The easiest way to know if you qualify for low income internet in your area is if you qualify for other government assistance programs. For example, senior citizens may qualify for internet discounts for being seniors in addition to their discount if they receive SSI assistance. Veterans who receive assistance from the VA may also qualify for low income internet.
Other groups who are not seniors or veterans may get low income internet if they already receive government benefits. Those who receive assistance from the following programs automatically qualify for discounted internet from major internet providers:
- Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
- Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)
- HUD Housing
- National School Lunch Program (NSLP)
- Supplemental Security Insurance (SSI)
Indiginous peoples who live in reserves qualify for Lifeline internet assistance in addition to an extra $20 for being a protected government group, meaning low income Indiginious households receive a discount of $29.25 on their monthly internet costs.
However, even the households under the previous protected categories do not receive free government Lifeline internet.
Some companies, like Spectrum, are offering students and educators free internet for 60 days due to COVID-19, but that is the only form of free low income internet available and it is only temporary.
To get low income internet, you need to contact your local internet provider and see what discounts they offer low-income families.
Many large providers like AT&T offer internet prices as low as $10 a month for low-income families with school age children who need the internet for school.
If no provider in your area offers low-income internet options, you can apply for Lifeline through the federal government and they will help set you up with a discounted internet plan in your area.