The pandemic has given Americans yet another way to save a bit of money, this time on your cable bill.
According to NBC News, Americans can begin applying for $50 off their monthly internet bill as part of an emergency government program to help low-income households during the pandemic.
The $3.2 billion program is part of the $900 billion December COVID-19-relief package.
On top of the $50 deduction, eligible households can also receive a one-time discount of up to $100 to buy laptops, desktop computers or tablets from participating providers if they contribute more than $10 and less than $50 toward the price.
Tens of millions of people are eligible, although the Federal Communications Commission, which is administering the program, did not specify a number.
Here’s which households qualify, according to the FCC:
- Households with an income at or below 135% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines or participates in some assistance programs, including SNAP, Medicaid, or Lifeline
- Those who are approved to receive benefits under the free and reduced-price lunch program or school breakfast program during the 2019-2020 or 2020-2021 school year
- Households who received a Federal Pell Grant during the current award year
- Those who experienced a substantial loss of income due to job loss since February 29, 2020 and the household had a total 2020 income at or below $99,000 for single filers and $198,000 for joint filers
- There are other eligibility requirements, too — see https://getemergencybroadband.org to find out if you qualify and to apply.
You can get the discount even if you owe your phone or cable company money. More than 800 cellphone and home-internet companies are participating, including AT&T, Charter, Comcast, T-Mobile and Verizon.