Cricket Wireless Military Discount Overview

At one time Cricket Wireless had a discount program for military service members. However, that program has since been terminated, and Cricket offers only very limited military benefits compared to other cell phone service providers. However, it has to be noted that Cricket Wireless is also one of the lowest cost cell phone service providers.…
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At one time Cricket Wireless had a discount program for military service members. However, that program has since been terminated, and Cricket offers only very limited military benefits compared to other cell phone service providers.

However, it has to be noted that Cricket Wireless is also one of the lowest cost cell phone service providers. For that reason, the need for a specific military discount plan may not be entirely necessary.

It may be that the regular cost of Cricket Wireless service is even lower than that offered by other providers, even when military discounts are factored in.

Cricket Wireless Military Deployment Plan

Cricket Wireless LogoThis is not a discount plan in any sense. Instead, it enables you to suspend your phone number when you’re called into active military duty service. Thus, you won’t be able to use your Cricket Wireless service.

Cricket Wireless will hold your phone number in inactive status for up to 36 months. Once you return from deployment, you’ll have up to 90 days to re-subscribe to the service.

You are eligible for this plan whether you are being deployed or are currently deployed.

In total, Cricket Wireless’ Military Deployment Plan is a 39-month plan, comprised of 36 months, plus a 90 day grace period.

If you fail to reactivate your service within that time frame, your phone number will be deactivated and recycled.

To take advantage of the Military Deployment Plan, you can call Customer Support, giving your last name and date of birth. If you signed up for AutoPay, you’ll be unenrolled to avoid paying unnecessary bills.

Your wireless voice, data, and voicemail will be turned off. Unfortunately, you’ll lose any existing voicemails you’ve saved.

But one of the big advantages with this plan is that while you can deactivate your own phone line, other lines on your account can remain active. That’s a valuable benefit if other members of your family are also on the same plan.

Reactivating Your Account When You Come Home

Once you return home, you’ll have 90 days from your final date of deployment to reactivate your account. You can reactivate simply by calling Customer Support.

Cricket Wireless also provides expedited unlocking prior to deployment, if it must be done on short notice. Once again, you can call Customer Support to make it happen.

To unlock your phone, you have to provide the following information:

  1. Your name.
  2. Your date of birth.
  3. Your phone number.
  4. A copy of your documentation of deployment status.
  5. The email where you’d like the unlocking directions to be sent to.

Cricket Wireless Low-Cost Plans

Though it doesn’t offer a military discount, Cricket Wireless does have some of the lowest priced plans in the industry.

For example, their Talk & Text plan provides unlimited calls and texts throughout the US, though it doesn’t offer data access. Still, if you’re looking for basic phone and text, this is a highly affordable plan.

They also offer their popular Unlimited Program. For $55 a month ($50 after AutoPay credit) you’ll have:

  • Unlimited calls, text and picture messages across the US.
  • Unlimited text from the US to 37 countries.
  • Data access, plus unlimited calls, text, and picture messages to and from Mexico, Canada, and the US.
  • Unlimited data access with speeds to 3 Mbps.
  • Video streaming at SD quality (about 480p).

With the Unlimited plan, you can stream video and music, surf the web, post photos to social media, send and receive emails with attachments, and download apps, games, and songs.

And as you’ve doubtlessly seen on Cricket Wireless’s numerous TV commercials, they offer four lines of unlimited data for $100 per month with the Unlimited plan. So that’s one line for $55 per month or four lines for $100 per month.

What’s more, there is no annual contract, no overage charges, and the rate includes taxes.

How Does Cricket Wireless Compare to Other Cell Phone Provider Discounts?

Since Cricket Wireless doesn’t offer an actual military discount, you’ll have to compare the cost of their regular plans with what’s being offered by other carriers, including their respective discounts.

To give you an idea of what Cricket Wireless’s competitors have to offer, below are the other military discounts offered by major cell phone carriers:

Verizon Wireless Military Discount

  • Discount: $15 for one line, $35 for two lines, $40 for three or more lines; 25% off select accessories when purchased online
  • Eligible Plans: Go, Beyond or Above Unlimited
  • Eligibility: Active Duty, National Guard, Coast Guard, Reserve, Retirees, Veterans, Family Members (when the military member is the sponsor), Commissioned Officers of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the US Public Health Service
  • Learn More: Verizon Wireless Military Discount

AT&T Military Discount:

  • Discount: 25%
  • Eligible Plans: AT&T Unlimited & More Plan
  • Eligibility: Active Duty, Guard, Reserve, Retirees, Veterans, Family Members (when the military member is the sponsor)
  • Learn More: AT&T Military Discount

Sprint Military Discount:

  • Discount: 50% off Family Lines
  • Eligible Plans: Sprint Unlimited Military Plan (comparable to Sprint Unlimited Basic plan)
  • Eligibility: Active Duty, Guard, Reserve, Retirees, Veterans, Family Members (when the  military member is the sponsor)
  • Learn More: Sprint Military Discount

T-Mobile Military Discount:

  • Discount: 20% on first line; 50% on each additional line
  • Eligible Plans: T-Mobile Military One Plan (comparable to T-Mobile ONE Plan)
  • Eligibility: Active Duty, Guard, Reserve, Retirees, Veterans, Family Members (when the military member is the sponsor)
  • Learn More: T-Mobile Military Discount

How Cricket Wireless Gives Back to Veterans

Cricket Wireless is now available in 122 military exchanges in US-based military bases. This includes 83 for the Army and Air Force, 26 for the Navy, and 14 for the Marines.

A military shopper can take home Risio 2, CoolPad, HTC Desire 550, or Sol 2 devices.

Alternatively, they can use a bring-your-own-device kit (BYOD) to activate their own device on the Cricket Network.

Bottom Line

Cricket Wireless is admittedly weak on providing discounts and benefits for members of the military.

But their Military Deployment Plan does make it easier for deployed military to temporarily interrupt their service, without fully terminating either their account or their phone number.

And once you return to the US, you can easily reactivate your account, and pick up where you left off.

In the meantime, even though Cricket Wireless doesn’t offer specific military discounts, they do offer some of the most competitive phone plans in the industry.

Their Unlimited plan, providing unlimited data access, calls, text and picture messages across the US, as well as unlimited text from the US to 37 countries, a serious bargain at $100 for four lines.

It may not be a military discount, but it’s the kind of program that can definitely benefit military families.

You can find even more ways to save on our military discount list, which we update regularly with all of the best offers available to you.

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About Ryan Guina

Ryan Guina is The Military Wallet's founder. He is a writer, small business owner, and entrepreneur. He served over six years on active duty in the USAF and is a current member of the Illinois Air National Guard.

Ryan started The Military Wallet in 2007 after separating from active duty military service and has been writing about financial, small business, and military benefits topics since then. He also writes about personal finance and investing at Cash Money Life.

Ryan uses Personal Capital to track and manage his finances. Personal Capital is a free software program that allows him to track his net worth, balance his investment portfolio, track his income and expenses, and much more. You can open a free Personal Capital account here.

Featured In: Ryan's writing has been featured in the following publications: Forbes, Military.com, US News & World Report, Yahoo Finance, Reserve & National Guard Magazine (print and online editions), Military Influencer Magazine, Cash Money Life, The Military Guide, USAA, Go Banking Rates, and many other publications.

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