There aren’t many places to get CompTIA A+ certification for free. But they do exist. In this article, we cover options of where to get trained and certified for free.

Before you apply for CompTIA A+ certification, it’s worth knowing three things:

  • Employers prioritize CompTIA A+ certification on resumes when scouting for entry-level IT talent.
  • CompTIA A+ certification includes two exams that normally cost a total of ~$500.
  • Passing the exams can be challenging, requiring a solid understanding of technical IT concepts, including hardware, software, networking, and security.

Now the question is, is there a way to get CompTIA A+ certification for free? The answer is yes!

Our nonprofit organization, Climb Hire, offers an IT Support program that prepares you to pass the CompTIA A+ exams completely free of charge. And we cover the cost of certification, too.

Free CompTIA A+ training and certification aren’t commonly available. Exam fees are usually hard to bypass, as they directly cover essential costs like exam development, administration, and the testing center itself.

Plus, the exams are difficult, so many people enroll in a CompTIA A+ training program to get properly prepared. These programs—the good ones anyway—aren’t usually free, and that cost adds indirectly to the cost of certification.

For example, through CompTIA itself, you can find training programs for A+ certification, but they’re far from free. Their comprehensive package, which includes live online training and hands-on lab work, will set you back thousands of dollars.

So, how can Climb Hire offer both the training and certification for free?

As a nonprofit, our goal at Climb Hire is to help low-income and underrepresented working adults start careers in tech. Our generous donors, such as and the California Workforce Development Board, believe in our mission. Thanks to them, we’re able to offer free training, no strings attached.

In this article, we begin by explaining why it’s a good idea to enroll in a CompTIA A+ training program. Then, we’ll review some general ways to access free training (and in some cases, certification). Plus, we’ll go over the benefits of our own IT Support program and how you can take advantage of this opportunity at no cost to you.

Ready to get your CompTIA A+ training? Apply today.

Why Should You Enroll in a CompTIA A+ Training Program?

In general, there are two categories of programs out there for CompTIA A+ training: self-guided and instructor-led. Instructor-led programs are often better because:

  • You’ll get guidance through the technical content of the CompTIA A+ exams, including the fundamentals of PC hardware, troubleshooting, operating systems, operational procedures, and security practices.
  • If you have questions about any of the material, you can ask a real person for help or clarification—without having to scour the internet in hopes of finding a concrete answer.
  • Structured programs can help you stay motivated and disciplined by giving you a clear plan to follow while also keeping you accountable for your progress.
  • Hands-on labs are integrated into many guided programs, reinforcing the practical information technology skills you’re acquiring.
  • You’re more likely to land an IT job, as these are the skills you’ll need to excel in those roles.
  • You’ll get “soft skills” training, including resume writing and interview and professional communication skills.

For these reasons, we’ll focus only on instructor-led courses in this guide. Luckily, there are free options available, which combine both the training and the IT certification.

Where to Find Free CompTIA A+ Training Programs

Free, instructor-led CompTIA A+ training programs are most commonly available through either:

  • Government/corporate-sponsored initiatives
  • Nonprofit organizations

Typically, these programs are designed to support traditionally underserved groups, such as low-income or unemployed individuals, minorities, and military veterans. Aside from being free, many of these programs also cover the cost of the certification exams.

Free CompTIA A+ Training Programs through Nonprofit Organizations

Some nonprofit organizations offer free IT training programs and certification to help people from diverse backgrounds overcome financial barriers to education and job opportunities. These programs often offer both free CompTIA A+ training and certification, with instructor-led classes, hands-on lab work, and post-graduation job support.

In this section, we provide the details on Climb Hire’s free CompTIA A+ certification training, before sharing some alternative options.

Study for CompTIA A+ Certification for Free with Climb Hire

Climb Hire’s IT Support program is a fully remote option that prepares you to pass the CompTIA A+ exams in just six months. It’s not only completely free, but we also cover the cost of your CompTIA A+ certification (which would normally set you back over $500).

Specifically, our program is geared toward low-income, working adults between 24–40 years old that are authorized to work in the U.S. To qualify, you’ll need to have access to a computer with a webcam and microphone. You’ll also need to be able to commit 20 hours per week to the online course (divided between 9 hours of classes and 11 hours of homework and career prep).

Here’s a quick rundown of the syllabus (though if you want a more detailed outline, you can take a peek here):

  • IT basics (networking, computer hardware, software, troubleshooting, operating systems)
  • Mobile devices (laptop hardware, displays, configuration, connectivity)
  • Networking (ports/protocols, wireless networks, DNS/DHCP configuration)
  • Hardware (cables, memory, storage devices, motherboards)
  • Additional topics like cloud computing, operating systems, and security.

Once you complete the program, you’ll take the two CompTIA A+ certification exams. The first exam is Core 1 (220-1001), which covers computer systems, network security, troubleshooting, virtualization, security, and cloud computing.

The second exam is Core 2 (220-1001), which covers operating systems (macOS, Windows, Linux, and mobile OS), cybersecurity, troubleshooting software, and operational procedures.

Why Choose Climb Hire for Your Free CompTIA A+ Training & Certification?

Enrolling in our IT Support program comes with many perks:

  • It is fully remote, with live instruction from our experts. This approach is great because it comes with the necessary guidance in complex technical concepts, exam prep such as practice questions, and the flexibility to manage your studies alongside your other commitments.
  • You’ll learn in “pods,” studying alongside like-minded learners in a supportive environment. Classes will cover CompTIA A+ concepts and include guided, interactive labs, aligning with CompTIA’s recommendation for hands-on experience prior to taking the A+ exams.
  • Our IT Support program only takes six months to complete, fast-tracking you to CompTIA A+ certification and into the IT industry.
  • Our program includes training in essential “soft skills” to improve your employability, such as interview preparation and resume writing.
  • You’ll receive personalized support in your career path from a dedicated Career Development Advisor and access our wide network of graduates and IT professionals. These connections give Climbers a huge advantage in their job search.
  • After completing the coursework, you’ll become a member of our active alumni community, providing even more networking opportunities and ongoing support as you begin your IT career journey.

You’ll get all of this plus your CompTIA A+ certification without paying a dime, thanks to our generous donors.

Our alumni have a lot of great things to say about Climb Hire. Sisanda worked two jobs just to make minimum wage before she decided that wasn’t good enough. She was looking to break into the tech industry when she found Climb Hire. Since graduating from one of our programs, she’s secured a tech job with a significantly higher salary than she’s ever earned.

More than 80% of our graduates find a job within six months of completing the program, often upping their salaries to over $50k.

Free Programs through Other Nonprofit Organizations

Other nonprofits in the IT sector may also offer free CompTIA A+ training and certification. Typically, though, unlike Climb Hire, they tend not to offer fully remote learning. If you don’t live near one of their locations to attend in-person classes, this may not be an option for you.

It may be worth checking if there’s a non-profit that’s local to you offering CompTIA A+ training, especially if you find in-person classes more appealing.

Here are a couple of options that stand out:

  • Per Scholas offers free in-person or hybrid learning options across 20+ locations throughout the U.S., preparing you for the CompTIA A+ exams.
  • Tech 901 is a nonprofit in Memphis, Tennessee that offers a CompTIA A+ course at a discounted rate of $180. They recommend taking their course in person in Memphis, though remote learning is also available.
  • Minnesota Tech for Success (MTFS) a nonprofit based in Minneapolis, offers free tech training courses, including CompTIA A+ to Minnesota residents. Courses are held either virtually or in person at the MTFS headquarters.

Government or Corporate-Sponsored Programs

Local governments and corporations sometimes lend a hand to their communities by sponsoring free IT education programs. Right now, for example, the CUNY Upskilling Scholarship Program is funding a free CompTIA A+ training course at Bronx Community College for New York residents. Another ongoing program is through Goodwill in Colorado. They’re offering a free course for a few different CompTIA certifications, available to Colorado residents.

Programs like these are known to pop up from time to time, though they’re not always available. For example, Workforce Boulder County partnered with CompTIA in late 2023 to offer under-employed residents of Boulder, Colorado a free online training course for the CompTIA A+ certification exams. This program ran from November 2023 to March 2024.

Check with your local government to see if an opportunity like this is available nearby.

While these can be valuable opportunities, many require in-person attendance and/or residency in the local area. That means, in order to qualify and take advantage of these types of programs, you may have to:

  • Live in a state where these programs are offered.
  • Be able to commit to attending classes in person.

Given these prerequisites, it’s easy to be excluded from these opportunities.

Get Your CompTIA A+ Certification for Free with Climb Hire

Getting CompTIA A+ certified doesn’t have to be expensive. With Climb Hire, everyone who enrolls in 2024 will get comprehensive CompTIA A+ training and certification for free (we have our amazing donors to thank for that).

We go above and beyond in preparing you for both the certification and your subsequent job search with:

  • Fully remote, instructor-led learning (including hands-on labs!) so you will be thoroughly prepared for the CompTIA A+ exams.
  • Personalized support as you search for a job with the help of a dedicated Career Development Advisor.
  • Access to our extensive professional network and alumni community once you graduate.

Apply to our IT Support program today!

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