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Straight TalkCell phone bills can easily get out of hand. With two teenagers in the house, we have four lines. Add in texting and data packages, and the cost easily exceeds $150 a month. One option we’ve covered in the past is prepaid cell phone plans. And one pay-as-you-go option worth considering comes from STRAIGHT TALK™.

How It Works

Because there are no long-term contracts required, getting started with Straight Talk is very easy. You simply pick your phone, transfer your existing cell phone number over or get a new one, and pick your plan.

How Straight Talk Works

The two key decisions are picking the cell phone and the best plan. Let’s start with the plans.

Straight Talk Plans

The first contract plan is called the “All You Need” Plan and costs $30 per month. This plan includes 1,000 nationwide minutes, 1,000 texte messages, 30MB of data transfer for data phones and 411 at no additional charge for 30 days.

After 30 days, the $30 dollar plan expires. If you go with this plan, one nice feature is called Auto-Refill. You can register a credit or debit card with Walmart, and they will automatically renew your plan every month for as long as you want. If you use up all your minutes or texts before the 30 days are up, you can pay $30 dollars to refill on the Internet or by phoning Straight Talk directly.

If you’d prefer unlimited calls and texting, then the “Unlimited Plan” is the best option. It costs $45/month and includes unlimited nationwide calling, unlimited text and picture messages and unlimited data access as well as 411 service.

There is one important caveat. The terms and conditions prohibit “uploading, downloading or streaming of audio or video programming or games.” In other words, no Internet radio. Further, data access is limited to use of the Internet to programs loaded by Straight Talk and Walmart on the handset.

Regardless of which plan you choose, there is no fee to activate the Straight Talk service and no roaming charges.

Straight Talk Phones

Now on to the phones. Straight Talk offers handsets from the leading manufacturers such as Motorola, Nokia, LG and Samsung. The cost ranges from a low of about $10 for a phone like a reconditioned LG 620G to $180 for an LG Optimus Q. Here are some more cool phones to Straight Talk offer:

Straight Talk phones and service plans are available at over 3,000 participating WalMart retailers nationwide. The Straight Talk products can be purchased at WalMart or on the Straight Talk website.

Author Bio

Total Articles: 1118
Rob founded the Dough Roller in 2007. A litigation attorney in the securities industry, he lives in Northern Virginia with his wife, their two teenagers, and the family mascot, a shih tzu named Sophie.

Article comments

Jared says:

So this is like what virgin mobile’s doing?

Whitteker says:

In the light of tracfone actually having score the highest amongst all wireless providers in the country in the recent ACSI report, along with US Cellular, I sort of puzzle at your painting Straight talk / Tracfone service in a negative way. By no means is it as easy, or convenient, as walking into a mall, activating your phone and walking away with it working. But for many the prices afforded by tracfone are the major drawcard, and simply can’t, or won’t pay for the convenience of a ‘mall’ transaction. To further this sentiment; what other company will offer seniors a phone for $15, and a service plan for less than $7 a month, and Still score so highly with consumer satisfaction?

LaughOutLoud says:

You’re right; as with any provider there are drawbacks. StraightTalk’s is probably customer service. Verizon and AT&T ‘s are price and contract. And so on. So is there a perfect plan? Depends largely on your needs and will vary from 1 user to the next. Which is why people getting into debate about a product is so amusing. Decide what your criteria are and find out how that rates for you. StraightTalk does offer one of the lowest prices for an unlimited plan, and yes, they have the phone variety, ranging from around $30-$200. Great, but more than I will ever need (and we really don’t like giving our money away for something we don’t use, no matter how great a deal it is, do we?!). Same thing for Virgin Mobile. Verizon has iphone and reliable coverage…at one hell of a price and 2 year contract. Tracfone offers me connectivity for under $10 a month, with good coverage off Verizon or AT&T. Somebody is already jumping up and down-limited phone choice and too few minutes for your needs…aha…the difference being that those are my needs-that’s what I want. Get my point? 🙂

Heather says:

With Tracfone having another great last quarter I’m getting excited to witness further growth in the next quarter as Tracfone has just released their 2 qwerty keyboard phones, the LG500G ($29.99 includes DMFL) and the LG800G touch phone ($49.99 includes DMFL).
In the past I think that potential customers where put off using Tracfone’s cheap plans because their phones were rather basic. But now these 2 phones are going to draw a wider customer base and maybe more texters because of the great qwerty keyboards and a touch screen feature.
Tracfone – Straight Talk also now has international calling which is another great advantage on an already cheapest unlimited everything plan of $45 of theirs.
So it seams as though the masses are being drawn more and more towards no contracts, low prices, reliable coverage on the major networks which is what Tracfone, Net10 and Straight Talk offer. I can’t wait to see what growth figures Tracfone is going to clock up next, I’m enjoying watching the competition between the giants.

CINDY says:

HORRIBLE CUSTOMER SERVICE….ALL CELL PHONE CARRIERS HAVE HORRIBLE CUSTOMER SERVICE BUT THIS ONE IS THE PITS! My cell phone which is only 6 months old a nokia smatphone has been freezing up on me…now it wont work..i went and got another one found out they are recalling them..cant get nothing for it.. so i had to go to another one which there choice of phones are very short most are very cheap and worthless. I finally got one i did not want but had no other choice, called to get my number from my straight talk phone to a new straight talk phone and minutes…its been 24 hrs and still a no go. told me i would be better off getting a new number is why i am staying with them i did not want a new number. so after 24 hrs of hearing there bull sh*t i agreed to get a new numnber and they told me it would be another 24 hrs for it to be on…what a joke this company is… there custmore service is a JOKE

Auburn_Alexis837 says:

I guess I am lucky because I have yet to have to deal with customer service for anything other than establishing my service for the first time. I am not the most tech savy person, but they were able to guide me and help me set it up. I am using the Razr, which is considered a basic phone, but it gets the job done. I use it only to make calls. Not too fond of texting and do it only when I NEED to. Good simple, basic phone and I am only paying $30 a month for 1000 minutes, which is more than I need. Might eventually venture to a smart phone once I get comfortable with them or if I find a good intro phone to expose me to what smartphones have to offer. I saw Straight Talk offers one by Nokia. Any thoughts?

P.H. says:

Thanks for a WONDERFUL article! Very informative in helping to make a decision on what to buy—I needed REAL con’s and REAL pro’s that apply to real-world usage of this phone! According to my prior research, I find that your article is more than likely HIGHLY trustworthy! Thanks again!

ej says:

Beware calling tracfone customer service is horrible! half the time they don’t understand english, why you ask because they are all from different countries. Veinna, mexico,hong kong etc. We as americans have the right to request to be transfered to a us rep. This is actually out right to do this so when you do call demand to speak to someone in the united states of america. All of our us jobs are going to these companies and it isn’t fair. Tracfone has terrible customer service, I have had to battle with them everytime. I hate calling them because of this. Please ask we all have rights and you can’t get proper service from someone who does not understand english. I always have to repeat myself over and over when i call.

Eric torrance says:

Straight customer service is a total joke have fun understanding them and waiting for long waits on the phone i mean long waits and hope they dont doulbe charge u on the straight talk website when buying a phone cause u will play hell getting ur money back for the over charge!!!! 6 weeks and still no money so far I have turn the matter over to my credit card company for this issue, i feel sorry for anyone who has to deal with them on any kinda of a refund , i like their smart phones and what they can do but if u need help have fun i cant ever understand them and its overseas that make it real great!!!!!


not2bforgotten says:

I have had Straight Talk for almost 2 months. I love it!!! I was a Verizon user for 12 years and just could not continue with their outrageous prices. My first purchase from Straight Talk was a Samsung Q and I was told by Walmart employees that it would run off Verizon towers. It did not. I called Straight Talk Customer Service and they talked me through what I needed to do (return the phone to Walmart within 15 days) as it did not work in my area. Straight Talk CS advised me on what phone would work off Verizon towers and I purchased the right one. I have been VERY satisfied. I have unlimited talk, text and messages for $45 a month, no hidden fees just a flat rate. I will admit that some of the CS people had accents that were hard to understand and I just told them that with my hearing and their accent I needed someone else. It all seemed to go well. I have no complaints at this time, just great service.

not2bforgotten says:

Sorry that should be unlimited talk, text and internet. I have the new LG511C, it is fantastic.

nae brook says:

man i want that phone im going to get it to

heather r treharne says:

there might have been a straight talk cell phone entered in the dash of my car to a power source not factory to the car the people who know the cellphone number hate the police & government I was threatened by them might have been put in the name of heather treharne from parkersburg wv I was raped wv sex molested in Colorado they illegal entry florida while asleep stolen jewelry from 5th wheel camper toilet clogged homeless over and over in 1999 ford texts not true sent out about man who sex molested coerced me on psychiatric meds 15yrs friends with judges police mechanics wont remove shut off please