If you’re in the market for a new mobility scooter then one of the first questions you’re going to ask is how much does a mobility scooter cost?
The price of a budget 3-wheel scooter designed primarily for indoor use starts at around $600. Prices for 4-wheel models with better outdoor performance average around $1,000. While decked-out models with plush suspension, a more comfortable seat, faster top speeds, and longer battery life can cost between $2,000 – $3,000 or more.
Of course, if you’re shopping for a mobility scooter then price should only be one factor in your decision. What’s most important is you get the right scooter for your needs and budget. In this article we’ll look at some of the differences between cheaper and more expensive models and help you determine if the extra expense is worth it or not.
Mobility Scooter Costs Explained
With the most expensive models selling for up to 5 or 10 times the price of the cheapest models, I was curious what the real differences are between the top and bottom of the price range. And most importantly, would the extra expense make a noticeable difference to your enjoyment of the scooter when cruising around town?
What are the differences between budget and premium models?
Here’s what I discovered…
- Battery Life – The vast majority of mobility scooters are electric battery-powered vehicles. This means the battery is the lifeblood of the machine and will determine how far you can travel before needing to recharge. Some top of the line models such as the eWheels EW-36 Elite can travel up to 45 miles on a single charge. While a budget model like the Pride Travel Pro will need to be recharged after just 6.3 miles.
- Top Speed – If you like to feel the wind in your hair (or just need to get anywhere in a hurry) then the 4mph top speed of a budget scooter might leave you wanting. Invest a little more in a sporty model like the eWheels EW-11 and you’ll experience blazingly fast 18mph speeds, enough to satisfy the thrill seeker in all of us.
- Ride Quality – The size of your wheels, as well as the width and quality of tyres, and suspension (or lack thereof) all play a part in determining how smooth or bumpy your driving experience will be. Generally speaking, more expensive scooters come better equipped in all of these areas and therefore provide a more enjoyable ride.
- Ride Comfort – If there’s one component that can make or break a mobility scooter it’s the comfort of the seat. Premium models tend to have deeper and wider seats with more adjustment options so you can get the perfect sitting position for your height and proportions.
- Style – They say beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but objectively speaking — and almost without exception — we’ve found higher quality machines simply look much nicer… you can tell by the number of heads you turn when cruising around town! And while that might not be important for some, for others it will be enough of a deciding factor to invest in something other than a budget model.
One thing that I must give the major manufacturers credit for is that Build Quality across the entire spectrum of mobility scooters is fantastic. Rest assured if you purchase a scooter from any of the reputable brands such as Pride Mobility, Drive Medical, Buzzaround, or eWheels then it will be a quality piece of equipment no matter if it’s an entry-level product or top of the line model.
How much does an indoor mobility scooter cost?
Smaller 3-wheel scooters have a tighter turning circle than their larger 4-wheel counterparts and therefore are more suited to indoor use. Budget models from reputable manufacturers can be found for as little as $600, while compact travel models can sell for $1,650 or more.
How much does an outdoor mobility scooter cost?
Large all-terrain tyres, full suspension, and plush leather seats are just some of the features you’ll find on a top quality scooter designed primarily for outdoor use. These can sell for up to $3,000. While cheaper models without all the bells and whistles can be found for as little as $749.
Check out my complete buyers guide on the Best Outdoor Mobility Scooters.
Mobility Scooter – Infographic
What about mobility scooters for sale secondhand on ebay?
Prices on eBay vary by a huge margin depending on the make, model, condition, and age of the scooter.
But my best advice with buying a used mobility scooter on eBay is buyer beware! While you can sometimes find a real bargain on there, when you’re buying a secondhand product it can be difficult to know exactly what you’re getting and whether or not it has been properly cared for and maintained or not.
This is doubly important when investing in an assistive device with potentially serious health impacts if something were to go wrong. Carefully inspect the tyres, brakes, batteries, and steering before parting with your hard-earned money.
And in many cases when buying secondhand the warranty period will either already be up, or simply not transfer to you because you are not the original owner. So if anything is worn out or breaks and needs replacing then you’ll be up for the full cost of the parts and labour.
How much does it cost to rent a mobility scooter?
The cost of scooters for rent varies greatly depending on your location, the make and model, and the rental duration. In most places scooter rentals will start at around $25 – $50 per day and get cheaper (on a daily basis) the longer you rent. These costs can add up quickly, so if you need to rent a scooter for more than a week you might want to seriously consider buying because it might actually end up cheaper!
How much does a folding mobility scooter cost?
If you take occasional trips, drive a smaller vehicle or simply prefer its convenient size, a folding mobility scooter is something worth your consideration. They make life easier but what about the price? Folding mobility scooters price ranges, at the time of this writing, from $1649 to $2655. You can see our reviews and check their prices here.
What does it cost to take a mobility scooter on an airplane?
As if traveling wasn’t expensive enough unfortunately you have to also consider airline fees into your trip budget when flying. Examples of airline fees can range from blankets to wi-fi access charges and many items in between. So you may ask yourself then, what does it cost to take a mobility scooter on an airplane? The U.S. Department of Transportation says that if a mobility device cannot be placed in the overhead compartment or under the seat in front of you, it may be placed in the stowage area at NO EXTRA COST to you. Your device will be able to go to this passenger area stowage if it fits and also if it complies with FAA and foreign safety regulations. One of the biggest safety concerns when it comes to flying with a mobility scooter is the type of battery it has. Lithium batteries are questionable especially if they exceed 300 amp hours and all battery types must also be sealed. So as long as your device complies with the safety and battery guidelines, if it is too large for the passenger area it can be stowed in the cargo area also at NO EXTRA COST to you! This is great news but as an added assurance please contact your airline carrier customer service for their procedures for your particular mobility device. For your convenience you can find many airline customer service links at the bottom of our Flying With A Rollator page. If your device has to be transported in the cargo area, we recommend that you take pictures of it before handing it over in order to prove if any damages were caused during the flight. Now you are on your way! Happy flying!
You Get What You Pay For
Like many things in life, the old adage “you get what you pay for” tends to apply when purchasing a mobility scooter. Budget-friendly models will get the job done and get you from A to B. But premium models will get you from A to B and back again in comfort and style. And while the initial purchase price of a better quality scooter might seem high, when you think of it as an investment in your enjoyment of life and look at the cost spread out over the lifetime of use it’s really quite reasonable.
“Price is what you pay. Value is what you get.” – Warren Buffett