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Planning Retirement Online

Private Benefits of Growing Older

As we indicated on the first page of this Guide, this section deals with national, rather than local, concessions and benefits.

Benefits, Concessions and Discounts

Even with these national deals, whilst there will be some specific organisations mentioned, the emphasis in this section is on making you aware of the types of things available so that you can make your own enquiries. It is not comprehensive but indicative, showing you the areas that you might like to follow up.

However, make sure you read the conclusion to this article because we are giving you the chance to contribute to making this section more specific and therefore even more helpful to people. We want your contributions, so read on and see how you can help us.

Rail Travel

Once you are 60 you can buy a Senior Citizens’ Rail Card. This will cost £30 (2017/18 rate) but then you get a third off all your rail travel. So if you intend to use the rail network at all regularly, you should get one. If you buy a three-year one on-line it costs £70, so the annual rate is even cheaper. For more details, go to 

If you live in Scotland, FirstGroup run a website called Club50. It provides discounted rail tickets for the over- 50s. If you have a senior rail card, you get an additional discount. The offers are for a limied period only, so have a look at the website when you want to travel to see if there's one available.

You can very often get cheap fares by booking up well in advance. So book as early as possible to take advantage of these cheaper prices.

National Trust/English Heritage

If you like looking round lovely buildings and gardens and seeing some of our most historic buildings, you might like to join the National Trust ( or English Heritage (

You can get either annual or life membership, both of which enable you to get free entry into the properties. English Heritage gives discounts for the over-60s for both annual and life membership. The National Trust gives over-60s discounts for life membership and for Annual Membership if you have been a member for a total of 5 years.

Hotels and Restaurants

Discounts for older people are very common amongst hotels and restaurants, both locally and through national chains.

Locally, many pubs will do a ‘Senior Citizens’ lunch’ or have other similar schemes for older people. Restaurants will provide discounts at certain times, sometimes providing a limited menu for these schemes. You need to keep your eyes open for local in initiatives and always ask if they run such schemes.

Nationally, many of the hotel and restaurant/pub chains run discount schemes, not necessarily just for older people, but which are very useful for people of all ages. There are also some specific schemes for older people. For example, Little Chef do a Finetime card that provides discounts for the over-50s. There are set times when you can get the discount and you get the details when you get the card. Ask for one when you go into a Little Chef.

Next time you are in a hotel, restaurant or pub make sure you ask if there are any discounts. If it’s one of those that has a card scheme, get an application form and fill it in. There’s no harm in having these cards because you never know when they will come in handy.

Cinemas and Theatres

You will very often get discounts at theatres if you ask for one, although there is no national scheme that we are aware of.

Some cinema chains give cheap entry to the over-60s on certain days. If you want to go to the cinema, why not go on the day that you can get in cheaper?

Stores and Garden Centres

Stores such as Boots ( ) offer extra benefits for the Over 60s, whilst there are many DIY stores and Garden Centres that provide discount days (usually 10%) to the over-60s on certain days.

For example, you can join the B&Q Diamond card for 10% off on Wednesdays.

If you are over 60 and go to Wyevale Garden Centres on a Tuesday, you get double points under their Gardening Club scheme.

Next time you go to a DIY store or garden centre, make sure that you ask whether they run a similar scheme and start to take advantage of it.

Visitor Attractions

Many visitor attractions such as Canterbury Cathedral and Windsor Castle allow you to get in cheaper if you are over 60.

If you are having a day out and are visiting an attraction make sure you ask if there are concessions if there is nothing to advertise them. Very often you will be pleasantly surprised at the outcome.

Sporting Events

As an older person, you will sometimes get a discount on entry to sports events. Football clubs will offer discounts on tickets and season tickets for older people but very often you have to be 65 before this applies.

You can play a round of golf a bit cheaper on some courses if you are over-60 and some golf club membership is cheaper, too.

If you want to become a member of a county cricket club, for example, you may well get that cheaper. So the key, once again, is to ask. Whenever you order a ticket for a sporting event, want to join a club, obtain a season ticket or whatever, make sure you ask if there are discounts for older people.

Local Discounts

We made clear earlier that this is not the forum for strictly local discounts. However, in general terms, as well as all the things we have spoken about earlier, you may well find local age-related discounts in all sorts of outlets if you look and ask. For example, hairdressers often give older people reductions and you probably know of many other examples in your area.

To remind yourself of how to help us with this section, go back to our introductory pages at Concessions, Discounts and Special Offers. To look at what's available in the public sector, go to Concessions, Discounts and Special Offers - Public Sector.



This Guide to Concessions and Discounts is written by Retirement Specialist Dave Sinclair  supported by members of the LaterLife team. As well as writing on retirement matters Dave is Training Director at LaterLife and responsible for the content and continuous improvement of LaterLife's Retirement Courses.
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