When it comes to overseas travel, people aged 50 and over are a prime target market for many travel agencies and agents.
It is well known that they travel more often, go further and stay longer than people of any other age group. Most people over 50 have more discretionary income than most other travelers and more time to spend it.
As a result, today’s 50+ are offered an amazing and sometimes confusing range of travel discounts and special bargains.
But if you can successfully identify and take advantage of the best age-specific travel discounts, you can potentially save hundreds.
“The most important thing for people over 50 is value for money,” says Matt Corcoran of Dublin-based King Travel, which offers packages aimed at over 50s. “Most of them are retirees, who care about their savings and want the best possible deal.”
Many resorts, hotels, restaurants, tour operators, transport companies and other travel providers offer special discounts and concessions for older travelers, but sometimes they are not always advertised, so you have nothing to lose. while asking.
2. Be flexible and ready to go
Regardless of your age, being flexible about when you can travel can be the best way to keep your vacation costs down. But of course, it’s after your kids have fled the nest or you’ve retired or semi-retired that this flexibility takes on a whole new dimension, and you must use it to your advantage.
“The main benefit for senior travelers is the ability to travel when the value is highest,” says James Malone of Rathgar Travel. “Flights will always be more expensive near public holidays and school vacations and, if savvy senior travelers avoid rush hour, they will save a lot of money.”
However, remember that early or last minute discounts tend not to persist, so you’ll need to be quick and flexible. “Get used to traveling at the last minute,” John Spollen explains on Cassidy Travel. “Keep this suitcase ready for the best deals from tour operators, your passport up to date, and purchase an annual insurance policy as the best deal.”
That said, many people over 50 may tend to focus on travel in the spring or fall, especially if they resort to specialist providers of 50+ package deals such as John. Galligan Travel.
“Demand drops in the summer when the grandchildren are on vacation,” explains John Galligan.
3. Look beyond the internet
Regardless of how you book, you should be able to get a discount or discount on senior citizen travel if it’s available, but sometimes it can’t be found online. If you want to know if any senior citizen discounts or concessions apply, you or your travel agent may need to call and speak to someone.
Many over the age of 50 don’t use the internet anyway, according to Corcoran. “People over 50 don’t book online, they call every time,” he says. Many of them could see offers on television, especially on Aertel, he adds.
Another way to stay on top of the best deals is to sign up for email or print newsletters from travel agencies that target those over 50.
4. Do your homework
Some senior citizens’ discounts, concessions or travel packages are available to you as early as age 50, while others may be effective at age 55, 60, 62, 65, 70 or other birthdays.
“Most of our offers are valid when one traveler is over 50, some are 55 and some are 60,” said Malone.
If you’re interested in specific travel discounts, make sure you know how old you need to be to qualify. Keep in mind that many travel discounts only apply at certain times or may result in other restrictions.
5. Get discounts for your companions
A little-known feature of many senior travel discounts is that if the person buying the tickets, trip, or room is the right age to qualify, they can get the same discount for any number of their companions. , regardless of their age.
“To meet the needs of guests traveling with their sons, daughters and even grandchildren, some hotels will also allow the use of rates for those over 50,” said Galligan.
6. The best discount may not be the senior discount.
A discount is a discount of any type, but a senior discount may not be the best deal available.
Before you apply for the senior citizen discount, be sure to check out any special promotional or other travel discounts that may be available regardless of your age, as there may be better deals around.
“Some cruise lines offer senior discounts, but it may be more beneficial to take a different offer,” said Malone. “But any ITAA (Irish Travel Agents Association) travel agent will advise clients on the best deal available.”