9 best Free Patient Scheduling Software for healthcare practitioners (2024) | Carepatron

By Jamie Frew on Jun 16, 2024.

Fact Checked by Ericka Pingol.

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What is an appointment scheduling app?

Appointment scheduling software allows practitioners to reimagine their appointment booking experience. They will enable you to book appointments, access calendars, and automatically send out email and SMS reminders in real-time.

Practitioners are busy, and that is not going to change anytime soon. It makes complete sense to use an appointment scheduling app that reduces no-shows, cancellations, and reschedules. Basically, it automates or streamlines most of your scheduling process and workflow.

It isn't easy to know what to look for in a scheduling tool and how much you should expect to pay.

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Why free appointment software?

Appointment scheduling is vital to your business, but this doesn't mean that you have to run your booking system on Outlook, another Office 365 program, or any other paid software. As a small business owner, it's not likely that you have spare money lying around to invest in appointment scheduling software. We've been there, and that's why we're helping you find these options, too.

Today , there are plenty of free schedulers available that you can use to improve your workflow and the functionality of your practice.

Features to look out for in an appointment scheduling app for healthcare practitioners

Considering the different aspects of each platform is a crucial part of selecting user-friendly software, which will streamline your business. Which scheduling features do you require? How many people are on your team?

Do you need a scheduling platform that can be used on the move? Are text messages or appointment reminders important to you? Will employee scheduling or online payments through a credit card be a part of the equation?

These are all questions that need to be answered before selecting which free appointment scheduling software is best for you. Some of the most essential features to look for include:

  • Ability to customize working hours and block out specific time periods 
  • Ability to customize appointment times  
  • Synchronization with calendar to avoid double bookings
  • Automated notifications and reminders for both practitioners and patients
  • Integration capabilities, so the software is cohesive with other systems already in use 
  • Cancellation windows, to avoid no-shows and improve communication 

Once you've decided what the most essential features are for you, then it's time to look at the assessments we've made below of some HIPAA-certified options to choose from.

Evaluation criteria for the top appointment scheduling softwares for healthcare practitioners

With the vast number of different platforms available, trying to sort through them all can be overwhelming. To guarantee you are making the best decision for your practice, here is some evaluation criteria you can utilize when you are analyzing different appointment scheduling systems: 

  • Affordability: This guide solely assesses appointment scheduling systems with free plans, so we've done some work for you already! Nevertheless, some of these platforms include features that are only available at an additional cost, so you must keep these costs in mind when making your decision. 
  • Integration capabilities: It is highly likely that your healthcare business already has some software in place - whether electronic health records (EHR), electronic medical records (EMR), a practice management system or anything in between. As such, the appointment scheduling software you select must be able to be integrated with whatever other system you are already operating.
  • Features: Unsurprisingly, an appointment scheduling system's features say a lot about its suitability. We've already touched on the different features you want to watch for, so keep these in mind when we review the available platforms. 
  • Ease of Use: The best appointment scheduling systems are very easy to use. They should be accessible on mobile devices and simple to navigate - remember, not everyone is a technology expert!

Best free appointment scheduling software

After considering dozens of scheduling software, including but not limited to Quickbooks, Zapier, SimplyBook.me, Appointy, Setmore, and Acuity Scheduling, We decided that for healthcare and wellness practitioners, there are the free options worth sharing:

1. Carepatron

Carepatron is an all-in-one digital workspace for healthcare practitioners and their clients. Designed specifically with healthcare in mind. Its functionalities mean practitioners can automate many different aspects of their practice, not just booking appointments and online scheduling. Additionally, while Carepatron also has paid plans, it lets free users get unlimited user accounts and appointments.

Carepatron key features 

  • Calendar synchronization
  • Customizable scheduling 
  • Unlimited staff
  • SMS reminders
  • Telehealth video calling 
  • Patient portal where clients can schedule their appointments 
  • Access to clinical notes, documentation storage, online payments, and medical billing and coding resources

Carepatron pricing

  • Starter: Free
  • Professional: $15 per month per user ($12 per month if you commit to a whole year)
  • Organization: $29 per month per user (19 per month if on annual billing)

2. Square Appointments

In terms of free appointment scheduling software for single users, Square Appointments is a good example. They enable access to all of their business management software free of charge, which is great for solo practitioners but does become costly as soon as you require a multi-user option.

Square Appointments key features

  • Unlimited appointments per month
  • Access to all capabilities for free
  • Email and SMS reminders
  • Mobile app
  • Scheduling 
  • Automated reminders
  • Recurring appointments
  • Multiple time zones
  • Booking website 
  • SEO tools 
  • Customer support 

Unfortunately, Square Appointments was not explicitly created with healthcare in mind, so you'll have to make do with basic features if you're a healthcare professional.

Square Appointments Pricing

  • Free plan for individual users
  • Plus: $29 per month per location
  • Premium: $69 per month per location

3. Calendly

Calendly is an excellent software for online booking if you want to present professionally. It also offers robust administration capabilities and a high level of security. Calendly does provide a free version but only giving access to some functionalities and limited email support. In addition to this, the platform they provide is not customizable.

Calendly key features

  • Can connect to Google, Office 365, Outlook, and iCloud calendars
  • Create unlimited 1-on-1 events
  • Schedule customizable appointments
  • Automated event reminders and email notifications
  • compatibility with Windows, macOS, IOS, and Android

However, Calendly provides limited customer support for the free version, and it lacks booking page customization. There have even been reported to cause issues with custom objects, fields, and views.


  • Basic: Free
  • Standard: $12 per seat per month
  • Teams: $20 per seat per month
  • Enterprise: Starts at $15,000 per year

4. 10to8

10to8 is online booking software that focuses on an instant messaging feature. 10to8 only allows 100 appointments per month on its free version, its customer support is limited to an online platform. 

10to8 key features

  • Free version can have two staff logins/ service providers
  • Calendar sync automation
  • Live chat feature
  • can be integrated with different apps and programs such as Stripe, Paypal, Microsoft, iCloud, and Zoom
  • Can be embedded into your social media page
  • Unlimited number of clients
  • Recurring appointments
  • Customizable calendar view
  • Approve appointments manually and automatically
  • Secure online payments
  • 1 reminder per appointment
  • Timezone management
  • Calendar sync 

However, 10to8 does not include email marketing and follow-ups. In addition, the free account has a 100-appointment limit and online-only customer support, and the appointment confirmation feature is only for the paid plans.

10to8 pricing

  • Free Forever: Free
  • Standard: $460 per year per site
  • Pro: $612 per year per site

5. Appointlet

Appointlet is a scheduling app for businesses that don't need a smartphone app. They offer several different features in the free plan and unlimited online appointments but only for one staff member and only supply email reminders.

Appointlet key features

  • Unlimited appointments
  • Can edit and customize availability
  • Prevent double bookings
  • Time zone management
  • Custom intake forms
  • Ability to cancel and reschedule meetings
  • Google calendar and office 365 integration in all plans
  • Automated notifications for rescheduling and cancellations

However, Appointlet has some limits. Only one staff member/team member is allowed on the free version, and it has a web-based interface, so no booking on the go. Lastly, it has average customer support and no point of sale (POS).

Appointlet pricing

  • Basic: Free
  • Premium: $8 per month

6. Appointy 

Appointy is an online appointment scheduling software that is designed to automate the booking process. It focuses on elevating customer engagement and by doing so, improving client satisfaction and retention rates. 

Appointy key features

  • Clients can self-schedule their appointments 24/7
  • Integrate with company's website 
  • Time zone management
  • Good customer service 
  • Doesn't have cancellation fees and can change payment plans at any time with no additional cost
  • Offers online payment options 

Still, the Appointy free plan is limited to 100 appointments per month and offers customer support only via email. Also, the software doesn't offer two-way Google calendar sync with the free plan.

Appointy pricing 

  • Free
  • Growth: $19.99 per month if billed annually
  • Professional: $49.99 per month
  • Enterprise: $79.99 per month 

They offer a 14-day free trial for all the paid plans, too.

7. HubSpot

HubSpot is designed to assist businesses with their content management, sales, marketing and customer service. The system has placed emphasis on creating an intuitive and attractive interface, making it easy to be used by anyone. 

HubSpot key features

  • Great calendar sync options
  • Scalability 
  • Offers high security features 
  • Email scheduling
  • Mobile optimization
  • Custom domain
  • Multi-language options
  • SEO recommendations

The downsides of HubSpot is that it lacks technical and customer support, and its paid plans come with a hefty price tag for small business owners.

HubSpot Pricing

  • Free
  • Professional: Starts $1,200 per month for monthly billing, $1,080 per month if paying for a whole year upfront
  • Enterprise: Starts at $4,000 per month

8. SimplyBook

SimplyBook, as the name suggests, is a platform designed to simplify the scheduling process. With a wide range of features, and availability in a number of countries, it allows businesses to streamline booking and increase their client engagement. 

SimplyBook key features

  • Wide range of automated reminder options
  • Recurring bookings 
  • Customizable appointment information 
  • 50 included bookings
  • Up to 5 users
  • Booking website
  • Mobile app
  • Time zone management
  • Customizable appointments 

What we don't like about SimplyBook is that add-on features have attached fees, and the interface isn't very intuitive—just a few things, so it's still pretty good software.

SimplyBook pricing

  • Free plan
  • Basic: €8.25 per month (roughly $9 per month)
  • Standard: €24.90 per month (roughly $27 per month)
  • Premium: €49.9 per month (roughly $54 per month)

9. Zoho Bookings 

Zoho Bookings is a smart scheduling platform that automates appointment booking. It customizes your interface depending on your industry, making it accessible to a wide range of professional fields. 

Zoho Bookings key features

  • Calendar sync with Zoho, Google, Outlook, Office 365 
  • Schedule online meetings
  • Notification emails 
  • Two-way calendar sync
  • Attractive interface 

Still, Zoho Bookings only has limited features for the free plan, and it only allows for one staff member to be logged in. 

Zoho Bookings pricing

  • Forever Free: Free for one person 
  • Basic: $8 per month per staff member, $6 per month if paying by the year
  • Premium: $12 per month per staff member, valid for 3 workspaces. $9 per month if paying by the year.
  • Flex plan: Custom pricing for tailored features; you need to get a quote from them for this.

Comparing the top features of free appointment scheduling software

appointment scheduling software comparison table

Although every appointment scheduling software will differ, there are certain features to be on the lookout for. As you can see in the table above, Carepatron and Square Appointments excel in regards to available features. And while Calendly, 10to8 and Appointlet have their own advantages, there are some serious drawbacks too. Perhaps the most significant of these is the lack of HIPAA-compliance; without the right amount of protection, patient privacy can be compromised. With fantastic integration capabilities, we think that Carepatron is definitely the way to go. In addition to offering appointment scheduling tools (specifically for healthcare practitioners), the software is integrated with medical billing, online payments, a patient portal and a sophisticated mobile app.

Comparing appointment scheduling apps based on ease of use

appointment scheduling app comparison table

When you are looking for the perfect appointment scheduling software for your practice, you also want to be looking for ease of use. Realistically, there will be both patients and providers at your practice who aren’t experts at using technology. In order to ensure the system is being used to its maximum capacity, you want to guarantee it is both intuitive and has an attractive interface. 

Additionally, you’ll want to be looking for a platform that offers automatic time zone conversions, especially as the rate of telehealth continues to increase and a greater number of patients are accessing remote care. We also think it’s important that the software has patient waiting lists and automated reminders; not only do these features enhance the customization capabilities but they help to significantly reduce no-shows - saving you both money and time!

Which Type Fits You? 🙋🤦

Free appointment scheduling software is an integral part of any modern private practice. It can be hard to choose which of the best appointment scheduling software is right for you.👊

After assessing all of the different options above, it's clear that Carepatron is the best healthcare booking software. 🙌

In addition to offering free appointment scheduling software, Carepatron also offers these capabilities;

  1. Electronic patient records
  2. Scheduling
  3. Notes
  4. CRM
  5. Tasks
  6. Reminders
  7. Telehealth
  8. Client portal
  9. Voice transcription

Further Reading: 

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