37 Senior Discounts You Can Score Starting at Age 55
The savings are there for the taking—if you know where to look. Check out these senior discounts that start a lot earlier than you think!
Are you already eligible for these senior discounts?
When you see ads for senior discounts or freebies, you might think you need to be 65 or older to qualify for them. But, in many instances, 55 is the new 65! “Senior discounts can start at age 55—or even age 50—for some businesses,” says money-saving expert Andrea Woroch. “These discounts can be as much as 50% off a membership, or simply 10% off a purchase.”
Just be aware that in some cases, businesses may require you to sign up for a free loyalty account to access their discounts. In others, you may need to be a member of AARP—an advocacy organization for people over 50 that partners with numerous businesses to offer discounts—to reap the savings. Woroch notes that people can join AARP at any age, and some discounts may be available to even younger folks.
That’s why it’s important not to get too hung up on that “senior” word. Money is money, right? And why not start raking in the savings as early as possible? If you’re interested in how to save money—even if you’re not thinking about retirement yet—you’ll definitely want to check out the discounts below.
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Hotels are one of the best categories for scoring senior discounts at age 55, with several chains offering great rates. Even better, many hotels will allow seniors to book more than one room at the discounted rate, so you can help your travel buddies or even adult children get a good deal too.
You typically have to book directly with the hotel to get the discount, though Woroch says it’s always worth comparing prices at third-party portals like Hotels.com. If you find something cheaper than what the hotel advertises for its senior rate, call the hotel and see if they’ll match it. Don’t forget to ask about a room upgrade too!
- Best Western: Guests 55 and over receive discounted room rates at any location in more than 100 countries. You’ll also get free breakfast and Wi-Fi. To get the rate, choose “Senior/AARP” from the drop-down menu when booking.
- Caesar’s: If you’re at least 50, you can get up to 30% off room rates at hotels and resorts in 12 different states, though you’ll need to verify your age and identity online at the time of booking. Start by choosing “Senior (50+) Rates” from the drop-down menu when searching; then click “Verify with ID.me” to get started.
- Extended Stay America: When searching for a hotel online, select “Senior Discount” from the special-rates drop-down menu. You can also call 800-804-3724 to book your hotel at the senior discount rate. If you sign up for the chain’s loyalty program, you can also get discounts at retail stores, restaurants, car rental companies and more.
- Omni: This chain offers special rates for travelers 55-plus at all of its 60 hotels and resorts across the United States. Just choose “Senior Rates” from the drop-down menu when booking. If you prepay your room, you can save even more.
Feeling ready for a vacation now? Check out these trips for seniors who love to travel.
According to a 2021 report from the Cruise Lines International Association, more than 52% of passengers were over 50. For this reason, finding senior-specific discounts on cruises can be a little tricky. While the companies listed below say that they occasionally give discounts on select cruises, it generally depends on factors like your destination and the kind of stateroom you’re interested in booking (balcony or interior, for example). Often, senior discounts for people 55 and over become available at the last minute when cruise lines are trying to fill unsold rooms. “Cruises look to maximize profits on bookings, and extending unlimited senior discounts would eat away at this,” Woroch says.
That said, “being a senior may give you more flexibility, so you can find better deals during slower times for cruises,” says Nancy McLaughlin, a travel advisor in Colorado at Fora Travel. If you don’t have restrictions on when you can travel, you may be able to find great deals on cruises with the following companies:
- Carnival: This cruise line offers savings for seniors 55 and up, though it doesn’t specify just how much. Instead, it instructs would-be cruisers to check its booking calendar “to find Carnival’s best senior fares.”
- Holland America: While Holland America doesn’t offer any booking discounts on its website to seniors, McLaughlin says that clients who are AARP members can snag up to $200 in onboard credits.
- Royal Caribbean: This popular company offers reduced senior prices “only on selected sailings exclusively for guests who are 55 years of age and older.” According to Woroch, Royal Caribbean is among the cruise lines that offer last-minute savings. One guest per stateroom booked must meet the age requirement to qualify.
Airlines tend to be pricey for people of all ages, though we did find one solid senior discount for people over 55. In general, though, you’ll want to know when to book a flight for the cheapest rates. Driving? You’re in luck! The senior discounts are better when it comes to rental cars.
- British Airways: If you’re an AARP member, you can get the following deals.
- $65 off for travel in standard or premium economy class (World Traveller or World Traveller Plus)
- $200 off for travel in business class (Club World)
If you’re flying basic economy, you’re unfortunately not eligible for any deals. Silver lining: Even if you can’t get a senior discount, you can still get these airline freebies.
- Hertz: Travelers 50 and older can save up to 20% off base rates. From the Hertz home page, navigate to “Deals” at the top, then select “Featured Offers” and click on “Travelers 50 and Over Save More.” It’ll bring you to the booking page with the appropriate discount code already filled in.
- Sixt: Get a 5% discount on prepaid rentals if you’re 50 or older. Go to this Senior Car Rental Discount page and click on the “Book Discount” button to get started.
- Thrifty: Save 5% on time and mileage charges on rentals of any car type. Other charges, such as insurance, are not eligible for discounts.
If you’re an AARP member, you may also be eligible for discounts at:
- Avis: AARP members get up to 30% off base rates (or up to 35% when selecting Pay Now) and receive a 3% credit to apply to rentals within 12 months. Plus, you get an upgrade on compact through full-size car class bookings (based on availability), and an additional driver at no cost.
- Budget: Up to 30% off base rates.
- Payless: Up to 5% off base rates.
- Zipcar: $20 off an annual membership.
Some retailers offer senior discounts for 55-plus customers only on certain days of the week, while others slash prices for seniors every day. You may need to show ID to prove you’re eligible for their discounts. Learning how to coupon will also help you pile on the savings.
- Goodwill: Policies vary by region and store, but most shops offer a weekly senior discount day, with amounts varying from 10% to 25% off. Check with your local store for specifics.
- Michael’s: Starting at age 55, you can sign up for senior discounts in your Michael’s Rewards account and get 10% off online and in-store purchases every day—including sale items.
- Pep Boys: Get 10% off any in-store purchases at this auto-parts chain every day. Just show your ID to prove you’re 55 or older.
- Ross Dress for Less: The Ross senior discount lets you shop on Tuesdays for 10% off all purchases. Just notify the checkout clerk that you’re eligible for a 55-plus senior discount. You might need to show ID.
- Walgreens: The first Tuesday of each month is Seniors Day at Walgreens. You’ll need to sign up for MyWalgreens first, but once you have an account, you can get 20% off all regularly priced items in store, with some exceptions like alcohol, tobacco, stamps and more. Simply tell your cashier that you’re participating. If you shop online, you have the whole week to place your order and get your 20% discount; just use the code SENIOR20 at checkout. However, you can use the code only once during that week, so keep hitting “add to cart” until you have everything you need!
“I’m not seeing as many senior deals at grocery stores these days,” Woroch notes. Of course, there are other ways to save money on groceries—like using your supermarket’s app to find in-store coupons. It also helps to know the cheapest grocery stores in your area before discounts are applied. If you’re specifically looking for senior discounts, though, you’ll have the best luck at these regional stores:
- Bashas’: This small Arizona chain offers 10% off every Wednesday to customers 55 and older. You’ll need to use your Thank You Card and may be required to show ID to get the discount.
- Fred Meyer: This Kroger-owned chain in the Northwest gives a 10% senior discount to 55-plus customers on select items, including private-brand groceries and nutrition (Fred Meyer, Kroger or Simple Truth); clothing, shoes and accessories; home goods, including toys, sporting goods, auto and garden; and most electronics.
- Fry’s: Lucky Arizonans also have this Kroger-based chain offering a monthly senior discount day. On the first Wednesday of the month, customers 55 and up can take 10% off most items, but not on things like prescriptions, alcohol, tobacco, money orders and gas.
- Hy-Vee: With nearly 300 stores in eight Midwestern states, Hy-Vee senior discounts vary by location. Some hold a weekly discount day, with 5% to 10% off for seniors (beginning at age 55 in some stores, and at older ages in others). Contact your store for details.
No, you don’t have to start eating dinner at 4 p.m. But when you find out which restaurants offer senior discounts starting at age 55, you might be willing to dine there at any time of day. Just keep in mind that many restaurant chains are actually franchised, meaning that policies may differ by location.
- Chili’s: The official word from Chili’s headquarters is that “there is not a single brand-wide policy regarding these discounts; offers vary by location. Please contact the restaurant directly for information.” That being said, many locations do offer a 10% discount for diners 55 and older, any day of the week, though certain menu items may be excluded.
- Denny’s: While the diner chain doesn’t offer a specific senior discount, it does have a separate menu for the 55-and-older set. You won’t find the belly-busting Grand Slamwich listed there, but rather entrees aimed at smaller appetites—and with smaller prices. The chain also offers 15% off regular menu prices to AARP members.
- DQ: Although it’s one of the country’s oldest restaurant chains, the ice cream and hamburger shop doesn’t automatically honor the nation’s older people. Many stores offer 10% off to seniors over 55—but it’s not official corporate policy, and you have to ask for it.
- Hardee’s: This chain doesn’t have an official policy either, but some stores offer discounts to seniors 55-plus. Common deals appear to be for 10% off and/or 33-cent beverages.
- IHOP: Like Denny’s, the pancake house offers a 55-plus menu, which offers smaller portions of its most popular menu options at lower prices, and meets many common dietary restrictions.
- Outback Steakhouse: A meal from this Aussie-themed restaurant will cost you 10% less—if you’re an AARP member over age 55.
When you’re ready to relax with some TV or movies after dinner, additional senior discounts await you. You can also score these freebies on your birthday—no matter how old you are!—for movies and more.
- Amazon Prime: If you’re a senior who receives government assistance such as SNAP, Medicaid or SSI, you’re eligible to sign up for an Amazon Prime membership at $6.99/month instead of $14.99/month—more than 50% in savings. Let the movies, music and free shipping begin!
- Cinemark: This movie theater chain offers special discount pricing for seniors 55-plus one day a week. The day varies by location, but seniors get reduced-price tickets for any movie, at any showtime, on that day.
- Dish: The Dish 55 and Older Deal lets you pick the service package you want, then apply a discount at checkout. Dish guarantees your price will remain the same for three years. Plus, you get one free movie rental each month, as well as free in-home tech visits and free equipment replacements.
If you’re in the market for a new phone contract, the following senior discounts kick in at age 55. If these don’t work for you, you can always learn how to lower your household bills, including your cellphone bill.
- AT&T: If you live in Florida, you can get two lines with unlimited talk, text and data for $40 per month, per line.
- Mint: The Mint 55+ plan offers seniors unlimited talk and text for $15/month, plus full-service activation by MINTech Advisors at no additional cost.
- T-Mobile: Seniors 55 and over can choose from the following plans.
- Essentials, priced at $27.50/month, gets you two lines with unlimited talk, text and data (including texting while abroad). There aren’t any annual contracts, but there is advanced protection against phone scams.
- The other two plans, Go5G Plus 55 and Go 5G Next 55, priced at $50 and $60 per month, give you everything in Essentials, plus 4K streaming, 50 GB of 4G LTE mobile hotspot data, Apple TV+, an AAA membership and more.
- Verizon: The Verizon senior discount is, unfortunately, available only to new subscribers in Florida. If you’re a senior there, you’re eligible for a plan that gives you two lines for $84/month or one line for $62/month. You’ll get unlimited talk, text and 4G LTE data; DVD-quality streaming; an unlimited mobile hotspot (600 Kbps); and Verizon Up Rewards.
Smart ways for seniors to save even more
It’s easy to find additional ways to save, according to Woroch. Even if a business doesn’t advertise a senior discount, they may still offer one. “Call the business or store you’re planning to make a purchase with to find out if they offer a senior discount, and what type of deal you’re looking at getting,” she says. Also, ask if there are any restrictions, like it being limited to certain services or days of the week.
When booking travel, always check online coupon sites. “Stack your senior deal with cash back through deal sites like CouponCabin.com,” Woroch says. “Since you’re likely spending hundreds or maybe even thousands of dollars on travel costs for hotel, car rentals and flights, any cash back you earn can really add up.”
And finally, don’t fret about meeting the senior discount age when you hardly feel like a senior. After all, age is just a number … but so is a discount!