fees may exceed ACP discount)50/-Cable$2-$3 depending on stateMapYou may qualify for Optimum Advantage Internet if you’re in one of the following groups:
  • Households with Students:
    • Your household qualifies for or participates in the National School Lunch Program (NSLP); OR
    • You are a New York City resident attending a New York City public school
  • Seniors:
    • You are 65 years or older and eligible for or receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
  • Veterans
    • You are a Veteran and receive state or federal public assistance.
Universal Criteria: In addition to being in one of the groups above, you must not have an outstanding balance with Optimum or Suddenlink, you must live in an area where Optimum or Suddenlink Internet service is available, you must have not been an Optimum or Suddenlink Internet subscriber within the last 60 days, and you must provide a valid US Postal Service address when applying.
Optimum representatives stated on multiple occasions that customers could not apply an ACP benefit to this plan, and that it is only available to applicants 65+ years old - neither of these is true. This plan has multiple eligibility criteria, as listed on Optimum's website, and it is ACP eligible (September 2022)
PCs for PeopleBridging the Gap$15$0 monthly50/10Fixed Wireless, Mobile WirelessUpfront $45 for modem only.MapUpfront $45 for modem only. Eligibility Criteria; Mobile wireless relies on cellular networks so speeds vary by location and coverage.None
Spectrum (Charter Communications)Spectrum Internet AssistLocation dependent (minimum $19.99)$0 (Additional taxes and fees may exceed ACP discount)30/4CableTaxes and fees may apply MapInstallation costs may apply if technician is requiredSpectrum representatives provided inconsistent information about which plans are only open to new customers vs new and existing customers - they shared incorrect information about both of their low cost plans. Spectrum Internet Assist is only open to new customers who meet eligibility criteria, while Spectrum Internet 100 is open to new and existing customers but requires ACP participation (September 2022)
StarryStarry Connect$15$030/30Fixed WirelessNoneMapPlan offers vary by location. Multiple plans exist that are $0 to ACP participants. Eligibility information hereNone
StarryStarry Select$30$0100/50Fixed WirelessNoneMapPlan offers vary by location. Multiple plans that are $0 to ACP participants. Eligibility information hereNone
Vexus FiberVexus 150 Mbps High Speed Internet$47.57$0150/150Fiber7/mo modem rental & mandatory $50 installation feeMap$7/mo modem rental waived if using your own modemNone
Xtream (Powered by Mediacom)Connect2Compete Plus (C2C+)$30$0100/5CableNoneMapFree modem rental, free installationNone

Low-Cost Plans (No Eligibility Requirements)

These plans are offered to all customers where the service is available, with no special eligibility criteria. ACP participants may use their benefit to pay for these plans.

ProviderPlanMonthly Service CostCost with ACP BenefitSpeed (Download/Upload)Service TypeAdditional Taxes and FeesService AreaEligibility / Other NotesCustomer Alert
DigitalCEmpowerCLE+$18$050/20Wireless$1.44MapNone
Xtream (Powered by Mediacom)Connect2Compete$9.9920/3CableMapAdditional $13 modem rental/monthNone

Notes

Speed (Download/Upload) – The speeds listed for each plan are the fastest speeds advertised for that plan. Actual speeds may vary depending on the type of service available in a given area, along with a range of other factors, some of which can be controlled by the provider and some of which cannot.
Service Type – This is the general type(s) of broadband technology the service uses. Where more than one type of service is listed, the provider generally offers service through the best technology (e.g. fiber) where it is available and through another technology (e.g. cable or DSL) where it is not. 
Additional Taxes & Fees – Additional taxes and fees are meant to include any costs beyond a plan’s monthly subscription cost. These could include one-time costs like installation fees or recurring costs, such as taxes and monthly equipment rentals. These fees may or may not be covered by ACP benefits. While NDIA makes an effort to document all additional costs, it is possible that some costs may not be readily apparent on a provider’s website.
Service Area – Service area mapping is shown for each provider and is not plan-specific, and some plans are not offered across a provider’s entire service area. Broadband Now is used to show general service areas with consistent mapping across all providers. For specific availability for each plan, users should contact providers directly, using the links provided in the “Plan” field.

Inclusion Criteria

Free and Low-cost offers must meet the following minimum criteria to be included on this page:

Speed: Minimum speed threshold must not be lower than the federal definition for “broadband internet” of 25Mbps upload/3Mbps download

Cost: Maximum cost for any plan will not be greater than $30/month

Data Caps: Plans included on this page have no data caps

 

Updates and Adding More Offers

We regularly review and update this page. As part of this process, we reach out to ISPs by phone and research offers on their website. We ask about monthly costs (including taxes and fees), participation in ACP, and several other details.

We have consistently heard misleading information from some providers about plan costs, eligibility requirements, and plan availability.

To suggest additional content, email [email protected]. Additional plans should adhere to the Free & Low-cost Internet Plans page criteria above.