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Cheapest Cell Phones for Seniors

We've put together our top picks for the least expensive cell phones for seniors, so you can find the right phone for your budget

The 3 Best Brands
Accolades Least expensive cell phone overall Least expensive smartphone Least expensive phone + unlimited plan
Device cost $30 $149 $100
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How We Chose the Cheapest Cell Phones for Seniors

We understand that searching for an affordable cell phone can be intimidating and downright overwhelming. That’s where we come in! Here at SeniorLiving.org, we’ve researched dozens of cell phones to find the best ones for seniors that offer the most bang for your buck. If you’re budget conscious like us, we believe that you shouldn’t have to sacrifice quality for value. On our list of the cheapest cell phones for seniors, we found devices that bring the best of both.

After hours of research and hands-on testing, we narrowed down the list to five cell phones with features designed specifically for seniors that are also budget-friendly and some of the least expensive on the market. Our list contains both flip phones and smartphones for beginner to advanced senior cell phone users. Every phone on our list had to meet the following criteria:

  • Price: This one’s a no brainer; every cell phone in our top five is affordable for seniors. We’ve included options for those on the tightest of budgets, along with some that have slightly higher price tags but still offer great value and won’t break the bank. There’s something for everyone!
  • Value: While we’re all about getting the best deals and discounts, we also make value and quality a top priority. What’s the point of purchasing a cheap phone if it’s just going to fall apart or provide unreliable service? All of the affordable phones on our list offer value that’s much greater than the price tag.
  • Senior-Friendly Design: At SeniorLiving.org, we’re all about, you guessed it, helping seniors. You’ll find that our top five cheapest cell phones come with senior-friendly features, like high visibility screens and buttons, medical alert capabilities, and durability.
  • 2. GreatCall Jitterbug Smart2

    Why it Makes our List

    The rate of seniors using cell phones has increased to 90 percent, and, of those cell phone users, 53 percent use a smartphone.1 Seniors are steadily closing the digital divide, and we love it! That’s why the Jitterbug Smart2 made our list. It’s the least expensive smartphone on the market made specifically for seniors and boasts a host of features that create the perfect balance of technology and senior-friendly usage. What we like best about the Jitterbug Smart2 is that in addition to talk, text, and Internet, the phone can double as a medical alert device when you add one of GreatCall’s Health and Safety packages. If you already utilize personal safety equipment, we see major savings potential by bundling these two services. Two devices for the price of one? That’s what we call a deal.

    Jitterbug Smart 2

    Jitterbug Smart 2

    Ease of use Equipment Service & Response Features & Tech Pricing
    Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent
    Please scroll to the right for more info.
    Pros
      • Large 5.5” screen
      • Voice typing
      • Video chat capabilities
      • 13 MP camera for clearer photos
      • 5Start Urgent Response
      • Internet access
      • Simple list-style menu
    Cons
      • Urgent Response and safety packages cost extra
      • $35 additional activation fee

    How Much Does the Jitterbug Smart2 Cost?

    The Jitterbug Smart2 is priced at $149, with an additional $35 activation fee. This smartphone runs on Greatcall’s network, which provides coverage throughout the nation. Flexibility is essential to us, so we appreciate that there are no long-term contracts or cancellation fees with these plans. There are also various plan options available so you can find the one that’s right for both your lifestyle and budget. Seniors choose how many minutes, texts, and how much data they need starting at just $14.99. You can also choose unlimited talk and text for $39.99 per month with an additional data plan purchase. For those who want it all, a completely unlimited talk, text, and data plan is $59.99 per month. If you opt for one of GreatCall’s Health and Safety packages, you’ll receive a discount on your talk, text, and data plan.

    Is the Jitterbug Smart2 Right for Me?

    We know that in trying times, it is even more important to stay connected. Research shows that seniors who use smartphone apps have increased feelings of connectedness with friends and family.2 With Internet access, smartphones can help older adults connect to resources that promote physical and mental well-being. We included the Jitterbug Smart2 on our list for seniors who use the Internet to supplement their quality of life. The Jitterbug Smart2 is excellent for seniors who are beginners or advanced Internet users. The phone’s large screen also makes it easy to view and navigate even for those with vision difficulties. It’s a solid choice for seniors who enjoy video chatting with friends and family.

    Want to take a closer look at pricing for the Jitterbug Smart2? Our Jitterbug pricing page covers everything you need to know about the phone and its talk, text, and data plans.

  • 3. T-Mobile Alcatel GO FLIP 3

    Why It Makes Our List

    We chose the Alcatel GO Flip 3 because it offers the right balance between Consumer Cellular’s Link and GreatCall’s Jitterbug Smart2. It combines the durability of a flip phone and the technological capabilities of a smartphone, all at one great price. Additionally, it works on T-Mobile’s nationwide network, providing connectivity to one of the country’s largest providers. Seniors who purchase this phone can choose any of T-Mobile’s Unlimited 55+ senior plans to go with it; we call that a win-win! T-Mobile’s three senior plans offer discounted rates, great perks, and unlimited talk, text, and data. Overall, they offer some of the best value for seniors on the market.

    Alcatel Go Flip 3

    Alcatel Go Flip 3 from T-Mobile

    Ease of use Equipment Service & Response Features & Tech Pricing
    Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent
    Please scroll to the right for more info.
    Pros
      • M4/T4 Rating
      • Inexpensive phone
      • Simple design
      • Google Assistant built in
      • Mobile apps
      • Large keypad
      • Affordable senior talk, text, and data plans with T-Mobile
    Cons
      • Battery life is only 8 hours
      • 2MP camera won’t be as high quality as other options

    How Much Does the Alcatel GO Flip 3 Cost?

    The Alcatel GO Flip 3 costs $100; however, T-Mobile also has a payment plan with no interest financing for $4 per month for 24 months. If you plan on having the phone for a while and don’t want to pay the full cost upfront, this is an affordable option. You can save extra money with one of T-Mobile’s Unlimited 55+ plans. Unlimited talk, text, and data start at just $27.50 per line for two lines or $40 per month for one line. Given that many unlimited plans on major networks start at $50+, that’s a deal! You’ll also get extra perks with T-Mobile’s unlimited plans like mobile hotspot data, weekly freebie giveaways, and in-flight WiFi.

    Is the Alcatel GO Flip 3 Right for Me?

    The Alcatel GO Flip 3 is a perfect companion for seniors who want smartphone essentials but are loyal to the flip phone style. It’s also a great option for seniors who venture out often, as the Internet capabilities can assist with location, navigation, and looking things up on the go. Seniors who work on their laptops or other devices outside of the home can benefit from the mobile hotspot data included with T-Mobile’s unlimited plans. It’s also a great entry-level phone for older adults who want to start incorporating the Internet into their lives but want a lower cost and more easily accessible device to begin their journey.

  • 4. GreatCall Lively Flip

    Why It Makes Our List

    GreatCall’s products offer features that cater to the needs of older adults, including medical alert capabilities, which is why GreatCall’s Lively Flip phone made the cut. This phone offers medical alert capabilities and a simple flip phone design at an affordable price point, so seniors can stay safe and connected without putting a dent in their wallet. With the Lively Flip, seniors have options to connect to Urgent Response staff in an emergency and even speak with a registered nurse or doctor and order prescriptions over the phone. Talk about customer service!

    The phone is designed with optimal viewing accessibility like big buttons and a large screen. It has an 8MP camera, which provides much clearer photos than other flip phones with 2MP cameras. GreatCall has also teamed up with Lyft to make it convenient to get a ride to any location, such as the grocery store, doctor’s office, or to visit friends and family.

    Lively Flip

    Lively Flip

    Ease of use Equipment Service & Response Features & Tech Pricing
    Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent
    Please scroll to the right for more info.
    Pros
      • Simple and easy to use
      • Amazon Alexa capable
      • Powerful speaker
      • Hearing aid compatibility
      • Urgent Response and Lyft connections
      • Variety of Health and Safety packages
    Cons
      • No Internet connectivity
      • Extra fee for Health and Safety packages

    How Much Does the Lively Flip Cost?

    The Lively Flip is priced at $99.99. In addition to the phone price, there is a one-time activation fee of $35, which we aren’t huge fans of. However, we like the flexibility that their talk and text plans offer. You have the option to mix and match your monthly minutes and texts, which start at $14.99 for 250 minutes and $3 for 500 texts. If you want to upgrade to unlimited talk and text, you’ll be paying $39.99 per month. Health and Safety Packages with Urgent Response are also available, starting at $19.99 per month and come with discounted talk and text rates.

    Is the Lively Flip Right for Me?

    If you or your loved one are looking for a simple, affordable cell phone that does the job and does it well, the Lively Flip may be for you. It’s a great option for seniors who are not necessarily interested in the bells and whistles of smartphones or who don’t frequently use the Internet. However, if you love to connect with your family and friends through phone calls and texts, then the Lively Flip paired with GreatCall’s Unlimited Talk and Text plan provides the best deal. Lively Flip is also great for seniors who live alone and could benefit from the added protection of the Urgent Response features, ensuring they’re protected in and outside of their home.

    For a more hands-on look at the Lively Flip, check out our latest detailed Jitterbug review.

  • 5. Snapfon ez4G

    Why It Makes Our List

    Don’t let the simplicity fool you. The Snapfon ez4G has many of the smartphone capabilities in an easy-to-use senior-friendly package. It runs on a 4G LTE network, which is one of the fastest network speeds available. Seniors will know where they are at all times with GPS location and navigation. They can also stay connected online with Internet access and popular mobile apps like Facebook and email. This option cannot be overemphasized, as many seniors are now practicing social distancing but still want to remain connected to their family and friends through social media.3 Safety is always a priority for us, and we’ve found that it’s a priority for Snapfon as well. This phone has a variety of easily accessible SOS emergency features to keep you or your loved one protected at all times.

    Snapfon ez4G

    Snapfon ez4G

    Ease of use Equipment Service & Response Features & Tech Pricing
    Excellent Average Above Average Average
    Please scroll to the right for more info.
    Pros
      • Fall detection available
      • SOS button
      • Hearing aid compatible
      • Simple design and navigation
      • Speech-to-text capabilities
      • Internet access
    Cons
      • Small internal memory
      • Not available in all areas, check availability first

    How Much Does the Snapfon ez4G Cost?

    Seniors can purchase the Snapfon ez4G for $119.99. Like GreatCall, Snapfon offers various mix-and-match minutes, text, and data options at different price points. Unlimited talk and text starts at $25 per month, and with additional data of 1-3 GB, it can range from $30-$40 total per month. If you want to access Snapfon’s medical alert capabilities, you’ll need to pay for a sosPlus monthly package, starting at $19.99 for all of their safety features plus 500 texts per month. Overall, Snapfon’s talk, text, and data plans are flexible and affordable.

    Is the Snapfon ez4G Right for Me?

    The e4G is an excellent option for on-the-go seniors. The Internet capabilities provide connectivity away from home, and the SOS emergency features offer monitoring for added safety and security. The e4G can double as a hotspot, so seniors who enjoy working outside of the home can do so anywhere their network is available. The highest data plan is 3 GB, so this phone is best for seniors with low to moderate Internet usage.

    For more information on Snapfon and the other providers on our list, take a look at our top picks for senior cell phones this year.

How Much do Cell Phones for Seniors Cost?

If you’re on the hunt for a senior-friendly cell phone, pricing is one of the most important things to consider. Cell phone prices vary depending on the style and features of the phone. We broke down the average prices you can expect, including styles, fees, contracts, and various plans.

Style Price Range One-time Activation Fees Contracts Unlimited Talk, Text, and Data
Flip $30-$150 $30-$35 Depends on plan and provider $27.50 to $50 per month
Smartphone $100-$300 $30-$35 Depends on plan and provider $27.50 $70 per month
Bar/Brick $18-$90 $10-$35 Depends on plan and provider $27.50 to $50 per month

Frequently Asked Questions About Cell Phones for Seniors

  • What makes a cell phone for seniors different from other cell phones?

    Seniors can use any cell phone they’d like; however, senior-specific cell phones have user-friendly features such as larger buttons, clearer screens, and more powerful speakers to address older adults’ needs.

  • Should I get a cell phone that connects to the Internet?

    This depends on your estimated monthly Internet use. If you or your loved one connects to the Internet daily or weekly, it may be worth it to have a phone and plan that offers Internet capabilities. However, data does cost extra on some plans you may be paying for it unnecessarily if it’s not used.

  • Are all cell phones for seniors hearing aid compatible?

    The majority of cell phones made for seniors have hearing aid compatibility through Bluetooth, but it may depend on your hearing aids’ connectivity. Many standard cell phones for seniors have M4/T4 ratings, which offer the best hearing aid connectivity and sound quality.

  • Can I keep my existing phone number?

    Most people can transfer their existing cell phone number to their new phone line. It depends on where you live and your old service provider.

For over five years, Taylor has been writing, editing, and researching products and services covering topics such as senior care and technology, Internet and the digital divide, TV, and entertainment, and education. Her research on media consumption and consumer behavior has been… Learn More About Taylor Shuman