youTuber Travis asks….
i want a smart phone to keep in my glove box in my car. I will ONLY use it when i need to look up an address, which i will then manually enter into my old school GPS i have on my car dashboard. My question is…..does Tracfone allow someone like me to buy one of their cheap smart phones and put say $10.00 a month for a DATA ONLY plan? And yes, an old school flip phone IS my daily driver. Thanks for any input and information!
No unfortunately, Tracfone does not offer data-only plans. The way tracfone works is you buy metered or fixed service. Each Tracfone plan includes a metered amount of minutes for talk, messages for texts, megabytes for data, and days of service. They do offer add-ons for data, texts, and in some cases service days.
If you wanted to use a smartphone with Tracfone for data only you can do this. You’ll need to keep the phone’s service active however. You could purchase a $125 plan that comes with 1500 minutes, 1500 texts, 1.5GB of data and 365 service days, that comes out to about $10.50 per month so even though they don’t offer a data only plan you could do what you are asking. 1.5 GB isn’t a lot of data, but you can buy add-on data, it’s $10 for 1GB and the data doesn’t expire as long as the phone is active.
While you made it clear that you only want to use the phone for this one purpose you did not say often you need to look up addresses. I’d guess you won’t be using up too much data so a tracfone plan would work for this purpose. Spending $125 per year to do this seems excessive to me just to be able to look up a few addresses. Let’s consider some other options.
Use free wi-fi
Depending on where you travel and how often you want to look up addresses, you could just rely on free WiFi. Many stores, resturants, and libraries have free wi-fi. You could install a free Wi-Fi finder app on the phone and use it to locate free Wi-Fi.
Use a free wireless service from FreedomPop or FreeUp Mobile
FreedomPop is a wireless service that will give you a free 250mb of data each month and you can buy more if you need it. I have some videos about it on my channel. You need to use it weekly to make sure it remains active. Also look at something called FreeUp mobile, check out the iTechUOutGuy youtube channel, Dwight, talks about it often.
Consider a Tablet or phone with a tablet only data plan
Straight Talk has a tablet plan for $15 1GB per month, other carriers offer similar solutions.
Embrace the smartphone
I assume for whatever reason, you don’t want to carry a smartphone but replacing your flip phone with a smartphone and a plan with data could be a better option. You don’t need to pay for two service plans, you might decide you want to look up more than just an address now and then, and you might appreciate having a decent camera in your pocket where-ever you go. If that flip phone is already using tracfone you may have lots of unused data already on your plan and you could transfer your number and service credit to a new smartphone.
Finally, when looking at the services make sure to consider which network has the best coverage in your area AT&T, Verizon, or T-Mobile and pick a service that will use that network.