The current population of seniors 50 and older in the United States is edging in on over 51 million in 2018.
Based on the US Census Bureau, by 2030, all baby boomers will be older than age 65. This will expand the size of the older population so that 1 in every 5 residents will be retirement age.
Many people raised in the baby boomer generation have different values than younger generations. They have a strong work ethic. They were taught – and still believe – that a person should work hard to provide for themselves and their families.
They feel that there are too many handouts these days to folks who aren’t willing to work hard. And they don’t want to be counted among those people.
I get that. In fact, I agree with it wholeheartedly. But I also believe that by the time you reach your 50s or 60s, you’ve probably paid your dues. You have the right to cash in on a few perks that come with age.
One of those perks is senior discounts. We shouldn’t hesitate to take advantage of them when we see them. I’m sure you’re aware of AARP- which is a membership that offers specific discounts to seniors. But there are plenty of other options for claiming your “senior discount” without the membership cost.
Senior discounts are offered by many restaurants. And public transportation is often cheaper for seniors. Most of us are familiar with those common types of discounts.
But did you know that there are some senior discounts that are only available online? And that many senior discounts are only available if you specifically ask for them?
Those are the more “hidden” discounts. If you find out about them, you can greatly increase the number of senior discounts you’re able to utilize.
Here are some of the senior discounts you may not be aware of:
- The Home Affordable Refinance Plan (HARP) helps middle class senior Americans reduce their monthly mortgage payments. Sometimes by as much as $4,000 a year.
- Many hotels offer discounts for seniors. Check before you travel and be ready to show proof of your age at participating hotels.
- Some theaters will allow seniors to purchase movie tickets at discounted prices. (You might not get that same discount on popcorn and candy.)
- Parks that charge for admission will often have discounted prices for people who are considered seniors (which often means 55 or older).
- Depending on your driving record, you may be able to get a cheaper car insurance rate due to your age. Insurance companies know that seniors are likely to drive more carefully than those in their teens and 20s.
- Certain grocery stores and supermarkets offer discounts for seniors. Do some research to find out which ones do, then see how much you can save.
- In addition to less expensive food, you can often find clothes at reduced prices if you’re a senior. Some retailers offer these discounts only on certain days of the week.
- Becoming a member of a senior discount club could save you some money. Check around to see which ones are free and with which stores they have relationships.
- In many states, you can reduce your taxes by purchasing energy-efficient appliances and by installing solar panels on your roof.
- Most national parks charge admission, but as a senior you can get in and enjoy it for a discount. Annual and lifetime passes for all national parks are available at a discounted rate for seniors.
- Cruises can be very expensive, but gaining a senior discount can make a cruise affordable for some seniors. Same with airline flights.
- Other possibilities for senior discounts include public utilities, gym memberships, museums, automobile services, haircuts, college classes, hardware stores, home repair, phone plans and lots more.
So, check out these discounts from home before you do your next errand, go out for a meal or seek out entertainment. The savings will make all these experiences more enjoyable.