The Pros and Cons of Subscription Hearing Aid and Financing Plans

Here's a look at six popular hearing aid subscription financing and leasing programs, as well as some affordable alternatives to consider

Traditional hearing aids come with a major downside: high upfront cost. The sticker shock—with an average price of about $4700 a pair—can deter some people from even considering hearing aids.

But there are many affordable options, such as subscription hearing aids and financing plans that can help alleviate the sting of one large payment. In this article, we'll give you the good news and bad news about the various subscription hearing aid plans available today.

What are subscription hearing aids?

Many online hearing aid brands offer a subscription model. Rather than buying your hearing aids outright, you pay a monthly fee that covers your aids and additional benefits, including maintenance, support, accessories, loss and damage protection, software updates, and regular hardware upgrades. Since you're leasing the aids, you can cancel your contract anytime, though restrictions and penalties may apply.

Subscription Hearing Aids 2023 2

Numerous companies offer subscription hearing aid plans.

Depending on the service you choose, you might receive a remote fitting. If the service doesn't require you to see a hearing care provider to fit your hearing aids in person, you either have to provide your own hearing test or complete an online hearing screening. As with traditional hearing aids, you can try your new aids out during a risk-free trial period, which can range from 45 to 60 days.

Subscription hearing aids are a great option if you don't have the means to pay a large sum upfront. And if you don't want to be stuck with the same product for 3-5 years, you will appreciate receiving new models with the latest technology every 18 to 24 months.

Pros of subscription hearing aids

Manageable monthly payments
Maintenance and support covered
Loss and damage protection
Regular product updates
100% remote option

Cons of subscription hearing aids

1 to 3 year commitment
Financial penalties when canceling early
A mandatory hearing test may cost extra
In-person support, such as hearing aid cleaning, may not be included
Shorter trial period than traditional hearing aids

How much are they and what do you get?

Subscription hearing aids can set you back anywhere from $25 per month to $6,000 per year. A few of them are all-inclusive, though they may charge a setup fee. Others sell low-cost hearing aids for $499.99 to $3,995 per pair (with the ability to finance), plus optional monthly subscriptions. There are also some over-the-counter (OTC) hearing aids available with subscription or financing options.

Most online distributors offer only remote services, meaning you might have to pay out-of-pocket for a professional hearing test. Yes Hearing, however, facilitates in-person hearing tests and hearing aid fittings, performed by an audiologist, at your house. Lyric also requires in-person fittings and replacements of its disposable hearing aids every 2 to 3 months.

Typically, hearing aids should last at least 3 years, and the standard rule of thumb is 5-7 years for conventional (professionally dispensed) hearing aids. The recent MarkeTrak 2022 consumer survey suggests most people use their hearing aids for about 4.5 years. But with Audicus you'll receive a new hearing aid every 18 months. Other distributors essentially offer pay-to-own plans with additional benefits.

None of these companies accept insurance. Some, including Yes Hearing, can file insurance claims for you. Note that most insurance won't reimburse you for monthly subscription plans.

Each online hearing aid retailer has its own payment model. Below is an overview of the most popular ones and their purchasing or subscription plans.

Company Subscription Financing Device Upgrades Trial Period
Audicus 18 month 45 days
Lyric 24 month ✓* 30-45 days
Yes Hearing 45 days
iHear 60 days

The most popular subscription hearing aid plans and their details. *Provider dependent


Audicus hearing aids cost from $699 to $1,499 per ear. You can buy the hearing aids upfront and pay separately for loss and damage protection ($189 per pair and month), supplies ($12 per month), and cleanings ($50 each). Financing for the aids, but not the subscription, is available through Allegro Credit and CareCredit.

Alternatively, you can lease the aids on a monthly basis through Audicus Plus, which includes all of the benefits and services mentioned above, as well as unlimited warranty and replacements every 18 months. An Audicus Plus subscription is $89 to $159 per month and pair, plus a one-time setup fee for select models, ranging from $299 to $499. Your minimum commitment is 18 months, though you can buy out anytime.

Audicus Lineup

Audicus hearing aids.

Audicus offers four different hearing aid models: the tiny Mini completely-in-canal (CIC) hearing aid and the Wave, Spirit, and Omni receiver-in-canal (RIC) hearing aids which are situated behind the ear and have an almost invisible wire that connects to a receiver (sound generator) and dome earpiece. However, only the Spirit 2 and Omni 2 models are available via subscription or one-time payment.

Whatever route chosen, you can evaluate your Audicus hearing aids and services during the risk-free 45-day trial period. While you can submit your own hearing test or visit a local Albertsons for in-person services, your hearing screener and fitting can also be done remotely.

Audicus markets good hearing aids. The Audicus Omni 2 earned the independent hearing aid testing lab's 2023 Expert Choice Award.


iHear over-the-counter (OTC) hearing aids range from $499.99 to $999.99 per pair. You can pay with Shop Pay, which offers 0% interest if paid in 4 bi-weekly payments. iHear also offers financing from $37.99 to $66.99 per month. If you return the aids within the 60-day trial period, iHear will grant a full refund.

Ihear Matrix Otc

iHear Matrix OTC hearing aid.

iHear offers four different OTC models: the Reciever-in-Canal (RIC) Matrix which features full-streaming and app controls; the Axis RIC which features app controls; the Explore RIC which is controlled via a push-button; and the Linx which resembles earbuds and feature full-streaming and app-controls.

As a mid-priced OTC hearing aid, iHear MatriX had a good SoundScore (3.3 out of 5) in testing at the independent HearAdvisor lab.


Lyric is a truly invisible hearing aid that sits deep inside the ear canal, is worn 24/7, and is replaced every 2 to 3 months. While not appropriate for everyone.

Lyric is now made by Phonak—the flagship brand of the world's largest hearing aid manufacturer, Sonova. It is a unique device that, for most of its users, supplies continuous stimulation to the auditory system and brain, and one prominent clinician has reported that 80% of his patients who use Lyric don't turn it off at night or place it into sleep mode.

Lyric Side By Side

Lyric 24/7 hearing aid from Phonak.

The Lyric hearing subscription costs between $3,000 to $6,000 per pair or $250 to $500 per month, and you have to commit to at least one year. The subscription includes up to 8 replacement devices annually, fitted in person by a Lyric provider, as well as repairs, battery replacements, and technology updates. In May 2024, Phonak announced FDA clearance for self-replacement of the Lyric, meaning those experienced users who get the green light from their provider can do it themselves every other replacement potentially halving their number of required office visits.

The subscription fee is due annually, but some providers offer monthly payment plans. Your initial consultation with a Lyric provider may cost extra. The trial period is 30 to 45 days, depending on your local provider.

Yes Hearing

Yes Hearing carries prescription hearing aids from Phonak, Oticon, Starkey, Signia, and ReSound which are fitted by a hearing care professional in your own home. You buy your hearing aids at a discounted rate of $1,395 to $3,995 per pair, which includes an in-person hearing test by a licensed hearing care professional, up to three in-home fittings, 60 days of virtual follow-up care, and a 3-year warranty.

Yes Hearing At Home Hearing Test 1200x675

Yes Hearing offers in-home testing, fitting, and consultation.

With optional care bundles for $25 to $55 per month, you get up to three additional in-person appointments per year, hearing aid supplies, and unlimited virtual audiologist appointments.

The trial period is 45 days, and 12 months of interest-free financing is available for the initial hearing aid purchase.


Lexie Hearing offers its B1 and B2 Plus Powered by Bose self-fitting OTC hearing aids that cost from $799 to $999. However, it appears that Lexie is moving away from the subscription hearing aid option and we may soon have to remove it from this page!

The Lexie B1 model uses disposable size 312 batteries while the B2 is rechargeable; otherwise, they are virtually the same. Both offer good sound quality, onboard volume control, directional microphones, noise reduction, smartphone app control, and real-time remote set-up and support from Lexie—but they do not offer audio streaming. Hearing Tracker placed the aids in the top-3 of its best OTC hearing aids for 2023.

Lexie B2

Lexie B2 Powered by Bose rechargeable OTC hearing aid.

You can also add optional care and protection plans for a one-time payment. Alternatively, you can opt for a 2-year subscription of $42 to $49 per month and pair, plus a $149 start-up payment. The subscription includes care and protection plans. The early termination fee equals one month of your subscription fee.

Either payment option includes batteries (for the B1) and accessories, real-time video and voice support, a 1-year warranty, and a 45-day risk-free trial.


The Whisper Hearing System is no longer available for purchase. The company announced it has voluntarily withdrawn the product and is issuing full refunds until December 1, 2023 to those who previously purchased it. Whisper says there are no known safety issues with the hearing aids, but the announcement does mean it will no longer be servicing or producing the device. For more details, HearingTracker published an article on this development on June 8, 2023, the day of the announcement.

Whisper Wide

The Whisper hearing system with carrying case and brain.

Affordable Alternatives to Subscription Hearing Aids

The low upfront cost and ability to get frequent upgrades are the main reason people turn to subscription hearing aids. Over the long term, however, they may end up being more expensive than traditional hearing aids. Or maybe none of the available models meet your needs. Here are a few other ways to reduce the financial impact of purchasing hearing aids.

Does your insurance cover hearing aids?

Before you go out and buy a hearing aid, check with your insurance provider whether your plan covers this expense and which conditions apply. For example, it might not cover out-of-network providers.

Some examples: five US states mandate hearing aid coverage for adults; you might have hearing care benefits through your employer or retiree plan; the VA could cover you if you are an eligible service member; Medicare Part B partially covers diagnostic hearing and balance exams, and those eligible for Medicaid may also enjoy limited coverage.

These are just some of the most common benefits available. For a comprehensive roundup, refer to our page on paying for hearing aids with health insurance. The overview also includes a list of discounts, charities, and state programs for those without insurance coverage.

Get low-cost hearing aids from local professionals

Even if you do have hearing care benefits, they might not cover the cost of hearing aids in full. To make the most of your budget, look into local hearing aid discounts, and compare the prices for specific models with our hearing aid price tracker. While even good deals are going to be expensive, you may have options.

Local clinics generally price in 2-3 years of service. However, some audiologists are willing to unbundle their cost, so you can buy the hearing aids separately and pay for services as you go. Others can set you up with monthly payment plans.

Choose a hearing care practice that offers monthly payment plans

Many hearing care clinics work with CareCredit, AllWell (via Allegro Credit), Ally Financial, or PowerPay financing to provide customers with monthly payment plans for their hearing aids. Most of these plans are only available through a hearing healthcare practice. When you find a good hearing aid deal at a local clinic, see whether they can facilitate monthly payments.

Consider third-party financing options

As noted above, when you can't stretch your budget far enough to pay for your hearing aids upfront, third-party financing can cover the gap. Here are some popular options:

  • CareCredit: This healthcare credit card offers up to 24 months of no-interest payments when you make the minimum monthly payments and pay the full amount due by the end of the promotional period. For longer financing periods of up to 60 months, APRs range from 14.90% to 17.90%. The credit card can also be used for dental, vision, chiropractic, cosmetic, animal/pet care, and other services and is accepted at 250,000 locations nationwide.
  • All Well/Allegro Credit: A sister company of CareCredit, Allegro offers simple payment plans with fixed APRs.
  • Ally: Provides budget-friendly financing solutions for a variety of healthcare needs.
  • PayPal Credit: No interest is due for balances paid off in full within 6 months. The merchant must accept PayPal as a payment option.

Our hearing aid financing page covers more ways to defer your health spending. HearingTracker has also published the Guide to Paying for Hearing Aids.

Use your Costco or Sam's Club membership

Costco's Hearing Aid Centers and Sam's Club Lucid Hearing Centers are an affordable alternative to local clinics, with state-licensed hearing aid specialists or audiologists providing services. Both include free hearing tests, a selection of hearing aid technologies and styles, in-person fittings with real-ear measurements, and free follow-up appointments, cleanings, and programming adjustments for the lifetime of your hearing aids.

Costco Ks 1200x675

Costco hearing aid centers offer some of the most advanced professionally fit hearing aids at around $1500.

Our Recommendation

If this is going to be your first hearing aid, we strongly recommend that you see an audiologist or hearing aid specialist for an in-person evaluation of your hearing. They can accurately determine the severity of your hearing loss and rule out underlying conditions or other complications. This will help you choose the right hearing aid for your needs.

Generally, subscription hearing aids are suitable for mild to moderate hearing loss, though Yes Hearing carries models suitable for all hearing levels, including profound hearing loss.

Rather than choosing a hearing aid based on the price alone, determine what you need in terms of hardware features and services first, then compare prices from different vendors. Keep in mind that subscription hearing aids, like Audicus and Lexie, let you cancel early; in contrast, you're on the hook for the full amount when you opt for a payment plan with providers like Whisper or Yes Hearing.