6 Senior Travel Discounts to Keep an Eye Out for on Your Next Holiday
We often hear that senior discounts are dead. In the travel world, this is far from true. In fact, it’s relatively easy to find senior discounts on hotels, museum admissions, car rentals and outdoor activities.
Here are six senior discounts that will help you save money on your next trip.
Senior Travel Discount #1: Hotel Discounts
A surprising number of hotel chains offer senior discounts, ranging from 5 percent to 15 percent. While some of these discounts are limited to hotel properties in the U. S., a few chains, such as Marriott and Best Western, offer senior discounts worldwide.
Senior Travel Discount #2: Ski Lift Tickets
If you enjoy ski vacations, be sure to ask about senior discounts. Many ski areas around the world offer discounts to mature skiers. Mammoth Mountain, California; Chamonix, France; Banff – Lake Louise, Canada; Zermatt, Switzerland; and Beaver Creek, Colorado; all offer senior discounts on single-day lift tickets.
Senior Travel Discount #3: Rail Tickets and Passes
In the U. S., Amtrak offers passengers age 62 and over a 15 percent discount on train travel; restrictions apply. Canada’s VIA Rail gives travelers age 60 and over 10 percent off Economy Plus fares.
Several European countries offer senior travelers discounts on certain first-class rail passes, including Ireland, France, Romania and the UK. You can purchase these rail passes online at RailEurope.com. In Spain, travelers age 60 and older may buy a Tarjeta Dorada card for €5.15; this card gives seniors rail discounts of 25 to 40 percent.
France’s SNCF rail system offers the Senior+ Railcard for €60 per year; this card gives you a 25 to 50 percent discount on rail tickets, but you will need to do some travel math to find out if you can recoup the card’s cost during your time in France. Eurostar, the “Chunnel” train, offers senior fares, too.
Senior Travel Discount #4: Car Rentals
A few car rental companies in the U. S. still offer senior discounts. Hertz gives customers age 50 and older a Baby Boomer rate if they use CDP code 2007815. Avis and Budget offer worldwide AARP discounts of 10 to 25 percent; this discount also includes a waiver of the fee for one additional driver.
Senior Travel Discount #5: National Parks
In the U. S., national park visitors ages 62 and older who are citizens or permanent residents may purchase the Senior Pass, which costs $10 and is good for life. This pass offers free admission for the pass holder and the occupants of the pass holder’s vehicle, as well as discounts on some campsite and tour fees.
In Canada, park visitors age 65 and older can purchase the annual Discovery Pass, which gives the pass holder admission to all Parks Canada sites that charge admission, at a discounted rate of CAD 57.90. Short-term visitors to Canada will need to compare park admission fees with the cost of the Discovery Pass to determine which option is better for them.
Senior Travel Discount #6: Bus Travel
Taking the bus can be a very affordable way to get from one place to another. In the U. S., Greyhound and Peter Pan Bus Lines offer seniors age 62 and over a 5 percent discount on unrestricted fares. Greyhound Canada offers travelers 62 and over a slightly better deal; the discount on the unrestricted fare is 10 percent.
If you are visiting the United Kingdom and plan to use National Express buses to travel long distances, consider buying a Senior Coach Card, which costs £10; this card will save you one-third on standard fares.
How Can I Find More Senior Travel Discounts?
The two best ways to find senior discounts are, first, to look at the travel provider’s, restaurant’s or attraction’s website and, second, to ask whether senior discounts are offered. Don’t be upset if senior discounts aren’t available, especially at restaurants, where discount policies can vary from location to location.
Are Senior Discounts My Best Deal?
Sometimes. You may be able to save more money by looking at online discount travel agencies, such as Hotwire.com or Priceline.com, or by finding discounts through your insurance company or association memberships. In other words, if you invest a bit of time, you might find a better deal. It’s always worth asking about senior discounts, though; you never know when you might save a little extra.
Have you found a senior discount that saved you money on travel? How did you find it? Share your good deal in the comments section.
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