In America, 91 percent of older adults age 65+ own cell phones.1 That’s a lot of seniors! If you’re in the market for a new phone, we’re here to help. We know how challenging finding the right cell phone for seniors can be. Looking for information on multiple websites, reading through customer reviews, and deciding whether you can trust the information that you find takes time.
That’s why we did the hard work for you. After over a hundred hours of research and hands-on testing, we put together a list of our favorite flip phones for seniors. We know everyone is looking for different phone features, so each of our picks brings a little something different to the table. But each one had to meet three critical metrics to qualify for consideration:
Top 5 Flip Phones for Seniors for 2021
|Flip phone||Alcatel GO FLIP 3||Lively Flip||Snapfon ezFlip 4G||Consumer Cellular Link||Sonim XP3|
|Camera quality||2MP||Rear: 8MP
Front: 5 MP
|Battery life||7.9 hours talk time||12 hours talk time||5.5 hours talk time||14 hours talk time||21 hours talk time|
|Hear aid compatibility||M4/T4||M4/T4||T3/M3||M3/T3||M3/T4|
If you want quality vacation photos or print-worthy pics of your fur babies, then the Alcatel GO FLIP 3 probably isn’t right for you. It only offers a 2MP camera. However, if you’re more concerned about how much your new phone will cost, you’ll love this flip phone. It’s just $100 outright or $4 per month for 24 months when you finance it through T-Mobile.
Speaking of T-Mobile, did you know they have 55+ unlimited phone plans? Two lines start at just $27.50 per line; no contract required. T-Mobile’s reasonable pricing earned high marks from our research team.
Plus, all plans include five layers of scam-blocking protection to keep pesky robocalls, scammers, and telemarketers at bay. That’s a must-have, seeing as seniors lose more money to phone scams than any other age
If you’re looking for a provider that offers plan perks and discounts, visit our latest T-Mobile review for more details.
The Lively Flip relies on Lively’s phone plans. Luckily, it’s an affordable phone service you can count on. We know; we tried it out, naming it on our list of the best no contract and prepaid phone plans for older adults. Just know that it relies on Verizon cell towers, so make sure you have good Verizon coverage in your area.
Quick Tip: Our in-depth cell phone buyer’s guide includes side-by-side comparison of the top senior-friendly cell phones.
With Lively, you can choose a limited number of minutes and texts per month, or you can go with an unlimited option. With that in mind, make sure you explore all of the Lively plans and pricing.
The Sonim XP3 costs a whopping $189.99, which is fairly expensive compared to other flip phones on our list. Of course, it is super durable, so you won’t need to replace it any time soon. Plus, you can pair your phone with a reliable and affordable AT&T plan. AT&T’s Senior Nation plan pricing starts at just $29.99 per month for users aged 65+. Make sure you have good AT&T coverage in your area before purchasing, though.4
From the Pros: Wondering how AT&T stood up against the competition? Our AT&T senior plan review has you covered with the details!
You’ll need a Snapfon mobile plan to go with your ezFlip 4G. Monthly costs start at $10 for calling, $1 for texting, and $2 for data. Plan to use your phone a lot? Unlimited talk and text cost just $25 per month. Add in a gig of data to surf the web, check Facebook, and send emails for only $5 more.
Inside Tip: Our experts recently tested and researched 15 senior cell phones. Find out why Snapfon made it on our best cell phones for seniors list!
You’ll also need to decide if you want Snapfon’s sosPlus mobile monitoring service. It connects you to a 24/7 response agent who can contact your emergency contacts or other help. It’s only $19.99 per month and comes with 500 texts. We recommend it, especially for seniors who live alone.
If you’re looking for a cell phone, you’re probably trying to decide what type of phone you want. Do you join the 61 percent of seniors with smartphones or the 29 percent of seniors with more traditional cell phones?5 Let us help you decide!
First, let’s talk about what a smartphone is. Your kids and grandkids likely have them. They’re mobile touchscreen devices that easily access the internet. You can download movies, social media apps like Facebook, and games. Since their screens are larger, it’s easier to do tasks like surfing the web, sending emails, and following GPS directions. Plus, smartphones take excellent pictures and let you video chat with your loved ones.
Quick Tip: Feel like a smartphone is more your style? Visit our list of the best smartphones for older adults.
However, since smartphones have lots of bells and whistles, they can feel overwhelming. Especially if you’re new to cell phones. Now, there are great smartphones for seniors, but they’re still more complicated than a simple flip phone.
In a lot of ways, flip phones are the opposite of smartphones. They don’t typically have a touch screen. Instead, you get easy-to-use tactile buttons. Many older adults prefer this over the swiping and clicking of a touchscreen smartphone.
Flip phones also keep things simple. You get a few essential features, so you only need to master a few things. You won’t have to worry about downloading and switching between phone apps. Plus, flip phones are usually smaller in size. They’ll fit in your purse or pocket more comfortably. In other words, you might be more likely to keep it on you.
If you’re not sure whether a flip phone or smartphone is right for you, below is our list of the types of older adults we recommend flip phones for. Flip phones are best for those who:
Here are some questions to ask yourself and some features to consider as you decide what flip phone to purchase.
If remembering to charge your phone is a challenge, look for phones with long battery life. You won’t need to charge it as often. Some flip phones give you up to 21 hours of talk time, so you’ll make it through a whole lot of phone calls before it’s time to charge.
Not all flip phones let you use data. If you think you want data, make sure you pick one that does. You can find flip phones that let you browse Facebook, send emails, use GPS, surf the web, download simple games, and more.
You can find a flip phone at any price point. On our list above, prices range from $33.95 to $189.99. When deciding on a phone, don’t forget to also factor in the cost of service. Even the cheapest cell phones for seniors can bust your budget if the service plan is expensive.
Everyone’s looking for different things in a phone. Think about what you want and need. Do you need a bright screen because of low vision? Do you wear hearing aids? If so, make sure the phone is compatible. What about medical alert capabilities? Some flip phones offer built-in fall detection, alerts, and assistance buttons.
Other features you might want include large tactile buttons, a low battery warning system, a high-quality camera, Internet access, GPS, mobile hotspot, or durability.
Some flip phones double as personal safety devices. Others are just cell phones. If you’re interested in medical alert capabilities, Lively and Snapfon should be at the top of your list. Both providers sell devices with built-in medical alert functions and separate monthly services that help you during emergencies.
Seniors who live alone, are at high fall risk, or have chronic medical conditions should really consider a phone with medical alert features. It’s often cheaper than purchasing a separate medical alert device.
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