There are several programs that provide free or discounted Samsung Galaxy smartphones to eligible low-income individuals and families. With the cost of living on the rise, a free phone can help ease financial burdens. Here’s what you need to know about getting a free Samsung Galaxy government phone this year.
Lifeline Assistance Program
The Lifeline Assistance program, also known as Assurance Wireless, is one of the best-known providers of free smartphones, including free Samsung Galaxy phones. Lifeline provides discounted or free wireless service and free phones to qualifying low-income consumers.
Am I Eligible for a Free Phone from Lifeline?
To receive a free Samsung Galaxy phone from Lifeline, you must be eligible to enroll in the Lifeline program. Here are the requirements:
- Your household income is at or below 135% of the federal poverty guidelines
- You receive Medicaid, SNAP, SSI, public housing assistance, veteren’s pension or survivor’s pension benefit
- You live on Federally recognized Tribal lands
You can only enroll one person per household in the Lifeline program. Having more than one Lifeline discount per home is not allowed.
How to Apply for Lifeline and Get a Free Samsung Galaxy Phone
Applying for Lifeline is easy and can be done online or by phone. Here are the steps:
- Determine your eligibility.
- Choose a Lifeline cell phone provider. Assurance Wireless provides free Samsung phones, or you can choose another company.
- Submit your Lifeline application with the provider. You’ll need to provide documents that prove your eligibility.
- Activate your new free phone after approval. Once approved, just activate your Samsung Galaxy phone on the carrier’s network.
Lifeline providers allow enrollees to switch their existing phone number to the free phone. You’ll get a certain number of monthly minutes, texts, and data at no cost.
Lifeline Cell Phone Providers
Along with Assurance Wireless, other Lifeline carriers like SafeLink, QLink, and Access Wireless also offer free phones, which may include Samsung Galaxy models to choose from based on availability. Each provider has its own application process, coverage areas, and specific phone models it provides for free with activation.
Federal Phone Assistance Programs
Along with Lifeline, some government assistance programs like Medicaid, SNAP, and public housing may offer free cell phones to their recipients. Here are some options to check into if you already participate in these programs:
- Medicaid – Medicaid recipients may qualify for a free phone through Lifeline or other carriers in certain states. Check with your state’s Medicaid office.
- SNAP – States like California, Wisconsin, and Texas offer free Lifeline cell phones to SNAP (food stamps) recipients. Check with your local SNAP enrollment office.
- Public Housing – Some public housing authorities allow residents to get free cell phones through partnerships with Lifeline carriers. Check with your housing agency.
- Tribal Programs – Members of Federally recognized Tribes may qualify for a free Samsung Galaxy phone through enhanced Tribal Lifeline benefits or Tribal-specific programs.
Free Phone Donation Programs
Some non-profit organizations accept used cell phone donations and distribute them to domestic abuse victims, veterans, seniors, and low-income individuals for free. These are usually refurbished phones, but can include Samsung models. Check with donation programs in your local area.
You may need to provide documentation that you meet their eligibility criteria, such as proof of income. Supplies may be limited, so check back periodically if no phones are currently available.
Replace Through Homeowners or Renters Insurance
If you have a broken Samsung Galaxy phone, check your homeowners or renters insurance policy. Some policies cover accidental damage and theft of personal possessions like phones. You may be able to get your Samsung phone replaced for free by filing an insurance claim.
Review your policy and contact your insurer to start a claim. There is usually a deductible, so you’ll want to check the amount and if there are any exceptions for electronics.
Trade In an Old Device
Wireless carriers like Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint accept phone trade ins and may offer free Samsung Galaxy models in exchange. Here’s how it works:
- Check the carrier’s trade in program for eligible devices. Old smartphones, tablets, and smartwatches may get trade in value.
- Submit your device and get a trade in value estimate if it’s accepted. Carriers will inspect it.
- Choose your new Samsung Galaxy phone and apply the trade in value towards it. Higher value devices can often cover the full cost.
- Send in your old device, then activate the new phone when received. Damaged devices may still be accepted but get less trade in value.
Trading in instead of paying full retail is a great way to get the newest Samsung Galaxy phone upgrade while minimizing out-of-pocket costs. Time promotions right and you could essentially get the Samsung Galaxy phone for free.
Wait for Deal Promotions
Samsung Galaxy smartphones frequently go on sale direct from carriers and retailers. It’s worth waiting for an upcoming deal promotion to save big on the newest models.
Watch for these common sales periods:
- Black Friday / Cyber Monday – Massive November discounts on Samsung Galaxy phones. Look for ads and plan ahead.
- New model releases – When the next big Galaxy comes out, previous models see instant price drops.
- Summer sales – Memorial Day, Fourth of July, and Labor Day sales often include Samsung phone deals.
- Student deals – Back to school sales in summer and student discounts can equate to free Galaxy phones with contract.
- Holiday sales – Occasional free phone with activation offers pop up around other major holidays like Christmas and Father’s Day.
With the right sale timing, you could pay $0 upfront for your Galaxy smartphone purchase. Buying refurbished or used instead of new can also mean massive savings off retail price.
Sign Up for Giveaways
Samsung itself occasionally runs giveaways and sweepstakes to win one of its latest models for free. Third-party tech review sites and blogs also sponsor Galaxy phone giveaways.
- Check Samsung official website, Facebook page and other social channels for contests. These often coincide with a new release.
- Look for giveaways on tech review sites like CNET, Tom’s Guide, Tech Radar, Engadget, etc. Follow them on social media to see when new contests are announced.
- Enter as many giveaways as you can find to increase your chances of winning. Just avoid any sketchy offers or scams.
While winning requires luck, entering giveaways is free and you just might score the latest Galaxy phone model for $0 cost.
Wait for Model Upgrades
When buying on a carrier installment plan or through Samsung itself, upgrading your Samsung Galaxy phone yearly allows you to get the newest device every 12 months for no extra charge. Here’s how it works:
- Buy a new Galaxy phone from a carrier on a monthly payment plan or through Samsung’s upgrade program.
- Make 12 months of on-time payments / yearly program payments.
- Once half the device is paid off, you become upgrade eligible.
- Trade in your current Galaxy and restart payments on the latest model. With most carrier and Samsung upgrade plans, this recalibrates payments back to $0 down for the new phone.
Upgrading each year means you always get the newest Galaxy innovation without having to save up lump sums of cash to afford it. As soon as the next model comes out, you can get it for free.
A free smartphone can save you hundreds of dollars upfront. With all of the options above, you can get your hands on Samsung’s latest Galaxy model without the financial burden. From government programs to trade ins, giveaways, discounts and upgrades, score the phone you want for $0 dollars down with good timing and persistence. Use these tips to get your free Samsung Galaxy phone this year!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
What phones can I get for free from Assurance Wireless?
Assurance Wireless offers several free Samsung Galaxy models such as the A10e, A20, A50, and J3. The available models vary based on stock and may change.
If I qualify for Lifeline can I get any phone for free?
You are limited to the free phone options provided by the Lifeline carrier you choose. The major carriers like Assurance, Safelink, and QLink offer at least some Samsung Galaxy models.
Can I get more than one free Lifeline phone per household?
No, only one Lifeline phone is allowed per household. Having more than one is considered duplicating benefits and is not allowed.
How often can I get a replacement phone from Assurance Wireless?
Assurance Wireless replaces their free phones every 12 months. You need to continue qualifying for Lifeline as well as using your phone actively each month to receive an annual replacement.
Do I have to be on public assistance to qualify for a free phone?
No, having a low household income at or below 135% of the federal poverty guidelines qualifies you for Lifeline as well. You do not need to be enrolled in any public assistance programs if you meet the income requirements.
Can I trade in any old phone to get a free Galaxy?
Carriers are selective about which devices they’ll accept for trade in. Older smartphone models in good working condition usually qualify, but you’ll want to check your carrier’s program details.
What is the best deal time to get a Galaxy for free?
Historically, the best Samsung Galaxy phone deals are around Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Christmas, and when new models are released. But good promotions can pop up year-round, so keep watch.