Following earthquake, wireless carriers offer free calling from U.S. to Mexico

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Jonathan Weiss/123RF
A magnitude-8.1 earthquake struck near Chiapas, Mexico at 12:49 a.m. ET on September 8, tragically killing at least 32 people and leaving hundreds more injured. The quake has been dubbed the strongest in the country for over a century, and is the cause of what is likely to be months of recovery.

As has been the case in the past, carriers have started responding to the disaster in an attempt to try and help people connect with loved ones who may be affected by the quake. Here’s what you need to know.


Soon after the quake, Verizon announced it would be offering free wireless and landline calling from the U.S. to Mexico, allowing Verizon customers to reach out to friends and family in the region without having to pay for it. The offer will last from September 8 to September 10.

“There’s a strong connection between our customers and their families in Mexico, this is the right thing to do,” said Tami Erwin, executive vice president of Verizon Wireless Operations, in a statement. “Speed matters when providing relief that can connect people during this crisis.”


AT&T has made a similar decision, saying it will automatically add credit and waive charges for calls and texts placed between September 8 and September 10. This applies to customers of AT&T wireless, AT&T Prepaid, and AT&T landline services.

“Our thoughts are with the people of Mexico and our customers who have friends and family there,” an AT&T spokesperson said in a statement emailed to Digital Trends. “As with any emergency, text messaging is recommended due to the possibility of network congestion in the local area.”


We’ve reached out to Sprint but have yet to hear back. We’ll update this article if and when we do.


T-Mobile One customers already have unlimited calling and texting to and from Mexico.

“U.S. customers currently in Mexico can call the U.S. for free through the same benefit,” a T-Mobile spokesperson told Digital Trends. “Customers in the U.S. with Stateside International can also make unlimited calls and texts to Mexico. There has been no announcement regarding non-T-Mobile One customers who do not have these benefits.

Stateside International is a service you can add to your T-Mobile plan, and it essentially offers unlimited calling and texting for numerous countries from the U.S., Mexico, and Canada.


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