Summer is a great time for aging parents to get out and about. For many, this is a great time to make travel plans; others may simply want to take in a movie or engage in other local activities. Whatever their goals, aging parents should remember that they may be eligible for a number of discounts that can make their summer activities more affordable.
What are some of these possible discounts for seniors?
Going on a trip is fun, but getting there can be expensive. Those who are 62 years old or older can get a 15% discount on the lowest fare available from Amtrak, which is very helpful. Airlines have gotten much stingier in recent years, but there are some senior discounts that are still available. In most cases, these discounts are available only on certain flights; the best bet is to look into what flights you are interested in and then call the airline to see if senior discounts apply for that flight. For those who will need a car when they arrive at their destination, most of the major rental companies offer senior discounts of some sort.
Staying with friends or relatives is cheapest, but that may not be the best or preferred option – if it’s an option at all! Many hotels offer discounts for aging parents; check with the hotel of choice and see. Be aware that some hotels offer the discount only when paying in advance. Planning on staying at an Airbnb? It doesn’t hurt to ask if the host has a special seniors rate, just in case.
Whether traveling or staying at home, people still have to eat. Major food chains frequently have incentives for seniors – a specially priced seniors menu, discounts, or offers of free items (such as coffee). Many local restaurants also offer enticements for aging parents. The best way to find out? Ask before you go in or before you order.
Movie theaters frequently offer senior discounts – but increasingly there may be some “catches,” such as only on certain days or times or only for certain movies. It’s a good idea to check with the local theater about their policy. Many state and national parks have adjustments for aging parents which can make them more readily affordable.
Looking for new beachwear or clothing that’s appropriate for the hot weather? Many stores, including Kohl’s, Banana Republic, and Dress Barn, have some form of senior discount that can make being fashionable more affordable.
These tips for aging parents are just the beginning. The best tip of all: if you wonder if there might be a senior discount available for whatever store, restaurant, or activity you are interested in – just ask.