Today, access to the internet is vital in every household for purposes of work, education, news and entertainment. However, there are many cable companies in collaboration with the federal government that provide cheap cable TV for low income families. This affordable internet service programs help seniors, students and food stamp people living below poverty levels. The need for internet connectivity is useful as many low-income households often struggle to either put up with their monthly bills.
As mentioned above, you can get a cable provider with amazing internet packages, and TV offers to help you remain connected and lower your monthly obligations. Hence, a cable TV doesn’t stand to be a luxury, especially if these packages can reduce your bill in half. However, lack of cable tv may result in individuals missing out on fundamental news as well as informational television programs.
Moreover, cable TV and internet have gradually become more and more expensive, prompting many households to cut their cable service due to hiked pricing. Luckily, there are low-income internet and cable providers that usually provide cable TV services and internet bundling at a discounted price, to the lower-income households that qualify. The qualifying families get to enjoy the same privileges as their counterparts on access to internet and TV channels.
How Do You Find The Cheap Cable Tv For Low-Income Households?
Specific guidelines will help you to choose the best cable providers that suit your budget. Put into consideration the following;
i) Find out all cable providers linked with government assistance in your area
Conduct research on all cable TV providers who offer their services in your area and make a comparison on who has the lowest price. Identify the providers that have nationwide coverage on their network.
ii) Consider the channels you prefer
Since you’ve already listed down the providers, also make a shortlist of the channels of your choice. Compare the list of TV channels you love verses the channels offered by the provider on their website and then choose the provider that meets your needs.
iii) Check out the plan packages and prices
The reason as to why you are conducting research is to have the cheapest option. Some companies have monthly billing fees, hidden costs, and extra taxes, which increases your monthly bill. Therefore, choose a provider who gives room for monthly subscriptions negotiations and transparent on their pricing.
iv) Check out for customer reviews
Customers will always genuinely attest to services delivery and affordability of the providers. Some reviews will give you a clue on the provider’s application requirements. Otherwise narrow down your options depending on the customers ranking as the reasonable and cheapest cable TV operators will always have the best customer reviews.
v) Understand the provider’s Customer Care Service
You can visit their offices, call, chat with them on social media or website and see how they handle your queries. Your first impression with them enables you to rate their customer service and decide if that is how you would want to get addressed when you become their customer.
vi) Pick your preferred Cable Serve Provider
Ultimately, pick the cable service provider with the best price in terms of affordability, excellent packages, and outstanding customer service. However, avoid compromising quality due to the pricing. A cheaper option can end up expensive in the long run.
How Can You Get Free Cable Tv?
When it comes to provisions that enable you to save money, the cable is last on that list. Most people fear that monthly bill, even if they watch television, as the cost seems uneconomical compared to the value. Therefore, many people are looking for ways to watch TV without cable to avoid the monthly cable cost. So, you can stream your favourite channels online, including ABC, NBC, CBS, and FOX, that offer free online programming, using a standard internet connection.
What Are The Government Assistance Programs For Internet And Cables?
Lifeline is a US federal government initiative intended to offer cable and internet services within the convenience of the qualifying families. Besides, this program provides low-income households with cheap cable or internet access in collaboration with reputable internet services providers.
Suppose you or a member in your home is in a federal assistance program, or income levels are at or below 135% federal poverty guidelines. In that case, you may be eligible for Lifeline, the Federal Communication Commission’s (FCC) program that subsidies 9.25% on monthly cable or internet bills.
What Are Programs That Qualify For a Lifeline?
To benefit from Lifeline discounts, you must prove that you qualify through one of the listed government programs below. You may need to ascertain qualification by, presenting a card or award letter from Medicaid, SNAP or any of the programs.
Eligibility is dependent on government assistance programs such as:
- National School Lunch Program
- Public Housing Assistance
- Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
- Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
- Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)
- Women, Infants, and Children (WIC)
- Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)
What are the Income-Based Programs for Internet and Cable?
Suppose you or any member of the household do not get assistance from any government program. In that case, you can also receive a subsidy of $9.25 on your monthly bills based on the income criteria. Precisely, if your income amounts to or below 135% of the federal poverty benchmark, you are eligible for the Lifeline program.
However, you will need to prove that you are eligible by providing the following documents.
- Salary slip of your current income
- Tax returns from state, federal or tribal for the previous year
- Federal or Tribal notice of participation in General assistance
- Divorce decree, child support award or other documents which show your financial responsibilities
- Workers’ Compensation or unemployment benefits you receive
- Social Security statements of benefits
What Are the Low-Cost Internet Options By Isps (Internet Service Providers)
Xfinity cable is offered to low-income families through numerous package options, starting at just $24.99 per month, families can access up to 100 channels via the Comcast affiliate. Other plans include digital starter plan has 140 channels at $49.99, preferred digital plan with more than 220 channels at $59.99, and the premier digital plan with over 260 channels at $104.99.
However, to get Xfinity services, you don’t need to qualify for any government program or low-income based criteria to be eligible for the cheap internet and cable services offered. Note that, Comcast Xfinity cable deals are not available in all areas. Moreover, it is advisable to know that costs and packages vary depending on the location.
Spectrum is a reliable cable TV with amazing features that come with no extra fees or hidden costs. Also, the qualifying households can get an internet connection of up to 30 Mbps downloads speed, a free modem and security suite, with no data cap or contracts plus, the ability to use parental controls. The Spectrum plan costs $17.99 per month, plus taxes and fees. However, for an additional $5 per month, you can receive a wireless router.
Moreover, those who quality must be a member from a household participating in the National School Lunch Program (NSLP), receiving SSI benefits, be in the Community Eligibility Provision of the NSLP or be over 65 years old.
3) Verizon Wireless
Verizon has a very competitive price plan package without any contract called Verizon Fios. This brand is one of the cable TV and internet providers that enable you to get TV reception without cable or an antenna by use of fiber optic services. They have different categories of internet plans, as per the below details:
- 100 Mbps monthly at $39.99
- 300 Mbps monthly at 59.99
- 1000 Mbps at 79.99 per month
The best cable TV deals for AT&T get bundled with the internet, and DirecTV offers several internet bundles worth noting. For $65 per month, you can get the “Select” cable package plus AT&T internet, and the kit includes 150 channels. For even extra savings, you can bundle your internet and TV bill together to receive free unlimited data.
However, suppose you or a family member participates in the SNAP program or falls under the low-income category. In that case, you automatically qualify into the AT&T Access program that provides basic internet to fixed income household starting from $10 per month for either cable & internet.
5) Cox Cable Services
This provider avails the most competitive prices in the market for cable TV and internet services. They offer 140+ channels nationwide monthly at $70. Besides, Cox cable also provides 70+ channels regularly at $25. They also provide internet services for the below-listed prices.
- 10 Mbps monthly at $29.99
- 30 Mbps monthly at 39.99
- 150 Mbps monthly at 79.99
- 300 Mbps monthly at 99.99
- 1000 Mbps with unlimited data at 99.99 per month
Additionally, the Cox cable services qualify you must have at least one child in grades K-12 and participating in the NSLP, SNAP or TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families). Or, receive project-based vouchers, tenant-based vouchers, or Section 8 Project-Based Rental Assistance (PBRA) and who reside in public housing. If you are not eligible, Cox still has some reasonable internet prices starting at $29.99 per month.
With Mediacom’s Connect2Compete program, in collaboration with Everyone On, gives qualifying households up to 10 Mbps for $9.95 per month with no contract, no deposit, no installation fees, and no equipment rental fees. Besides, a Wi-Fi modem gets provided via a no-cost lease.
Interestingly, you may qualify for the free government internet and laptop, if you have at least one student in grades K-12 staying at home and at least one child receiving reduced lunch program through the National School Lunch Program (NSLP). Moreso, you must not be an existing Mediacom internet customer or have an outstanding bill or unreturned equipment.
Century Link provides high-speed internet to eligible participants starting from $9.95 to 19.95 per month. The internet speed connection ranges from 1.5-12 Mbps. However, participants can also buy an iPad mini for $150 through the program, with a two-year term commitment
To qualify for this offer, you must be a member in a federal assistance program such as the Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP), SNAP or Medicaid, or have an income that is at or below 135% of the Federal Poverty guidelines. Besides, seniors in some states may qualify if their income is below 150-175% of the Federal Poverty benchmark.
Summary Of Low-Cost Internet For Low-Income Internet Home
|Low Income Internet Provider||Speed Up to||Monthly price||Eligibility For This Program|
|AT&T Access*||10 Mbps||$5.00 or $10.00/ month||SNAP|
|Cox||15 Mbps||$9.95/month||NSLP, SNAP, TANF, HUD|
|Spectrum Internet||30 Mbps||$14.99/month||NSLP, SSI|
|Comcast Xfinity||15 Mbps||$9.95/month||NSL, PHUD, MEC, SNAP, SSI|
|Century link||15 Mbps||$9.95/month||HEAP, SNAP, MEC|
|Verizon||100 Mbps||$39.99/month||NSL, PHUD, MEC, SNAP, SSI|
Does The Government Offer Free Internet And Cable?
The federal government provides certain essential utilities for free, but that’s not the case with cable TV and internet services even to the less fortunate. However, the federal government doesn’t usually provide free internet and cable but will subsidize a family’s internet connection by paying part or all of the monthly cost.
Generally, the household should pay for a small monthly fee for the program, but the service can be for free to some families. The Lifeline program gets offered by phone companies, cable companies, and other telecommunication providers. Otherwise, any vulnerable citizen denied coverage but has a meagre income, can dial the Federal Communication Commission Customer Help Center at (888) 225-5322 for more help.
Cable TV and internet deals are not always spread across the media or posted on billboards. For this reason, we have provided you with a comprehensive discussion of who are the cheap cable TV and internet providers, and other useful information.
Of course, the deals offered by any ISP depends on the cable companies within your area, as some companies are not widespread in various parts of the country. Therefore, learn more about how to find better deals in this article.