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Financial Benefits for Seniors

Both public and private organizations offer discounts for seniors. For example, they may receive discounts on travel, entertainment and education. Tax and investment opportunities and discounted or free community or government benefits may also be available.

Financial Benefits for Seniors

Travel

Seniors receive discounted national and state park, recreation site and monument passes. In addition, they are offered discounted hotel rooms and rental cars. Transportation companies, such as Greyhound, Amtrak and some airlines, may also provide travel discounts to elders.

Entertainment

As individuals age, they may be able to see movies and eat at restaurants at a discounted rate. They may also receive free museum and gym memberships. Additional entertainment venues and events may also offer discounts or free admission to seniors.

College

Senior citizens may be able to attend public and private colleges for free or at significantly lower tuition rates.

Taxes

Seniors are eligible for larger standard deductions than younger individuals. In addition, IRA transfers of up to $100,000 to charitable organizations may be tax deductible after 70 ½ years of age.

Counties, states, and cities may also defer or exempt elders’ school tax requirements. Finally, these individuals may be eligible for real estate tax relief, and their property taxes may be frozen, preventing property tax increases as long as they own the property.

Investments

If they are still working, these individuals pretax 401K and IRA contributions may increase significantly. In addition, they are able to withdraw money from their retirement accounts without paying the tax bill until they are 70 ½ years old. After 59 ½ years of age, seniors can withdraw money from their IRAs without paying penalties, and 401K withdrawal penalties stop at 55 years of age.

Community-Based Benefits

Communities may also offer discounts or benefits to elders. For example, they may receive low or no cost meals and free or discounted public, taxi or van transportation. Communities may provide events where seniors are able to socialize. Local retail or grocery stores may also offer senior discounts.

Government programs

Seniors may receive discounted Social Security payments starting at the age of 62 and full payments at 66 or 67. In addition, the federal government offers housing stipends if the average cost of a one-bedroom home or apartment is greater than 1/3 of their monthly income.

Several food programs, such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, Seniors Farmers Market Nutrition Program and Emergency Food Assistance Program, are available to seniors who cannot afford to purchase food. Seniors are eligible for Medicare Savings Programs if they are unable to pay their medical premiums or care costs. In addition, those with high-deductible health plans may invest up to $1,000 in Health Savings Accounts pretax.

The Department of Energy’s Weatherization Assistance Program is used to evaluate and upgrade elderly individuals’ windows, appliances and HVAC systems to improve energy efficiency and reduce energy costs. Finally, seniors may choose to work with the Senior Community Service Program, working with government or community agencies for minimum wage.

As you age, you may be eligible for many cost-saving discounts, such as discounted travel, entertainment and education. You may also gain tax and investment benefits, and you will be eligible for community and government programs.