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Total Wireless

4.2 Stars (4 Reviews)
Updated: January 24, 2023
By: Jeff Smith
Jeff Smith
Sr. Content Manager
As Retirement Living’s senior content manager, Jeff oversees the product and publishing of all retirement, investing, and consumer wellness content on the site. His extensive expertise in brand messaging and creating data-driven stories helps position Retirement Living as a top authority for senior content and community resources.
Sr. Content Manager
Edited By: Lauren Hamer
Lauren Hamer
Sr. Editor
Bringing more than a decade of editorial experience to Retirement Living, Lauren focuses on reporting senior-related issues, including retirement planning, finance, consumer protection, and health and wellness. Lauren has edited consumer content for Credible, Angi, Slickdeals, Jobs for the Future, and more.
Sr. Editor

Total Wireless promises to give customers the best value in wireless with affordable, no-contract nationwide service. Consumers can choose from a variety of cell phones and plan options with the talk, text and data that they need. Total Wireless is a subsidiary of Tracfone and utilizes Verizon’s network for dependable coverage at a lower cost. Receive up to 25% off with code "25OFF100".

Total Wireless

Editorial Breakdown

Price 4.2 Stars
Plan Options 4.2 Stars
Flexibility 4.1 Stars
Devices 4.3 Stars

Overall Rating 4.2 Stars

Bottom Line

Total Wireless is a no-frills prepaid cell phone carrier with basic services at affordable prices.

Total Wireless Review

Total Wireless customers can benefit from the same coverage and plan options of the larger cell service providers without a commitment to a lengthy contract. We included Total Wireless in our Best Cell Phones for Seniors Buyer’s Guide for having great basic plans in the industry. Cell service plans are straightforward with all the features cell phone users need without the frills that they don’t want.


  • Prepaid, no-contract service
  • Easy-to-understand service plans
  • May be able to keep existing phone and number
  • 4G LTE network speeds, where available
  • Affordable international calling


Will Your Phone Work with Total Wireless?

Not all cell phones work with Total Wireless’ service. Check your device compatibility on the company’s website by entering in the phone’s IMEI, MEID or serial number. The website instructs customers how to find this information on their phone. Only phones that are Verizon-compatible or are CDMA unlocked will work with Total Wireless’ service.

Total Wireless International Calling

Customers can add international calling to their existing service plan by purchasing a $10 Global International Long Distance card on the Total Wireless website. The company publishes a list of countries and the corresponding rates online. Calls must originate from the United States or Puerto Rico, and any unused card balance carries over to the next month. Customers who make frequent international calls can download Total Wireless’ International Dialer app, which makes the calling process easier.

Total Wireless Costs

The cost of a Total Wireless phone depends on the type, model and condition. Prices range from free (with a qualifying service plan purchase) to over $1,000. We list the service plan pricing in the table below. Customers who need more data than listed can buy 5GB cards that never expire for $10. All cell phone companies change service pricing from time to time, so verify the cost before finalizing a Total Wireless service plan.

Total Wireless offers optional automatic service plan refills charged monthly to the customer’s credit card with a 5% discount.

Total Wireless Cell Plan Costs
Plans 30-Day Plan 90-Day Plan
Single Line
High-speed data throttled to 2GB after 25GB of usage.
Unlimited nationwide talk and text: $25
With 5GB of data: $35
Unlimited data: $50
Unlimited nationwide talk and text with 15GB of data: $90
Data speed lowers to 2G after reaching from 30GB to 100GB, depending on plan.
Unlimited nationwide talk, text and data.
2 lines: $60
3 lines: $85
4 lines: $100

How to Buy Total Wireless Cell Phones and Plans

Customers can purchase Total Wireless phones, accessories and service directly on the company’s website or by calling customer service. If you prefer to shop in a store, you will find a list of Total Wireless retail partners in your area on their site.

Shop for phones online by entering your ZIP code to check product availability. You can filter the results by criteria like operating system, brand, price, new or refurbished and other options. The available phones are primarily smartphones with at least one flip phone. The Smartphones listed are from well-known manufacturers, but Total Wireless does not sell the latest models, which keeps costs down.

Total Wireless Complaints

Although many customers are satisfied with Total Wireless’ reliable network coverage and easy-to-understand service plans, online reviews for the telecommunications provider are mixed. The Better Business Bureau accredits the company and gives Total Wireless a B rating. However, reviewers give Total Wireless just over 1 star, with most complaints focused on defective products and poor customer service. On the other hand, consumers who purchased Total Wireless products and services through Best Buy gave an average rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars. Personal economist Clark Howard recommends Total Wireless for those who like the Verizon network and who don’t need to buy a new phone.

Total Wireless Q&A

  • What is Total Wireless’ return policy?

    If a customer purchases a phone or accessory directly from the Total Wireless website or a company representative over the phone, they may return the item within 30 days of delivery. Save all packaging materials until you’re sure you will keep the hardware. Customers pay for return shipping and must send the item back in like-new condition in the original packaging, with a copy of the receipt. Eligible products purchased in-person at a retail store are subject to that location’s return policy. Activation kits and service plans are not returnable.

  • Is there a warranty on Total Wireless phones and accessories?

    Total Wireless provides a one-year limited warranty on all new phones, excluding iPhones. Apple’s one-year limited warranty covers iPhones. A 90-day limited warranty covers refurbished phones (excluding iPhones) and accessories. There is no warranty on refurbished iPhones, but these devices fall under the 30-day return policy.

    The Total Wireless limited warranty covers product failure due to regular use and does not apply to cases of physical damage or theft. Call customer service if you have a problem with a warrantied product to resolve the issue over the phone. You’ll get a return authorization to send the item back for repair or replacement.

  • What should customers do if they have a question about a Total Wireless product or service?

    Consumers can contact the Total Wireless customer service team by online chat, phone or text seven days a week with questions or concerns. The Total Wireless website provides user manuals, company FAQs and other information.

  • Does Total Wireless offer financing for their phones?

    Total Wireless finances phones through Affirm on eligible purchases, with payments spread over 6, 12 or 24 months. Depending on credit history, customers receive a 0% to 30% APR. Applying for financing is fast and straightforward, with an instant credit decision rendered during checkout. Total Wireless leases some phones with 24 monthly payments. Customers end the lease at any time by paying off the balance or returning the phone.

  • Does Total Wireless have a rewards program?

    The Total Wireless rewards program awards customers points for completing short online activities, such as watching videos. Points are exchanged for free service. Total Wireless also has a referral program where customers and those they refer can earn a free month of service.


Total Wireless provides customers with a no-commitment, flexible solution for their cell phone needs. The company offers a variety of phones and service plans backed by a dependable network that can accommodate all lifestyles and budgets. Total Wireless helps customers stay connected — all on the customer’s terms.

4 Total Wireless Reviews

Write Review
1 Star

February 05 2022 5:28AM

I switched to Total Wireless to save money and because I was frustrated with degradation in coverage with my previous supplier. All was fine until I lost my phone. When I bought another phone to replace it, it had issues that no one could resolve, so I bought another phone.

The phone with issues inactivated, but the second phone would never activate at all. Countless hours (8 in just one day!) being on hold or talking to incompetent people who don't listen and just read scripts will make a nun curse.

I have been nice, been firm, teared up, and raised my voice, but all to no avail. They continue to hold my phone number hostage because their system corrupted my account data.

After almost a week I decided to just go back to my previous carrier, but Total Wireless is refusing to release my phone # citing policy and procedure. Since I am a realtor, and my phone number is printed on all my advertisements, this is more than just a nostalgic attachment to a phone number.

Being without it is costing me money, and relationships (they don't know why I haven't responded). I would not recommend Total Wireless. There are better ways to save money!!!

Dee D.
Forsyth, GA
1 Star

December 03 2020 10:42PM

The first months were fine but my hotspot data suddenly disappeared. Tried to call customer service. I pray you never have to do that. It's like they don't want customers. The guy could not help me at all but tell me my hot spot data was used up only three days after I got it.

The only reason I use it is to check sound cloud account for once a week. Now I can't check it the rest of the month. The bottom line is it's not reliable. You can not contact anyone to help you.

I would not buy this service. It's a rip off. They lie about their data. They cut you off all the time. I will be changing my service now. I have to buy a new phone.

Johnny S.
Luther, OK
1 Star

June 01 2020 1:40AM

I feel that Total Wireless is trying to cheat me out of $60, or $380 depending on how you look at it. I wanted to add a second line to my existing Total Wireless account for my elderly mother who is retired and doesn't have a lot of money. We thought this carrier would be a good fit since it is relatively inexpensive compared to other companies.

She wanted to buy her own phone for this switch to my account, and had an existing cellphone number that she wanted to transfer in. It seemed like a straightforward transaction and hook up, but it turned into a nightmare of a chore, and we need to return the phone tomorrow. The value of Total Wireless is good, but it is terrible if something goes wrong. Four total wireless tech support people could not get this phone hooked up to the second line.

The fourth person told me that the last thing to try was to check my bill so he was transferring me to the "Billing Department". To check if my bill was paid in order to solve a technical problem. This was the fifth person by now and I finally gave up and asked for a refund of my $60 for the prepayment of the second line. He refused to refund me.

I asked to speak with his manager, and he hung up on me. I then decided to leave the company, only to find they refused to unlock my one month old phone since the fine print says that I agreed to stay with Total Wireless for 12 months as a condition of the purchase of the phone. So they are holding my phone hostage.

I would never have agreed to a contract on a phone with a no contract cell phone company! I missed that and feel it is unfair and deceptive business practice. Where else are they so unscrupulous? Some of their staff are incompetent, some are nice, and three have hung up on me. -Jason in Western Massachusetts

Jason S.
South Deerfield, MA
5 Stars

December 22 2019 1:50AM

TW offers great flexibility for the budget conscious and who are not big users of data. The carryover option is fantastic and goes well beyond 30 days. My wife has been on the $25 plan for over 1 1/2 years and is still on only 10 GB of data usage as a result of using wifi! Since she has had a great experience, I switched from Verizon to TW just this month and purchased the Samsung S7 Crown. Great phone as well. The pre-paid feature also saves money and keeps the plan going. Could not be happier. Thank you.

Craig M.
Gilbert, AZ