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4.25 Stars (19 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

Tracfone provides nationwide, no-contract cellphone service to suit a variety of needs and budgets. The company uses the same reliable network as the major carriers to ensure customers have dependable service. Customers can enjoy a Tracfone Smartphone or flip phone and an array of service plans that include talk, text and data. Receive up to 25% with "25OFF100".

Tracfone Logo

Editorial Breakdown

Price 4.4 Stars
Plan Options 4.3 Stars
Flexibility 4.4 Stars
Devices 4 Stars

Overall Rating 4.3 Stars

Bottom Line

Tracfone is an affordable cell phone carrier that provides nationwide, no-contract cellphone service to suit a variety of needs and budgets.

Tracfone Review

Tracfone helps customers stay connected to loved ones with cellphone solutions tailored to their specific circumstances. The company connects them with the phones and service plans that they need with no unnecessary extras and commitments. We’ve included Tracfone in our Best Cell Phones for Seniors Buyer’s Guide for great physical store availability. Customers who aren’t tech-savvy or prefer buying goods in person have easy, local access to Tracfone’s products.


  • Prepaid service with no contract
  • Many plans to choose from
  • International calling included
  • May be able to keep your old phone
  • Network speeds up to 4G LTE where available


  • Incompatible with Sprint phones
  • Some complaints regarding customer service

Tracfone Service

Tracfone is known for providing no-contract, no-hassle service that meets their customer’s individual needs at an affordable price. Consumers choose from a variety of Tracfone phones and service plans to suit their usage and lifestyle. The company doesn’t charge activation or cancellation fees, and you may be able to activate a Tracfone cell plan on your current phone.

Switching to Tracfone is a simple, three-step process. You buy a new phone or SIM kit to use in your current phone, activate the service online then buy a plan for minutes, texts and data service.

Checking Tracfone Compatibility

To check if your specific phone can use Tracfone’s services, use the company’s compatibility checking tool on their website. Choose your carrier and then answer a few questions about your phone. Unlocked GSM phones are compatible with Tracfone as will many phones from AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon. As of this writing, Sprint phones cannot be used with Tracfone’s service.

Tracfone International Calling Options

Tracfone offers four ways to make international calls, but the programs do not cover international roaming and international texting is prohibited. Calls must originate from the United States, Puerto Rico or the U.S. Virgin Islands unless you sign up for the International Neighbor program.

  • Tracfone Basic International Calling: Included with the standard Tracfone plan and customers can make many international calls at no additional charge. Customers must use an access number or the Tracfone International App to place calls. This plan is not available with an unlimited talk and text Smartphone plan.
  • Tracfone International Neighbor Program: Those in Mexico can use a local number to reach a US-based Tracfone. Customers can get up to three free numbers to share with family and friends in Mexico.
  • $10 Global Calling Card: Customers can call many foreign nations for as little as a penny per minute using an access number or the free Android Tracfone Dialer app. Tracfone users can add as many cards to their account as needed as long as they maintain active service. Purchasing this card doesn’t extend the service period.
  • Frequent Numbers Program: Customers can get toll-free numbers to substitute for the international numbers that they dial frequently. This makes placing calls much easier.

Tracfone Costs

Prices for Tracfone phones vary widely based on the device selected and range from free to well over $300. Service plan prices are based on plan type, service length and plan features. Smartphone plans with unlimited talk and text cost from $20 to $30 per month. Classic Plans range from $15 to $125.

Tracfone Unlimited Smartphone plans offer 30 days of service and unlimited talk and text. Unused data carries over from month to month as long as active service is maintained. You can buy 1GB of data for $20, 2GB for $25 or 3GB for $30.

Tracfone Classic plans are best for customers who enjoy using their smartphone but may not need as much service month to month.

Tracfone Classic Plans
Days of Service Talk, Text and Data Price
365 1,500 minutes and 1,500 texts
1.5GB of data
90 750 minutes and 1,500 texts
2GB of data
90 750 minutes and 1,000 texts
1.5GB of data
60 750 minutes and 1,000 texts
1GB of data
60 500 minutes and 1,000 texts
500 MB of data
30 500 minutes and 500 texts
500 MB of data

Tracfone basic plans come in several configurations and are ideal for customers who don’t use much data. Included minutes cover talk, text and web browsing. Each text message sent or received costs an average of 0.3 minutes. Each minute of web browsing uses 0.5 minutes of service, with sessions rounded to the next whole minute.

Tracfone Basic Plans
Days of Service Minutes Included Price
365 400 to 1,500 $99.99 to $199.99
90 60 to 450 $19.99 to $79.99
30 30 $9.99

Add-On Tracfone Services

Tracfone offers the following add-on services to ensure that customers always have the minutes, text and data they need. Purchasing these add-ons does not extend the length of service of the current plan.

  • 500-minute card for $10.00
  • 1GB data card for $10.00
  • 1000 texts card for $5.00

How to Buy Tracfone Plans and Phones

Tracfone Plan

Source: Tracfone

Customers can buy phones, plan cards and accessories directly from the Tracfone website. The company ships online orders for free via two-day FedEx. Tracfone also lists local retailers for those that like to shop in person. For plan refills, customers can order online, over the phone, via text or purchase in person. Automatic plan refills with a credit card gives you up to a 10% discount.

To buy a Tracfone phone online, customers enter their ZIP code as not all phones are available in all locations. From there, the search can be filtered by Android or iOS, brand, color, new or refurbished, price and reviews. Although most devices sold are smartphones, Tracfone offers multiple flip phones. The company doesn’t list the very latest models for sale, but their prices seem to reflect that.

Tracfone runs periodic deals, sometimes including free phones with the purchase of a service plan, or phones that include a free service plan.

Tracfone Complaints

Though Tracfone has received a lot of praise for being a great value and meeting the needs of their customers, reviews online are mixed. Tracfone is A+ rated and accredited by the Better Business Bureau, but the average customer review is 1 star. ConsumerAffairs gives Tracfone a little more than 3 out of 5 stars. Top complaints involve issues with transferring minutes to a new phone, defective phones and poor customer service.

Tracfone Q&A

  • Can I finance a Tracfone phone?

    Tracfone partnered with Affirm to offer 6, 12 or 24-month payment plans for select phones. Apply during checkout and receive an instant credit decision. Depending on your credit history, the APR can range from 0% to 30% and a down payment may be required.

  • Does Tracfone offer a warranty on their phones?

    Tracfone offers a one-year limited warranty on their new phones and a 90-day limited warranty on their refurbished phones and phone accessories. (iPhones are not covered by Tracfone and customers must go through Apple for service.) The warranty covers normal wear and tear only — not accidental damage, loss or theft. To initiate service, customers should contact customer care for troubleshooting. If the issue can’t be resolved over the phone, the customer will be given a return authorization code to ship the phone to the service center, where it will be repaired or replaced. As with any warranty, customers should review the terms carefully.

  • Can I get additional protection for my Tracfone phone?

    Tracfone offers two supplemental protection plans to cover issues excluded by the limited warranty. Both programs allow for accidental damage. Tracfone’s more comprehensive plan also covers loss and theft. Prices depend on the type of phone and cell plan, and you can enroll for supplemental coverage on the Tracfone website.

  • What is Tracfone’s return policy?

    Phones purchased directly through the Tracfone website may be returned within 30 days of delivery. Customers must pay return shipping. The refund is contingent upon the phone being received in like-new condition and returned in its original packaging with all included accessories as well as a copy of the purchase receipt. Phones purchased through other vendors are subject to that vendor’s return policy. SIM kits and service plan cards are not returnable.

  • What do I do if I have a question or concern about Tracfone’s service?

    Customers can call Tracfone 7 days a week if they have any questions or concerns about their device or service. The company’s website has a lot of helpful articles for troubleshooting issues, and customers can also check network strength on Tracfone’s interactive online map. Tracfone uses an arbitration process for more extensive problems, and we recommend reading about this on the website.


Tracfone gives customers the ultimate flexibility with their no-contract service plans without sacrificing network or device quality. The company offers customers many phone and service plan options so that their unique needs are met. Customers can feel confident that no matter their lifestyle and preferences, Tracfone has a no-commitment solution for them.

19 Tracfone Reviews

Write Review
1 Star

July 30 2023 1:40AM

It's a bait and switch scheme. They advertise a plan for your points and it is not available. Customer service will not listen to you. They have an agenda to drain your well earned points. The phone conversations usually cost you minutes.

Bad R.
Miami, FL
2 Stars

February 05 2023 3:07AM

I am a very long time Tracfone customer and was very pleased with the service provided. That has all changed. The customer service is poor and they don't seem to understand your problem no matter how you explain it to them.

I was calling service through bluetooth on my car and told the representative that I was driving but needed help with my data for GPS. She wanted to send me a text message to authenticate the account!! I said excuse me I just told you I was driving, I can't look at a text.

She didn't understand that I could make a call from my car hands free with bluetooth. It's a shame that companies can't hire in the U.S. as overseas customer service is awful. Depending on who you get, it's hard to understand what they are saying and they just hang up when they can not solve your issue (and I was not being ugly to the reps).

I will be shopping for another cell phone provider when my time is up. This is not the same Tracfone company that is used to be and the Verizon purchase of Tracfone did not help.

H H.
Charlotte, NC
1 Star

June 10 2022 6:35PM

I have been a customer for over 10 years. The service is basically fine until you have a problem with your phone. My phone was purchased from Best Buy. Was only eight months old when it started having problems. It was bought to replace a defective.

Phone Tech support as well as customer service could not fix the problem. I fought with them for hours over a replacement phone. After contacting multiple reps I got multiple different answers. Every rep told me something different. If you expect a fast return on a defective phone GOOD Luck.

I am still waiting on my replacement phone and I cannot get a ship date. My advice is to just purchase a new phone and have the minutes transferred over if you need a phone replacement quickly. I'll be lucky to have a replacement phone within two weeks.

Don B.
1 Star

April 02 2022 11:18PM

Don’t even think you can speak with an agent in less than 45 minutes. Even after that wait you may be switched to another agent, another more than 30 min. wait, and you could well be cut off. Then you must start over again with the same wait times. No thanks.

Frank D.
W Warwick, RI
3 Stars

April 01 2022 2:59PM

Got a Tracfone for my husband. It did not last too long. The texting went wrong where you could not even type anything. Sent it back, they received it but have not yet received the replacement.

Tried to talk to customer service. They connected me to the warehouse and kept getting disconnected! What can be done to get the replacement phone! This was done in February!

Helene J.
Port Orange, FL
1 Star

March 11 2022 7:10AM

Replaced Tracfone touch screen with flip tracfone. Because of forced upgrade. This phone doesn't connect to internet. Called customer service. What a joke. Next step to Verizon store. They said that Verizon didn't own tracfone. That I should go to Walmart.

Janice A. N.
1 Star

February 06 2022 1:28PM

I have always had Tracfones. The service used to be good. Now the Phones are terrible and also the service. People have sent me Texts and Left me voice messages. Never received them!!!

Then the last phone I had with them said emergency phone calls only. Very disappointing with this company. Then I was told if I wanted to make a call to go in my backyard to get a better signal!!!!

Karen K.
Lowell, MA
4 Stars

February 06 2022 4:47AM

I signed up not only 1, but 2 flip phones last month. I was able to as activate one by myself. The other I was talked to with the representative. Both are now in service. I bought the $19.99 Basic Plan for both phones. One of which I added more minutes for $10.00 just this month.

I have been pleased with both the phone's and the plans. The only thing I did differently from the other reviewers was I bought the phone's from my local dealers (Target & Best Buy).

If I had any problems with the phones themselves, I know these retailers would have taken them back during their own warranty defective product exchange periods. I prefer to do business that way.

Iona D.
Southern California, CA
1 Star

February 04 2022 1:27AM

I have been a customer for years. My phone became outdated with their system. They offered a free phone, I was very pleased, until it never showed up. Then I got a letter stating the order was cancelled because the phone was out of stock.

I called and asked about my offer for a free phone. Got nothing but a run around. They hold you on the phone forever just to run through the minutes. You never get anywhere, then they need to transfer you and you start all over again. After several attempts, phone, chat, email.

I got a phone from my son. It was unlocked from his carrier. I did the chat with Tracfone. Yes I could use it. I bought a sim card and now guess what, they tell me I can't use this phone. I have 288 GB 3052 text and 1463 min. available on my phone. They don't own up to their word. They don't provide good service at all.

C B.
Dallas, OR
1 Star

February 03 2022 4:34AM

Tracfone stopped promo code for 1gb data card. $10/gb is highest of all cell providers, even their own Total Wireless!! Data is priced much higher with limited plans. Looking to change data provider. Paul, TF stockholder, and with TF abt 15yrs.

Paul H.
Fort Wayne, IN