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Verizon insists it will give you up to $1,000 in trade-in credits for your broken phone

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Another brand enters the April Fools’ fray, but Verizon says this is ‘#NoJoke’

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April Fools Day is at hand, and Verizon has willingly stepped into the fray with a deal that seems too good to be true — especially for people who have a broken, useless phone. The US carrier insists that starting tomorrow, April 1st, customers can trade in an “old, cracked, or water damaged phone” for up to $1,000 off a new 5G phone, like an iPhone 12, or Samsung’s Galaxy S21. The promo doesn’t extend to phones with battery damage (for safety concerns).

You’ll get the most out of this deal if you’re on a different carrier and looking to open a new line and port your number into Verizon’s network. But current customers can reap some savings, too. You can find out the value of your phone online or at any of its retail stores, although if you plan to visit in-person, the company encourages you to make an appointment on its store locator page or through the My Verizon app. The offer will go live on this page starting April 1st.

So, here’s the fine print (there’s a lot of it, but it’s worth trudging through if you think you may want to try for the deal):

  • Eligibility requires upgrading, or adding a new line and porting a number, to one of Verizon’s Unlimited plans with 5G
  • For new lines and phone number port-ins, or current customers porting a line from a different network: you can get a $300 Verizon e-gift card for an iPhone trade-in, or a $200 card for an Android phone (sent to you within eight weeks after transaction)
  • Stacked on that for new lines and port-ins (and also applicable for current customers who want to add a line, but not port in a number): you’ll get up to $700 in monthly credits sent your way for an iPhone trade-in, or up to $800 for a qualified Android phone (sent to you as a credit each month over a 24-month period)
  • If you’re simply upgrading your phone, but only have a broken phone to trade, Verizon will give you up to $440 in savings
  • There’s no limit as to how many people per account can trade in broken phones to take advantage of the deal
  • This is a “limited time” offer, but Verizon didn’t share when it will end

Once all is said and done, you’ll eventually have a $300 Verizon credit sitting on your account, and / or an additional credit coming your way each month, which will lower the cost of your monthly bill. It won’t make the investment of buying a pricey, new 5G phone any less steep upfront, but it’ll soften the blow a little by spreading the credits out over time.

Verizon didn’t share exactly how much trade-in value every phone has, but it offered a list of phones that are in a “higher value” category and others that will fetch a “lower value.”

Verizon trade in
Yes, that’s right — Verizon will take your RED Hydrogen One as if that never happened.

Updated 3:00PM ET: Verizon responded to The Verge’s request for clarification on a few points, including how many people can take advantage of this promo within a single account, when the promo will end, and how the credits received differ depending on whether you’re a new or current customer.