How to Send Text Messages by Email for Free (Both SMS & MMS)

Did you know that you can send someone a text message via email?

Yep – it’s a great way to reach someone if you don’t have your phone as long as you know their number!

You probably get unlimited text messages so this tip won’t save you a lot of (or any) money, but it could save you time. There are a lot of cases where a business, or some other entity, is willing to notify you by email but not necessarily by text message.

In those cases, you may want to get a text message instead. Now you can, just figure out your carrier’s email address configuration to route to text messages and you’re golden!

Table of Contents
  1. Where to Send Your Text Messages by Email
  2. What is emailSMS?
  3. Difference Between SMS and MMS?

Where to Send Your Text Messages by Email

To send a text message by email, you just need to email the carrier’s SMS or MMS email address and email your message there.

The format is the same for all of the carriers – [their phone number]@[domain] – the domain is the part that changes. It’s technically called an email gateway, in case you ever have to search for it yourself. An email gateway is an email server that filters out spam and other unsolicited email.

Here they are for some major U.S. based carriers:

Alltel [number] [number]
AT&T[number] [number]
Boost Mobile[number][number]
Consumer Cellular[number] (not available)
Cricket Wireless [number] [number]
Google Fi[number][number]
Metro PCS[number] [number]
Mint Mobile[number] available)
Page Plus [number] [number]
Republic Wireless [number] (not available)
Simple Mobile [number] (not available)
Sprint [number] [number]
T-Mobile [number] [number]
Tracfone [number] [number]
U.S. Cellular [number] [number]
Verizon [number] [number]
Virgin Mobile [number] [number]
Xfinity Mobile [number] [number]

Here they are for Canadian based carriers:

Bell Canada [number]
Bell MTS[number]
Fido Solutions[number]
Freedom Mobile[number]
Koodo Mobile [number]
PC Mobile[number]
Rogers Communications[number]

What is emailSMS?

EmailSMS often refers to services that companies offer to permit this type of communication within their organization. Various companies make the email gateway servers that facilitate the email-to-text-message “translation,” so to speak, but you don’t need that because the wireless carriers already do it for you.

In other words, you don’t need emailSMS because it’s already there.

Difference Between SMS and MMS?

The main difference between SMS and MMS is that SMS is for simple text messages and MMS is for longer messages that may include media.

SMS is short for Short Message Service and what we think of when we think of text messages. You are limited to 160 characters of text and longer messages will be split up into multiple text messages.

MMS is short for Multimedia Messaging Service and handles longer messages that include photos, videos, or audio.

If you are just sending text, SMS is fine. Otherwise, you need to use the MMS address if it’s available.

What happens if you send multimedia to an SMS address? It depends on the carrier but the message usually goes through without the attachment. When I tried to send an image via SMS to myself, the message went through including the filename of the attachment but the attachment was removed.

There you have it – how to send a text through email!

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About Jim Wang

Jim Wang is a forty-something father of four who is a frequent contributor to Forbes and Vanguard's Blog. He has also been fortunate to have appeared in the New York Times, Baltimore Sun, Entrepreneur, and Marketplace Money.

Jim has a B.S. in Computer Science and Economics from Carnegie Mellon University, an M.S. in Information Technology - Software Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University, as well as a Masters in Business Administration from Johns Hopkins University. His approach to personal finance is that of an engineer, breaking down complex subjects into bite-sized easily understood concepts that you can use in your daily life.

One of his favorite tools (here's my treasure chest of tools,, everything I use) is Personal Capital, which enables him to manage his finances in just 15-minutes each month. They also offer financial planning, such as a Retirement Planning Tool that can tell you if you're on track to retire when you want. It's free.

He is also diversifying his investment portfolio by adding a little bit of real estate. But not rental homes, because he doesn't want a second job, it's diversified small investments in a few commercial properties and farms in Illinois, Louisiana, and California through AcreTrader.

Recently, he's invested in a few pieces of art on Masterworks too.

>> Read more articles by Jim

Opinions expressed here are the author's alone, not those of any bank or financial institution. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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    • Jim Wang says

      The best way to know is to try to email the setting above and if it doesn’t work, dig deeper. Sometimes these legacy systems are still in operation!

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