Friday, March 26, 2021

Senior Discounts - Use Them Wherever You Go

Over the past few years, increases to the Social Security benefits of senior citizens have been tiny or non-existent.  Most seniors have tightened their belts as much as they possibly can, but this does not mean they want to stop enjoying life. They just cannot continue to pay the ever increasing prices for the things they enjoy.  This is why senior citizens should take advantage of every possible senior discount they can find.  Why pay more than necessary for the things you enjoy?

General Senior Discounts

If you belong to either AARP or AAA, you may discover they offer a wide variety of benefits, including senior discounts. Even if you do not belong to either of those organizations, there is no harm in asking about senior prices everywhere you go ... restaurants, hotels, movie theaters or for transportation.  Many businesses offer a discount, even without a membership, but you have to ask.  In addition to the ideas listed below, you can also get more ideas for saving money by reading the inexpensive book "The Money-Saving Idea Book: Inside Tips for Starving Students, Frugal Seniors, and Every Financial Survivor."

Below are some specific discounts you might appreciate:

AARP discounts:  Use your card to save money at Ticketmaster, Outback Steakhouse, Bonefish Grill, Denny's restaurant, EyeMed, prescription drugs purchased from OptumRx, Delta Dental, Pet Plan Pet Insurance, auto and other types of insurance products, Avis, Budget and Payless car rentals, cruises, and a wide variety of hotels.  You will also get the AARP magazine and Bulletin, which regularly offer information of interest to retirees.

AAA discounts:  AAA offers many of the same benefits as AARP.  Whenever we make a hotel or car rental reservation, we always ask if one of these cards offers better discounts than the other.  Usually, they have very similar discounts but, with AAA, you also get roadside assistance for any car you are in.  AAA also offers locksmith services for both home and auto, discounts on select items at Home Depot, Lowe's, Walmart and other retailers, restaurant discounts through Restaurants.com, discounts at the Hard Rock Cafe, Rainforest Cafe and other popular eateries, and many other discounts.

Senior Discount Websites - You may be able to check online to find discounts for anything from airline tickets to restaurant meals.  Check out SeniorLiving.org, DealNews.com and TheSeniorList.com

Professional Organizations - The retiree unit of the public employee union I belong to offers discounts on my AT&T cell phone service.  This one discount, alone, saves me several times the amount of the retiree union dues, so belonging to the union pays for itself.  The union also offers discounts for a number of local attractions.  In addition to my union membership, I have also received discounts on performances in our area through the clubs I belong to in our community.  Before you pay the full price to enjoy a local performance, visit an amusement park, or attend a festival,  check to see if the local senior center, your union, or any clubs you belong to can help you obtain a discount.

Groupon - This smartphone app is another way to get discounts for the admission to local attractions. Scroll through what they have to offer in your area.  You may be surprised to find Groupon discounts for a number of popular activities. 

Basically, check out all your options before purchasing tickets to anything.  Avoid paying full price whenever you can.  We all need to stretch our retirement dollars as much as possible.  

Medical Discounts

In addition to the generous benefits offered by AAA and AARP, you can find individual organizations which offer discounts. Here are few to help with your medical expenses:

ada.org - Click on Dental Schools and find a list of schools which will perform your dental work for significantly less than many dentists.

Partnership for Prescription Assistance - pparx.org - If you qualify, you may be able to save money on your prescription medications.

RxSaver - All pharmacies do not charge the same price for prescription medications.  Check out this website to save money, especially if you not qualify for prescription assistance.

EyecareAmerica.org - People over the age of 65 may be able to get a thorough eye exam and a year of free care from a volunteer ophthalmologist. 

Vacation Discounts

Everyone wants to travel once in a while, either for a well-deserved vacation or while taking a road trip to visit your family and friends.  Discounts on travel can make this easier.  Don't forget to check out the hotel and restaurant discounts you can get with AAA and AARP.  In addition, you may want to take advantage of the deals listed here:

Amtrak and Via Rail Canada both offer 10 percent discounts for seniors ... Amtrak at age 62 and Rail Canada at age 60.

National Park Service - nps.gov - You can find free entrance days at the national parks on the site.  If you love to spend time in the national parks, you will want to get an America the Beautiful senior pass for $80, which entitles you and everyone in your car to get into any national park for the rest of your life!

Discounts on Insurance

Safety Course Discounts on Auto Insurance - Talk to your insurance agent about how you might qualify for a discount on your auto insurance.  One way could be to take an older-driver safety course.  Some insurance companies will give you a reduction of as much as $100 a year.

Non-smoker Discounts on Life Insurance - Healthy people who exercise, do not smoke and maintain an ideal weight can often save money on life insurance.

Multi-Policy Discounts - If you get both your home and auto insurance from the same company, you may also get a discount.

Online Shopping Discounts

Recently, I wrote another post devoted entirely to getting discounts while shopping online on sites such as Amazon, Walmart, Macy's or Target.  It contains a lot of great ideas for shoppers of all ages. You can read that in-depth article here:

https://www.baby-boomer-retirement.com/2021/03/amazon-savings-tips-how-to-save-money.html

Finally, if you are a struggling retiree who is worried about how you can make sure your money lasts for the rest of your life, I recommend the Suze Orman book, "The Ultimate Retirement Guide for 50+: Winning Strategies to Make Your Money Last a Lifetime."

If you are interested in learning more about financial planning in retirement, Social Security, Medicare, where to retire, common health problems as you age, use the tabs or pull down menu at the top of the page to find links to hundreds of additional helpful articles.

Disclosure: This blog may contain affiliate links. If you decide to make a purchase from an Amazon ad, I'll make a small commission at no extra cost to you.

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