Verizon buyer’s guide: plans, perks, and more

Verizon logo on phone stock photo

If you’re reading this, there’s probably a good chance that you’re considering a move to Verizon. There are plenty of things to like about Big Red. For starters, it’s the largest carrier in the US with over 151 million subscribers. Verizon’s coverage network is large and fast too, although it’ll cost a pretty penny for service.

See also: Best Verizon deals

As you work your way through this page, we’ll do our best to explain your pre- and post-paid options. We’ll also highlight some of the best devices you can try on Verizon’s network. If you’re working with a budget, we’ve included a few MVNOs to choose from as well. Ready to learn all about your potential future carrier? Let’s get started.

Verizon at a glance

Big Red has existed in one form or another for decades — but it hasn’t always been called Verizon Wireless. The carrier many people rely on today launched in 2000 as a joint venture between Bell Atlantic and Vodafone of the UK. It’s been Better Business Bureau accredited since 1929, and carries an A-plus rating. Despite the high rating, the company is rated at just over one star according to BBB reviewers and has closed 7,191 complaints in the past three years.

Verizon’s massive 4G LTE network extends into all 50 states, and the carrier has claimed the Root Metric reliability award for the last 13 years — in a row. Its 4G coverage reaches over 300 million Americans, and its 5G coverage is available in parts of 35 major cities.

For a better picture of Verizon’s coverage, head on over to its product map. You can also see Verizon’s 5G maps here.

Post-paid Verizon plans

  Start Unlimited Play More Unlimited Do More Unlimited Get More Unlimited
Cost $70 for one line
$60 for two lines
$45 for three lines
$35 for four lines
$80 for one line
$70 for two lines
$55 for three lines
$45 for four lines
$80 for one line
$70 for two lines
$55 for three lines
$45 for four lines
$90 for one line
$80 for two lines
$65 for three lines
$55 for four lines
Talk & Text Unlimited Unlimited Unlimited Unlimited
Data Unlimited 4G LTE 25GB Premium 4G LTE
Unlimited standard 4G
5G access with compatible phone
50GB Premium 4G LTE
Unlimited standard 4G
5G access with compatible phone
75GB Premium 4G LTE
Unlimited standard 4G
5G access with compatible phone
Hotspot Not included 15GB 4G LTE
Unlimited 3G
Unlimited 3G
Unlimited 3G
International Service Talk & Text in Mexico and Canada
Texting in over 200 countries
Talk & Text in Mexico and Canada
Texting in over 200 countries
Talk & Text in Mexico and Canada
Texting in over 200 countries
Talk & Text in Mexico and Canada
Texting in over 200 countries
Extra Perks 480p streaming
Apple Music for 6 months
Disney Plus for one year
720p streaming
Apple Music included
Disney Plus for one year
480p streaming
Apple Music for 6 months
Disney Plus for one year
500GB cloud storage
480p streaming
Apple Music included
Disney Plus for one year
500GB cloud storage

Start Unlimited

As the name suggests, Start Unlimited is the perfect way to introduce yourself to Verizon’s network. It’s not as feature-rich as some of the other best Verizon plans, but it makes up for that with savings. One line will cost you $70, a second line will drop the price to $60 each, and the third and fourth lines cost $45 and $35 each, respectively. For your money, you’ll get unlimited talk, text, and you’ll never have overages again.

Beyond the basics, Start Unlimited offers 480p streaming, Apple Music free for six months, and one year of Disney Plus. It may not be the highest quality, but you’ll be able to take Hamilton and The Mandalorian wherever you go.

Start Unlimited highlights:

  • Unlimited talk, text, and data
  • DVD-quality streaming
  • Apple Music free for six months

Best for:

  • Users who only need standard definition streaming
  • Users who don’t plan to use hotspot data

Play More Unlimited

If you’re constantly streaming your favorite songs or your goal is to watch all of Netflix, Play More Unlimited is the plan for you. It’s designed to take your music and movies to new heights and comes in at $80 per month for one line. Two lines are $70 each, three cost $55 and a fourth is just $45. The talk, text, and data options are the same as the Start Unlimited plan, but the perks really set Play More Unlimited apart.

For starters, you can hop onto the ever-growing 5G network at no extra charge as long as you have a capable device. That means you can knock out tasks like downloading an episode of Stranger Things in just a few seconds. You can then stream that episode in 720p HD resolution. Here are a few other can’t miss features of Play More Unlimited:

  • Apple Music included
  • One year of Disney Plus
  • 5G network access

Best for:

  • Anyone who wants to be all-media, all the time
  • Users who have 5G-capable devices

Do More Unlimited

While Play More is built for the media junkies of the world, Do More is ready to help you stay productive no matter what. The pricing structure is the same as Play More, as are the talk, text, and basic data options. However, losing 720p streaming is more than worth it for the perks you get.

That’s right, you only get 480p DVD-quality streaming, but you get double the premium data access — 50GB instead of 25GB. Apple Music is back to just six months, but you get 500GB of cloud storage and the chance to save half off of a connected tablet plan or a dedicated mobile hotspot.

Do More Unlimited highlights:

  • 50GB of premium 4G LTE data
  • 500GB of free Verizon cloud storage
  • Save 50% on a connected tablet or hotspot (up to $15 per month value)

Best for:

  • Users who want to stay productive wherever they go
  • Anyone who needs a lot of cloud storage

Get More Unlimited

If you’ll stop at nothing less than the biggest, fastest, most powerful plan Verizon has to offer, choose Get More Unlimited. It’s the most expensive at $90 for one line, $80 for two, $65 for three, and $55 for four, but the plan adds the best of the best options. From 720p streaming to 75GB of premium 4G data and 30GB of 4G hotspot, Get More Unlimited is the powerhouse of the best Verizon plans.

Get More Unlimited isn’t just a data beast either, it also adds Apple Music permanently to the mix along with a year of Disney Plus. 500GB of cloud storage is back, as is the half-off tablet offer. As with all Verizon plans, you can text to over 200 countries too.

Get More Unlimited highlights:

  • 75GB of premium 4G data and 30GB of 4G hotspot
  • Apple Music and Disney Plus
  • 5G access with capable devices

Best for:

  • Anyone with a large mobile budget
  • Users who want unlimited access to Apple Music and Disney Plus

Just Kids

So long as you already have one line of unlimited service, Verizon makes it very easy to set up a line that’s built for kids. Called the Just Kids plan, this option that starts at $50 per month includes 5GB of 4G data, unlimited texting to 20 parent-approved contacts, and 480p streaming. It’s a fairly basic plan, and it emphasizes safety over all else.

If the basic safety features aren’t enough, Just Kids includes a safety mode to prevent data overages. Once your kids hit the 5GB threshold, they’ll be throttled back to just 128Kbps. You can hop into the Verizon Smart Family app too and track your kids’ locations, filter their content, and restrict internet time. It’s an easy way to keep them focused on doing homework instead of scrolling through Instagram.

Just Kids highlights:

  • Requires one line of unlimited service
  • Safety over all else with the Smart Family app
  • Texting to 20 parent-approved contacts and 5GB of 4G data

Best for:

  • Kids who are adjusting to their first phones

Shared data plans

Some people can get by without an unlimited plan, and Verizon offers solid savings with those subscribers in mind. You can grab either a 5GB or 10GB pool of data and access for $55 per month for one line with autopay. Two lines will run you $80 total, three lines cost $105, and four lines cost $130 per month. Your extra data rolls over from one month to the next, and Safety Mode keeps you from going over the limit.

Shared data highlights:

  • Choose from 5GB or 10GB of 4G LTE data
  • Save $10 per month with autopay
  • Safety Mode keeps you under your limit

Best for:

  • Families who don’t need too much data

Tablet and connected device plans

samsung galaxy watch active 2 review watch face clock face 1

Verizon supports a wide variety of tablets and connected devices, and you don’t even need a phone to set up access. All you have to do is grab a single device plan that matches your item. A basic phone costs $30 per month for unlimited talk and text as well as 500MB of data. It’s perfect if you mostly talk and text but you just want to download some memes or ringtones.

Tablets, hotspots, and wearables with 1GB of data cost just $10 apiece each month and the tablets and wearables include unlimited talk and text. A connected home plan for Wi-Fi will cost you $60 per month for the first 10GB of service and just $30 more for each additional 10GB of data. You might want to check out our Best Internet Providers list though before you sign up.

Pre-paid Verizon plans

  Basic Phone 5GB Prepaid 15GB Prepaid Unlimited Prepaid
Cost $35 per line $40 per line $50 per line $65 per line
Talk & Text Unlimited Unlimited Unlimited Unlimited
High Speed Data Talk & Text Only 5GB 4G LTE then 2G 15GB 4G LTE then 2G Unlimited
Hotspot Not Available Included up to data cap Included up to data cap Available for $5 per month
Calls to Mexico and Canada Available for $5 per month Available for $5 per month Included Included
Loyalty Discount Not Available Save $5 per month after 3 months
Save $10 per month after 9 months
Save $5 per month after 3 months
Save $10 per month after 9 months
Save $5 per month after 3 months
Save $10 per month after 9 months

Basic pre-paid

It may be hard to believe, but not everyone needs a data plan with their phone. Verizon’s Basic prepaid option offers just talk and text and costs just $30 per month with autopay. There’s no option to add data, which means there’s no mobile hotspot, but it also means you never have to worry about going over a data cap.

For just $5 per month, you can add calling from the US to Canada and Mexico, and another $5 per day you use the service will grant calls and texts while you’re in our North American neighbor countries. Basic prepaid is built for a very specific set of customers, but it’s a great way to save some money.


  • No data
  • The low price of $30 per month
  • International options for $5

Best for:

  • Users who don’t care about data access

5GB pre-paid

Once you add data to the mix, it might relieve you to see that Verizon skips the cute plan names. Instead of figuring out what’s in a name, you can instantly see just how much data you’re working with. For example, this 5GB prepaid plan comes with 5GB of 4G LTE data. Better yet, you can use as much of that data as you want for a full-speed hotspot.

In addition to the $5 autopay discount, the 5GB prepaid plan is the first to introduce Verizon’s loyalty incentives. After you keep your plan for just three months, you can save an extra $5 per month. Nine months on the network knocks off another $5 per month for $15 off with autopay.


  • Loyalty discounts
  • 5GB of data that works as a hotspot
  • Unlimited talk and text

Best for:

  • Users who spend most of their time on Wi-Fi but want some LTE access

15GB pre-paid

For just $10 more per month, you can triple your data cap to 15GB and triple your hotspot. Your hotspot feeds from your total data cap, but it should still be plenty. At just $45 per month, you’ll get unlimited talk and text, and calls to Canada and Mexico are included at no extra cost.

You can enjoy the same autopay and loyalty discounts as before, which makes the 15GB prepaid plan a slightly better value than the 5GB option.


  • Triple the data for $10 more
  • Use up to 15GB for hotspot
  • Loyalty discounts

Best for:

  • Users who want a healthy amount of data and calls to Canada and Mexico

Unlimited pre-paid

The last Verizon plan on the menu gives you a taste of unlimited data at a prepaid rate. It’s the most expensive at $65 per month before any discounts, but unlimited data is tough to beat. The unlimited prepaid plan might be your best option for North American travel too as talk, text, and data in Canada and Mexico are included at no extra charge.

Unfortunately, the same can’t be said about the mobile hotspot. You must chip in an extra $5 per month to enjoy tethering and data wherever you go with up to 10GB of 4G followed by 600Kbps speeds thereafter. It’s more sensible than getting a standalone hotspot, but it makes unlimited sound, well — limited.


  • Unlimited data, talk, and text
  • Roaming included in North America
  • Hotspot costs an extra $5 per month

Best for:

  • Heavy-duty data users who plan to travel between the US, Mexico, and Canada

Which plan is right for you?

verizon big red v logo at mwc 2019

If you’re ready to make the switch to Big Red, it’s time to pick your plan. It’s tricky to say which plan is the best though, as each of Verizon’s unlimited plans is designed for a certain audience. If you’re a worker bee, go for Do More. If you want to stream, pick Play More. The best plan overall is the Get More Unlimited plan though, because you can do just about anything you want.

Verizon’s prepaid plans are worth a mention though too, as they offer a chance to save money without skipping out on many features. However, if you value Disney Plus or Apple Music, you’ll want to opt for an unlimited plan as they include both in the monthly cost.

How does Verizon fare against the competition?

Sprint Verizon T Mobile and Verizon carriers stock photo 2

If you’re ready to switch carriers, it might help to check out a head-to-head-to-head showdown. We’ve stacked Verizon against the top options from both AT&T and T-Mobile to help you choose. Sprint no longer makes the cut because of the merger with T-Mobile. Our plans come straight from our “the best unlimited plans in the US� guide to show you how each carrier fares.

  Magenta Plus (T-Mobile) Unlimited Elite (AT&T) Get More Unlimited (Verizon)
Cost $85 for one line
$70 for two lines
$47 for three lines
$43 for four lines
$85 for one line
$75 for two lines
$60 for three lines
$50 for four lines
$90 for one line
$80 for two lines
$65 for three lines
$55 for four lines
Data Unlimited 4G LTE 100GB of Premium 4G Data 75GB of Premium 4G Data and Unlimited 4G LTE
Talk and Text Unlimited Unlimited Unlimited
Streaming HD Streaming HD Streaming with Stream Saver HD Streaming
Hotspot 20GB of 4G LTE then unlimited 3G 30GB of 4G LTE per line 30GB of 4G LTE
International Texting, 2G data Texting to 120 countries Texting to 200 countries
Extra Perks Netflix Standard or Quibi
Gogo in-flight Wi-Fi and texting
5G Access
Apple Music
Disney Plus
5G Access


The smallest of the Big Three, T-Mobile has recently completed its merger with Sprint. Magenta Plus is the best post-paid plan you can get, with unlimited talk, text, and data for your money. Plans are all about perks though, and Magenta Plus offers unlimited in-flight Wi-Fi and texting. You’ll be able to access both the 4G LTE and 5G networks without an extra fee.

As far as streaming options go, Magenta Plus comes with HD options and you can choose either Netflix Standard or Quibi. Each line has up to 20GB of 4G LTE hotspot access, although it’ll drop to 3G speeds afterward.


  • Netflix Standard or Quibi included
  • Unlimited in-flight Wi-Fi
  • 5G access and HD streaming


America’s second-largest carrier, AT&T, keeps pace with just about everything Verizon can do thanks to the Unlimited Elite plan. All three of AT&T’s options include unlimited talk, text, and data, but only Elite and Extra offer 5G access. No matter which way you go, you’ll be able to text more than 120 countries.

If you’re looking for streaming perks to help guide your decision, Unlimited Elite comes with HBO Max. Unfortunately, only Elite offers this perk so it may be easier to simply sign up for HBO Max depending on your needs. AT&T’s Unlimited Elite also includes 30GB of hotspot per line and high definition streaming.


  • HBO Max with Unlimited Elite
  • 30GB hotspot per line
  • High Definition streaming with stream saver

Want Verizon service on a budget?

It’s no secret that Verizon’s service is some of the most expensive around Iit’s one of the largest and fastest networks in the US. Luckily, you don’t have to send your money right to Big Red to make use of its service as there are several MVNOs that rely on Verizon. Check out the table below for more information:

  US Mobile Red Pocket PagePlus Total Wireless Visible
Cost Build your own with talk, text, and data for as little as $5 per month
Unlimited from $40 per month
Limited plans as low as $10 per month
Unlimited plans for $60 per month
Limited plans as low as $12 per month
Unlimited plans for $55 per month
1 line starts at $23.70 for 1GB 4G LTE data
1 line up to $47.50 for 25GB 4G LTE data
$40 per month
As low as $25 with Party Pay
Talk & Text Starts at 75 minutes for $2
Starts at 50 texts for $1.50
$10 plan includes 500 texts and 500 minutes
Plans above $15 include unlimited talk and text
500 minutes talk and 500 texts for $12
Unlimited for all other plans
Unlimited Unlimited
Data Starts at 50MB for $1.50 Starts at 500MB for $10
Unlimited data for $60
100MB for $12
3GB 4G LTE for $30
8GB 4G LTE for $40
Unlimited for $55
up to 25GB high-speed data Unlimited
Hotspot Add 10GB to the Unlimited All plan for $5 Hotspot available Not available Up to 10GB on plans above $50 Unlimited
International Up to 10GB for Unlimited plans Free calls to 80 countries Plans above $12 include $10 international calling card $10 global calling card available Not available
Extras Pick your subscription perks with 2, 3, and 4 line plans
5G access available
Free SIM card Video streams at DVD quality Earn rewards points that can be used to pay for service Save with Party Pay

US Mobile

US Mobile is a unique Verizon MVNO in that you can build your plan just how you like it. In fact, everyone in your entire family can customize a plan. You pick your talk, text, and data, and US Mobile gives you a price. There’s even a brand-new unlimited plan that costs just $40 per month. The unlimited plan offers your choice of subscription services for free with 2, 3, and 4 line plans.

Red Pocket

You may not be as familiar with Red Pocket, but it’s an effective way to save money thanks to its variety of plans. There are plenty of limited service options to choose from all the way up to unlimited access. Red Pocket actually runs on all of the Big Three networks, but you’ll lock into a carrier when you sign up.


PagePlus is similar to Red Pocket with varying tiers of limited and unlimited service. The pricing structure is about the same as well, but PagePlus puts a warning on its website about using more than 60GB of data per month. You can also opt for pay-as-you-go minutes, data add-on cards, and international add-on cards.

Total Wireless

Total Wireless has a number of single-line and family plans, and each includes unlimited talk and text. The data is unlimited as well, though you have to pay more for unlimited high-speed access. Total’s basic unlimited plans offer just 1GB of high-speed data before you fall back down to 2G speeds.


Visible serves as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Verizon, but it offers one plan at one price. You can save with Party Pay and unlimited talk, text, and data are included. There’s no international access, but you can read about our own experiences with Visible in the review right here.


What phones can I use?

OnePlus 8 on fluff back 1

Verizon is a dominant name in the US smartphone game, and it offers one of the best selections of phones to pick from. If you can think of it, there’s a decent chance that it works on the Big Red Network. You can check out the Samsung Galaxy S20 family, the exclusive Motorola Edge Plus, and even the latest iPhone SE. If you want a full rundown of options, take a peek at our list of The best Verizon phones.

It’s also easy to bring your own device to the Verizon network — at least as long as it’s a CDMA phone. AT&T and T-Mobile are both GSM carriers, so you may not have the best luck bringing a device from either one, unless its an unlocked device.

See also: The best phone deals

What bringing your own device really comes down to is band support. As long as your phone can handle the right ones, you should be in business. Check out the following table for a breakdown of the bands you’ll need to join Big Red:

Frequency Band Network Supported
39GHz N260 5G
28GHz N261 5G
1900MHz 2 2G
1700MHz/2100MHz 4
3G and 4G LTE
850MHz 5 2G
700MHz 13 4G LTE

Frequently asked questions

Q: Who owns Verizon?
A: At one point Bell and Vodafone were among Verizon’s owners. These days Verizon is owned by Verizon Communications is a fully US based company. 

Q: How do you get Disney Plus with Verizon?
A: Disney Plus is included with select plans, including Play More Unlimited. Basic and prepaid plans do not offer the perk, however. 

Q: How do you unlock a Verizon phone?
A: The great thing about Verizon is you might not have to unlock your phone! Unless its a prepaid device or an ancient iPhone 3G World device, Verizon phones already are unlocked for use on other supported carriers. However, we have a complete guide here that will walk prepaid and 3G World phone users through the unlock process. 

Q: Does Verizon have 5G and does it cost extra?
A: Yes, Verizon has one of the strongest 5G networks in the US with at least partial support in over 35 cities. 5G is included with most of Verizon’s plans, at no extra cost. 

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