How Much Does an Ambulance Ride Cost? (2023)

Health Costs > How Much Does an Ambulance Ride Cost?

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An ambulance ride is most often the quickest way to get to the hospital in the case of an injury or serious illness such as a car accident or heart attack. The cost of an ambulance ride can depend on the company, the miles being driven, the reason you had to ride in one and if insurance is involved. A basic ambulance ride to a hospital, for example, can cost a lot less than a paramedic unit.

How much does an ambulance ride cost?

On average, an ambulance company will charge anywhere from $350 to as much as $2,000 for a trip without insurance.We explored multiple cities throughout the United States and included the prices we had found inside the table below.

Even with health insurance, an ambulance ride may not be covered 100 percent. Refer to your insurance documentation to see exactly what is covered; most of the time, the insurance company will only cover the payment if it were a medical necessity and your life was in danger. Some insurance policies have a flat fee/co-pay, while others may say you are only responsible for the deductible.

According to article, a patient was billed more than $1,538 for her ambulance ride. This was after the insurance company had paid more than $750. claims ambulance rides within the area of Aberdeen can vary anywhere from $550 to $1,000, but the most common charge for a ride is around $675. The least expense trip is one that is deemed as a non-emergency. On top of the standard fee, companies may also charge $12.50 per mile driven.

A member on said they received a bill for $1,157. $13 was for the mileage, $80 for the oxygen, $25 for the supplies and $1,000 as the base price.

Type of ServiceAverage Rate
Advanced life support$750 to $1,500
Basic life support$550 to $1,000
Mileage rate (additional)$5 to $20 per mile
Standby waiting rate$150 to $250 per hour
Geographical LocationPrice Reported
Chicago, IL$1,200
Cleveland, OH$500
La Jolla, CA$1,772
Longview, TX$1,065
New York, NY$2,480
Oklahoma City, OK$1,300
Phoenix, AZ$860
Pinellas County, Florida$1,007 per person plus $13 per loaded mile
San Diego, CA$1,700
Seattle, WA$950
Tucson, AZ$1,105

Ambulance ride overview

In an emergency situation, the ambulance provider will determine which type of truck needs to be dispatched (basic or ALS) depending on the circumstances. During the ambulance ride, the crew will assess the patient’s medical condition and check vital signs to determine the best course of action. Basic life support trucks will work with non-threatening injuries, continuing monitoring to a destination, while an advanced life support truck, will be dispatched for life-threatening situations. An ALS crew can administer medication, perform CPR, insert breathing tubes and perform other procedures.

When you receive a bill from an ambulance service, it should have an itemized bill, showcasing the price for each item. If you feel that you never had that treatment or you want to dispute the charges, be sure to call up the ambulance company or insurance company to dispute these charges. If the service doesn’t offer an itemized bill, be sure to ask for one.

(Video) The surprising cost of an ambulance ride

Aside from transportation to a hospital, ambulance providers can take a patient to a nursing facility, rehabilitation center, home health agency or hospice center.

What are the extra costs?

If other medical equipment or medication is used during an ambulance ride such as IVs or oxygen, the costs can rise. Advanced life support, when compared to basic life support, can cost even more. The Arizona Republic even said blankets and bandages are billable if you were to use them during the ride.

Plan on spending at least $3 to $10 per mile driven if the ambulance has to drive outside of its radius.

If the ambulance has to standby at the hospital and/or a location, it can cost up to $200 per hour.

Tips to know:

Why is an ambulance ride so expensive? Regardless of how many 911 calls are made in a day, an ambulance service still has to be available for 24 hours per day, staffing crew members and maintaining the vehicles available. This also doesn’t include the salaries and the fuel being used.

How can I save money?

Many ambulance companies have a payment plan if you can’t afford to pay the payment in full. If you pay up front in full, most of the time, they will usually offer a discount that is more than 40 percent. Each company will have its own policy, so be sure to call them and ask before paying the payment in full.

If you cannot afford the bill, talk with your local city as many have plans set up that can help those that meet certain income requirements.

The La Times says you can appeal a bill if you feel the bill seems either too high or improper.

Both private insurance companies and Medicaid will cover an ambulance ride as long as the ride is a necessity and endangers your health.

If it’s avoidable, skip the ambulance and drive to the hospital with a friend or family member. As you can see, the prices can be quite steep. Even if you don’t have someone to drive you, consider something such as Uber or Lyft.

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How Much Does an Ambulance Ride Cost? (2)

(Video) Cost of an Ambulance

Average Reported Cost: $2528.27

How Much Does an Ambulance Ride Cost? (3)

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How Much Does an Ambulance Ride Cost? (4)

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Less Expensive $1 $1.5K $3K $5K $6.5K More Expensive $8k

How much did you spend?

  1. American Medical Response(daly city, California) paid $3258 and said:

    Trip was 1.5 miles, was charged for 5 miles.

    (Video) Why Ambulance Rides Are So Expensive In The United States

    Was it worth it? Yes

  2. TM(Horsham, Pennsylvania) paid $1600 and said:

    My wife took me to an emergency clinic/care place. They said that I had to be ambulanced to the local hospital ER. I told them that my wife would drive me, but they strong armed her into letting them call an ambulance. It was maybe 15 minutes in an ambulance, no lights, no siren, no drugs, nothing. They were nothing more than a glorified $1600 taxi ride.

    Was it worth it? Yes

  3. American Medical Responses(Chula vista, California) paid $2900 and said:

    I was having a miscarriage I didn’t even know I was pregnant. I called 911 I was in so much pain and couldn’t drive I only live 5 minutes from the hospital, the paramedics didn’t do anything other then transport me and asked a few questions and I’m being charged $2900, not only that to add salt to the wound they sent me a bill for a miscarried baby that according to them was also transported total $5800. what a rip off.. this is wrong….highway robbery!!

    Was it worth it? Yes

  4. marci(helena, Montana) paid $2048 and said:

    13 miles, two of us in same ambulance. Husband got no services during ride. I was on the gurney. They charged us each 2048.88!

    Was it worth it? Yes

  5. V Gray(La Mesa , California) paid $3700 and said:

    $3700.00 for a 6 block ride

    Was it worth it? Yes

  6. helen(gilbert, Arizona) paid $876 and said:

    trip was bls , less than one mile, non life threating

    Was it worth it? Yes

  7. John Collins(Hudson, Maine) paid $2500 and said:

    Only had to go 15 miles.

    (Video) Why Do Ambulance Rides Cost So Much?

    Seriously though, most people would rather die than call 911 because the cost is out of this world.

    I KNOW FOR A FACT, with all expenses added together, they over charge by 200-500%

    Was it worth it? Yes

  8. Portsmouth(Dover, New Hampshire) paid $3485 and said:

    3485.00 to only go 14 miles. I didn’t even need any treatment while I was in the ambulance. I was transferred by ambulance from Wentworth Douglas Hosp in Dover NH, to Portsmouth Regional Hosp in Portsmouth NH. I had a small intracranial brain hemmorhage and concussion. Certainly intend on calling LifeLine Amb Service…

    Was it worth it? Yes

  9. Tina(Barstow, California) paid $1925 and said:

    This rate is too high for a 6 mile ride to the emergency room

    Was it worth it? Yes

  10. Tina Mendoza(Barstow, California) paid $1925 and said:

    No it was not worth it for a 6 mile ride to the emergency room, in Barstow, CA

    Was it worth it? Yes

  11. Alan G.(livingston, Texas) paid $3594 and said:

    Transport from clinic to hospital.

    Was it worth it? Yes


How expensive is an ambulance ride in us? ›

Without insurance, the average cost of an ambulance ride is around $1200. However, factors like ground mileage and severity of services affect the final prices of ambulance services.

Why are US ambulance rides so expensive? ›

Why are ambulance rides so expensive? Ambulance companies cite the costs of round-the-clock staffing, limited insurance reimbursements, and expensive inventory as reasons for high consumer bills. Ambulances provide everything necessary to save your life in an emergency and stabilize you on the way to a hospital ER.

Is ambulance ride free us? ›

It depends on the ambulance company. Some may not charge you unless they provide transportation. Others may charge for being called to the scene, even if you aren't taken to the hospital.

How much is an ambulance ride in Texas without insurance? ›

(5) A fee of fifteen dollars ($15.00) per mile shall be charged for the transportation by emergency ambulance of a person to a hospital.
Sec. 5-02. - Emergency service generally.
Basic Life Support (BLS)$750
Advanced Life Support (ALS) 1$850
Advanced Life Support (ALS) 2$950

How much is an ambulance ride in New York? ›

The last increase was in 2021. Back then, the price for an ambulance ride ticked up 16% from $775 to $900. The fire department's ambulance service — which costs roughly $600 million per year — handles about 70% of the city's hospital transports.

How much does an ambulance cost in Los Angeles? ›

The rate for a private ambulance response for a call with basic equipment and personnel is now $1,305, and a response to a call requiring a paramedic ambulance is $1,852.

How much does it cost to ride in an ambulance with insurance? ›

For patients with health insurance, an ambulance ride can set someone back between $500 and $1,000, according to a report from the Public Interest Research Group released Tuesday.

How much is an ambulance ride in China? ›

A trip in an official ambulance costs about 500 yuan (HK$630) in Hangzhou, but the patient was charged 1,600 yuan by the fake emergency vehicle's operator, the report said.

What is the most expensive ambulance? ›

There are a total of only seven Lykan HyperSport units in the world and cost at about 26 crores for one. The car is capable of accelerating from a standstill to a 100 kilometres per hour in just 2.8 seconds and has a claimed top speed of 400 kilometres per hour.

Can you refuse an ambulance USA? ›

Yes, an adult can refuse an ambulance. The patient has to consent to treatment. Consent is either implied, as in the patient is unconscious, or it is expressed, as in “I have chest pain….”

Are ambulance rides free in California? ›

Ambulances are the safety net of the safety net; an ambulance service will never refuse to provide emergency service regardless of a patient's ability to pay.

Why is American healthcare so expensive? ›

The United States healthcare system is complex and most costs are market driven. High, unregulated prescription drug costs and healthcare providers' salaries rank higher than in other western nations, and hospital care accounts for 31% of the nation's healthcare costs.

Is it better to call an ambulance or drive to the hospital? ›

All of this can happen while you are being taken to the hospital, which is why an ambulance is a better option than having someone drive you to hospital. Don't be surprised if the paramedic team drives past your nearest hospital and takes you to another.

Does Texas Medicaid cover ambulance? ›

Services, Benefits, Limitations, and Prior Authorization

Emergency and nonemergency ambulance transport services are a benefit of Texas Medicaid when the client meets the definition of emergency medical condition or meets the requirements for nonemer- gency transport.

How much does 1777 ambulance cost? ›

Is ambulance free in Singapore? If you are facing an emergency, the SCDF emergency ambulance that conveys you to a hospital will be free. However, for non-emergency cases, SCDF charges $274. For non-emergency ambulances in Singapore, you can call 1777.

How much is an ambulance ride in New Jersey? ›

An ambulance in New Jersey usually costs around $600 plus $10 per mile, which means no ambulance bill is cheap. Plenty of people are afraid of high hospital and medical costs. Yet if you were injured on the job in New Jersey such that you require an ambulance, you do not have to worry.

How much do ambulance drivers make in New York? ›

How much does an Ambulance Driver make in New York, NY? The average Ambulance Driver salary in New York, NY is $39,821 as of February 27, 2023, but the range typically falls between $38,274 and $43,895.

How much is an ambulance ride in NC? ›

Loading. How much does ambulance transport cost? $400 to $1000 is the fee for ambulance transport depending on the level of care provided. $17.00 per mile is the charge for out of county transports (out of county transports must be cleared with Medical Control at our sponsoring hospital.)

How much do ambulance drivers make in Los Angeles? ›

How much does an Ambulance Driver make in Los Angeles, CA? The average Ambulance Driver salary in Los Angeles, CA is $38,049 as of February 27, 2023, but the range typically falls between $36,571 and $41,941.

Does Medi Cal pay for ambulance? ›

Medi-Cal covers ambulance and other medical transportation services only when ordinary public conveyance is medically contra-indicated and transportation is required for obtaining needed medical care. To be eligible for medical transportation services, a recipient must be eligible for Medi-Cal on the date of service.

How much is an ambulance ride in California with Kaiser insurance? ›

Emergency medical transportation $300 / trip $300 / trip None Urgent care $50 / visit $50 / visit Non-Plan providers covered when temporarily outside the service area.

How much is an ambulance ride with insurance in Maryland? ›

The fees are $700 or $750 per transport, depending upon the level of care required.

How much is an ambulance ride in Georgia? ›

The current rate is $1,150 and around $20 per mile.

How much does an ambulance weigh? ›

Weight Guides

Type I ambulance – 10,001 to 14,000 pounds. Type I AD (additional duty) ambulance – 14,001 pounds or more. Type II ambulance – 9,201 to 10,000 pounds. Type III ambulance (cutaway van) – 10,001 to 14,000 pounds.

How much is an ambulance in Japan? ›

It is important to note that using an ambulance in Japan is free of charge, even for international visitors. Therefore should you require emergency medical assistance or should someone call an ambulance on your behalf, don't hesitate to use it. You won't be charged.

How much is an ambulance ride in Colorado? ›

Get flown to the hospital (air ambulance) – Average Cost $8,928. Get driven to the hospital (ground ambulance) – Average Cost $607.

How much is an ambulance ride Philadelphia? ›

Specifically, Act 42 authorizes the following fees: not less than $180 per loaded trip for basic life support ambulance transportation services; not less than $300 per loaded trip for advanced life support ambulance transportation services; and not less than $3,325.53 per loaded trip for air ambulance transportation ...

What are the most common ambulance calls? ›

What Injuries & Illnesses Do EMS Providers Most Commonly Treat?
  • Poisoning / drug ingestion. 3.5%
  • Diabetic symptoms (hypoglycemia) 2.5%
  • Stroke / cerebrovascular accident (CVA) 2.0%
  • Cardiac rhythm disturbance. 1.9%
  • Cardiac arrest. 1.8%
  • Hyperthermia. 1.0%
  • Allergic reaction. 0.9%
  • Hypothermia.
Nov 5, 2020

What is the most common type of ambulance? ›

Emergency ambulance – The most common type of ambulance, which provides care to patients with an acute illness or injury.

What is the fastest ambulance? ›

seconds and reach a top speed of 400kph, powered by its twin-turbocharged 780-horsepower Porsche engine. The world's fastest ambulance has set a Guinness world record. Owned by Dubai Ambulance Corporation, the Lykan HyperSport is manufactured in the UAE by W Motors and was unveiled at Expo 2020 Dubai in January.

What should you not call for an ambulance? ›

Call 995 For Emergencies Only

You can make a difference between life and death by knowing what is an emergency. For life-threatening cases such as cardiac arrest, active seizures, breathlessness, major traumas and stroke, call 995.

Is it illegal to not move out of the way for an ambulance? ›

The ambulance crew are trained to negotiate traffic and may look to use the bus lane to pass, and you could get in their way or even get a ticket. Do not go through a red light to try to get out of the way as you may commit an offence. If it is safe to pass the ambulance will do so.

Is it illegal to pull over for an ambulance? ›

The Highway Code states that motorists should give way to emergency service vehicles using flashing lights, including ambulances, fire engines and police vehicles.

Who can drive an ambulance in California? ›

Every driver of an ambulance responding to an emergency call or transporting a patient shall be at least 18 years of age, hold a valid California Driver License, possess a valid ambulance driver certificate issued by the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), and be trained and competent in ambulance operation and the use ...

Are ambulances free in Los Angeles? ›

10. Is there a bill if a patient didn't call 9-1-1 or was not transported to a hospital? The Los Angeles Fire Department bills for ambulance transport only. Patients may refuse transport, in which case no charges are incurred.

Can ambulance companies balance bill in California? ›


The NSA prohibits health care service plans, as well as providers and facilities, from surprise balance billing consumers in specified nonemergency, emergency, and air ambulance circumstances.

What happens in America if you can't afford healthcare? ›

If you don't have health insurance, you're at much greater risk of accumulating medical bills that you may not be able to pay. In a worst-case scenario, you could be sued and have your wages garnished. You might even be forced into bankruptcy.

What state has the best health care? ›

Hawaii is the top state for health care in the U.S. It has the best health outcomes in the country, with low preventable death (47 per 100,000 people), diabetes mortality and obesity rates. However, the state ranks fairly low for accessibility (No. 31). Iowa is the second-best state for health care.

Who has the best healthcare in world? ›

The Top 10 Healthcare Systems in the World 2022
  • South Korea. South Korea tops the list of best healthcare systems in the world. ...
  • Taiwan. Taiwan is second in the best healthcare systems in the world. ...
  • Denmark. ...
  • Austria. ...
  • Japan. ...
  • Australia. ...
  • France. ...
  • Spain.
Jul 21, 2022

How long is acceptable to wait for an ambulance? ›

We aim to be with the patient within 15 minutes of the time specified by the GP. Similarly, if your assessment requires an emergency response, make this clear to the call operator. Our non-emergency transport teams provide basic care including oxygen and Entonox.

What do you say to get seen faster in an emergency room? ›

As your friend did, you can always try to drop a big name, like say you're friends with the president of the hospital. In general, if they think you're a VIP (even if you're not), you'll definitely get seen more quickly. ...

Should I wait for ambulance or drive? ›

Many people think hopping into a car to an emergency room is faster and cheaper, but they could be dead wrong! In our community, calling an ambulance when it matters saves lives. Even if the scene of the emergency or accident is very close to a healthcare facility, it is always best to call 9-1-1.

What is ambulance cover in health insurance? ›

Ambulance Service Cover offers coverage of up to Rs. 5,000 for ambulance services.

Can you use Texas Medicaid out of state for emergency? ›

Texas Medicaid pays for Medicaid-reimbursable services provided out-of-state if the: recipient needs services because of a medical emergency documented by the attending physician or other provider; recipient's health could be jeopardized by not obtaining services; and. provider enrolls in the Texas Medicaid Program.

Does Texas Medicaid cover emergency room visits? ›

Laws require that all states' Medicaid programs cover outpatient hospital services, including emergency room visits.

Why are ambulance calls so expensive? ›

Why are ambulance rides so expensive? Ambulance companies cite the costs of round-the-clock staffing, limited insurance reimbursements, and expensive inventory as reasons for high consumer bills. Ambulances provide everything necessary to save your life in an emergency and stabilize you on the way to a hospital ER.

Is 111 non emergency? ›

NHS 111 can help when you need medical help or advice fast – but it's not an emergency. The 111 online service can also help if you're not sure what to do.

What is considered an emergency? ›

It is an emergency if waiting to get care could be dangerous to your life or a part of your body. A bad injury or a sudden serious illness can be an emergency. Severe pain and active labor are emergencies. An emergency can also be related to your mental health.

Does insurance cover ambulance in us? ›

Ambulances are covered when medically necessary

In general, insurance will cover the cost of an ambulance when it is determined to be medically necessary. In those cases, insurance companies will consider the cost of an ambulance ride in the same manner as they would any other medical expense after a car accident.

What happens when you call 995? ›

For emergency cases, dial 995 immediately and SCDF will dispatch an emergency ambulance team to your location within minutes. For less urgent cases, you can dial 1777 or reach out to our Care Advisors at 6100 0055 for a non-emergency ambulance.

What is Medicare Part B? ›

Part B (Medical Insurance): Helps cover: Services from doctors and other health care providers. Outpatient care. Home health care. Durable medical equipment (like wheelchairs, walkers, hospital beds, and other equipment)

Does Colorado Medicaid pay for ambulance? ›

Emergency ambulance service is a component of the Colorado Medicaid Medical Transportation benefit. Emergency ambulance service is available when the client's condition requires immediate medical attention.

How much do ambulance drivers make in Colorado? ›

How much does an Ambulance Driver make in Colorado? The average Ambulance Driver salary in Colorado is $33,710 as of January 26, 2023, but the range typically falls between $32,401 and $37,159.

How much is an ambulance ride in Virginia? ›

Basic life support - emergency$500
Basic life support - non-emergency$350
Advanced life support - non-emergency$425
Advanced life support- emergency$600
Advanced life support - emergency with three or more medications combined with at least one specialized ALS procedure$850
4 more rows


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