Thinking about retirement can be overwhelming, but thanks to senior discounts, you can at least look forward to saving some money in your golden years. Senior citizen discounts can be found online and in the real world, in restaurants and retail stores, and in hotels and hair salons. However, sometimes the best deals go beyond the standard AARP discounts.
These senior savings that break the industry norm can help you enjoy your retirement sooner than later.
Last updated: Nov. 8, 2019
- Senior discount: Varies
Southwest recently announced it was canceling its senior discount nearly 35 years after it first began the program in 1985. Other airlines, like Delta, do extend senior discounts, but not online. Other airlines offer limited and restricted discounts for older travelers. United, on the other hand, offers discount fares to customers 65 and older with few restrictions, including online, but those discounts vary depending on factors like date and destination.
- Senior discount: Waived fees and discounts on both accessories and service
AT&T offers AARP members the AT&T Signature Program, which waives up to $45 in activation and upgrade fees, plus 10% off Mobile Share Plus monthly service charges and 15% off eligible accessories.
America’s National Parks
- Senior discount: Senior Pass for $20 per year, $80 for a lifetime pass
The National Park Senior Pass is not only much cheaper ($20 annually) to buy than a standard pass ($80 annually), but it also gets you 50% off of some amenity fees for services and facilities like a boat launch, camping and swimming.
- Senior discount: 10% off a stay at PetsHotel
If you’re 65 or older and you insist on luxury when you board your pet, you can save on stays at one of PetSmart’s PetsHotels. Their “hotel hosts” are safety certified, the cost includes meals and full-service amenities, and a vet is on-call 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Royal Caribbean Cruises
- Senior discount: Reduced rates for travelers 55 and older
If your vacation takes place on the ocean, Royal Caribbean offers discounts to people who are still years away from being eligible for Social Security. It applies only to select sailings, but in some cases, a reduced fare can be extended to companions sharing accommodations who wouldn’t qualify for a discount on their own.
- Senior discount: Balance Rewards card offers senior-specific specials
Older Balance Rewards members can get exclusive deals and discounts just for seniors. AARP members qualify, as does anyone over the age of 55. Walgreens also periodically hosts special “Seniors Day” events that offer 20% off both in-store and online purchases.
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Mountaineer Casino Racetrack and Resort
- Senior discount: $50 hotel rooms Monday-Thursday for guests 50 years old and up
Located in West Virginia but easily driveable from the Pittsburgh metro area and much of Eastern Ohio, the Mountaineer Casino Racetrack and Resort is part of the sprawling Eldorado Resorts Collection. This deal stands out not just for its dirt-cheap $50 room offer, but also for its inclusive age-range, since the discount at the adult playground is open to “seniors” as young as 50.
- Senior discount: Up to 15% off for guests 55 and older
It’s not unusual for hotel chains to give seniors a break on the price, but Best Western considers “senior” to be anyone a full decade younger than the traditional retirement age of 65. That rule holds true across all 4,200-plus Best Westerns across the world, and you still collect rewards points even if you accept the discount.
- Senior discount: 10% off entire order including sale items for customers 55 and older
Craft and hobby chain Michaels also has a generous policy regarding senior discounts — the minimum age is only 55. Even better, the discount is available every day, instead of only on specific days, like many competitor stores.
- Senior discount: 10% off for riders aged 65 and older
If you prefer to travel by train, Amtrak offers 10% off for riders 65 and older for most fares. Or, if you ride internationally on trains operated by Amtrak and VIA Rail Canada, the discount applies to passengers 60 and older. Various restrictions apply.
- Senior discount: Whatever the mall says, goes
Hallmark follows an unusual pricing structure when it comes to discounts for seniors. It doesn’t offer discounts directly, but it does honor any senior day discounts advertised in the mall or shopping center where a Hallmark store is located, provided it’s not more than once per week.
- Senior discount: Ages 55 and older save up to $40 per month
Verizon, too, offers a senior discount, but it’s not open just for AARP members — you only have to be 55 to take advantage of it. The deal includes two lines for $80 per month, as opposed to $60 for a single line. Unlimited 4G LTE, unlimited talk and text, and an unlimited mobile hot spot are all part of the deal.
- Senior discount: 10% for customers 55 and older
The Pep Boys discount is good for in-store visits only, not to online purchases. It’s open to anyone 55 and older, and applies storewide, including tires and tire service, traditional service and repairs.
Castle Resorts and Hotels
- Senior discount: Up to 25% off the best available price
Paradise isn’t cheap, but older travelers can get a relative bargain on a trip to Hawaii. Castle Resorts and Hotels maintains 22 locations across the Hawaiian islands, including Oahu, Kauai, Maui, Molokai and the Big Island. People ages 55 and older qualify, and the discount applies to the best price available — not just the standard rate.
- Senior discount: 20% off base rates for customers 50 and older
The Hertz 20% everyday discount is open to people as young as 50, but that’s not the only thing that sets the Hertz Fifty Plus Program apart. Members can save even more by making reservations on Hertz.com before they travel. They can also pair discounts with promotional coupons and add a spouse or domestic partner as a driver with no extra charge.
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- Senior discount: Seniors Day screenings
Prices vary by location, but all Cinemark Theaters participate in Seniors Day. Seniors can buy one ticket only at a reduced rate, which applies to all movies and all showtimes. The special rate, however, does not apply to IMAX, Xtreme, Cinemark XD and special engagements.
- Senior discount: $7.50 movies on Senior Wednesdays
If you don’t live near a Cinemark, Showcase Cinemas celebrates seniors on Wednesdays. You only have to be 60 to take advantage of the deal, which also includes a soda and popcorn for $4.50. Even better, the discount applies to all formats, including IMAX and RealD 3D.
- Senior discount: 10% off every Wednesday
If you’re 60 or older, Kohl’s is the place to be on Wednesdays. But the special discount is available for in-store purchases only. However, be ready to navigate a heap of restrictions on categories and brands.
- Senior discount: Many locations offer discounts
Your local Goodwill could offer a 10% discount or more on specific days of the week. Check with your nearest Goodwill for details and age requirements, which can vary by location. Goodwill is a nonprofit human services organization.
- Senior discount: Wellness65+ Wednesday savings
The first Wednesday of every month is Wellness65+ at Rite Aid. Wellness65+ members get 20% off nonprescription in-store purchases. Members also get extras like a free pharmacist consultation and can participate in monthly activities based on different health-related topics.
- Senior discount: Up to 40% off lenses, up to 30% off frames, reduced-rate services
AARP members get exclusive discounts and services from LensCrafters. Members get exams for a $55 copay and discounts of 10% on contact lenses. Lenses or frames by themselves are 15% off, complete pairs are 30% off, and Transitions lenses are 40% off.
- Senior discount: 55+ menu
IHOP does not offer senior citizen discounts on regularly priced items, but it does have a senior menu. As the name implies, you only have to be 55 to take advantage, and it’s got plenty of deals for breakfast, lunch and dinner — every option is less than $10.
- Senior discount: 55+ menu
Denny’s restaurants are owned by independent franchisees, which means there is no single price structure in terms of senior discounts, which vary from location to location. But like IHOP, Denny’s offers a special menu for seniors with low-price entrees for all three meals.
- Senior discount: 10% off for AARP members
AARP members can dine at the Australian-themed chain restaurant for 10% off. Known for its famous Bloomin’ Onion, Outback has an impressive lineup of big steaks for low prices. A recent steak and lobster deal could be had for under $20.
- Senior discount: 5% discount every Thursday
The Harris Teeter food and pharmacy Thursday senior discount is open to VIC cardholders age 60 and older. The discount can be added after coupon savings. It doesn’t apply to gift cards, pharmacy items, fuel or tickets.
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About the Author
Andrew Lisa has been writing professionally since 2001. An award-winning writer, Andrew was formerly one of the youngest nationally distributed columnists for the largest newspaper syndicate in the country, the Gannett News Service. He worked as the business section editor for amNewYork, the most widely distributed newspaper in Manhattan, and worked as a copy editor for TheStreet.com, a financial publication in the heart of Wall Street’s investment community in New York City.