Getting great customer service in the cell phone industry can be challenging, especially with so many cell phone carriers only offering online support. In fact, many carriers are notorious for providing poor customer service and experiences. Online forums are flooded with tales of woe and misfortune.
In some cases, you may get a representative who is challenging to understand, who isn't knowledgeable, or who doesn't have the tools to solve your problem and has to escalate your issue to a higher-tier of support. Having poor customer service can be frustrating, time-consuming, and discouraging. You can find stories online of people having poor experiences with pretty much all carriers.
Now, in an ideal world, you shouldn't need to contact customer support. Once your device is set up, you should be good. All you have to do is remember to pay your cell phone bill each month.
But there are some times where you do need to contact customer support. Maybe you're upgrading your phone, adding a line, or you need to troubleshoot an issue. In the times it's nice to have friendly, understanding, and knowledgeable chat agents who are there to help you out.
Having great customer service is also nice for grandparents or people who would like extra reassurance that they have people they can contact if something goes wrong.
So what carriers offer good customer service?
Ting is known in the cell phone industry for their customer support. Ting representatives are typically knowledgeable, friendly, and quick to respond. Ting support is available by phone, via a chat tool on their website, and by email.
Ting's phone support is available from 8am to 1am EST. Ting's chat support is available 10am to 9pm Monday through Friday, and from 10am to 6pm on Saturday and Sunday.
If you have a quick question that isn't urgent, you can also use Ting's email support. It's available 24/7. A Ting agent will respond as soon as they can. Better yet, you can see if Ting has an article in their support base that already answers your question.
Every support experience will be different, but in general, Ting is known for providing more positive experiences.
US Mobile is also known for providing better customer support. They are especially known for their quick response times. US Mobile's customer service is available 24/7. You speak to real humans and get quick resolutions to any issues you may have.
US Mobile's support is available via chat, email, or phone. From our experience, the chat agents were knowledgeable and helpful. For example, you need to enter custom APN settings to configure data usage on US Mobile's GSM LTE network, which uses T-Mobile for coverage. When we had problems, US Mobile's chat agent guided us in the right direction and explained what settings to enter and how to enter them.
We even had a positive experience when we wanted to leave US Mobile. After a quick chat with support, a US Mobile agent emailed us with our account number and PIN so we could switch our line to a new carrier. This was much better than the 20-minute phone call we had with Mint Mobile's customer support to get our account number and PIN.
If you have questions about US Mobile's plans or services, chat with an agent using the chat bubble on US Mobile's website. They'll be happy to answer questions, and from our experience, they'll even give you a code for a free SIM kit if you ask for it.
From our experience, Wing's customer service has been overall positive. Whenever we've had questions about billing or plans, the chat agents have been quick to respond, knowledgeable, and friendly. When we were accidentally billed for a line we had canceled, a Wing agent resolved the issue in a matter of minutes. The Wing agent even offered us a permanent $5 discount off our plan for the trouble.
Now, the billing issue shouldn't have happened in the first place, but it's nice that customer support was there to easily take care of it. Wing's support is available their mobile application, via the chat bubble on their website, or by calling them.
Wing's support hours are from 9am to 11pm EST Monday through Friday, and from 9am to 6pm EST on Saturday and Sunday.
As one of the major cell phone carriers in the United States, Verizon should have good customer service. And most of the time, they do.
What's nice about Verizon's customer service is you can go to a physical store location for help. What's not so nice? Some, well actually most of the stores are third-party stores. This means the Verizon stores are franchised and not owned directly by Verizon. Verizon just provides the stores with tools and systems to provide service and support. But sometimes, that support just isn't as good.
For the best support experience with Verizon, we recommend you go to a corporate store location. You can identify Verizon corporate stores on their map. Corporate stores are often better able to resolve issues, and managers are often able to be more accomodating depending on the situation.
From our experience, Verizon call and chat support have been decent too. Now, it's not perfect. There was one time we were forwarded to Apple's phone support for a Samsung Galaxy S20+ issue, and it took multiple phone calls and trips to separate Verizon stores to ultimately get the S20+ working on Verizon's 5G network.
But still, every support experience will be different, and in general Verizon's support seems to be pretty good. Especially if you go to a corporate store.
T-Mobile is another major carrier. They have recently been doing a lot to improve their coverage and support. Similar to Verizon, T-Mobile has physical store locations. This makes it a lot easier to get support. T-Mobile also franchises their stores. While franchised stores try and provide the same experience as corporate stores, customer experience is often better at corporate locations. For example, you're more likely to get a free SIM card at a corporate store than a franchised store.
T-Mobile offers 24/7 customer support over the phone. In general, the reps are courteous and helpful. Again, ever support experience will be different, but we think T-Mobile is doing a good job with their service and support.
There are a few carriers that deserve honorable mentions in the support category:
Visible: When Visible first launched, they were known for poor customer service. The problem was their service was popular and many people were signing up. This caused long wait times with customer service representatives, and sometimes they were unknowledgeable or not able to help. It's now been two years since Visible launched in 2018, and they've made noticeable improvements with their customer support. Wait times are much lower, and the reps seem more prepared to answer common questions.
Mint Mobile: Mint Mobile's customer service is generally the same as everyone else's. About on par. Nothing to write home about. But where Mint Mobile shines is with their customer support on Reddit. Mint Mobile has their own subreddit. Their account is active and they are known for quickly responding to comments and working with users to get their problems resolved as quickly as possible.