In 26 US states US Cellular does business. In just fifteen of those states it offers the Lifeline program. The states with service include Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Maine, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Nebraska, Oregon, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Virginia, Wisconsin, Washington, and West Virginia.
The discounts that you'll get on the program vary, but you usually get around $9.25 per month. You can get this discount in Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Wisconsin, and Washington. In West Virginia you can get a discount of $11.25. In Oregon Nebraska, and Maine you get a monthly discount of $13.50. If you live in former or current native lands in Oklahoma, there's a discount of $34.25.
While all of this sounds good it's important to note that U.S. Cellular isn't very serious about the lifeline assistance program. The services Of U.S. Cellular are limited, the prices are high, and the add-ons are also priced quite High.
U.S. Cellular offers the essential Lifeline plan which gives you 300 minutes but at a high price of $29.99. If you want extras like white area unlimited incoming calling, you'll have to pay another $6. If you want white area weekend and night minutes which start at 9 p.m. which is going to cost you another $6. If you exceed your monthly allotment of the minutes you were giving, then you were charged an extra $0.49 for each additional minute.
The features you get include call waiting, voicemail, call forwarding, caller ID, three-way calling, and incoming text messages which are all free. It's also important to note that there is some fine print which you'll find at the bottom of U.S.Cellular Lifeline website which is as follows:
"To be a customer of us Cellular you need to have a billing address within that the license market and be eligible for service. You must take a two-year initial term which is subject to a prorated $150 termination fee if you terminate services early. For all new lines, credit approval is required. The use of the service constitutes your acceptance of the conditions and the terms. The $30 activation fee is only waived if you order the product online and there is also a $15 equipment charge fee. Any other fees, charges, surcharges, taxes, and overage charges also apply. There is a regulatory cost recovery fee or RCRF that is not a government or a tax charge."
"The RCRF could be around $2 per line each month and this fee is subject to change without notice given to you. The current charge is $1.40 per line each month. The reliability in the network coverage may also vary. Your usage is rounded up to the next full minute and they're also National rate plans. U.S. Cellular reserves the right to terminate the service if less than 50% of your minutes in three consecutive billing Cycles in the U.S. Cellular markets are not used. On the family plan you're limited to 5 lines per account there is also a monthly charge of $10 per line which applies to lines three through five. Mobile to mobile rate will apply to calls you make or receive to and from other customers on U.S. cellular in the calling area."
"Your roaming indicator on the phone has to be off for the rate to apply for mobile to mobile. Any incoming unlimited calls won't be deducted from the package minutes and these are only available when you receive calls in the calling area. The calling area is going to differ from the national calling area. The weekend and night minutes are valid Monday through Friday and they go from 7 p.m. to 6:59 a.m. or from 9 p.m. to 5:59 a.m. but this all depends on the calling plan. They also go all day Saturday as well as Sunday."
In reality, you're not going to get much of a deal U.S. Cellular when it comes to the lifeline assistance program. They are going to nickel-and-dime you and take most of your money out of your pocket. This program is designed to help people who are in need and the lights line service through U.S. Cellular is simply not much of a bargain and it's going to cost you a whole lot of money if you decide to get the service through this provider.
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