According to the National Institute of Aging, social activities can help seniors maintain a sense of well-being and independence. However, this can be difficult for seniors who have mobility issues or a chronic condition that leaves them easily fatigued.
Mobility scooters can help aging adults stay active and engaged. With dozens of mobility scooter brands and styles on the market, finding the right scooter can feel overwhelming. This guide compares the top three mobility scooter companies and outlines what you need to know to make the right selection for your mobility needs.
Comparison of the Top Mobility Scooter Brands
Pride Mobility, EV Rider and Drive Medical are three of the top mobility scooter brands in the world. EV Rider only sells mobility scooters and accessories, while Pride Mobility caters to the seniors in need of a wheelchair, scooter or lift chair. Drive Medical offers something for everyone, from furniture and CPAP machines to mobility scooters and accessories. The table below provides a quick overview of the three companies for easy comparison.
|Company||Years in Business||Headquarters||Best Known For||Price Range|
|Drive Medical||22||Port Washington, NY||ZooMe Flex, Scout||$829-$5,100|
|Pride Mobility||36||Duryea, PA||GoGo Ultra X, Revo 2.0||$799-$3,269|
|EV Rider||16||Ft. Myers, FL||Transport Plus, Minirider||$1,150-$2,850|
Drive DeVilbiss Healthcare began as Medical Depot in January 2000. More than two decades later, the company is one of the world’s largest providers of durable medical equipment, including power wheelchairs and mobility scooters. Drive Medical’s product line doesn’t stray far from the compact, low speed mobility scooters best utilized in-home or for short shopping trips. Consumers love them, as Drive models including the Spitfire and the Scout consistently rate in the top 10 favorite mobility scooters for seniors.
|Product Line||There is a large selection of compact and travel scooters.||Only two heavy-duty models are available|
|Cost||There is a wide range of prices to fit most budgets with a large number costing between $900-$2,000.||The Drive Spitfire DST4-Wheel costs more than $5,000, far outside the average cost range.|
|Customer Service||Many carriers allow customers to rent or test the scooters out before buying.||Customers cannot buy directly through the company.|
|Features||Special features such as swivel seats and lightweight frames make these models convenient for seniors with back/hip problems.||Smaller models have a small battery range and low travel speed.|
The Meuser and Kretchik families started manufacturing lift chairs in 1986 in the small city of Pittston, Pennsylvania. Six years later, the company built its first Shuttle scooter. Unlike many other companies, Pride focuses on two or three products, with mobility scooters one of their most popular products.
|Product Line||They have a large selection that includes a variety of sizes, features and styles, and most scooters can be disassembled easily.||They only have a small selection of foldable scooters; they have so many similar products that it can be difficult to find what you need.|
|Cost||Among the lowest cost scooters available on the market, with most models costing between $800-$2,000.||Reason for price differences between similar models is unclear.|
|Customer Service||The company has an extensive resource page, and a customer service representative is usually available by phone.||Local vendors may not know enough about the product to help you if you run into problems with your scooter.|
|Features||Most of the scooters are lightweight and easy to transport.||Traveling on grass or gravel is difficult with the three-wheel scooters.|
EV Rider opened its doors as a manufacturer and distributor of mobility scooters in 2006. The company is headquartered in Florida, with offices throughout Mexico and Central America. EV Rider is an affordable brand, with a narrow price range of approximately $1,150-$2,850, with one notable exception, the behemoth Vita Monster. This all-terrain mobility scooter features a 28-mile battery range, a top speed of 11.5 miles per hour and a price tag of $5,100.
|Product Line||The product line is varied without being overwhelming; There is a large selection of foldable scooters.||Only one all-terrain scooter option is available, and true 3-wheel models are hard to find|
|Cost||There is little variation in price, from $1,100-$2,800, making it easier to be budget-conscious.||The only all-terrain model is more than $5,000, far more than the other models. Battery upgrades and replacement parts can be expensive.|
|Customer Service||It is easy to reach the customer service department using the phone number on the EV Rider homepage.||It can be difficult to reach customer service reps if the scooter was bought from a vendor or distributor.|
|Features||Many models have a tight turn radius for increased maneuverability inside; Customers can add extra accessories such as a weather cover or lap belt.||The three-wheel design limits some models to indoor or flat surface travel only.|
Frequently Asked Questions
Will insurance help pay for a mobility scooter?
Medicare, Medicaid and some private insurance companies will help cover the cost of your mobility scooter as long as you have a written prescription from a medical professional stating that you have a medical need that can only be met with a mobility scooter.
What is the difference between the three-wheel and four-wheel mobility scooters?
Three-wheel scooters are usually more compact and easier to maneuver in smaller spaces, but their configuration makes them less stable on uneven ground. Four-wheel scooters are sturdier and suited for both indoor and outdoor use, but they can also be cumbersome and more difficult to control.
Do you need a driver’s license to operate a mobility scooter?
No, you do not need a driver’s license to drive a mobility scooter. However, if you have a scooter that can travel more than 8mph, it might be considered “road legal.” Check with your local Department of Motor Vehicles’ office to see what the local laws are for mobility scooters.
How do I choose which mobility scooter is best for me?
To choose the right mobility scooter for you, think about why you want a mobility scooter and how it will improve your life. Do you need a scooter to make it easier to get around your home or through the local supermarket, or do you need it as a source of transportation to appointments or meetings located around the neighborhood? The size and design play a role in how you choose the right mobility scooter for your needs.
Is a mobility scooter the same thing as a powered wheelchair?
No, mobility scooters and powered wheelchairs are fundamentally different in design, function and appearance. Mobility scooters typically weigh less, are easier to transport and can travel faster than powered chairs, but because their wheels are smaller than those of an electric chair, scooters don’t provide the rock-solid stability that wheelchairs offer. Scooters also require users to have some level of upper body strength, and they aren’t designed for long-term comfort. That being said, scooters offer additional perks that wheelchairs don’t, such as a greater range and more power. They are also much more affordable.
Why is there such a huge price difference between mobility scooters?
Mobility scooters vary greatly in price. Some cost as little as $700, while others manufactured by the same company can cost over $5,000. In general, only a few factors influence the price of a mobility scooter besides its brand name and the company you buy it from. These include the size/type of battery, the size of the motor, the scooter’s design/safety features and any extra accessories that might be included. A scooter with a larger battery or motor, a four-wheel design, multi-terrain wheels, for example, will increase the price of the scooter.