All three of the major wireless carriers offer discounted phone plans for first responders.
According to the carriers, these jobs qualify you for the discount:
- State and local law enforcement
- Emergency medical response personnel
- Pensioned retirees
- Parents, children or spouses of first responders killed in the line of duty
If any of the above applies to you, then you should be getting a huge discount on your cellphone plan.
Seriously, if you’ve been paying full price for a cellphone all this time, get on the phone with your carrier and start taking advantage of the discount ASAP.
Here’s what the discount looks like for AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon users.
AT&T first-responder discounts
AT&T has a broader definition of first responders and offers discounts for nurses, physicians and teachers as well.
Regardless of what type of first responder you may be, you get the same 25% discount on any AT&T unlimited plan.
Your cheapest option would be to go with the Unlimited Starter plan from AT&T, which will cost you $58.75/month. You get unlimited talk, text and data on one of America’s best networks.
T-Mobile first-responder discounts
T-Mobile has a more narrow definition of first responders that sadly doesn’t include teachers. The deal exclusively applies to law enforcement, firefighters, emergency medical response personnel, pensioned retirees and direct family members of first responders killed in the line of duty.
The second bit of bad news is that the discount is about 22% off, rather than the 25% off that AT&T offers.
Sure, it’s a matter of a few percentage points, but every dollar counts when it comes to something you’re paying for every single month of your life.
Okay, now for the good news: You can get a huge discount on a T-Mobile unlimited plan if you bundle four lines together in a family plan.
As long as your family meets the criteria for a first-responder discount, you can get your cellphone payment down to $25/month per line on a T-Mobile unlimited plan.
Here’s what the T-Mobile first-responder discounts look like if you don’t go the family plan route:
Compare that with the price you would pay for four lines with the same unlimited plans:
The moral of the story with T-Mobile unlimited plans and first-responder discounts is that you should absolutely jump on a family plan. If you are just getting a plan for yourself, you’ll get a better discount elsewhere.
Verizon first-responder discounts
Verizon follows the AT&T approach and expands its discount to groups beyond the textbook definition of first responders. You can get the discount if you’re a first responder, nurse, student or teacher.
The downside is that it’s only a $10/month discount compared with the normal Verizon prices. That makes Verizon’s first-responder discount the weakest option from a price standpoint.
Honestly, it’s not really a surprise coming from Verizon, the carrier that always has the most expensive prices. On the other hand, Verizon does have the most reliable coverage in the country, which can justify the price for some folks.
Here’s what Verizon’s unlimited plans look like with the first-responder discount:
Best first-responder discount
All in all, AT&T’s 25% discount is the strongest discount for first responders on an individual plan. T-Mobile isn’t far behind with its roughly 22% discount, but you can get an amazing deal if you bundle four lines together with the first-responders discount on T-Mobile.
In last place is Verizon, which only offers a $10 discount on cellphone plans for first responders. If you want our advice, the best deal for first responders is the T-Mobile family plan discount.