Best for Protection in the Bathroom
Life Alert was founded in 1987 with the goal of helping seniors live independently at home without worrying about safety. It now handles over 2 million emergency calls per year and saves at least one person from a “potentially catastrophic” outcome every 11 minutes, according to the company’s website.
In addition to an in-home and mobile system, Life Alert offers a device specifically for in-bathroom use. The in-bathroom device is a wall-mounted button that is completely waterproof, so it may be placed in areas where bathroom falls are most common, such as the shower.
Who Life Alert Is Best For
Those Without a Landline
Life Alert’s in-home system is available with both a landline or a cellular connection, both at the same price. Unlike other companies in the industry, Life Alert does not charge an extra monthly fee for its in-home system with a cellular connection. Seniors who wish to use Life Alert but do not have a working landline in their home can take comfort in knowing that they will not have to pay an extra fee each month just to be able to connect their device with the monitoring center.
Seniors Looking for Comprehensive In-Home and On-the-Go Coverage
Life Alert’s mobile device, On the Go, comes as a package with both In the Home and In the Bathroom devices. This makes things simple for seniors looking for comprehensive coverage, who may otherwise have to sign up for several different service plans to receive in-home and mobile devices and a wall-mounted button. With Life Alert, all three devices come under one service plan and one monthly fee.
Seniors Prone to Falls in the Bathroom
Life Alert’s In the Bathroom device is specifically designed to give seniors extra protection in the bathroom. Because it is 100% waterproof, it can even be placed in the bathtub. If you or your loved one is prone to falling in the bathroom or worry about an accident occurring in the room, having an extra device specifically for in-bathroom use can provide peace of mind.
Plans and Starting Costs
All Life Alert systems are paid for on a month-to-month basis; there are no quarterly or annual payment plans or discounts. The plans range in price from $49 for the basic in-home device, referred to by Life Alert as the “first level of protection,” to $89 for the comprehensive bundle of devices.
Life Alert customers must sign a three-year service agreement. If a customer wishes to end their service with Life Alert before the contract has ended, they may be responsible for paying for the rest of the term. If a user must end their service for a “qualifying reason” such as moving to a nursing home, they may be able to end the contract without paying any fees.
Life Alert plans come with varying one-time fees. The starting costs are as follows:
- $95 for the In the Home device
- $96 for In the Home and In the Bathroom together
- $89 for On the Go, In the Home, and In the Bathroom
The one-time fee is comprehensive; it includes shipping, activation, and equipment fees. There are no additional startup costs.
Device Prices and Features
In the Home
Device Features and Pricing
In the Home is a standard in-home device. Users have the choice of using a landline or cellular connection; there is no extra fee for cellular. The base station has a 72-hour backup battery and range of 800 feet, and the personal help button is shower-safe. Fall detection is not available with In the Home, or any Life Alert device. In the Home costs $49 a month.
In the Bathroom
Device Features and Pricing
In the Bathroom is a wall-mounted button that is completely waterproof, so it can be placed in the tub or shower. It functions as an additional personal help button; users may press the wall-mounted button rather than their wearable button to connect with the monitoring center. Users may also choose to place the wall-mounted button anywhere else in the home where they would like some extra protection (it does not necessarily have to be placed in the bathroom). In the Bathroom costs $69, which includes a wall-mounted button and an In the Home system.
On the Go
Device Features and Pricing
Life Alert’s mobile offering, On the Go, is a lightweight device equipped with a cellular connection and GPS. Monitoring center operators can use the GPS information to easily locate callers during an emergency. On the Go is waterproof and showerproof, and has a battery life of up to 10 years. For a monthly fee of $89, users receive On the Go, In the Home, and In the Bathroom systems.
|In the Home||In the Bathroom||On the Go|
|Type of Device||In-home||In-home||Mobile|
|Battery Life||72-hour backup||72-hour backup||Up to 10 years|
|Range||800 feet||800 feet||N/A|
|Fall Detection||Not available||Not available||Not available|
Life Alert customers can download the company’s mobile app for extra coverage. If the user has an emergency and is not wearing their device, or simply finds using the phone is easier, they can contact the monitoring center via the app. They can also use the app in situations when they feel unsafe and would like a virtual escort, and an operator will stay on the line with them until they feel safe or are out of the uncomfortable situation.
For those without a smartphone, Life Alert also offers the option of manually dialing the monitoring center from a standard telephone.
Life Alert owns and operates its own U.S.-based monitoring center. The center is UL-listed and TMA Five Diamond Certified. According to the company’s website, the Life Alert monitoring center has helped save over 400,000 lives from catastrophe since 2008.