scroll top

How to get free and discount internet at home after the ACP runs out

We earn commissions for transactions made through links in this post. Here's more on how we make money.

In this digital age, internet access is essential for work and learning. Whether you are pursuing a work-from-home career or helping your child with a research project for school, having home internet is a must. 

In this post, we’ll show you how to get free internet at home without paying. There are also resources to help you find cheap internet without the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP), the federal program for low-cost internet, which expires April 30.

Status of the Affordable Connectivity Program

How to get free or discounted internet from the government

Discounted home internet from the major providers:

Low income internet providers:

Other tips for getting free internet access:

Status of the Affordable Connectivity Program 

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) established the ACP to help income-eligible households save money on home internet. Enrolled households currently receive a monthly discount of up to $30 (or $75 for households on Tribal lands) and a one-time discount of up to $100 to buy a laptop.

How to get a free government tablet or iPad

However, the ACP is not taking new applicants,1 since the program is scheduled to end in April 2024. If you have the ACP benefit, you can transfer it to a different provider or a different service offered by your current provider through the end of the program.

The FCC’s Lifeline Assistance Program is still operating. More on that below.

How to get free internet or discounted internet from the government

The Lifeline Assistance Program provides government discounts to qualified subscribers for cellphone use, broadband internet, and bundled voice-broadband service. 

Lifeline offers up to a $9.25 monthly service discount for qualifying low-income subscribers and up to $34.25 per month for subscribers on Tribal lands.

You can apply for Lifeline using the Lifeline National Verifier, an FCC system that verifies eligibility, or request a mailed application at 800-234-9473 or [email protected].

If the ACP is approved for more funding, you can combine it with Lifeline if you are eligible for both programs. This maximizes your savings and can provide free internet in some cases when paired with a low-cost home internet plan from a participating provider.

If you qualify, you have 90 days to choose and sign up for a phone or internet company, or you can ask your current provider to apply your Lifeline benefit to your existing service.

Discounted home internet from the major providers

These discount home internet options offer a variety of data plans at different price points. Many of the programs base eligibility on the Federal Poverty income guidelines. 

These are the 2024 Federal Poverty guidelines:

Number of people in family/householdAnnual income

* For families/households with more than 8 people, add $5,380 for each additional person.


AT&T offers discounted home internet service to low-income households in 23 states through its Access program, with service for $30 per month based on the maximum speed available at your address, up to 100Mbps.2

Access is available to households with income below 200% of the federal poverty level (FPL) or that receive benefits from:

  • The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
  • National School Lunch Program (NSLP)

You can further maximize savings by applying an existing ACP or Lifeline benefit to this service or other AT&T internet plans. Check with AT&T for availability and pricing.

AT&T ACP statement: “If the program ends, regular AT&T plan rates will apply.”

CenturyLink offers fiber internet with unlimited data in 16 states. Plans are $75 per month with free installation, modem included. CenturyLink works with ACP and Lifeline. You can speak with a CenturyLink representative about applying existing ACP or Lifeline benefits to lower your monthly bill.

CenturyLink ACP statement: “If the program ends, we’ll no longer apply the ACP discount you currently receive to your CenturyLink service.”

Cricket Wireless

Cricket Wireless offers a 15 GB mobile hotspot, unlimited high-speed data plans and a 100 GB data-only plan. With ACP discounts, you could pay between $0 and $30 per month for service. Cricket also accepts Lifeline benefits.

Cricket Wireless ACP statement: “Please refer to the FCC’s website at for more information about the status of the program.

You may contact your members of Congress to help protect access to an affordable internet connection for more than 20 million U.S. households at”


HughesNet offers discounted satellite-based internet service to low-income households with an existing ACP or Lifeline benefit. They offer a range of eligible plans, from HughesNet Select 100 GB to Elite 200GB in all contiguous states and Puerto Rico.

HughesNet ACP statement: “Upon the conclusion of ACP as announced by the FCC, you will be subject to HughesNet’s undiscounted rates and general terms and conditions if you continue to receive services from HughesNet.”


T-Mobile offers 5G home internet for $40 per month. This service is eligible for the ACP discount if you already have the benefit. Lifeline benefits do not apply to this service. There is no annual contract, and you can try the service for 15 days with a money-back guarantee if you aren't satisfied.

T-Mobile ACP statement: “If you are currently enrolled in the program, you’ll continue to receive your discount while funds last, as long as you maintain your eligibility.”


An existing ACP benefit works with any Verizon Fios Mix & Match internet plan, unlimited mobile data plans, 5G Home Internet plans, and LTE Home internet plans. 

Verizon ACP statement: “Unless Congress approves additional funding, all ACP benefits will end when the current funding runs out in the next few months.”

Low-income internet providers

If you have a low income and are looking for affordable home internet, the following internet providers offer low-cost internet access at home:

Cox Connect2Compete

A flagship program of EveryoneOn, Connect2Compete works with Cox Communications (and Mediacom) to provide low-income families with K-12 students affordable home internet. Plans are $9.95 per month.

Free Cox Connect2 qualifications

To qualify for Cox Connect2Compete, your household must:

  • Have at least one K-12 student
  • Receive government assistance

Cox is also currently enrolled in the ACP and Lifeline in California, Louisiana, and Oklahoma.

Frontier Lifeline Program

The Frontier Lifeline Program is offered in 29 states and provides discounts on qualifying Frontier internet services to low-income subscribers. Frontier internet service includes a wifi router. 

Free Frontier internet qualifications

In general, applicants must receive government assistance to be eligible for this service. However, each state Frontier serves has different qualification requirements.

Frontier currently accepts Lifeline and ACP benefits.

Internet Essentials from Comcast

Internet Essentials from Comcast is a discounted service that works with the ACP to provide low-cost monthly service for $9.95 and free internet equipment. If you receive ACP benefits, you can get the monthly service for free and enjoy speeds of up to 50/10 Mbps. This service also comes with free access to Xfinity wifi hotspots and offers low-priced computers.

Free Comcast internet qualifications

To qualify for this free Comcast service, you must:

  • Qualify for the ACP or receive benefits from Lifeline, SNAP, Medicaid, or the National School Lunch Program (NSLP)
  • Live in a Comcast service area
  • Not be a Comcast internet service customer within the last 90 days

Comcast also offers Lift Zone, a network of free, nationwide wifi-connected community centers for students. Comcast accepts ACP benefits.

We also put together a list of ways to get free wifi when you're away from home.


Juno offers contract-free dial-up internet access, with 10 hours of free internet each month. You can get connected by choosing an access number from the site, but make sure it is local to your area or you’ll pay fees if your current landline phone provider charges for long-distance calls.

Juno offers more than 2,200 access numbers nationwide. You will choose an access number when you sign up for service. To verify that there are local access numbers in your area, use the Juno access number search.

Juno also offers paid, accelerated dial-up for $29.95/month and DSL broadband internet service for $26.95/month. All services require a landline.


NetZero offers 10 hours per month of free dial-up home internet service. It also offers accelerated dial-up with Norton AntiVirus protection for $29.95 per month. 

FYI: NetZero charges $25 per incident for live technical support by telephone. 

Spectrum Internet Assistant Program

Spectrum offers a low-price option called Spectrum Internet Assist for $19.99 per month, plus taxes and fees, with contract-free service that includes a modem for high-speed internet at 30 Mbps. You can also add in-home wifi for $5 per month, with a free wifi router. This program is only for new internet subscribers.

Free Spectrum internet qualifications

To qualify for Spectrum Internet Assist, one or more members of your family must receive assistance from:

  • National School Lunch Program (NLSP)
  • Community Eligibility Provision of the NLSP
  • SSI (applies to those 65 and older)

Free Spectrum is also currently enrolled in the ACP.

Other tips for getting free internet access

Employer-subsidized home internet

Some employers may reimburse you for home internet services if you work from home. Check with your human resources department to find out what’s available, as well as the rules of usage. Consider negotiating this into your salary if you're starting a new job working from home.

Check with your school district about free wifi for students at home

Ask administrators at your child’s school if there is a free or subsidized internet access program. Some school districts might even have a network of free wifi partners.

For example, in Clark County, Nev., educators and business leaders collaborated to create Connecting Kids3 — an initiative to connect every child engaging in digital learning in the state to the internet. Programs like this ensure children have the equipment and wifi access they need at home.

Nonprofits and charities that help you get home internet

Check with local nonprofits who offer affordable programs to help you get connected. Here are some options to look into:

  • ConnectAll: Offers home internet at $14.95 per month through a hotspot connection on the T-Mobile network for eligible subscribers.
  • EducationSuperHighway: Their No Home Left Offline is a privately funded campaign to help families get free wifi in low-income apartment communities.
  • EveryoneOn: This nonprofit helps families in underserved communities access affordable internet service and computers. The Washington, D.C.-based organization has connected more than 890,000 people to the internet since 2012 and has provided more than 5,000 computers.
  • Human-I-T: Provides qualified applicants with a high-speed internet plan for under $30 per month when they buy a Franklin T10 mobile hotspot.

PCs for People: Eligible customers can get prepaid internet for $15 per month after purchasing a hotspot device or modem.

Check out these other resources for low-income households:

Help for single moms: 16+ resources$500 single mom grant
Government assistance for single momsFree cable
Energy assistanceFree money for bills
Free help with tax preparationFree smartphone
10+ charities that help single mothersFree money
Free furnitureEBT discounts


  1. “Affordable Connectivity Program,” Federal Communications Commission.
  2. “Affordable Connectivity Program Update: What It Means for You,” TechBuzz. February 13, 2024.
  3. Connecting Kids.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *