Longest Cheapest Pay as you go plan?

I am gonna guess thats either red pocket or tracfone, but in short...

need a "real" phone number for verification on many online applications

any ideas? we are talking maybe a couple texts a month max


The usual suspects, beyond those you mentioned (all with cellular voice/text, US number):
UltraMobile PayGo ($3/mo)
H20 PayGo
Page Plus PayGo
Freedompop's Walmart Exclusive plan.

All but FreedomPop basically work out in the $3-$3.50/mo range. FreedomPop is free, $10 start-up cost, but has some 'friction' in requiring manual renewal each month. (See the FreedomPop thread in the forum for details, kindly provided by a few early adopters.)

AT&T Prepaid's PayGo plans have been abruptly discontinued for all new lines, so that's no longer an option.

Couple other options:
Google Voice - I use this and work 90% of the time for me for verification texts. Chase Bank is one that I can think of that doesn't work for verification text.
You could also try TextNow and pay $4.99/yr for number lock. This allows verification texts and I'm guessing it would have a similar success rate as Google Voice.

Thanks @ajzwilli ,
Unfortunately in my experience VOIP based carriers do not count as "real" phone numbers.

Without divulging to much detail, I am trying to get authenticated with PayPal for a new account. However, since all of my phone numbers are primarily based with VOIP services, I cant get authenticated for it. The following did not work for new sign up.

• Google Voice
• Truphone
• FreedomPop
• TextNow

Thanks @KentE as well for listing those. I am actually surprised that AT&T Prepaid's PayGo is no longer possible. That would have been nice because I believe theres was talk and text but youre only charged when you use it. Such a shame...

Edit: I am still trying to find a way around it because to me its a little over the top. IMHO all they should need is a form of contact, which they have my email for that new account. Regardless, the cheapest thing I found was this:

Feel free to list other services where a "real" number may be needed. I am aware of chase thanks to @ajzwilli .

Note - the Walmart Exclusive Freedompop Plan that I and Kent mentioned is not the freedompop of old. This is a true cellular number and not VOIP and should work for exactly what you are doing. Is that what you tried when you mentioned FreedomPop didn't work?

Also, assume you don't have luck with the TextNow Free plan, but TextNow claims they support verification text with a paid plan including the $5 /yr number lock plan

From sovashadow's report, it sounds like Paypal rejects VoIP numbers, and won't even attempt to send the verification text to them. In that instance, it doesn't matter if the VoIP number would deliver the text.

For a long-term line, I think the FreedomPop Walmart Exclusive is the only one that beats the Red Pocket $30/annual cost. RP is an excellent choice for a minimal fuss method of maintaining the line long-term.

Page Plus paygo would also be $30/year @ $10/4 mo.

Used to be able to find discounted refills but nothing currently that I'm aware of other than pin zoo points discount, no tax so $30 is actually $30 or a touch less w/points.

I have old freedompop sims for the $15/year for 1GB each month. I had not realized they changed, but I am debating if the headache is worth saving $20/year

I do have the $5/year option and purchased it awhile back.

But KentE is right. I am saying if paypal thinks the service or number is VOIP based, they will not even attempt it.

FWIW, I just tried setting up a paypal account and successfully received the authentication code on the following numbers:
Google Voice
TextNow free (no number lock) with Sprint Sim
TextNow free (no number lock) with Tmobile Sim
Freedompop Walmart Sim

I guess paypal hates me. For me specifically it was when adding a bank account.

So I could add it in my account details, but when it came time to add bank account, it wouldn't allow any of those number to be used.