Even though you might not make a lot of money, you could still need internet service in your home so that children can do things for school or so that you can communicate with important people and offices. There are a few programs that can help a well as other ways that you can have internet services without paying a lot of money.
Why You Need Internet
There are several reasons as to why you might need internet. You might need to communicate with your employer or perform work at home. An internet connection can allow your children to take classes if they aren’t able to go to school. It could also mean that you could take classes online so that you can better yourself and make more money for your family. An internet connection can also allow you to keep in touch with your family and friends if you’re unable to go see them. Many companies like HughesNet allow you to pay your bills online as well, which is beneficial if you’re unable to drive or you don’t feel safe going to the business to make the payment.
One program that started in April 2021 is the Emergency Broadband Benefit. You can complete an application to see if you’re eligible to receive a discount of up to $50 off your internet bill each month or up to $75 off your bill if you live on tribal lands. The program started with the assistance of the Federal Communications Commission. At the beginning of the program, the FCC approved $3.2 billion to help those who need assistance paying their internet bill. Customers would need to contact their provider to make sure they are participating in the program in order to receive the discount. Those who participate in the program can also receive $100 to assist with the purchase of equipment needed to connect to the internet, such as a computer or a laptop. You need to keep in mind that the program will likely end once the COVID pandemic has been declared over. You will usually be approved for the program if you receive SNAP benefits, receive a PELL grant for school, or if children in your home receive free or reduced lunch.
Another program that is available is Lifeline. You’ll receive a discount of $9.25 off your phone or internet bill each month. Keep in mind that you can’t receive a discount for both services. Many of the requirements to be approved for Lifeline have been put aside until the end of June 2021 to make it a bit easier for people to be approved for the program. You can usually qualify for this program if you are on Medicaid or Medicare or if you receive Federal Public Housing Assistance. You can apply for the program if you don’t receive government benefits, but you would need to be at a certain percentage of the poverty level in order to qualify.
Some internet providers offer packages that are less expensive, especially if you only need internet. Altice Optimum offers up to 30 Mbps for $14.99 a month, and Spectrum offers a package with 30 Mbps for $14.99 a month as well. Some companies are a bit cheaper, but they offer lower speeds and data caps as well, such as Cox for $9.95 at 15 Mbps.