With age sadly for many people comes vulnerability; two of the biggest concerns we hear about at Age Space are an increased risk of a fall and dementia-related wandering.
GPS trackers for older people have been specifically designed to help alleviate these two worries by pinpointing the exact location of the user at any time. Most trackers also have an SOS/panic button that, when pressed, will alert either a monitoring team or a family member that help is needed. This is especially important if someone has fallen.
There are lots of shapes and sizes of tracker to choose from, and it really depends on priorities and budget. Our curated list includes a range of GPS trackers from simple pendants to discreet wearable GPS trackers to stylish watches and nifty GPS fall detection enabled devices.
Our Best GPS Trackers for the Elderly
Lifeline24 GO GPS Alarm - SOS pendant with GPS tracking
The Lifeline24 GO GPS Alarm comes with fall detection (optional), panic button and two-way communication to a 24/7 trained monitoring team. This stylish, lightweight SOS pendant can be traditionally worn around the neck or clipped onto a belt, or keyring. It offers reassurance for both older people who are actively out and about and those who are less steady on their feet.
This GPS tracker is water resistant and has an average battery life of 1-2 months. When it comes to charging all you need to do is place the device on the dock and it’ll begin to charge. No wires needed!
Lifeline24 is a family owned and managed company that has over 5,000 ‘very good’ reviews on Reviews.io. We had our own reviewer Jimmy (84) test it out, and you can read his comprehensive review here – Lifeline24 GO GPS Alarm.
What you need to know about the Lifeline24 GO GPS Alarm
- Battery life: 1-2 months
- Recharge: 3-5hrs
- Water resistance: IP67 (shower and bath)
- Fall Detection: Optional extra
- Monitoring: 24/7 trained team
- Price: £279 (includes 12 months monitoring)
You can call Lifeline24 on 0800 999 0400 and quote discount code “AS10” to save £10 or follow the link to their website below and put in the discount code at checkout.
Buddi GPS - GPS Clip and Wristband
The Buddi GPS plan from Telecare24 is a discrete option for a GPS tracker for an elderly relative.
With its sleek, understated and comfortable design, it is hard to tell the Buddi wristband apart from many health bands/watches that are on the market. It is designed to be worn at all times, in the shower, bath or in bed.
The wristband is accompanied with a small tile-shaped clip that can attach to either a keychain, fit a pocket or clip onto a belt. It enables the wristband’s functions and allows the monitoring team to communicate directly with the wearer, should they need to.
Both devices are able to send out an SOS alert. The clip does not have to be worn at all times but in order to function properly it is recommended that it is worn at all times outdoors and is within 20m inside.
The Buddi GPS plan is ideal for active older people, or for those with dementia who are prone to wandering.
What you need to know about the Buddi GPS
- Battery life: Wristband = 14days, Clip = 2days
- Recharge: Wristband = 2hrs, Clip = 4hrs
- Wristband can be worn in the shower & bath
- Fall Detection
- Monitoring: 24/7 trained team
- Price: £203 and £22/month (+£45 joining fee)
You can get £10 off any order with Telecare24 by using our special discount code, asbuddi10 at checkout.
CPR Guardian III - GPS Tracker Watch
The CPR Guardian is a smartwatch that triples as a GPS tracker, fall detector, and SOS Phone. This device is not connected to a 24/7 monitoring team and rather carers and/or family members are the emergency response. Connected via a mobile app you can check the GPS location of an elderly relative and call them directly through the watch if needed. This is perfect for older people who are used to wearing a watch and are reluctant to carry a mobile phone.
Should they need assistance, wherever they are, all they need to do is hold down the dedicated SOS button and the CPR Guardian will start to work through a list of predetermined emergency contacts until someone answers. In the event a fall has been detected the CPR Guardian will alert loved ones via SMS and automatically voice call through to the wearer’s emergency contact.
Additional features include the ability for a carer to be notified if the wearer leaves a specific zone (‘geofencing’) and a heart rate monitor that can be measured through the accompanying app.
What you need to know about the CPR Guardian
- Battery life: 36-48 hrs
- Recharge: 1.5 hrs
- Water resistance: IP77 (shower and bath)
- Geofencing safe zones
- Monitoring: Family and carers
- Price: £23.99/month or a full payment of £199.99
Taking Care Out-and-About Mobile Alarm
The Taking Care Out-and-About Mobile Alarm is a SOS pendant and GPS tracker for the elderly. We really like the device’s simple design. With only three buttons; the SOS button, yes and no, it is really easy to understand and use. The Out-and-About Mobile Alarm has built-in fall detection, which automatically contacts the monitoring team should it detect a fall.
As a mobile tracker there is no need to plug it in at home and it works whether you’re at home or away from the house. The GPS tracking capabilities are excellent and you can set up ‘safe zones’ that notify the monitoring team when someone leaves or enters a predetermined area at particular times.
This device has a built-in speaker and microphone which enables the wearer to talk directly to the 24/7 monitoring team. You can also input the numbers of 2 friends or family members so that the wearer can call them easily, even if there isn’t an emergency. This makes it a good option if they find mobile phones still a little too tricky. Finally, another great feature of this tracker is that you can set up alerts to take medication to help remind the more forgetful to take theirs!
The initial cost includes the purchase of the device – which means you will own the device outright. If an elderly relative is not getting on with the Out-and-About Mobile Alarm, Taking Care offer a 30 day full refund policy. They also offer a 12 month warranty period, should anything go wrong with the device.
What you need to know about the Taking Care Out & About
- Battery life: 50 hrs
- Not water resistant
- 3 simple buttons and clear bright screen
- Set up over a phone call
- Monitoring: 24/7 trained team
- Price: £19.99/month (+£134.99 initial cost)
The SureSafeGO is a very capable GPS tracker that prioritises your elderly relative being able to get help in an emergency, with an SOS button front and centre. The device also packs in lots of additional features including GPS tracking, fall detection, two-way voice communication and more.
The SureSafeGO can be bought with a 24/7 monitoring package, which means the SureSafe’s care team are connected if there’s cause for alarm. The 24/7 monitoring team will talk to your relative and work out the next steps to resolve the situation.
Or, you can purchase the family monitored package and nominate who you would like to be contacted in an emergency. With this option there are several additional features. You can set up geofences (safe zones) that send you a notification when the wearer leaves the zone and you can check their GPS location whenever you wish.
We had our own reviewer Jimmy (84) test it out, and you can read his comprehensive review here – SureSafeGO Review.
What you need to know about the SureSafeGO
- Battery life: Between 4-7 days
- Geofencing safezones (with Family Monitored package)
- Water resistance: Showerproof
- GPS, Fall Detection, Fully Mobile
- 24/7 Monitoring = £149.95 + £18.99/month
- Family Monitored = £149.95 + SIM costs
Call SureSafe now on 0800 112 3201 and quote AgeSpace10 for a £10 discount. You can also visit their website and enter AgeSpace10 at checkout
Buyer's guide to GPS watches & trackers for the elderly
Buying a GPS tracker for elderly relatives doesn’t need to be a long and difficult process. All of the devices on this page have GPS capabilities, but there might be other things you need to consider when buying one. For example, individual devices might have different or extra features that you need (or don’t!).
The first decision is to decide whether you want to have a 24/7 monitoring service or if you prefer to manage the emergency alerts yourself. The benefit of a 24/7 monitoring service is just that - they're available 24 hours, 7 days a week. They are trained to deal with older people in emergencies and contact the relevant people and services. They can also manage any false alarms safely and promptly.
If you decide against 24/7 monitoring, the trackers we've included use smart technology to connect family and carers via an app. You can set up safe zones, track the wearers location and be alerted if there's a fall. The main difference is that the family or nominated carer is the emergency contact 24/7.
Dementia GPS tracker features
Personal circumstances will also influence the type of features you need. For example, if your elderly relative lives with dementia and is prone to wandering, you will want to be notified if they leave their home.
How they will wear it
Wearability is also important. You might find initial reluctance from an older person, so it's important to find something they feel comfortable wearing. Whether that be something hidden in their shoe, discreet like a health watch or traditional like a attractive pendant. They also need to be able to remember to wear it when they step out the door. If they are particularly forgetful, a watch or insole might be better.
Finally, price is a major consideration. Monitored GPS trackers tend to be more expensive, however, this is because you are paying for the reassurance and security that someone trained to deal with every eventuality, will be available 24/7.
Frequently asked questions on GPS tracker devices
What is the best GPS tracker for seniors?
There isn't one answer to this. Different GPS trackers and GPS watches will suit different needs. We recommend looking at the options above and picking the device that will work best for your elderly relative's needs and circumstance.
How do GPS trackers work?
GPS trackers work by sending information up to satellites, that use this information to work out the location (a technique called triangulation).
GPS trackers need SIM cards to work?
Yes. In order to communicate with the satellites they need to be connected to the SIM network. In most GPS trackers for the elderly, the SIM card is already built in to the device.
How much do GPS Trackers cost?
GPS trackers for the elderly cost anywhere from £200 to just over £500 per year. The main thing that this depends on is whether the device is monitored 24/7 by a monitoring team or not and how many additional features are included. Considering that you can expect to pay a similar amount per week for a carer, we think that a GPS tracker should definitely be a consideration to help you feel safer and more reassured of your elderly parent's wellbeing.
Can GPS trackers be worn with pacemakers?
If your elderly relative does have a pacemaker we definitely recommend that you consider GPS trackers that can be worn as watches, or clipped around the waist. We also recommend speaking to both the GPS tracker provider and your relative's doctor to make sure they are happy with them wearing the tracker.
How do you charge a wearable GPS tracker
This will depend on the individual product you choose. More and more GPS tracker providers are shifting to wireless charging, which allows someone to just place the device on a charging station, without having to plug any wires in. Other GPS trackers still use the traditional wired approach.
How do you set up 'safe zones' and geofences
If your GPS tracker comes with the ability to set up geofences or 'safe zones', this means that you will be able to define a specific area that if tracker leaves or enters, you (or a monitoring team) will be notified. How you do this changes depending on device but it is commonly done through an accompanying app that you have on your phone. Other methods to do this are by talking to the provider when you set up or on a website on the computer.
Are there any GPS trackers without monthly fees?
Nearly all GPS trackers will come with monthly fees as to do their job they need to be connected to the SIM network, which needs to be topped up every month. Other monthly costs will be for the use of a 24/7 monitoring team to be ready if an alarm is every sounded. You can get GPS trackers that don't use a 24/7 monitoring team which include the SureSafeGO +, SmartSole and the CPR Guardian.