Life Alert Cost Comparison and Review


Unfortunately, despite its early popularity, our comparison of Life Alert’s cost to that of other medical alert companies, clearly shows that when it comes to price, transparency, quality and customer service it lags far behind. Fortunately, there are plenty of good alternatives and we list our recommendations below.

Life Alert Cost Comparison and Review
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Starting Monthly Monitoring Cost $19.95 $79.90 $24.95 $29.95 $19.95 $32.95 $29.95 $24.95
Range 1,300 ft 800 ft 1,300 ft 1,300 ft Up to 800 ft 1,000 ft 600 ft 1,000 ft
Response Time 29 sec 33 sec 48 sec 25 sec 35 sec 43 sec 35 sec 49 sec
Emergency Buttons 1 1 1 2 1 1 1 1
Backup Battery Life 30 hrs 72 hrs 32 hrs 32 hrs 32 hrs 32 hrs 30 hrs 32 hrs
Wall Mounted Button $2/mo N/A $39.95 $2.99/mo N/A $2.49/mo N/A $1.95/mo
Fall Detection $10/mo Not Available $5/mo $10/mo $10/mo $10/mo $15/mo $15/mo
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How Much Does Life Alert Cost?

Life Alert seems to have increased its pricing for 2024, now costing between $79.90 and $98.85 per month depending on whether you choose the in-home only or in-home / mobile package. We were also quoted a one time activation fee of $197.

Because Life Alert does not publish pricing on its website, we had to call the company and speak to two different agents before we were provided with pricing. After 1 week, we were told if we didn't make a purchase, the pricing would increase by $10 per month.

We consider any attempt to hide pricing and add arbitrary sales pressure when it comes to pricing a serious red flag, especially for a health product designed for seniors.

Aside from costing more, Life Alert also locks customers into long term 3 year contracts, when many competitors offer no contracts with 30 day money back guarantees. Perhaps more concerning, is that the only way you can get out of your 3 year contract with Life Alert is if you can prove you moved to a nursing home or provide them with a death certificate. We find this unnecessary, onerous and distasteful.

Life Alert Alternatives

If you're looking for a lower cost alternative to Life Alert, without sacrificing product, service or quality, with easy to cancel contract terms, we strongly recommend MobileHelp.

MobileHelp offers an excellent low price point, starting at just $19.95 a month. It's able to do so because it actually manufactures its medical alert systems itself (and supplies much of the rest of the industry), and passes on the savings to consumers. Despite its affordability, it's one of the only medical alert companies that's FDA and ULC certified.

MobileHelp currently has a limited time offer getting you 1 free month, free equipment, 50% off fall detection, a free lock box, a 30 day money back trial period, free cancellation, free overnight shipping and monthly monitoring as low as $19.95 a month - making it absolutely risk free to try and the best available pricing we've seen on the market at this time.

To get the best deal from MobileHelp (or anyone else for that matter), we actually recommend you give them a call at (800) 920-1745. It will help you lock in your pricing (offer expires July 31, 2024) and you'll get a free consultation to help you find the right system for your individual situation.

Life Alert Review Takeaways:

Life Alert Base Station

  • The cost of Life Alert far exceeds its value;
  • Life Alert costs nearly $60 a month more than other leading medical alert companies;
  • Life Alert has up-front fees of $197. Many top medical alert companies offer $0 in up-front fees;
  • There is no 30 day money-back period. We are strong believers in try before you buy, especially for seniors;
  • You must sign-up for a 3 year contract when most competitors offer month to month contracts and easy cancellation;
  • Red Flags:

Our conclusion is that there are far better medical alert systems available, offering more flexibility at a much more reasonable price than Life Alert, as can be seen in the chart above.

Life Alert Pros:

Monitoring Center

Life Alert owns multiple monitoring stations, all of which are located in the United States. Because it owns its own monitoring stations, and doesn't outsource calls, it has more control over quality and training. Its monitoring stations have also been accredited by a 3rd party and are UL listed.

Small Mobile Device

Life Alert's mobile device is actually quite small.

Long Back-Up Battery Life

If there is a power outage, Life Alert's devices do have a longer back-up battery life than the average medical alert device of 5 days. Most other medical alert devices offer back-up battery power of close to 3 days.

Life Alert Cons:

Life Alert Cost For Monthly Monitoring

The Life Alert cost for the basic in-home system is $79.90 per month (confirmed by company sales agent as of January, 2024). That is significantly more than the average of $19.95-$29.95 per month most other medical alert systems charge. Life Alert's in-home system doesn't even come with fall detection and offers no additional product feature or service that merits a higher price. At a full $50-$60 more per month, we just don't think Life Alert is worth the extra cost.

Start-Up Fees

Life Alert Help Button

In addition to its monthly charge of $79.90 for monitoring services, the Life Alert cost also includes up-front fees of $197, for things like shipping, programming and processing fees. Many other companies offer $0 start-up fees.

No Automatic Fall Detection

One of the big advancements in medical alert systems is the development of automatic fall detection. In the event a senior falls and is unable to press their emergency button themselves, the automated fall detector will call the emergency response center and they will send help within minutes.

Life alert does not offer fall detection. They said they had researched fall detection, but ultimately determined it was unreliable. While we agree that fall detection does not detect 100% of falls, we understand the best systems catch around 90% of falls, we think it performs an essential service and is a great back-up plan in the event the user can't press the button themselves due to shock or loss of consciousness.

Long Term Contracts

Another big drawback of Life Alert, is that it locks its customers into 3 year contracts. Most of Life Alert's competitors have migrated to no contracts, allowing customers to cancel at any time, for any reason with no penalties. Life Alert only allows contracts to be terminated upon death, if you move into a senior living facility or if you receive 24 hour care, however, you will have to provide a letter from your doctor or the long term care facility as proof.

The problem with long term contracts for medical alert systems, is that sometimes people's needs change, especially those of the elderly. Perhaps you don't like the way the equipment looks or feels, you move in with a family member, get a full-time caregiver or simply don't use the equipment often enough to make it worth your while. With Life Alert, you're stuck paying $79.90 a month until then end of your 3 year term - not so with the competition.

No 30 Day Money-Back Guarantee

Life Alert does not offer a trial period, plus you're locked in for 3 years. Many of the leading medical alert companies will give you a 30 day money back guarantee - get your money back, no questions asked - and a month to month contract. This is important for a few reasons. First, sometimes you may find that you or your loved one don't end up wearing your help button. Second, if you order a mobile alert system, you may find that you don't get good reception. Third, you may find it's too uncomfortable, big or unpleasant and want to try a different system that's a better fit.

Lack of Transparency

Life Alert Cost

We find Life Alert's sales and marketing practices less than transparent, especially given their target population. Neither the monthly Life Alert cost, nor its upfront fees are disclosed on their website. Once they have you or your loved one on the phone, we found they engaged in high pressure sales tactics, which was also a frequent complaint with the Better Business Bureau. We're not fans of the high pressure sales tactics, especially for a vulnerable senior population that is already feeling stressed or fearful.

Lots of Customer Complaints

One way to get a feel for a medical alert company's customer satisfaction levels is to check out the number of complaints lodged against it through the Better Business Bureau. Unfortunately, no medical alert company had more complaints against it than Life Alert - a total of 249 complaints. Some companies like Philips Lifeline, which is of similar if not larger size, only have 28 complaints!

Of the 249 complaints against Lifeline, 157 were for problems with the product or service, 56 were for advertising or sales issues and 35 were for billing and collection issues. We just can't recommend a medical alert company who has so many more complaints against it than its competitors.

Compare Life Alert Costs

Just take a look at the chart below to see how expensive Life Alert is compared to the competition. The worst part is, you're getting an even worse customer experience, while paying more.

Price of In-Home Landline $19.95 / mo $79.90 / mo + $197 fees $29.95 / mo + $79.95 fee
Price of Mobile GPS & 2 Way Voice $27.45 / mo $98.85 / mo + $198 fees (includes landline system) $49.95 / mo + $129.90 fee
In-Home Range 1,300 feet 800 feet 600 feet
Free Shipping YES YES YES
Free Activation YES NO NO
Free Cancellation, Prorated Refund YES NO NO
30 Day Money Back Guarantee YES NO NO
Learn More Now (800) 920-1745 (800) 360-0329 (855) 410-3191


We really didn't like the lack of transparency with Life Alert. We could not find any pricing on their website. They want to force you to call to get pricing, and then put you through a high pressure sales pitch. Regardless, you can see in the chart above that their pricing is VERY expensive relative to the competition, for product that offers the same level of protection.

As a result, if you're looking to get a personal emergency response system, we don't recommend Life Alert. We believe the cost of Life Alert, a full $30 per month more than other leading medical alert companies, plus up front fees of up to $198 and an inflexible 3 year contract are unfair. Moreover given that other companies are cheaper and offer more flexible contracts, it's unnecessary for you to pay more and get locked into a long term contract, when there are great alternatives offering the same service.


Despite its early success, we believe the customer complaints and negative reviews as seen on the Better Business Bureau website offer a cautionary tale to prospective customers.

The bottom line is, we believe you can find medical alert systems that are as good or better, at far more reasonable prices and much more flexible contractual terms than Life Alert itself.



  1. What are the most important things I should be looking for in a medical alert system for my mother?

    • Hi Steven, it really does depend on your needs. But we like the following:
      1. A system that will give you protection in all areas of your home, 24X7. (good range or a mobile device, can get coverage in the shower)
      2. Will store personal information (medications, allergies, health conditions) and provide them to first responders
      3. Will properly triage (not call 911 right away if not necessary), and reach out to listed contacts if necessary
      4. Transparent / reasonably pricing, no high pressure selling, no exploitative long term contracts
      5. Will not charge or cap the number of presses of the button

      Hope that helps,
      Seniorsfetyreviews staff

  2. When you actually call these companies, make sure to ask a lot of questions so that you know exactly what you are getting for the price. I have just spoken with Mobile Help and Medical Alert. In both cases, the prices presented here for the basic plan are correct, but the basic plan is very basic. For instance, the button the person is wearing will work up to 1300 feet away from the base, but if the base is a few rooms away or downstairs when the person is upstairs, the person being monitored and the people doing the monitoring will not be able to communicate with each other. With the home systems, all communication goes through the speaker in the base. If they can't communicate, the company will automatically have to call a caregiver, family member, or EMS. In order to talk through the button the person is wearing, they need a mobile system, and they are more expensive. Just ask a lot of questions! I will probably go with Medical Alert for my parents because all my questions were answered logically and honestly, but the price for a system with fall detection and the ability to talk through the button around their neck is going to be $49.95 per month minimum (that is with paying for a year in advance which leads to a considerable savings and other perks.) Both companies do a prorated refund if the situation changes and you need to send the system back, so that is helpful, but it is going to cost almost $700 for 1 year including activation fee.

  3. Thank you for this very valuable information. I saw Life Alert commercial and decided to google. Thank heaven I did and found your detailed article concerning life alert pros and cons. More cons than pros!! Again, thank you for alerting me of this major concern with the Life Alert company. Will definitely not give them by business!!

  4. This has been a blessing to me, as I am a senior, and thinking about getting an alert.

  5. Life Alert just locked my mom in a 3 year contract. $199 setup fee and $98 a month. She even has a landline!

    • Hi Charles,

      That's why we don't recommend Life Alert to our readers. Very unfair in our opinion. None of our recommended alternatives (which you can find above) lock their customers into a long term contract, and all are more affordable.

      Seniorsafetyreviews Staff

  6. How much are your equipment fees and activation charges and prices for the mobile cellular package with fall landline prices

    • Hi Karen,

      That will depend on the provider you choose. With MobileHelp it's $32.95, no equipment fees. Fall detection is an extra $5 per month. Alternatively, you can get the Lifeline "on-the-go" system, and it's $49.95 a month, and a one time activation fee of $99, fall detection included.

      Hope that helps!

      Senior Safety Reviews staff

  7. Looking for long time for one with fall detection because of Parkinsons BUT it being unreliable isn't helpful so now back to square one!

    • Hi Dee, before concluding the fall detection is unreliable, why not take advantage of the 30 day money back guarantee many medical alert providers offer and give it a try. Many do work quite well and are worth the try, especially with no upfront equipment costs, no long term contracts and 30 day trial periods.


      Seniorsafetyreviews Staff

  8. Can this system work with a landline?

    • Hi Mark,

      Mobile Help, does offer an in-home system that works over a landline, as well as an in-home system that works over cellular (for those that have cut the cord and no longer have a landline). They also offer a mobile system that allows you to use the medical alert system in and outside of your home through cellular. Best idea is to give them a call and discuss your needs and have them match the most appropriate technology for your situation.

      Hope that helps,

      Seniorsafetyreviews Staff

  9. concetta Ruzzi

    Find me a reputable alert company.

    • Hi Connie,

      Our top rated companies on the chart above all have good reputations. However, if you're looking for us to make life simple for you, MobileHelp will do great and has an excellent promotion in place, 30 day money back guarantee and easy cancellation terms.

      Hope that helps!

      Seniorsafetyreviews Staff

  10. We looked into Life Alert and find everything you say here to be true. Very rude sales people seems to be the norm for them. Stay away from Life Alert period. We went with Medical Alert and I'm glad I did the research first. It's only $19.95 a month and can be canceled when no longer needed, no proof needed.

    • Hi Steve,

      It's unfortunate and a shame Life Alert is so aggressive, especially for a product and service designed for the vulnerable who need real advice and compassion. Glad you found an alternative. Medical Alert is solid.

      Thanks for letting us and our readers know!

      Seniorsafetyreviews Staff

  11. I have been looking for a life alert type company for myself, and ran across this site in my search.

    Can't cancel a 3 yr contract? Geesh, that doesn't sound like a reputable company. Another way of screwing the Elderly?

    I will continue to search

    • Hi Patti,

      We agree, a non-cancellable contract for a product that often is only needed for a relatively short term (1-2 years), is not fair. That's why we provided alternatives in the chart above. We'd encourage you and others to give some of the other medical alert companies with higher ratings a call.

      Hope that helps!

      Seniorsafetyreviews Staff

  12. My mom does not have internet, and refuses to get it. Can this system work solely with a landline?

    • Hi Diana,

      If your mom does not have internet, most of the higher rated systems above either work with a landline or through wireless cellular (at no extra charge).

      Hope that helps!

      Seniorsafetyreviews staff

  13. Thank you for the review. I'm just starting to look for a good senior monitoring system for my parents, and I have a question. So, I assume that for all these monitoring systems that you reviewed, if a customer presses the "alert" button to call for help, or if the device that the customer wears detects a fall, an alert signal will be transmitted to an appropriate monitoring station/center and the monitoring staff will dispatch help. My question is whether the cost of the dispatched help is included in the monthly fee, or the customer would have to pay for it separately each time he/she requested help. For example, if the monitoring staff calls a nearby hospital or emergency service to send an ambulance, is the customer who requested help responsible for paying the emergency service of the ambulance and its staff? Thanks again.

    • Hi Andrew,

      The majority of calls to medical alert dispatch centers are resolved without sending emergency services (ambulance, fire department, police) to the customer's home. That is one of the advantages of medical alerts over 911.

      Here's why: When the customer presses the emergency alert button, the emergency response dispatcher will contact and attempt to speak to the customer through the medical alert pendent or base station, depending on the system. After assessing the situation, the dispatcher can then determine whether or not to contact one of the people on the customer's emergency contact list, such as a family member, neighbor or caregiver, who can resolve a situation. Or, whether it's an urgent situation that requires the dispatch center to contact an appropriate emergency service like the ambulance or fire department.

      If an emergency service is sent over, ultimately the customer, or their insurance provider, will be responsible for covering the cost of the emergency service. That said, the ambulance is NOT the default contact. If it's an issue that can be resolved by a family member, caregiver, friend or neighbor on the emergency contact list, they will be called first.

      As an example, let's say the emergency button is pressed because a senior has mild cognitive impairment and is having an anxious moment - for whatever reason. If, after speaking to the customer and assessing the situation, the dispatcher does not believe the customer is in imminent danger, he can call a family member to go and resolve the situation, all while staying on the phone with the customer, until help arrives.

      Again, one of the big advantages of medical alert systems, is that emergency services are not the default solution, unlike 911, which can be very costly. In fact, the majority of calls are resolved by the dispatcher or by someone on the customer's emergency contact list.

      Hopefully you find that answer helpful.

      Senior Safety Reviews staff

    • In most cases you only pay for ambulance services if the EMS transports you. If they don't transport you they don't charge for the service. The reasoning behind that is that if they charged just for showing up, people would be reluctant to call for help.

      • As a retired Paramedic, that isn’t the reason. Some States have laws against private EMS levying charges for showing up but not providing a service. Some counties/cities include this in their contract with the EMS service. Most EMS services do not charge for simply responding that ends up being no treatment, in order to maintain a good relationship with the citizens in the areas they serve. (They want their contract renewed). Keep in mind, no treatment means NO hands on (including a band-aid, oxygen, etc.

        There are areas where an unscrupulous EMS may charge exuberant fees for simply responding. They take advantage of people and should be reported to the State Agency that regulates them, along with reporting to your City/County, so they can be dealt with.

        The EMS system is abused in general. Oh the stories I could tell… This ties up valuable resources and may cause someone to lose their life when the closest ambulance is tied up on a bs call. Use EMS when life and limb are at risk.

  14. I think Life Alert must have offered fall detection at some point. My aunt had Life Alert years ago, with the fall detection (which cost more). When she had a stroke and collapsed, the fall was not detected.

  15. Love this site - thank you for having it. I made the mistake of calling life alert bc that’s what the doctor mentioned for my dad and I didn’t google to see what other companies were out there offering the service. The sales person was rude and pushy. Will be blocking him when he calls back!

    • Thanks for the kind words Kane! Glad our review helped. They'll hopefully stop calling after 4-5 attempts. Just let it go to voicemail or tell them very curtly you've bought a system from a competitor, they're wasting their time and hang-up.

      Kindest, Staff

    • I'm looking into getting this for my mom how much am I looking at to get everything set up

      • Hi Tabatha,

        It depends on the product and company. However, for an in-home system (with or without a landline), you can get everything set up for $19.95 a month (all in), with no additional equipment, activation or shipping fees. Alternatively, if you want a system that is able to work outside your home (mobile), you can get one for $32.95 a month (all in), no equipment fees, activation, shipping or cellular charges. Check out the chart at the top of this page for best offers and give our higher ranked providers a call to see which solution is best for you.

        Hope that help!

        Seniorsafetyreviews Staff

  16. Thank you for information. My mother has a 3 year contract and has not used devices for three months and company will not let us cancel contract.

    • Hi Evelia,

      That is the primary reason why Life Alert received a poor rating by our review team. There are many alternative medical alert companies that have no contracts and free cancellation, making it is easy to stop services.

      That said, our understanding with Life Alert is that you can cancel under certain circumstances, although they make it exceptionally hard. If your mother has moved into a nursing facility, some of their contracts allow you to cancel, although you will have to show proof.

      If you'd like you can share you customer contract with us and we can help you review it to determine your options, if any. You can email it to us at

      Would love to help, Staff

      • Is there more than one way to get out of the 3yr contract. That was not disclosed to my mother.
        They have you sign when they install never explaining it's a contract. This should be illegal. Definitely taking advantage of people.

        • Hi Teri,

          We'd love to see if we can help you. If you can scan and email us a copy of your contract to, we'll review it and see how we might be able to help, if at all. Also please let us know what state the account holder lives in. With regards to other Life Alert contracts we've reviewed, you have the ability to cancel if there's been a death to the account holder, or if she/he has moved into a nursing home. You will have to provide proof of either situation.

          As we mentioned in the review above, the 3 year contract is the reason we do not recommend Life Alert to our readers. There are plenty of other medical alert companies, with comparable or better service in our opinion, that allow you to cancel at any time, without any penalty.

          Look forward to hearing from you Teri,

 Staff (Marc)