Discounted Internet for EBT Cardholders
If you are an EBT Cardholder or food stamps recipient, you can now qualify for discounted internet service through the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP). The ACP provides discounted internet for EBT Cardholders and government assistance recipients.
Low-income households nationwide can take advantage of this program to save on their monthly internet bill. To learn more about the new discounted internet program called the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP), then continue reading below.
In this article we will cover:
- The Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP)
- How much of a Discount you can Expect
- Changes to the Discounted Internet Program
- How to Qualify for ACP Internet Credit
- Discounted Internet Program FAQs
Discounted Internet for EBT Cardholders
In April 2021, the U.S. Government passed the Emergency Broadband Internet (EBB) Program to provide households financially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic with $10 to $50 per month to offset the cost of internet.
The emergency program addressed the key affordability barrier that many households face related to reliable internet access.
As of March 1, 2022, the EBB discounted internet program is being transitioned to a permanent benefit called the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP).
The Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP)
The Affordable Connectivity Program is a Federal Communications Commission (FCC) program that helps ensure that households can afford the broadband they need for work, school, healthcare and more.
The ACP replaces the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program (EBB) that helped families and households struggling to afford internet service during the COVID-19 pandemic.
As of December 31, 2021 any EBB recipient will automatically continue to receive their current monthly benefit until March 1, 2022.
To stay enrolled and continue receiving monthly benefits after March 1st, you will have to apply for the new Affordable Connectivity Program.
The Affordable Connectivity Program is a permanent, long-term $14 billion investment to support broadband internet affordability for low-income households.
This helps ensure that all households can access and afford the internet service needed for work, school, and healthcare.
How much of a discount can I expect with the ACP?
If your household is eligible for the Affordable Connectivity Program, you can receive:
- Up to a $30/month discount on your internet service
- Up to a $75/month discount if your household is on qualifying Tribal lands
- A one-time discount of up to $100 for a laptop, tablet, or desktop computer
To learn more about the discounted internet program for EBT Cardholders, including the differences between the EBB and ACP, then continue reading below.
Changes to the Discounted Internet Program
The transition from the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program to the Affordable Connectivity Program results in several changes.
The changes to the discounted internet program are as follows:
Change #1 – Decrease in the Maximum Monthly Benefit
The maximum monthly benefit for the Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB) program is $50 per month. When the Affordable Connectivity Program goes into effect after March 1st, the maximum monthly benefit will change to $30 per month. That is a $20 reduction in the monthly benefit for discounted internet service.
If you live on qualifying Tribal lands, the monthly benefit will remain the same at $75 per month.
Change #2 – New Eligibility Standards for Households
After March 1st, households will have new ways to qualify for the discounted internet program. If you are currently enrolled and receiving WIC benefits, food stamps, or have an income at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines (FPL), you can now qualify for discounted internet.
Change #3 – Some Households must Re-Qualify
Households that qualified for the EBB $50 monthly benefit during the COVID-19 pandemic due to the loss of a job or being furloughed, must re-qualify through the Affordable Connectivity Program.
If this applies to your household, you will receive additional information about the steps to re-qualify for the monthly benefit from your internet service provider. You will be given at least 30 days to respond.
You will continue to receive the full $50 Emergency Broadband Benefit until March 1, 2022.
How do I re-qualify for discounted monthly internet benefits?
If you would like to apply for the Affordable Connectivity Program and receive a $30 discount on your internet each month, you must first determine your eligibility.
To be eligible to receive the $30 ACP internet credit, you must meet one of the three qualifications:
- Household income below 200% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines.
- Currently enrolled and receiving government assistance benefits such as SNAP, Medicaid, WIC, SSI, and more.
- If you or your child (or dependent) is already receiving Lifeline benefits for discounted monthly phone service.
In addition, your household may also qualify for the $30 internet credit of your child participates in the Free and Reduced-Price School Lunch Program or attends a USDA Community Eligibility Provision school.
If you live on qualifying Tribal lands, you can receive an additional discount on your monthly internet service – up to $75 per month.
To get a complete list on all the ways you can qualify for discounted internet through the Affordable Connectivity Program, read our complete ACP Eligibility article here.
If I am a Lifeline member do I need to apply for ACP?
To learn more about the Lifeline program and to find out if you qualify for discount phone service, read our complete article here.
Discounted Internet Program FAQs
Get the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions related to the ACP discounted internet program.
What internet providers are offering the ACP internet discount?
There are various national and local internet providers participating in the Affordable Connectivity Program. This includes AT&T, Comcast, Verizon, T-Mobile, Spectrum, and many more.
Several ACP internet providers offer both landline and wireless internet services.
Can I sign up for the ACP internet discount if I am already an internet customer?
Yes, the Affordable Connectivity Program internet credit is available to eligible new, past and current customers of participating ACP internet providers.
This means if you are a current Comcast internet customer, you can still apply for the $30 ACP internet credit directly with them. If approved, the ACP credit will come off your monthly internet bill.
Can I apply for the ACP internet discount if I have a past due internet bill?
Yes, eligible consumers with a past due balance or a balance in collections are still eligible to receive the ACP internet benefit.
ACP Internet Discount Summary
We hope this post about the Discounted Internet for EBT Cardholders and low-income households was helpful to you! If you have any additional questions about program eligibility or how to apply for the internet discount, please let us know in the comments section below.
For more information on the ACP Discounted Internet Program for EBT Cardholders, check out our list of Frequently Asked Questions here.
Want to save on your monthly phone bill? Check out our complete State-by-State Guide on the Lifeline Program to find out how you can get discounted phone service.