Getting a cell phone for your child can be a complicated task. You want them to be able to reach you (and vice versa), but you also want to make sure they’re safe, not getting too much screen time, and not blowing through your data plan in a week. There are lots of cell phone plans designed especially for kids that can help you balance needs, safety, and cost. Here are the 5 best cell phone plans for kids, and how they compare to one another, so you can find the perfect fit for your family.

1. Verizon Just Kids plan

Verizon’s Just Kids plan is, just as the name says, designed specifically for kids. It comes with safety features and parental controls that help you keep control over your child’s online activities. You add it to your existing Verizon plan.

Key features:

– 5GB of data: Plenty of gigs for your child to use apps and browse the web without blowing through all of the data.

– Unlimited talk time and texting: your child can keep in touch with friends and family via calling and messaging without worrying about limits.

– Parental controls: Manage the contacts your child can communicate with, set data limits, and track his or her location through the Verizon Smart Family app.

– Safety mode: this mode offers protection to make sure your child doesn’t exceed their data plan and rack up huge overage charges. Instead of extra charges, their data speeds just slow down after they’ve reached their allocated data for the billing cycle.

Cost: The Just Kids plan starts at $35/month when you add it to an existing Verizon plan.

Our pick for: Parents who want the most controls and safety features.

2. T-Mobile FamilyMode

Just like Verizon’s Just Kids plan, T-Mobile’s FamilyMode is an add-on plan that lets you manage and monitor your kid’s phone usage. You can pair it with any of T-Mobile’s primary plans.

Key features:

– Lots of data options: You can choose a plan that’s just the right fit for your family’s needs.

– FamilyMode app: Set screen time limits, restrict content, and track your child’s location.

– Unused data rollover: any data your child doesn’t use is rolled over to the next month.

Cost: FamilyMode add-on is $10/month per account when added to your existing T-Mobile account.

Best for: Families who already use T-Mobile and want to add comprehensive parental controls.

3. AT&T Prepaid

AT&T’s prepaid plans are a flexible and budget-friendly option for kids. You control the budget, and the plan is prepaid so there are no surprises as far as extra costs

Key Features:

– Multiple plan Options: Plans start with as little as 1GB of data, perfect for light users.

– No contracts: Cancel or change plans anytime without penalties.

– Parental controls: Use AT&T Secure Family app to monitor usage, filter content, and track location.

– Unlimited talk and text: Included with most plans.

Cost: Plans start at $30/month.

Best for: Parents looking for flexibility and no long-term commitments.

4. Mint Mobile

Overview: Mint Mobile is known for its affordable rates and straightforward plans. It’s a great choice if you’re looking for value and simplicity.

Key features:

– Affordable plans: Pay as little as $15 per month for 4GB of data with a 12-month plan.

– Unlimited talk and text: Included with all Mint Mobile plans.

– BYOD: If you already have a compatible device, you can keep costs down by using it instead of getting one as part of the Mint Mobile plan.

– Data management: It’s easy to track usage through the Mint Mobile app.

Cost: plans start at $15/month when you sign up for a 12-month plan.

Best for: Budget-conscious parents who want to save money without compromising service or features.

5. Google Fi Flexible Plan

Google Fi’s Flexible Plan is great for kids because you only pay for the data they actually use. It’s flexible (just like its name suggests) and transparent, making it easy to keep track of and manage costs.

Key features:

– Pay-as-you-go data: $10 per gigabyte of data used. If your child uses less data, you save more.

– Unlimited talk and text: Included in the base rate.

– Parental controls: you can set screen time limits, manage apps, and track your child’s location.

– Bill protection: Data charges are capped, so you’ll never pay more than $60 for data.

Cost: Starts at $20/month plus $10 per gigabyte of data.

Best for: Parents who want control over data costs and prefer a pay-as-you-go model.