The Ultimate Guide to Senior Travel Discounts

Wanderlust has no age limit. For many Baby Boomers and members of the Silent Generation, your Golden Years are a time to go on the trips you couldn’t take with busy weekends and limited time off during your 40 or more years in the workforce.

In fact, 38% of Baby Boomers have a travel related bucket list, but, on average, only 25% of that list has been accomplished, . Despite the fact that 56% of these Baby Boomers think about going on a bucket list trip at least once a month, AARP found that a lack of money is the most significant barrier to taking a trip for 45% of Baby Boomers.

Saving up for a trip can be difficult in your later years when you’re living on a fixed income or relying on savings; however, it’s not impossible. Many companies offer a senior discount, and in most cases, all you have to do is ask!

To help make your bucket list travel goals a reality, we’ve rounded up the best senior travel discounts. The Ultimate Guide to Senior Travel Discounts will help you plan your trip with savings and offers exclusive to seniors. You’ll find information about hotels, flights, car rentals, sightseeing, and more with tips and resources to help you get the most of your trip.

Start saving today with The Ultimate Guide to Senior Travel Discounts!

Note: The information provided within this guide is correct as of the time of publication. Please note that some of these deals and discounts may have changed after the date of publication impacting the accuracy of this information.

When do I become a senior citizen?

Age is just a number, except for when it comes to claiming senior discounts. While there’s no one set age at which you qualify, most companies start providing senior discounts to people in their early to mid-60s. The U.S. government, for example, opens up Medicare to people age 65 and older. However, some companies will provide senior citizen benefits and discounts to people in their 50s. For instance, AARP lets you become a member at 50. So, no matter how young you feel, don’t be afraid to ask!

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AIRLINES & FLIGHTS

In most cases, the biggest expense of any trip is the cost of getting there and back. Even when , flights still stayed around the same price or had a marginal decrease in cost. As a senior, though, you can receive special rates on flights. In most cases, you’ll need to speak with a customer service representative, ask for the senior fare, and confirm your age to receive the discount. Some airlines, though, extend discounts to AARP members only allowing you to book through a portal online.

These are some of the airlines offering exclusive discounts to seniors:

Airline Discount Details
Percentage or dollar amount off AARP Member Advantages include a specific percentage or dollar off flights.
Special rates offered AARP members who book flights through the AARP Travel Center could receive special rates on participating flights.
Discount varies American Airlines may offer senior fares in some domestic markets for seniors 65+. Please call Reservations at 1-800-433-7300.
$200 discount AARP members could save $200 on British Airways flights. Book by Jan. 31, 2018, for travel Feb. 1, 2017 – Dec. 31, 2018.
Discount varies Seniors (age not specified) could receive discounts or companion fares in certain markets. Fares may apply to a select itinerary but are not available online. Contact 800-221-1212 for domestic reservations or 800-241-4141 for international reservations.
Discount varies Southwest reservations for senior fares (age not specified) are available online for both domestic and international flights. You may also a Southwest Airlines Customer Representative at 800-I-FLY-SWA or your local travel agent.
Discount varies United offers select senior fares for passengers who are 65+. Ask for more details when you make your reservation or select the seniors (age 65 and older) category when booking on united.com.

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GROUND TRANSPORTATION

Flying isn’t the only way to get to your destination. You can also save money as a senior on buses, cars, and trains. Even if you do choose to fly or take a train, you may still need to rent a car or take public transportation to get around. AARP partners with a variety of car rental companies to provide a discount; however, you can also save money with the companies directly. Metro systems in New York City, San Francisco, Chicago, and Washington, D.C., reduce fares for seniors, sometimes by as much as 50% or more!

How much could you save?

Economy and compact cars can range from $45 to $65 per day (). With a 25% discount, you could save a total of $56.25 to $81.25 during a five-day trip.

These are some of the train, subway, bus, and car rental companies offering exclusive discounts to seniors:

Company Discount Details
Percentage or dollar amount off AARP Member Advantages include a specific percentage or dollar amount off certain flights, car rentals, train or bus tickets, cruises, and more.
Up to 25% discount AARP members who book through the AARP Travel Center could save up to 25% off select car rentals.
15% discount Amtrak travelers 62+ are eligible to receive a 15% discount on the lowest available rail fare on most Amtrak trains.
10% to 25% discount AARP members could save 10% to 25% on all vehicles. Use Avis Worldwide Discount (AWD) # A359810 to get the lowest rates.
62.5% discount Seniors 65+ can purchase a BART Green Ticket valued at $24 for only $9 (62.5% discount).
Up to 30% discount AARP members could save up to 30% on base rates at participating locations in the contiguous U.S. and Canada. Use Budget Customer Discount (BCD) number Y508501.
5% discount Greyhound passengers aged 62+ can ask for a 5% discount on passenger fares. Photo ID required.
Additional 10% discount Renters 50+ could save an additional 10% off the base rate for your next weekend, weekly, or monthly rental. Use promo code 310353 and discount code 2007815.
50% discount Seniors 65+ can purchase Reduced-Fare MetroCard providing base subway or local bus fare for half price (regularly $2.75).
5% discount AARP members could save 5% on leisure daily, weekly, weekend, and monthly rates. Use Payless Promo Code KW47RY to get the lowest rates.
Fare reduction If you are 65+ and not enrolled in the Illinois Department on Aging’s Benefit Access program, you are eligible for a reduced fare permit.
Up to 10% discount Seniors 65+ could save up to 10% on regular adult fare. Please have valid ID when purchasing tickets. Senior citizen fare discounts do not apply to already discounted tickets.
Up to 50% discount Seniors (age not specified) may purchase a Senior SmarTrip card to pay the reduced fare or add a Metrobus 7-Day Bus Pass by presenting a valid government-issued photo ID card.
43% discount As an AARP member, you can join Zipcar for $40 (that’s 43% in annual savings), and you’ll get $40 in free drive time.

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HOTELS & LODGING

Depending on the nature of your trip and your budget, you may want to just stay at a basic hotel with few amenities and spend most of your time out sightseeing, or you may want a luxurious place to kick back, rest, and relax. The good news is that you can save money no matter what type of lodging you’re looking for. The age range varies greatly among the hotels so, again, don’t be afraid to ask!

How much could you save?

The average price of a hotel room in Orlando, Fla., in 2016 was $112 per night (), meaning with a 10% discount, you could save $56 total for a five-night stay.

These are some of the hotels and lodges offering exclusive discounts to seniors:

Hotel Discount Details
Percentage or dollar amount off AARP Member Advantages include a specific percentage or dollar off certain hotels and lodging.
10% discount AARP members could get a 10% discount on select hotels when booking through the AARP Travel Center.
Up to 50% discount Seniors save up to 50% at participating Hyatt hotels and resorts in the continental U.S. and Canada.
Discount varies Guests 60+ could enjoy savings off the best available rate at participating Baymont Inn & Suites hotels by selecting “senior discount” online or calling 800-337-0550.
10% discount or more Guests 55+ save 10% or more on room rates at Best Western Hotels & Resorts. You will be asked to provide proof of age at check-in.
Up to 10% discount If you are 60+ or an AARP member, you could save up to 10% with advance reservations. Select “Senior/AARP” from the special rate drop-down or request the Senior Rate when you call.
Discount varies Discounts on the non-discounted room rate at any participating Candlewood Suites hotel in the U.S. will be available to guests who are 62+ or with valid membership ID of a retired persons organization.
Up to 10% discount If you are 60+ or an AARP member, you could save up to 10% with advance reservations. Select “Senior/AARP” from the special rate drop-down or request the Senior Rate when you call.
Up to 10% discount If you are 60+ or an AARP member, you could save up to 10% with advance reservations. Select “Senior/AARP” from the special rate drop-down or request the Senior Rate when you call.
Up to 10% discount If you are 60+ or an AARP member, you could save up to 10% with advance reservations. Select “Senior/AARP” from the special rate drop-down or request the Senior Rate when you call.
15% discount or more If you’re 62+, you could save 15% or more on your room rate at Marriott brand hotels worldwide.
Discount varies If you are 62+, you could enjoy a discounted room rate at any participating Crowne Plaza Hotel & Resort when you present a valid ID for membership in a retired persons organization.
Discount varies Guests 60+ could enjoy savings off the best available rate at participating Days Inn by selecting “senior discount” online or calling 800-225-3297.
10% discount or more Participating locations offer AARP members 10% or more off the best available rate. Choose your hotel and look for the “AARP” rate on the Rooms & Rates page.
Up to 5% discount AARP members could save up to 5% at participating DoubleTree by Hilton hotels. Search the “AARP” rate online.
Up to 10% discount If you are 60+ or an AARP member, you could save up to 10% with advance reservations. Select “Senior/AARP” from the special rate drop-down or request the Senior Rate when you call.
Up to 5% discount AARP members could save up to 5% at participating Embassy Suites by Hilton hotels. Search the “AARP” rate online.
15% discount or more If you’re 62+, you could save 15% or more on your room rate at Marriott brand hotels worldwide.
Up to 15% discount AARP members could save 5% to 15% at participating Four Points by Sheraton locations. For reservations, call 1-877-778-2277 or visit www.starwood.com/aarp.
Up to 50% discount Seniors could save up to 50% at participating Hyatt hotels and resorts in the continental U.S. and Canada.
Up to 10% discount Hampton by Hilton offers a special seniors rate for guests 65+ saving you up to 10% off our best available rate when booking online and selecting “senior rate.”
Up to 10% discount Seniors 65+ could enjoy up to 10% savings at Hilton Garden Inn. Search the senior rates online.
Up to 10% discount AARP members could save up to 10% on the best available rate at Hilton Hotels & Resorts. Book online or call 855-227-7445.
Discount varies Discounts on the non-discounted room rate at any participating Holiday Inn hotels in the U.S. and Canada will be available to guests who are 62+ or with valid membership ID of a retired persons organization.
Up to 10% discount AARP members could save up to 10% on the best available rate at Homewood Suites by Hilton. Book online or call 855-227-7445.
Discount varies Guests 60+ could enjoy special savings off the best available rate at participating Howard Johnson hotels. Book online and select “senior discount,” or call 800-225-3297.
Up to 50% discount Seniors (age not specified) could save up to 50% at participating Hyatt hotels and resorts in the continental U.S. and Canada.
Up to 50% discount Seniors (age not specified) could save up to 50% at participating Hyatt hotels and resorts in the continental U.S. and Canada.
Discount varies Guests 60+ could enjoy special savings off the best available rate at participating Knights Inn hotels. Book online and select “senior discount,” or call 800-477-062.
Up to 10% discount AARP members could save 10% per stay at participating La Quinta Inns & Suites or LQ Hotel locations in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, and Honduras. Book online with promo code “AARP” or call 866-573-6722.
15% discount or more If you’re 62+, you could save 15% or more on your room rate at Marriott brand hotels worldwide.
Up to 10% discount If you are 60+ or an AARP member, you could save up to 10% with advance reservations. Select “Senior/AARP” from the special rate drop-down or request the Senior Rate when you call.
Discount varies Guests 60+ could enjoy special savings off the best available rate at participating Microtel hotels. Book online and select “senior discount,” or call 800-225-3297.
10% discount Seniors 60+ could save 10% at Motel 6. Select “senior rate” online, or call 800-899-9841.
Up to 50% discount Seniors could save up to 50% at participating Hyatt hotels and resorts in the continental U.S. and Canada.
Up to 10% discount If you are 60+ or an AARP member, you could save up to 10% with advance reservations. Select “Senior/AARP” from the special rate drop-down or request the Senior Rate when you call.
Up to 10% discount Guests 60+ could enjoy up to 10% off best available rate at participating Ramada hotels. Select “senior discount” online or call 800-854-9517.
10% discount Seniors 59+ could enjoy a 10% discount on room rates year round. Bring your ID to verify senior status at check-in.
15% discount or more If you’re 62 +, you could save 15% or more on your room rate at Marriott brand hotels worldwide.
15% discount or more If you’re 62+, you could save 15% or more on your room rate at Marriott brand hotels worldwide.
Up to 10% discount If you are 60+ or an AARP member, you could save up to 10% with advance reservations. Select “Senior/AARP” from the special rate drop-down or request the Senior Rate when you call.
Up to 15% discount AARP members could save 5% to 15% at participating Sheraton Hotels & Resorts locations. For reservations, call 1-877-778-2277 or visit www.starwood.com/aarp.
Up to 10% discount If you are 60+ or an AARP member, you could save up to 10% with advance reservations. Select “Senior/AARP” from the special rate drop-down or request the Senior Rate when you call.
15% discount or more If you’re 62+, you could save 15% or more on your room rate at Marriott brand hotels worldwide.
Up to 15% discount AARP members could save up to 15% on best available rates at participating St. Regis hotels. For reservations, call 1-877-778-2277 or visit www.starwood.com/aarp.
Up to 10% discount If you are 60+ or an AARP member, you could save up to 10% with advance reservations. Select “Senior/AARP” from the special rate drop-down or request the Senior Rate when you call.
Discount varies Guests 60+ could enjoy special savings off the best available rate at participating Super 8 hotels. Book online and select “senior discount,” or call 800-454-3213.
Discount varies Guests 60+ could enjoy special savings off the best available rate at participating Travelodge hotels. Book online and select “senior discount,” or call 800-525-4055.
Up to 15% discount AARP members could save up to 15% on best available rates at Westin Hotels & Resorts. For reservations, call 1-877-778-2277 or visit www.starwood.com/aarp.
Discount varies Guests 60+ could enjoy special savings off the best available rate at participating Travelodge hotels. Book online and select “senior discount,” or call 800-337-0077.

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SIGHTSEEING & RECREATION

Whether you want to explore one of the more than 400 areas of the National Park Service, learn something new at a museum, or soak up some sun and fun on a cruise, there’s a senior discount for everyone! Discounts on our list range from a dollar amount off to a percentage off. And again, the age range varies considerably, so don’t be afraid to ask!

How much could you save?

An annual pass from the National Park Services for entry to the 110+ parks that charge admission usually costs $80 per year. However, starting at age 62, you can purchase an annual park pass for $20 or a lifetime pass for $80. Alternatively, if you’ve previously used a senior annual pass, you can turn exchange four for a lifetime pass ().

These are some of the sightseeing and recreation companies offering exclusive discounts to seniors:

Company Discount Details
$6 discount New York City, NY
Seniors 65+ can purchase general admission tickets for $18 (regularly $24).
Special rates offered Multiple locations
AARP members who book cruises through the AARP Travel Center could receive up to $100 in extra onboard cruise credit. Members could also receive special rates for vacation packages.
$6 discount Chicago, IL
Seniors 65+ can purchase general admission tickets for $19 (regularly $25), Chicago resident admission tickets for $14 (regularly $20), and Illinois resident admission tickets for $16 (regularly $22).
$1 discount Waterbury, VT
Seniors 60+ can purchase guided factory tour tickets for $3 (regularly $4) in person.
$9 discount Phoenix, AZ
Seniors 60+ can purchase all-day admission tickets for $22.95 (regularly $31.95).
$10 discount Asheville, NC
Seniors 65+ can save $10 on regular adult daytime admission at the Reception & Ticketing Sales Center every Tuesday and Wednesday.
$1 discount Dodge City, KS
Seniors 65+ can purchase general admission tickets for $11 (regularly $12) in person.
$5 discount Bronx, NY
Seniors 65+ can purchase admission tickets for $31.95 (regularly $36.95) online or in person.
Discount varies Multiple locations
Seniors 55+ can check the Carnival calendar to find the best senior fares. Under “Extra Savings” select “Cruisers 55+”
Special rates offered Davis, WV
Seniors 60+ can book a double queen or king lodge room Sunday through Thursday starting at $75 per night. Age verification will be required at check-in.
$2 discount Boothbay, ME
Seniors 65+ can purchase regular season tickets (May through October) for $14 (regularly $16) online or in person.
Special rates offered Williamsburg, VA
Seniors 50+ can purchase a day’s admission for $40.99 and get the rest of the year free. Tickets must be purchased by Oct. 31, 2017.
$5 discount Pigeon Forge, TN
Seniors 60+ can purchase 1-day theme park tickets for $64 (regularly $69).
$3 discount New York City, NY
Seniors 62+ can purchase main deck tickets for $31 (regularly $34) or main deck + top deck tickets for $51 (regularly $54).
$3 discount Mount Vernon, VA
Seniors 62+ can purchase general admission tickets online for $16 (regularly $19).
Up to $3 discount Atlanta, GA
Seniors 65+ can purchase tickets online for $29.95 + tax (regularly $31.95 + tax) on weekdays, $32.95 + tax (regularly $35.95 + tax) on weekends, or in person for $36.95 + tax (regularly $39.95 + tax).
$3.85 discount Memphis, TN
Seniors 62+ can purchase mansion tour tickets for $34.90 (regularly $38.75) online or in person.
$4 discount Wilmington, DE
Seniors (age not specified) can purchase museum tickets for $10 (regularly $14) in person.
$6 discount Milwaukee, WI
Seniors 65+ can purchase general admission tickets for $14 (regularly $20).
$2 discount Dearborn, MI
Seniors 62+ can purchase tickets for $20 (regularly $22) online and in person.
$6 discount Washington, DC
Seniors 65+ can purchase museum admission tickets for $15.95 (regularly $21.95).
50% discount Washington, DC
The Kennedy Center offers seniors 65+ a limited number of tickets at 50% off on a first-come, first-served basis, subject to availability.
$4 discount Titusville, FL
Seniors 55+ can purchase daily admission tickets for $46 (regularly $50) in person.
$1 discount Louisville, KY
Seniors 65+ can purchase tickets for $14 (regularly $15) online or in person.
$8 discount New York City, NY
Seniors (age not specified) can purchase tickets at their suggested price for $17 (regularly $25) online.
$2 discount Boston, MA
Seniors 65+ can purchase admission tickets for $23 (regularly $25).
Up to $4 discount Seattle, WA
Seniors 65+ can purchase tickets for $18 online (regularly $21) or $19 in person (regularly $23).
$5 discount Baltimore, MD
Seniors 64+ can purchase general admission tickets for $34.95 (regularly $39.95).
$8 discount Cooperstown, NY
Seniors 65+ can purchase tickets for $15 (regularly $23).
$2 discount Jamestown, ND
Seniors (age not specified) can purchase tickets for $6 (regularly $8) in person.
$2.75 discount Oklahoma City, OK
Seniors 62+ can purchase tickets for $9.75 (regularly $12.50) in person.
$60 discount Multiple locations
Seniors 62+ can purchase an annual pass for $20 (regularly $80), or a lifetime pass for $80. Applicants must provide documentation of age and residency or citizenship.
$3.50 discount New Orleans, LA
Seniors 65+ can purchase tickets for $23.50 (regularly $27) online or in person.
$3 discount Los Angeles, CA
Seniors (age not specified) can purchase tickets for $9 (regularly $12) online or in person.
$4 discount Canton, OH
Seniors 65+ can purchase tickets for $21 (regularly $25).
$2.25 discount Cleveland, OH
Seniors 65+ can purchase tickets for $21.25 (regularly $23.50) online or in person.
$3 discount Simi Valley, CA
Seniors 62+ can purchase tickets for $32 (regularly $34).
Discount varies Multiple locations
Royal Caribbean offers reduced prices on selected sailings for guests 55+.
10% discount San Diego, CA
Seniors 65+ can save 10% on 1-day passes. Tickets must be purchased in person, and valid ID must be shown.
$5 discount Albuquerque, NM
Seniors 62+ can purchase tickets for $25 (regularly $20) in person.
$2 discount Kennebunkport, ME
Seniors 60+ can purchase tickets for $8 (regularly $10) in person.
$3 discount Seattle, WA
Seniors 65+ can purchase general admission tickets for $19 (regularly $22) online or in person.
$4.50 discount New York City, NY
Seniors 62+ can purchase reserve tickets for ferry access and museum admission for $21 (regularly $25.50).
$3 discount Huntsville, AL
Seniors 55+ can purchase the Stars Combo admission for $26 (regularly $29) online or in person.
$2 discount Minneapolis, MN
Seniors 62+ can purchase gallery admission tickets for $12 (regularly $14) in person.
$31 discount Federal Heights, CO
Seniors 60+ can purchase tickets for the 2018 summer season for $10.99 (regularly $41.99)
$19 discount North Little Rock, AR
Seniors 60+ can purchase tickets for $10.99 + tax (regularly $29.99 + tax).
$2 discount Salem, MA
Seniors (age not specified) can purchase tour tickets for $8.25 (regularly $10.25) in person.
$2 discount Atlanta, GA
Seniors 65+ can purchase general admission tickets for $15 (regularly $17).
$20 discount Kansas City, MO
Seniors 62+ can purchase a JR/SR ticket for $39.99 (regularly $59.99 at the gate).

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Tips for planning your travel

Travel may be good for the soul, but it can put a strain on the purse strings. In addition to seeking out senior specific discounts, there are other ways you can save money on your next trip to make it memorable and affordable.

Here are some budget-friendly tips for planning your next trip:

Create a budget.

First and foremost, you should be setting a realistic budget to determine how much you’re willing to spend. This helps you tailor your trip to your interests and finances, while also reducing temptation – just because you qualify for a discount doesn’t mean you have to claim it! You could also use a travel rewards credit card to earn points for your trip to help boost your budget.

Ask, and you’ll probably receive.

We’ve said this already, but we’ll say it again – don’t be afraid to ask for a senior discount! Before you confirm any bookings, be sure to ask if a senior discount is offered and, if so, what ages qualify. Double check any fine print as well. Some senior rates require you to be an AARP member, and in some cases, might save more money.

Don’t forget to shop around.

While it’s great to check for a senior discount, don’t assume the senior rate is the lowest. For instance, many hotels offer discounts to AAA members, which might be a better deal. Airlines are known for running flash sales that only last a few days and might be a better deal. Websites like , , and help you compare costs for flights, hotels, and rental cars across hundreds of travel sites.

Consider traveling off-peak.

One of the great things of retirement is you aren’t restricted by a 9-5 Monday through Friday schedule. This allows you to take advantage of traveling during off-peak days and months. Many companies will offer a weekday discount, or lower rates during specific months. If you can be flexible with your dates, you could save even more money on top of your discount.

Don’t rule our travel insurance.

Emergencies happen, and when they do, they can completely derail your trip and your budget. While travel insurance may not be necessary for everyone, if there’s a chance you may have medical difficulties or an unforeseen circumstance that forces you to cancel, it can be a worthwhile investment. Be sure to purchase travel insurance from a reputable and trusted company.

Planning for your trip can be stressful, but try to keep perspective. Why do you want to go on this trip? To see and experience a new place! Focusing on what matters – the experience – will help you come up with a plan that works for you and your budget.

RESOURCES

There are a number of resources you can use to help you plan your trip:

  • – As the nation’s largest organization for Americans 50 years or older, AARP provides a variety of resources about retirement, Social Security, healthy living, , and more.
  • – As an AARP member, you can take advantage of special rates and offers for airlines, hotels, rental cars, cruises, and more through their travel center.
  • – As a political advocacy organization, AMAC strives to protect the interest of seniors. However, their website also includes some travel-related resources, tips, and recommendations.
  • – As the first adventure travel company designed specifically for people 50 and over, this worldwide organization provides itineraries for seniors. You can plan a trip or just get inspired.
  • – As the “conservative alternative” for seniors, NAOCS provides news, information, and resources including travel deals and discounts.
  • – This organization partners with nonprofits, businesses, and the government to improve the lives of older adults. On their website, you’ll find information about travel tips, travel insurance, finances, and much more.
  • – Originally founded as a job and information resource for Baby Boomers in 2003, the site has expanded to provide a wide variety of information, including travel related advice and resources.

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