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The Complete Guide to Mobility Scooters for Seniors

As we get older, we often find ourselves getting less and less mobile, and finding it more difficult to get around. It can be particularly jarring to watch a formerly active parent or grandparent struggling to keep up with daily activities and social outings.

For seniors who are finding it harder to get around, a mobility scooter might just be the ideal solution. Buying motorized scooters for seniors represents a fairly large purchase, and there is a lot of choice on the market.

To help make the shopping process easier, here is a look at what’s available at some of the top mobility scooter retailers, followed by a comprehensive guide to mobility scooters .

Top U.S. Mobility Scooter Retailers

There are many scooters on the market today. To help you find the right one for you, we’ve highlighted some of the popular retailers and the range available from each of them. Please note that each retailer offers several models and the ranges stated cover the main models on each site. The complement of features varies from model to model.

ScootersNChairs- Top Pick!

About: ScootersNChairs is our top pick for the best scooters for seniors. Not only do they offer a large variety of scooter options, they pride themselves in the care and customer service engrained in the company. If you visit their website, (ScootersNChairs.com) make sure to check out their handy product finder tool that will help you narrow down the best scooter for your home and budget.
Scooter weight: Starting at a lightweight 46lbs (after seat and battery removal) for the EV Rider: Transport Plus Foldable and up to 363lbs for the heavyweight Drive Medical King Cobra.
User weight: Starting at 220lbs up to 600lbs for the sturdiest models.
Cost: Scooters range from $779 for the Drive Medical Spitfire EX 3 and up to $7200 for the completely enclosed Shoprider Flagship Model!
Speed: From 4 mph up to 20 mph.
Travel distance: From 6 – 45 miles per charge, depending on the model.

1800wheelchair.com

About: 1800 Wheelchair offers an impressive range of scooters, including 3 and 4 wheel, travel, and indoor and outdoor.
Scooter weight: Starting at just 100 for some of the travel models, ranging to 300lbs for some of the heavy duty ones.
User weight: Starting at 250lbs for the foldable models, up to 500lbs for some of the three and four wheelers.
Cost: You’ll find a range for most budgets here, starting at $699 for basic models and ranging all the way up to $7999 for the most high spec options.
Speed: From 4.8 mph all the way up to 8 mph.
Travel distance: From 5.6 – 18 miles per charge, depending on model.

Walgreens

About: Walgreens offers a small but surprisingly varied range of mobility scooters, including three or four wheel, and foldable models. Although the site doesn’t specify if they’re suitable for use on highways, at first glance most models look like indoor and sidewalk models.
Scooter weight: Starting at just 59lbs for their foldable model, ranging to 94 lbs for some of the heavy duty ones.
User weight: Starting at 200lbs for the foldable model, up to 275lbs for some of the three and four wheelers.
Cost: From $549.99 – $1799
Speed: All models are around the 3.8 – 4 mph mark.
Travel distance: From 6 – 10 miles per charge.

Amazon

About: As you can imagine, Amazon offers a huge range of mobility scooters! Our initial search found many 3 and 4 wheeler models, and some highway worthy models, plus travel scooters. Amazon offers 100 plus listings – the specs below are from some of the top searches.
Scooter weight: Starting at just 82lbs for some of the travel models, ranging to over 200lbs for some of the heavy duty ones.
User weight: From 200lbs – 400lbs.
Cost: We found some models around the $679 mark, ranging all the way to $2000 plus.
Speed: Most of the models we found were around the 4 – 5 mph mark.
Travel distance: From 6.3 – 18 miles per charge, depending on model.

Gomobilityscooters

About: You’ll find a huge range of scooters here, including three and four wheel, foldable, heavy duty, and several covered canopy models. As well as mid-price models they also offer very high-spec and heavy duty scooters, suitable for use on many types of terrain.
Scooter weight: Starting at just 62lbs for their foldable model, ranging to 233 lbs for some of the heavy duty ones.
User weight: Starting at 250lbs for the foldable model, up to 500lbs for some of the three and four wheelers.
Cost: You’ll find a range for most budgets here, starting at $779 for basic models and ranging all the way up to $8995 for the most high spec options.
Speed: From 3.8 mph all the way up to 8 mph.
Travel distance: From 5.6 – 32 miles per charge, depending on model.

Related: Does Medicare Pay for My Scooter?

Medicalsupplydepot

About: Medical Supply Depot offers the full range of scooters, including indoor, outdoor, travel, and both 3 and 4 wheel models.
Scooter weight: Starting at just 70lbs for some of the travel models, ranging to over 300lbs for some of the heavy duty ones.
User weight: Starting at 250lbs for the foldable models, up to 500lbs for some of the three and four wheelers.
Cost: You’ll find a range for most budgets here, starting at $795 for basic models and ranging all the way up to $5712.99 for the most high spec options.
Speed: From 3.8 mph all the way up to 11 mph.
Travel distance: From 8 – 35 miles per charge, depending on model.

In-Depth: What are Mobility Scooters?

Mobility scooters are small motorized vehicles. They can be front or rear wheel drive. The user sits on them in a similar seated position to sitting in any chair, and steers them by way of handlebars (much like a bicycle.)

Scooters run on integrated batteries and need regular charging. Each model differs slightly, but in general you can expect around 6 to 8 miles of use from each charge for a standard model, though some heavy duty models go as far as 30 miles per charge.

Models suitable for road use run at up to 8 mph, while indoors and sidewalk suitable models max out around 4 mph.

Related: 9 Tips for Safe and Secure Mobility Scooter Use

What is the Purpose of a Mobility Scooter?

A motorized scooter for seniors is a mobility aid designed to make it much easier to get around. Some seniors use their mobility scooter in place of walking, taking public transit, or relying on a lift from another person, to get around their local area with minimal trouble. Others use their scooter to get around the home if walking is difficult.

What Features are Important in a Mobility Scooter?

  • What terrain does it drive on? Some mobility scooters are only suitable for indoor use, while others can only be driven on sidewalks, and still others can be driven on roads.
  • How easy is it to transport? If your loved one needs a scooter that can be folded up for taking on public transit or in a car, make sure the model you pick is designed to do so.
  • How easy is it to turn? Three wheeled models have a much smaller turning radius, but are only suitable for use at home. Consider where the scooter will be driven to make sure it’s maneuverable enough.
  • What is the maximum weight capacity? For larger individuals, it’s important to check out the maximum weight capacity before purchase, to be sure they can use their scooter comfortably.
  • Does it have good safety features? The three most important safety features to look for are non-tip wheels, an easy to use brake, and an easy to use single hand controller. Some models also offer non-leak batteries for extra reassurance.
  • What is the battery range? Some batteries allow 6 to 8 miles of use, while others go as far as 30 miles – be sure to pick one that suits the typical distance the scooter will be traveling.
  • How comfortable is it? Finding a scooter that’s comfortable to sit on for long periods of time is a must. If this a particular concern, look for one with an adjustable backrest, movable arms, and an extra padded seat.

Related: Scooters for Seniors, What You Need to Know

What are the Different Types of Mobility Scooters?

There are four types of mobility scooters:

  1. Three wheel: Three wheel mobility scooters are ideal for indoor use as they are typically smaller and lighter than their four wheel cousins, and offer a tighter turning radius that is much better for indoor use. Their outdoor use is limited, however, so think carefully before choosing one.
  2. Four wheel: Four wheel mobility scooters are a much better option for those who want to drive their scooter outdoors. Having four wheels gives them extra stability.
  3. Travel: Travel scooters are the lightest weight mobility scooters and are designed to fold down for transportation in the trunk of a car.
  4. Heavy Duty: Heavy duty mobility scooters can carry up to 500lbs or more and are suitable for heavier people who might exceed the weight limit for a smaller model.

Some three and four wheel models also come with a canopy to protect the user from the elements.

What Does Mobility Scooter Class Mean?

When choosing a mobility scooter, it’s important to be aware of its class:

  • Class 2 scooters are only licensed for use indoors or on a sidewalk, and can legally travel at up to 4 mph. A class 2 scooter user is considered a pedestrian and may travel anywhere a pedestrian would walk – which rules out roads and highways!
  • Class 3 scooters are classified as highway worthy and come fitted with lights and indicators. They can travel at up to 8 mph.

Always be clear on whether the scooter will need to be used on roads or highways, and if so, make sure to purchase a class 3 scooter.

Why Would Someone Need or Consider a Mobility Scooter?

For many seniors, loss of mobility is a distressing part of getting older. When it becomes hard to walk around the home, or to get to church, the library, the shops or for meetups with friends, a mobility scooter can be a wonderful piece of equipment . Using a mobility scooter gives many seniors their independence back, which is good for their confidence, and helps them keep up with their social life and stay active.

How to Choose a Mobility Scooter

The most important thing when it comes to choosing a mobility scooter is to be very clear about when, where and how the senior will use it. This will dictate which model you need, and whether it should be class 2 or class 3.

It’s also important to take into account the weight and overall health of the scooter driver, so you can buy a heavy duty, extra comfortable, or adjustable model if necessary.

With so many mobility scooters on the market, you are sure to find one to suit your needs and budget. We recommend getting clear on what specs you need and making a list before you start shopping, to be sure the scooter you choose is the ideal one for your loved one.

7 Comments

  1. Thanks a lot for providing all the information about mobility scooters at one place. I was just waiting for the right time at the right pice to buy it. Will definitely gonna buy now!
    1. Disney World rents scooters on a first come basis – no reservations. However, there are several scooter rental options nearby. All you need to do is a Google search for mobility scooter near Disney World. They cost less and bickup and delivery services are offered as well.
  2. It is extremely important to encourage people to purchase their mobility equipment from a local dealer that sells reliable product. Because our nation’s senior population is booming, there are many companies that are either only selling online, or are selling products that are made in far away countries. The problem here is that people are obtaining equipment that they really do need, but then when it needs service or repair, the company that provided it for them is either out of business, or they are only an online retailer that does not provide service or repair. This is problematic, especially if the parts are in another country and difficult to obtain. We provide actual sales, service, delivery, and installation for all of the products that we sell. It is the only way to truly provide a lifetime of good customer service to those that need and depend on mobility equipment. I appreciate your content and I will be creating a link to your very informative blog on my website also.
  3. My mother is getting older and mobility scooter could really help her get around better. I think you made a great point about what features are the most important for a scooter. I especially liked that you mentioned the safety features of the scooter and make sure it has non-tip wheels, easy brakes, and a single hand controller to help seniors use their scooter. We will have to keep this in mind as we search out scooters.

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