The Best Apps for Safely Walking Home Alone

Personal safety expert Pete Canavan advised us to look for safety apps with automated features.
Best overall
UrSafe
$59.88
/yr
  • pro
    iOS and Android
  • pro
    Automatic livestreaming
  • pro
    Calls friends or 911
Best recording
Parachute
From
$2.99
/yr
  • con
    iOS only
  • pro
    Automatic livestreaming
  • con
    Calls friends only
Best free features
Noonlight
From
$0.00
/yr
  • pro
    iOS and Android
  • con
    No video recording
  • pro
    Calls friends or 911
Best discreet alerts
Flare Bracelets
$129.00 per bracelet
  • con
    iOS only
  • con
    No video recording
  • pro
    Calls friends or 911
Best heavy-duty protection
Bond
From
$0.00
/yr
  • pro
    iOS and Android
  • con
    No video recording
  • pro
    Calls friends, 911, or bodyguard

Info current as of post date. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

Based on advice from personal safety expert Pete Canavan, we’ve crowned UrSafe the best app for safety when walking alone, going on a date, catching a rideshare, or meeting up with a stranger. It is button- or voice-activated, automatically livestreams from your camera, and shares your location with emergency contacts and/or law enforcement.

We found a few other Pete-approved personal safety apps that fill the gaps in UrSafe’s performance. Keep reading to find the best one for you.



Compare the best safety apps

App
Price range
Voice activation option
Getaway features
Walk with me
Learn more
Best overall
Icon Yes  LightYes
Fake call
Icon Yes  LightYes
Best recording
Icon Yes  LightYes, through Siri
None
Icon No  LightNo
Best free features
Icon Yes  LightYes, through Alexa or Google
None
Icon No  LightNo
Best discreet alerts
Icon No  LightNo
Fake call
Icon No  LightNo
Best heavy-duty protection
Icon No  LightNo
Siren Strobe light
Icon Yes  LightYes

Info current as of post date. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

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Best personal safety app reviews

1. UrSafe: Best overall

Best overall
UrSafe
Starts at
$0.00
/mo

According to Pete, the best apps for safely walking alone are not only easy to activate but also send your current location and a livestream video to your emergency contacts. UrSafe is one of just a handful of apps meeting these criteria, and it’s the best of the bunch because it calls 911 and lets you discreetly get help with a custom safeword.

pro
Pros
pro Automatic livestream
pro Location sharing
pro Custom voice activation
pro Calls 911
pro Fake phone call
con
Cons
con No siren
con No strobe light
con Limited free features

Voice activation is built-in and fully customizable

To activate UrSafe, just press the button on the app for three seconds. You can also say your custom safeword to launch the “SOS protocol” without ever touching your phone.

UrSafe starts recording and sends a livestream to your emergency contacts along with your location. The app also dials 911.

Screenshots: Cathy Habas, SafeWise

Extra safety features

If you’re nervous but not in danger, you can turn on the FollowMe function. The app sends your location to three emergency contacts so they can make sure you keep moving and end up in a safe place.

You can also schedule a timed or location-based check-in to confirm that you’re safe. UrSafe also lets you set up a fake phone call for a ready-made excuse to leave an awkward and potentially dangerous situation.

Affordable one-time use

UrSafe’s free version lets you use the “FollowMe” feature, but only one emergency contact can track your location. That’s about all you get for free, but the app itself isn’t too expensive at around $5 per month.

You can also purchase 24-hour premium access for around $1 if you anticipate being in a risky situation. 

2. Parachute: Best recording

Best recording
Parachute
Starts at
$2.99
/yr

The Parachute app takes emergency livestreaming to the extreme—and definitely in a good way. It protects your audio and visual evidence by uploading it to the cloud and wiping data from your phone so it can’t be seen or deleted without your consent. Parachute also records non-stop until the battery runs out or you complete the “end recording” sequence.

pro
Pros
pro Automatic livestream
pro Location sharing
pro Voice activation option
pro Protected data
con
Cons
con Compatible with iOS only
con Doesn’t call 911

Plus, you can make it look like you’re not even recording to prevent a tense situation from boiling over. Meanwhile, everyone designated as an emergency contact within the app gets a call, email, and text message with your livestream and location. It all fires off with a simple tap.

Optional add-ons

To avoid a cluttered interface, Parachute lets users customize their app experience with “add-on” features. For example, you can set up voice activation through Siri, send livestreams to your Twitter account, or stream from both the front- and rear-facing cameras simultaneously.

Screenshots: Cathy Habas, SafeWise

We recommend enabling the “Superlock” add-on, which locks your phone but continues to record. Even people who are familiar with Parachute’s “end recording” sequence won’t be able to stop the livestream without your permission.

Doesn’t call 911

Parachute doesn’t include an option to call 911. The developers were considering it as an add-on update in 2019 but haven’t released any information since.

3. Noonlight: Best free features

Best free features
Noonlight
Starts at
$0.00
/mo

With Noonlight, you don’t have to know that you’re in danger to use it. Feeling a little uncomfortable is reason enough to press and hold the SOS button. Let go and enter your PIN once you’re safe, or let go and do nothing to dispatch law enforcement to your location.

pro
Pros
pro Alerts emergency contacts and 911
pro Shares location
pro Activates with voice (optional)
pro Integrates with other apps
con
Cons
con No livestreaming
con No siren or strobe light

Noonlight’s one of the few personal safety apps with a free version. In addition to using the emergency button, you can add emergency contacts to your list, leave notes about where you’re going and who you’re meeting, and record important medical information for first responders.

Notepad
Not just an app

Noonlight is a simple app with a serious company behind it. For example, Noonlight is in charge of monitoring Wyze home security systems. You’re working with the pros when you talk to a Noonlight rep during an emergency.

Screenshots: Cathy Habas, SafeWise

Missing some critical features

Noonlight doesn’t tick many of the boxes outlined by our personal safety expert Pete Canavan. There’s no siren, strobing light, or camera recording. But Noonlight does share your location with emergency contacts and 911 dispatchers during an emergency, and you also have the option to share your real-time location with emergency contacts for 24 hours.

Voice activation and other optional upgrades

Voice activation requires Google Assistant or Amazon Alexa plus a premium Noonlight membership. Other integrations—including Uber, Lyft, or IFTTT—are also available with an upgrade.

Learn more in our full Noonlight review.

4. Flare Bracelets: Best discreet alerts

Best discreet alerts
Flare
$129 per bracelet

Sometimes it feels safer to not make a fuss, but you still need a way to get help. Flare bracelets solve this problem by hiding an emergency button inside fashionable jewelry. Whoever you’re with won’t think twice if you fidget with your bracelet, allowing you to discreetly send an SOS to your emergency contacts and/or 911.

pro
Pros
pro Alerts emergency contacts and 911
pro Shares location
pro Sends fake phone call
pro Works without a monthly subscription
con
Cons
con No livestreaming
con No siren or strobe light
con No voice activation option
con No Android compatibility

You can also use the bracelet to start a fake call to your phone, giving you a little extra help exiting an uncomfortable situation.

Other than that, Flare bracelets don’t do much. But they complement a more robust recording app like UrSafe, letting you choose a bold or discreet approach when you need help.

Flare bracelets cost $129 each, and there’s no monthly subscription fee.

Screenshots: Cathy Habas, SafeWise

5. Bond: Best heavy-duty protection

Best heavy-duty protection
Bond
Starts at
$0.00
/mo

Bond is a feature-packed app and virtual bodyguard service that’s perfect for realtors or anyone else who constantly meets unfamiliar people in unfamiliar places. Its premium features might be a little too expensive for people who rarely walk alone, but the free version is similar to Noonlight.

pro
Pros
pro Alerts emergency contacts and 911
pro Location sharing
pro Video escort service
pro Additional safety services available
con
Cons
con No livestreaming
con Expensive premium features
con No voice activation option

Connects you to professional monitors

Bond doesn’t automatically livestream when activated, but you have the option of video calling with an agent. They’ll talk with you until you’re safe and dispatch emergency responders if they detect danger.

If a video call seems like overkill, you can ask Bond agents to simply monitor your location until you arrive at your destination. If you go off course or don’t arrive within a certain time frame, Bond contacts you to make sure everything’s okay. If they can’t reach you, they call 911.

Bond’s “Ready an Agent” feature works like Noonlight’s SOS button. Just tap and hold the button when you feel uncomfortable. Release the button to connect with a Bond agent within five seconds.

Other features and services

Bond agents can also coordinate telemedicine services and dispatch physical bodyguards, roadside assistance, or rideshare drivers, but you may have to pay extra for these third-party services.

Finally, Bond is one of the few personal safety apps that turns your phone into a siren and a strobe light. Safety expert Pete Canavan recommends using these features to disorient someone long enough to put distance between them and you. They’re also great for attracting the attention of nearby helpers.

Screenshots: Cathy Habas, SafeWise

Bond app cost

Bond is by far the most expensive personal safety app we’ve come across. Premium features cost $50 per month. If you use the service more than five times per month, the cost doubles to $100 per month. You get a discount by paying for a whole year up front.

More apps we considered

We compared more than 20 personal safety apps before selecting and ranking our top five. Here are a few other notable contenders.

Hollie Guard

The Hollie Guard app includes an impressive list of features, including automatic recording and a strobe light that accompanies a blaring alarm. It even includes a duress PIN so that an assailant thinks you’ve canceled the alarm, but in fact you’ve confirmed the alarm with first responders.

Unfortunately, the Hollie Guard app is cluttered and cumbersome. It takes too long to find the feature you want to activate.

BSafe

BSafe includes most of the same functions as our top pick UrSafe, but it’s missing one crucial element: contacting local authorities.

Your friends and family are responsible for contacting law enforcement and sharing details about your location if they think you’re in danger and can’t get to you. If that’s not a dealbreaker for you, BSafe’s $19.99/year subscription is more affordable than UrSafe. 

InvisaWear

InvisaWear jewelry is monitored by security giant ADT, so you know you’re in good hands when you connect to the monitoring center. You also have the option to contact up to five friends or to call 911 after pressing the button.

You can buy InvisaWear necklaces, keychains, and scrunchies in addition to bracelets, so it’s a better option than Flare if you aren’t much of a bracelet person.

We chose Flare over Invisawear for our top five due to InvisaWear’s poor durability. We also liked the fake phone call feature on Flare, which InvisaWear doesn’t offer.

Life360

Life360 caters to families with features like individual driver reports, location history, and geofencing. It’s also one of the few safety apps to provide an analysis of safety risks in your current location.

It has an SOS button that reaches emergency contacts only—not 911. Life360 doesn’t livestream or include a siren.

A Life360 subscription costs the same for one person as it does for an entire family. And everyone gets identity theft protection, roadside assistance, and stolen phone protection with the $19.99/month Platinum Membership.

One Scream

The One Scream app features a special kind of voice activation: a woman’s “panic scream.”

The developers explain that women are more likely than men to scream when in a scary situation and that this panic scream makes a specific sound—one that you can’t even replicate for testing. The app activates when it recognizes that sound.

One Scream is free to use, and we don’t see any reason why you shouldn’t add it to your arsenal of personal safety apps if you think it will help you. We left it out of our top five because of its limited accessibility, lack of features, and impossible (or at least unethical) testing scenario.

Final word

Although we couldn’t pin down a personal safety app that met all of security expert Pete Canavan’s criteria, UrSafe came close to perfection. But you might choose another app based on personal preference:

  • Parachute for tamper-proof livestreams
  • Noonlight for a free panic button
  • Flare for sending a discreet SOS alert
  • Bond for professional bodyguards and concierge assistance

Safety app FAQ

How does the WalkSafe app work?

The WalkSafe notifies you of recent crime reports in the area so you can plan a different walking route or have the app’s panic button at the ready. It works only in the UK and relies on police data, which is sometimes old.

Try the Hollaback app for a global, crowd-sourced platform with the same purpose.

What should I carry for safety while walking?

In addition to safety apps, popular personal safety devices include sirens, pepper spray, stun guns, and strobe lights. Check our guides to make sure stun guns and pepper spray are legal in your state.

How we reviewed the best personal safety apps for walking alone

To find and review the best app for safety when walking alone, we chatted with personal security expert Pete Canavan. He provided a list of features to look for in apps to keep you safe:

  • Automatic video recording/livestreaming
  • Automatic location sharing
  • Easy activation through a button or voice cue
  • Analysis of safety risks in the area
  • Loud siren
  • Strobe light

We also prioritized apps with an option to contact 911 and virtual “walk me home” features.

From our initial list of 20 apps that keep you safe, we compared features and read user reviews to find the top contenders. Then, we downloaded and tested apps to create our final lineup.

Learn more on the SafeWise methodology page.

Related articles on SafeWise


Disclaimer

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Cathy Habas
Written by
Cathy Habas
With over seven years of experience as a content writer, Cathy has a knack for untangling complex information. Her natural curiosity and ability to empathize help Cathy offer insightful, friendly advice. She believes in empowering readers who may not feel confident about a purchase, project, or topic. Cathy earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in English from Indiana University Southeast and began her professional writing career immediately after graduation. She has contributed to sites like Safety.com, Reviews.com, Hunker, and Thumbtack. Cathy’s pride and joy is her Appaloosa “Chacos.” She also likes to crochet while watching stand-up comedy specials on Netflix.

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