Where to Save Money with Senior Discounts
Whether you are anxious about how the election results will affect your budget, or you want to set aside money for travel or luxuries, I have a roundup of senior discounts and ways to cut costs on the basics. It can be hard to cut costs on an already bare-bones budget, but finding deals can help you save money.
On average, caregivers spend approximately $5,000 for out-of-pocket caregiving expenses. If you also have medical challenges or need to outsource caregiving, you could spend more than twice that on medical or caregiving expenses.
One of the reasons I decided to close my business this year was because I saw first-hand how expensive it can be to get older. My company was losing money and had a major set-back that would require another large investment in the business and I realized I was trying to float the business at the risk of my family’s financial future.
I saw how many of my clients were impacted financially from covering transportation costs for their elderly parents to hiring paid caregivers or paying for meals and delivery services. That was for healthy parents. The costs went up exponentially for those who were caring for parents with health issues.
We are never guaranteed our health so we don’t know what the future will hold for us. One of the very few benefits of having a chronic illness is that I actually do know that my future will be expensive since I already deal with medical bills. It forces me to save and plan for the future so that I hopefully won’t burden my sons with my medical care.
Even if you or your caree are in a position to cover all of the caregiving and medical expenses, it never hurts to save money for a rainy day – or even for luxuries. Here are some opportunities to save money easily.
Senior Discounts on Groceries and Retail
These retailers and grocery stores offer senior discounts to shoppers. Taking advantage of these deals at places where you already shop can save you money without much hassle. Remember to ask for the discount. In many cases, they don’t offer the discount unless you request it. Don’t be shy, you earned it!
- Dress Barn: 10% off (55+, locations vary)
- Hallmark: 10% off one day a week (locations and date vary)
- Kohl’s: 15% off on Wednesday (60+)
- Michael’s: 10% off on Tuesdays with AARP card
- Rite Aid: 20% off the first Wednesday of the month for wellness + members (65+)
- Ross Dress for Less: 10% off every Tuesday (55+)
- TJ Maxx: 10% off on Tuesdays (not all locations, call ahead)
- Stein Mart: 20% off Red Dot/Clearance items first Monday of the month (55+)
- Walgreens: Senior Day once a month for Balance Rewards Members 55+. Day varies by location. 20% off Walgreens brands and 15% off most other brands.
- Harris Teeter: 5% off every Tuesday (60+)
- Kroger: 10% off first Wednesday of the month (60+ select locations)
- Publix: 5% off every Wednesday (60+ and only valid outside Florida)
- Fred Meyer: 10% off first Tuesday of each month
Additional Opportunities for Seniors to Save Money
There are also simple ways you can save money without expending much energy. Here are some suggestions:
- Reach out to your utility providers to find out if they have assistance programs for low income or other savings opportunities like energy savings, energy efficiency, seasonal discounts or medical discounts.
- Reach out to service providers (cell phone, cable, home phone, insurance) to find out if there is a plan better suited to your budget or if they have any current specials you can take advantage of.
- Sign up for loyalty cards for stores you frequent. You can earn coupons, special discounts and even savings on gas. For example, I have a CVS loyalty card and receive a 25% off everything I buy coupon fairly regularly. I use it to purchase necessities. I also have a loyalty card for my grocery stores. I get special savings on select items and I earn gas rewards. I’m not purchasing things I don’t already use, so I am just earning extra savings on things I already buy.
- Use the library for your entertainment. Did you know you can rent movies and music from the library? You can also read magazines to save money on subscriptions.
- Turn off heat in unused rooms. If you are living in a big house with several rooms you don’t use, consider turning off heat in those rooms to save on your gas or electric bill.
- On that note, consider turning your thermostat down two or three degrees and wearing a sweater and thick socks.
- Look for cost savings on medications. If you or your parents take a name-brand medication, find out if there is a generic alternative. If there isn’t, or it doesn’t agree with you, check the manufacturer’s website. Some pharmaceutical companies offer patient assistance on medication. It is usually fairly easy to use and the savings can be great. For example, I take a medication that has a $100 co-pay. Every month. My pharmacy found a co-pay assistance program that covers the entire co-pay so I now pay nothing.
- If you’ve already explored all of the cost savings for medications, meet with your doctor to determine if you need all of the prescriptions you are taking or if one new medication can cover two conditions. Additionally, if possible, consult your doctor about bumping up a prescription from 5 mg to 10 mg and splitting the pill at home (if possible without altering medication). You can also reach out to your insurance company about mail order prescriptions to save money.
- Apply for discount programs. Do you have a AAA card? Did you know that you are entitled to savings at various retailers, restaurants and on travel? If you haven’t applied for an AARP membership card, do it now for savings at various retailers and restaurants. If you are a member of an alumni organization, check in to see if they offer any special alumni discounts in places you frequent.
- If you use credit cards, consider getting a card that has cash back bonuses. If you are spending the money anyway, why not get some of that money back.
- Take advantage of any and all senior discounts available to you.
Whether you have a tight budget and need to save money or you are financially comfortable but like to have room in your budget for travel or other luxuries, taking advantage of these easy cost cutting tips can help make extra room in your budget.
I have recently had to see various specialists as a result of an autoimmune flare. A few weeks ago, I spent $75 in co-pays. I will be spending another $75 in co-pays this week. It is a pretty big blow to our budget, particularly leading up to the holidays when we’ll have higher expenses. As a result of my own medical expenses, I’m always on the lookout for ways to save without having to cut back on our necessities. Hopefully these tips will help your family.