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Tuesday 23rd July 2024

The best discounts and freebies for older people

senior citizens discounts

Getting older inevitably brings challenges, but thankfully there are some benefits as well. Among these is the range of discounts and freebies you become eligible for. In this article I’ll set out ten of the best for people aged 60 and over.

1. free prescriptions and eye tests

Everyone in the UK aged 60 or over is entitled to free prescriptions and eye tests. Depending on your circumstances you may be eligible for help with other NHS costs as well, e.g. dental treatment. The Age UK website has more information about this.

2. Free Bus Pass

Anyone in England is entitled to a bus pass for free off-peak travel once they reach the State Pension age (currently 66). In Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland you become eligible for free bus travel at the age of 60. You can find out more on this government website.

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  • If you’re 60 or over and live in London, you can get free travel on buses, trains and other modes of transport in and around London with a 60+ London Oyster photocard.

3. Reduced Price National Trust Membership

Over-60s can get a quarter off the cost of National Trust membership as long as they’ve been a member for at least the last three consecutive years. You have to phone them on 0344 800 1895 and ask for this – you can’t apply online for it. Once you’ve received the discount once, though, it should be applied automatically every year in future. English Heritage, Historic Scotland and CADW in Wales also offer discounts for the over-60s.

4. Senior Railcard

Senior Railcards are available to anyone aged 60 or over. They cost £30 a year (or £70 for three years) and entitle you to a third off most train journeys in the UK. You can also use them for first-class tickets, making travelling in style more affordable! You can buy a Senior Railcard at any staffed station, by phone, or via this website.

5. National Express Senior Coachcard

Over-60s can get a one-third discount on National Express coaches with the company’s Senior Coachcard. Card holders can also purchase £15 day returns to anywhere in the UK (excluding airports) on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, as long as they book at least three days in advance. You can also get 15% off the price of an adult ‘Fully Flexible’ fare for coach travel to an event. 

The National Express Senior Coachcard costs just £15 plus £3 post and packing per year. Visit the National Express website for more info and to apply.

6. Cut Price Cinema Tickets

All the main cinema chains – and many independents – have special offers for the over-60s, including discounted screenings on certain days. Free refreshments (e.g. tea and cake) may also be provided. Phone or visit your local cinema to find out what concessions are available.

7. ATS Euromaster Club 60

Club 60 is a discount programme for the over-60s run by vehicle services chain ATS Euromaster. Membership is free and entitles you to a range of discounts, including 15% off batteries, tyres (certain brands only), exhausts, brakes and servicing, and MOTs for £32 or just £25 with a service. There are also freebies including a cup of coffee on every visit and a free vehicle health check. Visit the Club 60 website for more information and to sign up.

8. Boots Over 60s Rewards

If you’re over 60 and have a Boots Advantage Card, you can get a range of extra benefits, including 8 points for every pound you spend on Boots’ own brands and selected others (normally card-holders only get 4 points per pound spent). You can also get 300 Advantage Card points when you take a free Boots Hearing Health Check. 

Each Advantage Card point is worth 1p, so 1000 points would be worth £10. You can spend your points online or in store. For more info and to apply, visit Boots’ Over 60s web page.

9. Dining Out Discounts

Some pubs and restaurants offer special deals and menus for the over-60s. For example, some Greene King pubs offer a ‘Seniors Menu’ with discounts on meals or a ‘Star Seniors Loyalty Scheme’ where you’ll receive larger discounts for frequent visits. Some Hungry Horse pubs offer ‘Golden Years’ menus with big discounts for over-60s. 

Discounts may only be available certain days and/or times. Offers vary, so the best advice is to check out your local pubs and see what offers for older people they have available.

10. Gyms and Swimming Pools

Most local authority swimming pools and leisure centres have discounts for older people. Some privately owned clubs also offer discounts. 

For example, Better Leisure Centres offer reduced-price Better Health Senior membership for people aged 66 and over. Members enjoy access to swimming pools and fitness classes, and can also take part in dedicated activities for senior members, from walking football to aqua aerobics. More info can be found here.

Of course, the above list only scratches the surface of what’s on offer for older people. If in doubt, it’s always worth asking whether a discount is available. There may not be – but if you don’t ask, you’ll never know!

  • Bonus! For even more freebies and discounts, check out Over 60s Discounts, a new website recently set up by a near-neighbour of mine!

Nick Daws writes for Pounds and Sense, a UK personal finance blog aimed especially (though not exclusively) at over-fifties.

Photo by cottonbro from Pexels

Nick Daws

Mouthy Blogger

Nick Daws is a semi-retired freelance writer and editor. He is the author of over 30 non-fiction books, including Start Your Own Home-Based Business and The Internet for Writers. He lives in Burntwood, Staffordshire, where he has been running his personal finance blog at Poundsandsense.com for over seven years.

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