Fitness trackers are now one of the most popular pieces of lifestyle tech on the market. It’s common to see sports fanatics, soccer moms, and students alike sporting smartwatches, activity trackers, or pedometers. While workout enthusiasts may be willing drop big bucks on wearable with lots of features, a lot of people only need a basic activity tracker or step counter to deliver the data on their day-to-day fitness and activity. Luckily there are many affordable and cheap fitness trackers available that have all the basic activity tracking features most consumers need. Many people worry that if they want an affordable fitness tracker they’ll be stuck with a clip-on pedometer that can’t do more than count your steps. In reality, there are plenty of cheap fitness bands available with lots of great features.
One of the concerns that comes up when shopping for low-budget activity tracker options is whether the items you’re considering are good quality or just a cheap knock-off that won’t deliver the performance and the features you need. We looked at the most popular affordable fitness trackers on the market today that sell under $50 and found the ones that offer the most bang for your buck. We focused on cheap fitness trackers the basic features that most people use like step counting, move reminders, smartphone syncing, and battery life. If you’re looking for a fitness tracker with a specific feature or designed for specific exercises or activities, we have other articles that explore those in depth. For now, check out our recommendations for the best cheap fitness trackers. Our comparison chart is next, scroll down to read the in-depth reviews for each tracker.
Cheap Fitness Trackers Comparison Chart
5 Best Cheap Fitness Trackers
Xiaomi Mi Band 6 Fitness Tracker
One of the most recently cited brands that comes up when experts discuss cheap fitness trackers under $50 is Xiaomi. Many are unaware of this Chinese company that is well known in Asia for making affordable and budget technology products. Their Mi Band is now available in its newest version, bringing all the basic functionality most people look for in an activity tracker and adding some features that are hard to find in budget trackers.
This wrist-based activity tracker has a new design and an improved pedometer algorithm for more accurate tracking. However, the biggest upgrade for the Mi Band is the wrist-based heart rate sensor, which allows for more accurate tracking of exercises and calories burned. This new version also features idle alerts: the band vibrates when you have been sitting too long so you know to take a short break and walk around. The 20 day rechargeable battery is fantastic in comparison to many other wristband trackers.
The band features an OLED display, so if you don’t like having to pull out your phone to see your stats, you’ll be pleased. By tapping the button it will cycle through time, step count, and heart rate. The built-in auto workout tracking means you don’t have to futz with settings to record your activity. Just wear the band and go. If you want more data, you can access the Mi Fit app at any time to monitor speed and heart rate. This tracker also automatically records your sleep, tracking light and deep sleep based on your heart rate.
This newest model is waterproof up to 50m, making it a good choice for swimmers. While it may be great for most people, it won’t work for runners who want a GPS watch.
Available colors: black (but replacement bands in a variety of colors are available)
Good for: Office workers who want to be more active, runners who want to monitor speed and heart rate
Tracks: steps, heart rate, running speed, 6 workouts, sleep duration and quality
Notable features: Touchscreen OLED display, time, heart rate monitor, move reminders, auto-work out tracking, auto sleep tracking, waterproof, Bluetooth syncing, compatible with Android 4.4+ and iOS 7+, Android only: phone text and call alerts, 20 day battery life, weather reports
3DTriSport Walking Pedometer
If you’re hunting for a budget activity tracker has you flustered by features and apps you’re not interested in, then the 3DTriSport is for you. At it’s simplest it’s a pedometer, but it’s better than those generic clip-ons you can buy at a local pharmacy. This tracker features tri-axis 3D sensor technology to accurately count your steps. Not only will this pedometer track your steps clipped on your belt, in your pocket, or in your bag, you can also wear it on the included wristband while you walk or run.
This pedometer also tracks 30 days of step and calorie history–which is one of the longest we’ve seen for pedometers that don’t need to sync to a smartphone. This helps keep you motivated and on track to reach your fitness goals. All of the stats are displayed on the screen. This is a great option if you’re shopping for your parents or grandparents and want an easy way for them to track their steps.
Available colors: pink/magenta, grey/black, white, black
Good for: people who walk or jog for exercise, no fuss step counting, seniors who don’t want to use an app for tracking
Tracks: steps, walking distance (miles or kilometers), exercise time, calories burned
Notable features: Tri-axis 3D sensor, 30 day step history memory, belt clip or wristband, miles or kilometer tracking
Check out more pedometers and step counters.
Amazfit Band 5
If you’re on a budget but want big features, AmazFit offers a lot with an affordable price tag. In addition to the normal step and distance tracking, the Amazfit has 11 sports modes for tracking your favorite exercises. The 24/7 heart rate tracking gives you more accurate sleep and exercise data. The band also features 5 ATM water resistance, perfect for swimming or showering. If you’re interested in overall wellness, the stress tracking and breathing exercises will help you relax when life gets hectic.
Beyond the typical features of cheap activity trackers, the Amazfit has Amazon’s Alexa built-in, so you can ask her questions, set alarms, check the water, and even control smart home devices from your wrist. The band also comes with 45 customizable watch faces. Once it’s synced with your smartphone you not only receive call and message alerts (text message, Whatsapp, Facebook, Twitter, and Wechat), it can also control your music (great for when you’re in the middle of a workout or run and out of reach of your phone) and be used to take pictures remotely (no more arms-length selfies!). Some users won’t need these extra features, but the band is so competitively priced with other fitness trackers under $50 that it’s worth buying the Amazfit if you want these features.
Available colors: black, olive, orange
Good for: office workers, people who workout while listening to music
Tracks: steps, calories, distance, blood oxygen level, heart rate, sleep
Notable features: Alexa built in, 15 day battery life, Health Assessment System, 11 sport modes, menstrual health tracking, stress monitoring, breathing exercises, 5 ATM water resistance, 45 customizable watch faces
ENGERWALL Fitness Tracker
ENGERWALL has recently released an excellent budget pick if you’re shopping for cheap fitness trackers. Don’t be fooled by the affordable price, it packs a lot of essential features into an affordable price–including real time heart rate monitoring. This easy to use tracker syncs with your smartphone or it displays up to the minute stats on the LED display. You just tap the screen to cycle through all the info. Once it’s synced with your phone, you can receive smart notifications and even use the band to find your phone.
For fitness tracking, it covers all the basics you expect. It also has a built-in stopwatch for easy on the go timing of laps or regular activities. It also has built-in wrist-based heart rate monitoring, which makes other stats like calories burned more accurate. Move reminders are great for office workers and the sleep tracking will help you make sure you’re getting enough rest. It also features IP68 rated waterproofing, so swimmers can use it as well.
No matter what type of exercise you enjoy, you can track it easily thanks to the 16 sport modes. THe battery life is one to two weeks, so you’ll never be stressed about charging. The USB charging port is built into the device, revealed once you take off the band. That way you never have to worry about having a charging cable nearby.
Available colors: Black/Purple, Silver/Purple, Silver/Black, Silver/Blue, Silver/Blush Pink, Silver/Aqua (no HR monitor)
Good for: Office workers, counting steps or tracking walking/running distances
Tracks: Steps, Distance, Calories Burned, Active Minutes, Sleep, Heart Rate, 16 Sport Modes
Notable features: LED Tap Display, Vibrating Alarm, Clock, Stop Watch, Interchangeable Bands, Smartphone Notifications, Wrist Sense Screen, Smartphone app (iOS 7.1+ & Android 4.4+), Built in USB Charger
Stiive Fitness Tracker with Heart Rate Monitor
Another affordable fitness tracker, this one packs in a lot of features at a great price. With a similar design to other trackers, it’s comfortable to wear and easy to use. It has a tap display to see all of the basic stats like steps, calories burned, and distance.
The Stiive is compatible with the “VeryFitPro” app for iOS and Android, which tracks your activity and sleep stats over time. You can also use it to utilize the GPS on your phone to track runs and walks outdoors. The app also has a built in exercise tracker with 14 different exercise modes. It also has a customizable Sedentary Alert function that will remind you to move after a period of your choosing (smallest period of time is 15 minutes). This is a great entry level activity tracker for anyone looking to get fit or count their steps.
Available colors: Black, Blue, Purple, White, Light Green, Pink
Good for: Casual fitness enthusiasts, office workers, tracking walking
Tracks: Steps, Heart Rate, Calories Burned, Distance, Sleep, 14 Exercise Modes
Notable features: Exercise GoalsTime Display, Smart Notifications, Move Alerts, Silent Alarm, Water Resistant, Rechargeable Battery (2 hour charge time), Built in USB Charger, IPX7 Water Resistant, Bluetooth, Smartphone App for iOS 9+ and Android 4.4+
Frequently Asked Questions About Budget Activity Trackers
Do I need to buy an expensive fitness tracker?
The answer to this depends on your lifestyle, what kind of exercise you do, and what kind of tracking you’re looking for. Cheap fitness trackers usually have enough features for basic step counting, calorie burn tracking, and sleep tracking. This is great for desk workers who want to be more active to counter-act a sedentary lifestyle or people who walk or jog for exercise. More and more of the budget activity trackers on the market also include heart rate monitoring for more accurate exercise and sleep data. These affordable options make great gifts for parents, grandparents, kids, and teens who want some basic activity tracking but aren’t necessarily tech-savvy or need the frills offered by expensive brands like Fitbit.
These affordable activity trackers are also a great entry-level fitness band for people who aren’t sure if they’ll get any benefit from having their steps and sleep tracked. Many people find once they have a device tracking their daily activity and reminding them to move and be active that they automatically start making changes to their life to meet the goals set by the tracker. This helps people lose weight, make better food choices, and live a healthier lifestyle overall.
If you’re a swimmer, runner, cyclist, or spend a lot of time at the gym, you may want to invest in a fitness tracker for your types of exercises. If you don’t care about exercise specific trackers, you may get enough data from cheap fitness trackers.
Should I be worried about buying a tracker by an “unknown” brand?
Not necessarily. Many companies like Fitbit, Garmin, and Sony spend a lot of money on advertising to increase sales and awareness of their brand. Those increased advertising budgets add on to the cost of the individual trackers and don’t necessarily mean they are better quality than comparable “no-name” devices. Instead, you should take into consideration what features are important to you in a fitness tracker and then do research reading articles like this and the reviews on Amazon to decide whether the band or clip you’re interested in is a good quality. You can save major money by ignoring name brands and looking at what customers think of each wearable.
How much should I spend on an activity tracker?
With the number of trackers available today, there are plenty of options in a variety of price ranges. You should consider your personal budget and the features you need when deciding how much to spend. If you only need basic tracking (steps, calories, sleep, smartphone syncing), you will easily find a tracker you like in the $20 to $50 range. You may even be able to find some advanced features like wrist-based heart rate monitoring and waterproof fitness bands when looking for activity trackers under $50.
If you want more advanced tracking like workouts, swimming, running, and cycling specific tracking, you may need to consider fitness trackers under $100 or up to $200. If you want more advanced features like wrist-based GPS, you may need to spend more than $200.
If you want more features but still want to save money, you can try a few different things. Often you’ll find name brand fitness trackers available for cheaper prices on Amazon. You may also be able to find refurbished activity trackers on Amazon for a fraction of the price of a brand new one. A certified refurbished fitness tracker is one that has been returned to the manufacturer for some sort of defect or problem. These may be tech issues or cosmetic issues. The manufacturer then repairs or replaces the defective part, tests it under the same conditions it uses for new trackers to ensure it is working properly and meets all of their quality standards. It’s then sold to consumers at a discount with the same warranty and protections as a new fitness tracker. Some people don’t like to take the risk, but those who do are often pleased by the quality and the money saved.
Still searching for an affordable fitness band? Check out the best fitness tracker under $100.