Now that you’re in retirement or nearing it, it’s time to take those trips you always put off. Thankfully, most hotels, airlines, car rental companies and cruise lines offer travel discounts for seniors, many as early as age 55. Here’s After55.com’s guide to senior travel discounts. Note: Many discounts require an AARP membership.
Hotels are known for offering discounts to anyone over the age of 55. Here’s a brief list of some of the most popular hotels that offer senior discounts.
- Best Western: AARP members and guests 55+ receive 10% or more off.
- Choice Hotels: (Cambria, Comfort Inn, Quality, Clarion, EconoLodge): 10% off for AARP members or guests 60 and over.
- Days Inn: Discounts vary for guests 60 and over.
- Hilton Hotels: (Hilton, Doubletree, Embassy Suites, Hampton Inn): AARP members can save 10%. Guests can also join the Senior HHonors program, which rewards them with discounted rates, free nights and savings at Hilton restaurants.
- Hyatt: Guests 62 and over can receive up to 50% off.
- InterContinental Hotels Group: (InterContinental, Candlewood Suites, Crowne Plaza, Kimpton, Holiday Inn): Discounts vary for guests 62 and older.
- La Quinta Inns: Discounts vary (65+), but AARP members receive up to 10% off.
- Marriott: 15% or more off for anyone 62 or older.
- Motel 6: 10% off for AARP members.
- Wyndham Hotels (Wyndham, Days Inn, Super 8, Ramada, Knights Inn, Howard Johnson, Travelodge): AARP members can receive up to 20% off; members of AMAC (Association of Mature American Citizens) also can get up to 20% off.
If you prefer to stay at a B&B or smaller hotel instead of a large hotel chain, call the property and ask if they have any senior discounts. In most cases, they will.
Unlike at hotels, finding senior discounts for airline tickets may take more work. That’s because most airlines that do offer discounts for seniors don’t publish the information.
For example, both United Airlines and American Airlines offer discounted fares to a handful of destinations for people age 65 and older. When booking your tickets for either airline, make sure you click on “Advanced search” or “All search options” on the main reservation page and indicate that the ticket is for a senior. You can also call United at 1 (800) 864-8331 and American Airlines at 1 (800) 433-7300.
Like United and American, Delta also offers senior discounts, but only for certain markets. To find available discounts when flying Delta, call 1 (800) 221-1212.
Southwest Airlines also offers discounted fares for people 65+ for limited destinations. These discounts are applied by calling Southwest at 1 (800) 435-9792. Another perk with Southwest is that the senior fares are completely refundable.
British Airways has partnered with AARP so senior travelers can receive discounts from $65 to $400 on flights.
To find the best airline deals, however, consider signing up for airline and travel newsletters and be flexible with your travel dates, like departing on a Tuesday.
Car and Transportation Discounts
If traveling by car, bus or train, seniors can take advantage of the following discounts.
Car Rentals (many require an AARP membership):
- Alamo Car Rental: AARP members are eligible for up to 25% off.
- Avis: AARP members can receive 25% off.
- Budget Rental Cars: 10-25% off for AARP members.
- Dollar Rent A Car: 10% off for anyone 50 or older.
- Enterprise Rent-A-Car: 5% off for AARP members.
- Hertz: Up to 25% off for AARP members.
- National Car Rental: Up to 30% off for AARP members.
If you have ever looked into a cruise, you already know it’s not that difficult to find some sort of discount. The major cruise lines – such as Carnival Cruises, Norwegian, Celebrity Cruises and Royal Caribbean – offer discounts to passengers who are age 55 and up. However, these discounts apply only to select ships and destinations.
Other Travel Discounts for Seniors
On top of the discounts listed above, seniors can get various other travel deals by being an AARP member. These include deals on vacation packages, hotel rooms, airfare, and cruises. AARP has also partnered with companies like Expedia and Grand European Travel so seniors can save hundreds of dollars when booking a trip.
Seniors can also purchase the Senior Pass for National Park Service sites for just $10. This pass allows guests 62 and older to enter the more than 2,000 beautiful federal recreation sites across the country and receive discounts for camping and RV hookups.
If you don’t see any senior discounts advertised, simply ask the company or organization. Along with the companies mentioned here, many restaurants, museums, and tour companies offer seniors reduced prices if asked.