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Best Prepaid SIM Card USA

Find the best prepaid SIM Card plan — no contract required!

If you are looking to stay online during your travels and make local calls, the best option is to take a prepaid SIM card in the destination country. Before you choose this option though, do make sure that your phone is unlocked (able to accept SIMs from other operators).

When you’re visiting the U.S. the last thing you want to do is go back home to a huge cell phone bill with all of your global roaming charges, especially if you’re visiting for a few months. Luckily, most cell phone companies in the USA offer prepaid SIM card plans without the hassle of complicated contracts, that are perfect for temporary visitors to the States.

A prepaid SIM gives you a local cell phone number and access to the provider’s network.  The service will only be provided if there’s credit in the account.  Once it runs out, you either have to put more in it or eventually, it’ll expire.  And of course, there’s no contract to sign. This is perfect for the traveler.

You may find different USA SIM cards at the airport or the nearest mobile shops, but you may not be able to pick a SIM that fits your needs immediately. Here, we’ve put together a list of comparisons that will help you find more insights into the best prepaid SIM card USA.

Our Top Picks For Best Prepaid SIM Card USA of 2020

Tello Mobile – Most Affordable Service

Tello Mobile Homepage

Tello is a prepaid cell phone service provider with flexible plans and low rates. There are no contracts, no activation fees, no early termination fees. It allows you to bring your own unlocked phone. You can check your phone’s compatibility on the Tello website.

Tello offers customizable plans for light, medium, and heavy data users. You can either build your own plan or choose from any of their “ready-made” deals.

All Tello’s plans include free calls to Canada, Mexico, and China, plus mobile hotspot access with WiFi calling through their application at no extra cost, along with visual voicemail and unlimited 2G data. If you are not happy with your plan, you still can change it at any time.

Plans and Pricing:

  • $8/month: Unlimited talk and texts with free calls to Canada, Mexico, China, and Romania.
  • $10/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 1 GB of 4G data with mobile hotspot access plus free calls to Canada, Mexico, China, and Romania.
  • $14/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 2 GB of 4G data with mobile hotspot access plus free calls to Canada, Mexico, China, and Romania
  • $19/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 4 GB of 4G data with mobile hotspot access plus free calls to Canada, Mexico, China, and Romania
  • $24/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 6 GB of 4G data with mobile hotspot access plus free calls to Canada, Mexico, China, and Romania
  • $29/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 8 GB of 4G data with mobile hotspot access plus free calls to Canada, Mexico, China, and Romania
  • $39/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and unlimited 4G data with mobile hotspot access plus free calls to Canada, Mexico, China, and Romania

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Red Pocket – Best Network and Coverage

Red Pocket Homepage

Red Pocket is another prepaid carrier that lets you choose your service from all four of the major companies. Plans range from 500 minutes, 500 texts, and 500MB of data to unlimited calls and texts, as well as over 10GB of data. Best of all, these monthly plans are incredibly affordable.

All phone plan offerings feature unlimited text, free unlimited international calling to over 70 countries, the ability to transfer your current phone number, English or Spanish customer service access, a 30-day risk-free guarantee, and no credit checks, activation fees, or overage fees.

Plans and Pricing:

  • $10/month: 500 minutes, 500 texts, and 500MB of 4G data.
  • $15/month: 1000 minutes, unlimited texts, and 1GB of 4G data.
  • $19/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 3GB of 4G data.
  • $30/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 7GB of 4G data.
  • $40/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 15GB of 4G data.
  • $60/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and unlimited 4G data.

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Ultra Mobile – Best for General Users

Ultra Mobile Homepage

Ultra Mobile is a great MVNO option for those who value staying connected with friends or family overseas. it has a number of low-cost monthly deals for limited data and you can switch up and down between the plans for free.

All plans include unlimited domestic minutes, unlimited texts, and unlimited international voice to 11 countries, including Canada, Mexico, China, and the UK. Cell phones from nearly every manufacturer will work on the Ultra Mobile network as long as they are GSM-compatible and use a SIM card, which includes any unlocked T-Mobile phones you may have.

Plans and Pricing:

  • $19/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 1GB of 4G data with mobile hotspot access, plus unlimited talk to 80+ international destinations.
  • $23/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 2GB of 4G data with mobile hotspot access, plus unlimited talk to 80+ international destinations.
  • $29/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 5GB of 4G data with mobile hotspot access, plus unlimited talk to 80+ international destinations.
  • $49/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and unlimited 4G data with mobile hotspot access, plus unlimited talk to 80+ international destinations.

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Twigby – Best Customized Plans

Twigby Homepage

Twigby offers its subscribers the ability to create their own personal phone plans. Customers first select the number of minutes they need, then if desired, they can pick to add a data package to the plan.

All voice packages include unlimited domestic and international texting to over 180 countries. All data plans include unlimited 2G data once the high-speed usage gets consumed. Free talk and text roaming on the Verizon network are also included. New subscribers will continue to get 25% off of their first two months of service.

Plans and Pricing:

  • $9.75/month: Unlimited talk and texts.
  • $14.25/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 1GB of 4G data with mobile hotspot access plus international talk and text at no additional charge.
  • $17.25/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 2GB of 4G data with mobile hotspot access plus international talk and text at no additional charge.
  • $21.00/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 3GB of 4G data with mobile hotspot access plus international talk and text at no additional charge.
  • $24.75/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 5GB of 4G data with mobile hotspot access plus international talk and text at no additional charge.
  • $32.25/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 10GB of 4G data with mobile hotspot access plus international talk and text at no additional charge.

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Freedompop – Best for Light Users

FreedomPop Homepage

FreedomPop has a completely free mobile plan that includes enough minutes, text messages, and data for lightweight users. May be unavailable in certain regions of the U.S.

FreedomPop offers 500MB of high-speed data along with 200 talk minutes and 500 texts, although sending and receiving texts will eat up your data. Along with being entirely free, FreedomPop does not need any agreements and there are no termination fees.

FreedomPop consent to automatically bill you at the end of the free trial so it is important to downgrade your plan before the end of the free trial, to downgrade to the free plan you will certainly need to log in to your account to downgrade the free plan.

Plans and Pricing:

  • FREE plan: 200 minutes, 500 texts, and 200 MB of 4G data.
  • $24.99/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 2GB of 4G data.
  • $29.99/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 3GB of 4G data.
  • $34.99/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 5GB of 4G data.
  • $59.99/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 10GB of 4G data.

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List of Other Cell Phone Carriers Offering The Best Prepaid SIM Card Plans

Cricket Wireless – Best Unlimited Plans

Cricket Wireless Homepage

Cricket Wireless is one of the best cell phone carriers in the USA. The provider operates on the AT&T network and provides nationwide service. It has an advantage in travel to Canada and Mexico with its unlimited plans, and the AT&T LTE network is one of the strongest available.

Plans begin at $30/month for 2GB of LTE data and unlimited talk and text. $40/month gives you 5GB of LTE data or unlimited high-speed data with the unlimited BYOD plan. Finally, there are two standard unlimited plans for $55/month and $60/month, with the last offering faster download speeds as well as 15GB of mobile hotspot.

If you bump up to the Smart plan, either individually or as a group, Cricket includes unlimited international texts, unlimited talk and text to and from the United States, Mexico, and Canada, and no-extra-charge data in Mexico and Canada.

Plans and Pricing:

  • $30/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 2GB of 4G data
  • $40/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 5GB of 4G data
  • $55/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and unlimited 4G data with roaming in Mexico and Canada for calls, texts, and data. (Cricket may slow data speeds when the network is congested)
  • $60/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and unlimited 4G data with 15GB of high-speed mobile hotspot plus roaming in Mexico and Canada for calls, texts, and data. (Cricket may slow data speeds when the network is congested)

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Ting Mobile – Pay for What You Need

Ting Mobile Homepage

Ting is another MVNO that offers more than just a choice between monthly plans. It lets you mix and match to find a plan with the right amount of talk, text, and data for you without paying for things you won’t need. Best of all, Ting doesn’t bill you for the services that you didn’t use.

The current costs are $6 per line, $3 for 100 minutes, $2 for 100 texts, and $3 for every 100MB of data. If international coverage is important to you, Ting provides service to over 60 countries. You can find cost and available countries on the Ting site.

Plans and Pricing:

On Ting, your monthly cost will likely be different each month since it depends on usage.

Let’s say you choose 101-500 minutes, 1000 texts, and 500Mb of data for $30/month. If you use that, that’s what you’ll pay. However, if you use less or more of anything, your bill will automatically be adjusted accordingly. The idea with Ting is that you only pay for what you use, ensuring you’re not overpaying for service you don’t need.

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Mint Mobile – Bulk Savings

Mint Mobile Homepage

Mint Mobile offers reliable and cheap data, voice minutes as well as texting. It comes in multiple tiers, each designed to charge you more at a later date. Keeping this in mind, it makes sense to get the 12-month plan upfront.

Mint Mobile leverages T-Mobile’s data networks, which means you need to get enough coverage from T-Mobile in your area to use Mint Mobile’s networks. You can bring your own device to Mint Mobile and even try out the service for a period of 7 days at no cost. The carrier also offers mobile hotspot functionality, which is handy in some situations.

Plans and Pricing:

  • $15/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 3GB of 4G data (cost upfront is $45 for 3 months)
  • $20/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 8GB of 4G data (cost upfront is $60 for 3 months)
  • $25/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 12GB of 4G data (cost upfront is $75 for 3 months)

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US Mobile – A Good Budget Choice

US Mobile Homepage

US Mobile a new MVNO prepaid phone carrier that lets you customize your Plan to specify how much talk, text, and data you want. consumers can select from lots of plan combinations that will save usage-conscious customers a lot of money compared to an unlimited everything plan from a Big Four cell phone company.

You can also always add minutes, texts or data onto your account, should your needs change. It uses Verizon and T-Mobile networks, two of the best and fastest networks in the U.S. These networks span both types of cellular technologies used in the U.S., which is great if you want to bring your own phone to the service. Both have fast data speeds, but one may outperform the other, depending on where you live.

Plans and Pricing:

  • $10/month: Unlimited talk and texts.
  • $20/month: Unlimited talk, texts and 1.5GB of 4G data with hotspot access.
  • $25/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 2.5GB of 4G data with hotspot access.
  • $30/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 5GB of 4G data with hotspot access.
  • $36/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 8GB of 4G data with hotspot access.
  • $40/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and unlimited 4G data with hotspot access.

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Total Wireless – A Solid Verizon’s Network

Total Wireless Homepage

Total Wireless is owned by TracFone. Total Wireless has been helping former Verizon customers save money on their cell phone service. This carrier has several affordable phone plans.

Plans start out as cheap as $25 for unlimited talking and texting if you don’t need any data, but if you’re like us, you’ll want to spend the extra $10 for the $35/month plan that comes with 5GB of LTE data. Total Wireless lets you add 5GB of Carryover Data for $10 no matter which plan you choose, and with Carryover Data, takes any unused data over to the next month without any hassle.

Plans and Pricing:

  • $25/month: Unlimited talk and texts.
  • $35/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 5GB of 4G data.
  • $50/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 25GB of 4G data.

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Straight Talk – An Excellent Value

straight talk Homepage

Straight Talk is also owned by TracFone, but it’s not the same as Total Wireless. For starters, Straight Talk partners with all of the major networks, not just Verizon.

Straight Talk has a plan for any need, beginning at 1,500 minutes and 100MB of 4G data for $30/mo and working up to unlimited data for $55/mo. There is also an unlimited worldwide plan available for $60 a month. Data plans are available at 3GB and 25GB with 2G speed after and more 4G LTE data can be added. You can also get plans at 3, 6, or 12/month periods.

Plans and Pricing:

  • $35/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 3GB of 4G data.
  • $45/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 25GB of 4G data.
  • $55/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and unlimited 4G data with 10GB of mobile hotspot.
  • $60/month: Unlimited talk, texts, and 25GB of 4G data with international talk and text.

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Just like how you’d get a SIM card back at home for your phone plan, you can easily get one in the United States. But make sure to check if your phone is unlocked. Having an unlocked phone means that your phone is compatible with any SIM card. This is a necessary step if you are planning to switch your SIM card with a foreign one especially if your phone tied to a specific service provider.

The bottom line is that different people can have different mobile usage when they travel. Examine your priorities and preferences when choosing the best prepaid SIM card for your lifestyle.