Are Walmart Smart Talk Cell Phone Plans Really a Good Value?

Written by Felipe on February 18th, 2011

A lot of people are in a position where they need a cellular phone but the have bad credit or don’t want to be bogged down with the hassles of month to month cell phone service charges.

Maybe they don’t want to be locked into a two year contract with a cell phone service provider? Whatever the reason, one thing is for sure, prepaid cell phones are becoming very popular with people these days. Surprisingly enough, it seems that their popularity is actually growing more and more as time goes on.

Today I’ll be writing about a prepaid phone that my family uses. As a matter of fact, we have been very happy with it. Of course we have a regular cell phone service provider but there are times when we want to take a cell phone with us but we don’t want to worry about it getting destroyed.

Experience, or should I say, misfortune has taught us that it’s not a good idea to carry a $500 smartphone with you for a day of sailing in a catamaran sailboat.

In cases like this, we take our Straight Talk prepaid cell phone with us. When I was looking for a prepaid cell phone that I might like to use, I was searching the Internet for “Smart Talk cell phone plans”. I don’t know why I thought that it was called “Smart Talk” instead of “Straight Talk” but I did.

How To Sign Up With Straight Talk

Signing up with Straight Talk was extremely easy. I actually purchased my phone from Walmart. I bought the LG 290C cell phone and their “All You Need” prepaid cell phone card. You can purchase these prepaid cellular phones from Straight Talk on the Internet and they are currently offering free shipping but make sure you don’t type “Smart Talk cell phone plan” or “Smart Talk cell phone” into the search box like I did or you won’t find what you’re looking for. As a matter of fact it’s easier if you just go to www.straighttalk.com.

After you have purchased the phone and a prepaid phone card, you’ll need to activate the phone. You can do that on the Straight Talk website or you can call the company on the phone and one of their customer service representatives will walk you through the process.

I should point out that unlike Tracfone prepaid cell phones, the minutes expire at the end of each month with Straight Talk so you need to remember to buy a new “minutes card” each month if you don’t want the phone to be deactivated. Straight Talk does have an option that you can sign up for that will automatically renew your minutes card every month for you. You do have to provide them with a valid credit card if you decide that you would like to go this route.

How Much Do Minutes Cards Cost?

As I mentioned, we bought our phone from Walmart and it cost us about $75.00 and the “All You Need” prepaid card cost us $30. With this card, you get 1000 talk minutes, 1000 text messages, and 30 MB of mobile web access. Where I live, I believe that Straight Talk actually uses the Verizon cellular network. We live in a rural area and have been very happy with the cell phone coverage on this phone. Surprisingly happy as a matter of fact!

Sometimes, if we’re traveling, we’ll spend $45.00 and purchase their “Unlimited Talk and Text Card”. This way we know we can use the phone as much as we want without having to worry about running out of minutes. The other nice thing, as I mentioned before, is that if we happen to drop the cell phone in the lake or leave it somewhere while we are on vacation, we’re not out very much because we haven’t lost our expensive smartphone.

The other options that you’ll have when it comes to purchasing minutes cards are the “Unlimited 3 Months” card which will cost you $125.99, the “Unlimited 6 Months” card which will cost you $249.99, or the “Unlimited 1 Year” card which will cost you $499. You can save a little bit of money if you purchase minutes several months at a time but you should know that these prices are only valid if you purchase the minutes cards online.

Do I Recommend Straight Talk?

I highly recommend that you visit the Straight Talk website and check out their phones and plans. Did you notice that I didn’t say the “Smart Talk cell phone website”? I’m finally getting it sorted out in my head. I have no idea why I want to keep calling it Smart Talk but I’ll get it right sooner or later. Our family has been quite happy with the service.

The only thing I think Straight Talk needs to do is provide a selection of more advanced smartphones for those who want to use a smartphone with this prepaid service.

November 7th, 2013 Update: They now has several modern smartphones to choose from. You can even use an iPhone with their service now!


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