Mint Mobile Review 2024: Affordable Prepaid Phone Plans

Mint Mobile
mint mobile logo

Product Name: Mint Mobile

Product Description: Mint Mobile offers discount prepaid cell phone plans operating on the T-Mobile network.

Summary

Mint Mobile offers prepaid plans with unlimited talk and text, 5G data speeds, and free mobile hotspots starting at $15 per month. A Mint Mobile unlimited data plan can be as low as $30 per month, half the price of many competing carriers.

Overall
4

Pros

  • Unlimited talk and text
  • High-speed 5G and 4G LTE internet
  • All plans have mobile hotspot and free international calls to Canada and Mexico
  • Affordable plans (including the unlimited data plan)
  • No data overage fees or late fees
  • 7-day free trial period

Cons

  • T-Mobile coverage isn’t strong in every area
  • Must prepay upfront in 3, 6, or 12-month increments
  • Unlimited video data plays in 480p standard definition
  • Unlimited plan mobile hotspot is capped at 10 GB per month
  • No multi-line or family plan discounts

Prepaid phone plans offer cost-effective and contract-free coverage, making them a great money-saving option. However, it’s important to note that while these plans are affordable, you may need to compromise on coverage quality and other benefits.

Mint Mobile offers prepaid plans with unlimited talk and text, 5G data speeds, and free mobile hotspots starting at $15 per month. A Mint Mobile unlimited data plan can be as low as $30 per month, half the price of many competing carriers.

Our Mint Mobile review looks at how much you can save, the phone plan benefits, and the potential downsides of this prepaid carrier.

⏰ Mint Mobile is running a limited time promotion – get a second line FREE when you bring your number from AT&T or Verizon. You need to activate a 3-month plan and both lines must have the same plan type and be porting over numbers. See more details here.

Table of Contents
  1. What Is Mint Mobile?
  2. Mint Mobile Plans
    1. Unlimited Data Plan
    2. Family Plans
    3. Mint55+
    4. Seven-Day Money Back Guarantee
  3. Mint Mobile Phones
  4. Best Mint Mobile Features
    1. 5G Data Speeds
    2. Unlimited Talk and Text
    3. Free Calls to Canada and Mexico
    4. International Roaming
    5. Free Mobile Hotspot
    6. eSIM Activation
    7. Bring Your Device
    8. Port Your Number
  5. First Hand Experiences with Mint Mobile
  6. Alternatives to Mint Mobile
    1. Visible
    2. Tello
    3. Twigby
  7. FAQs
  8. Is Mint Mobile Worth It?

What Is Mint Mobile?

Mint Mobile is a low-cost prepaid cell phone company that uses the T-Mobile Network for text, talk, and data. Users receive nationwide coverage with plans as cheap as $15 per month. 

All Mint Mobile phone plans include the following benefits:

  • Free international calls to Canada and Mexico
  • Free mobile hotspot
  • Unlimited nationwide talk and text
  • WiFi calling and text
mint mobile homepage

The carrier launched in 2016 and was acquired by T-Mobile in the spring of 2023, including the estimated 25% co-ownership stake of actor Ryan Reynolds, who stars in Mint Mobile advertisements and became a co-owner in 2019.

One of Mint Mobile’s biggest advantages is a monthly cell phone plan that costs as little as $15 for 5 GB of data plus unlimited talk and text. The carrier also offers 15 GB, 20 GB, and unlimited data plans with a three-, six-, or 12-month commitment.

As a quick comparison, I currently pay $30 monthly for a similar prepaid plan. I also don’t get a mobile hotspot or free international calls to select countries like Mint Mobile provides all users. Unfortunately, T-Mobile coverage is spotty where I live, so switching to Mint Mobile is impractical for me. Still, new users get a 7-day risk-free trial with a temporary phone number.

Most of the time, you can expect quality coverage, but service can be slower during peak periods.

3 Months6 Months12 Months
5 GB$25 ($75 upfront)$20 ($120 upfront)$15 ($180 upfront)
15 GB$35 ($105 upfront)$25 ($150 upfront)$20 ($240 upfront)
20 GB$45 ($135 upfront)$35 ($210 upfront)$25 ($300 upfront)
Unlimited Data$40 ($120 upfront)$35 ($210 upfront)$30 ($360 upfront)

Learn More About Mint Mobile

Mint Mobile Plans

There are no contracts for Mint Mobile’s plans, but you must commit to a multi-month plan of 3, 6, or 12 months. Not paying month-to-month requires that you spend more upfront, but you get a lower price as a committed customer. 

Here is the per-line cost by plan length and monthly data amount. Purchasing a 12-month Mint Mobile plan is usually the cheapest option. 

The cost includes all taxes and fees that postpaid cell phone carriers tack onto the base price. You pay at the start of the service period but don’t pay anything to cancel. 

New Mint Mobile users typically start with a 3-month plan with introductory pricing and then renew at the ongoing current rate.

Limited-Time Offer: All new users only pay $15 per month for all data plans for the first three months. That means you only pay $45 for the first three months of service, including the unlimited data plan.

Unlimited Data Plan

The Mint Mobile unlimited data plan can provide enough high-speed data for customers who normally stream or FaceTime when free WiFi is unavailable. You also get a free mobile hotspot for your other devices to link to. 

As with plans from competing carriers, there are several monthly data limits available.

  • Monthly high-speed data limits: 5G or 4G LTE data is available for the first 40 GB you consume monthly. Unless you purchase an add-on package, the carrier starts throttling your speeds for the rest of the month. Note that this limit is higher than most prepaid unlimited plans.
  • Mobile hotspot: Up to 10 GB of mobile hotspot data each month
  • Video streaming: Videos will play at 480p, which is standard definition (SD) quality

Ultimately, Mint Mobile’s unlimited data plan is very affordable.

Family Plans

You can include up to five lines per Mint Modern Family Plan. There is a two-line minimum. Each line can have a different plan length and data amount for ultimate personalization. It’s also possible to change the primary manager and easily add or remove lines. You can manage all linked accounts in one place and receive free activation support too.

While you won’t get a multi-line discount or data sharing, you can get the most affordable price (the 12 month pricing) without paying the whole year up front. You can pay it in 3-month increments and still get the annual pricing.

Mint55+

Seniors at least 55 years old can enjoy complimentary full-service activation and device troubleshooting through a dedicated service line. A MINTech advisor can walk you through the activation process and help you close an existing cell phone plan.

Mint 55+ includes 5 GB of monthly data, and the pricing is similar to the standard plan, except you receive hands-on customer support. Additionally, you must call 833-655-1768 to purchase, as the plan is unavailable for online enrollment.

The pricing is similar to the standard 5 GB per month plan. You pay $15 per month ($45 total) for the introductory three months and then an effective monthly rate of $25 per 3-month renewal, $20 for a 6-month term, or $15 for 12 months.

Payment for the entire term is due upfront, and choosing a longer plan means you spend less overall. 

Seven-Day Money Back Guarantee

Many people have switched phone companies to save a buck only to find that the service quality is less than promised. Mint Mobile offers a 100% refund during the first seven days after activation – excluding shipping costs.

You can also purchase a 7-day trial kit with a temporary phone number to see how coverage is in your local area. The provisional number works through the Mint Mobile app, so you can keep your existing phone number and carrier to decide if switching is worth it. 

The 7-day free trial includes these talk, text, and data limits:

  • 250 minutes, including free calls to Mexico and Canada
  • 250 text messages
  • 250 MB of high-speed data (5G and 4G LTE, depending on coverage quality)

These limits should allow you to see if Mint Mobile is worth it for you.

Learn More About Mint Mobile

Mint Mobile Phones

You can bring your own device to Mint Mobile (as long as it’s unlocked and network-compatible—most smartphones are these days 😀), but you can also buy a new phone. Instead of getting locked into a multi-year contract and a pricey monthly fee with a legacy carrier, you can search the Mint Mobile phone deals for additional savings opportunities.

mint mobile phones

Mint Mobile offers discounted iPhone and Samsung devices with a factory warranty. Other Android-compatible brands are also available, including Google, Motorola, and OnePlus. You can only buy new phones with monthly financing available through Affirm

Most phones are unlocked, although some offers require a lock period for the first 12 months to qualify for the discount. For example, you may get six months of free service if you buy an eligible device and enroll in a 12-month plan.

You can also buy a used or refurbished phone from a third-party marketplace or sell your old phone to help pay for your new-to-you one. 

Learn More About Mint Mobile

Best Mint Mobile Features

Here’s a closer look at some of Mint Mobile’s top features.

5G Data Speeds

All Mint Mobile plans include complimentary 5G coverage if it’s available in your area and you have a compatible device. Otherwise, 4G LTE is the standard backup speed.

You can view the coverage map and determine if your home and favorite spots have one of the following 5G speeds:

Mint mobile coverage map
  • Low-band: 600 MHz (20% faster than 4G). It’s the slowest 5G network speed, yet it has the furthest-reaching broadcasting potential and is less impacted by physical structures and vegetation.
  • Mid-band: 2.5 GHz speeds that are 200 to 400% quicker than 4G. This tends to be the fastest and most common speed available in the network’s coverage area. 
  • High-band: Millimeter wave speed that’s the quickest but also very easy to block. This speed isn’t reliable enough yet to offer as an advertised benefit. 

You won’t pay overage charges when you exhaust your monthly data amount, but your internet speeds will be slower for the rest of the month. 

Unlimited Talk and Text

Like most postpaid or prepaid cell phone plans these days, you can make or receive unlimited phone calls and text messages within the United States. 

While you don’t have to worry about using your voice minutes or text message allowance, you can also enable WiFi calling by connecting to a home internet or public network when reception is poor. You will also consume less of your monthly data while at home, school, or work.

Free Calls to Canada and Mexico

All plans include free calls to Mexico and Canada while you’re in the United States. Different rates apply when calling friends and family in other countries. You can also send free text messages to over 190 countries via SMS. 

International Roaming

Mint Mobile also offers international roaming through UpRoam, so you can keep your Mint Mobile SIM card and phone app while traveling outside the United States. It’s possible to purchase international roaming credits in $5, $10, and $20 increments to use in over 210 countries to call, text, or browse the internet. 

However, you may be better off getting a local SIM card that is more reliable and potentially cheaper, though Mint’s international roaming charges are pretty low compared to competing carriers. 

Free Mobile Hotspot

All Mint Mobile plans include a free mobile hotspot, allowing you to connect a tablet or laptop to surf the internet or finish work when WiFi is unavailable. This is a fantastic feature as several other discount carriers only offer it with their most expensive plans.

You can connect up to 15 devices simultaneously with 5G connection speeds. Unlimited plan users get up to 10 GB of hotspot data each month, and you can purchase add-on packages with all plans after exhausting the initial supply. 

eSIM Activation

An increasing number of new phones utilize eSIM cards you can activate without waiting for a physical card to arrive by mail. You can still receive a physical SIM card when you have an older device. 

Bring Your Device

You can bring any unlocked and GSM-compatible device. Most smartphones fit these criteria, but you may need to wait if your current phone is under contract. 

That being said, you have 45 days from the order date to activate your device. So, you might time your purchase to start putting the pieces in place before your contract expires but before it’s time to renew to avoid overpaying. 

Port Your Number

You can keep your existing phone number or request a new number at no extra cost. Depending on the current offers, you may have to transfer an existing number to qualify for a sale or service discount.

Additionally, there is a three-month waiting period after ending Mint Mobile service before your current number is eligible for a repeat new customer promotion. So, it’s possible to switch between the best prepaid phone plan prices several times each year penalty-free.

As a reminder, you can test out Mint Mobile risk-free for seven days with a temporary number. No commitment is required; you can cancel after the trial period and not pay any extra charges.

Learn More About Mint Mobile

First Hand Experiences with Mint Mobile

I’ve chatted with a few customers and everyone has been happy with their experience. And even happier with the cost savings.

I had a chat with Sam, who recently switched from T-Mobile to Mint Mobile (both use the same network) last December and has been pretty happy with it.

He chose to switch because of cost, which is common. His wife was coming from AT&T and he was from T-Mobile so they joined plans. He hasn’t noticed a difference, probably because he’s still on the same network, just playing less. He did say setup was a little confusing but otherwise he was fine.

He’s now paying $30 per month for unlimited for each person, which is $10 less than T-Mobile and $15 less than AT&T. Also, he doesn’t think most people will even need unlimited because of how often you’re on wifi. That’s even more savings.

El Ebit Papi has been with them for 3-4 years and loved it. They started with the $20 plan at 8 GB but they keep increasing the data, now they get 15 GB for the same price. They just get older model iPhones off eBay.

No More Weekdays’ has been using it for five years – now pays $15 a month for 5GB of data and unlimited talk/text instead of $50 per month to Verizon. That’s a savings of $420 a year. Plus they get a Christmas card from Ryan Reynolds ever year. 😂

Source: @NoMoreWeekdays

There can be some negatives though, but it appears that may be dependent on T-Mobile’s coverage and less about Mint Mobile’s service:

I have Mint Mobile. I’ve been with them for going on two years now. They are okay. You get what you pay for is my warning.

I had Verizon for 19 years and they offended me, so bye V and hi Mint. It’s cheaper and my signal is close to 95% ability to send/receive a call. But I was driving outside the city limits in various areas around larger cities in IN and OH and had no signal and no ability to use my data. I needed directions and had to drive around turning my phone on and off in an “emergency” – running late to a funeral to find my way.

But paying 25% of the V bill each month for more data was a no brainer. I used to spend $120 monthly for 2 lines and SHARE 2 GB of data with my wife. Now Mint is $360 a year for BOTH of us, and we each get 5 GB of data.

Reader Rich’s experience

Alternatives to Mint Mobile

You may find the prepaid cell phone plans to have more appealing pricing or coverage quality for your desired talk, text, and data features.

Visible

Visible Wireless has two plans, each offering nationwide unlimited talk, text, and data plans for just $25 per month (or $275 if you pay annually) using the Verizon network. This entry-level plan also offers an unlimited mobile hotspot and free international calls and texts to Canada and Mexico.

The premium Visible+ plan provides up to 50 GB of ultra wideband 5G data speeds each month, plus up to 500 in free minutes to over 30 countries and unlimited texting to over 200 countries. This plan’s monthly cost is $45 (or $375 if you pay annually).

Learn more in our full Visible review.

Learn More About Visible

Tello

Tello runs on the T-Mobile network and offers an Unlimited Everything plan with up to 20 GB of high-speed data for $29 per month. You can also customize your plan with different voice and data amounts for a lower price to spend as little as $5 month-to-month. 

Your plan includes a free mobile hotspot, WiFi calling, and international calls to over 60 countries. For example, calls are free to China, India, and Mexico.

Learn more in our full Tello review.

Learn More About Tello

Twigby

Twigby is an excellent option for low-data users who want access to the Verizon network. All plans include unlimited talk and text plus a mobile hotspot. You will also get free unlimited global text and unlimited talk to over 80 countries.

Your plan price depends on how many GB of high speed data you need. Each has unlimited talk, text, and data but it’s the high speed data that is priced. Once you use up high speed data, you’re reduced to 2G speeds for the rest of the billing cycle:

  • 2GB – $5 per month for three months, then $15 per month
  • 5GB – $10 per month for three months, then $20 per month
  • 10GB – $15 per month for three months, then $25 per month
  • 20GB – $25 per month for three months, then $35 per month

If you do not want any high-speed data (limited to 2G speeds), it’s only $5 a month for three months, then $10 per month.

Learn more at our full Twigby review.

Learn More About Twigby

FAQs

Is Mint Mobile coverage good?

Voice and 5G data coverage is available nationwide and is reliable for most people. However, Mint Mobile uses the T-Mobile network exclusively, which can have spotty coverage or slow data speeds in rural areas where Verizon is a better option.

How is Mint Mobile so cheap?

Mint Mobile has some of the most affordable cell phone plans as they rent excess capacity from T-Mobile. They also don’t have physical stores and are online-only, which helps reduce overhead operating costs.

Is Mint Mobile GSM?

Yes, Mint Mobile operates on the T-Mobile network, which uses the GSM frequency band that most cell phone service providers across the world also use. You can also buy international roaming credits through the Mint Mobile app for using your phone number outside the United States.

What are the Mint Mobile customer service options?

Mint Mobile offers live chat from 5 AM to 9 PM Pacific daily. Phone-based support is available from 5 AM to 7 PM Pacific each day of the week. You can also get basic questions answered 24/7 with the virtual chatbot or by searching the Mint Mobile website.

Learn More About Mint Mobile

Is Mint Mobile Worth It?

Mint Mobile is an excellent option when T-Mobile has excellent coverage in your area. Its monthly plans are cheap, especially since you get a free mobile hotspot and complimentary international calls to Canada and Mexico. And you don’t have to worry about the hidden fees or restrictive contracts that make premium carriers so frustrating.

However, you may prefer another prepaid carrier if you have limited funds and prefer paying month-to-month instead of buying several months upfront. Avid travelers may find the international roaming capabilities lackluster with inferior performance.

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About Josh Patoka

After graduating in $50k with student loans in May 2008 from Virginia Military Institute with a B.A. International Studies and Political Science with a minor in Spanish (he studied abroad in Sevilla, Spain for 3 months), Josh decided to sell his soul for seven years by working in the transportation industry to get out of debt ASAP and focus on doing something else with a better work-life balance.

He is a father of three and has been writing about (almost) everything personal finance since 2015. You can also find him at his own blog Money Buffalo where he shares his personal experience of becoming debt-free (twice) and taking a 50%+ pay cut when he changed careers.

Today, Josh relishes the flexibility of being self-employed and debt-free and encourages others to pursue their dreams. Josh enjoys spending his free time reading books and spending time with his wife and three children.

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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