BOSTON (CBS) – There are not too many perks to growing old so whenever you find a discount take advantage of it. Embrace becoming old. It beats the alternative.

AARP is now over 40 million strong and a membership, which costs $16 annually, offers some of the best discounts around. Discounts on insurance, prescription drugs, entertainment, hotels and car rentals are just a few of the perks you can get with your membership.

Membership is open to anyone 50 or over and they often find you on your 50th birthday! I am not sure how they manage it but they do.

Now the definition of a senior depends on who is giving the discount. Could be age 50, as with AARP, or it could be 55, 60, 62 or 65. It just depends!

So use your computer to find the deals. Type in “senior discount” and lots of links pop up. I discovered Gift Card Granny and Frugal Living.

One discount I found was for Mrs. Fields Cookies, 10% discount for seniors, age 60 or older. So when I turn 60 I am heading there for a giant birthday cookie.

There are discounts for haircuts, groceries, fast food, cookies, dog grooming and hotels. And once you reach 65 your MBTA fare is discounted as well.

Many restaurant chains like Friendly’s, Chili’s, Burger King, Denny’s, Wendy’s’, Taco Bell, Fuddruckers and McDonald’s offer various discounts as well. Some have a senior’s menu, others offer 10% off.

You just have to ask. That’s the key here. You have to ask. If you don’t look like a senior, and most seniors work hard at not looking like a senior, the kid selling movie tickets is not going to ask you if you want a senior discount. Harrison Ford recently bought two tickets for a movie showing. He asked for a senior and regular adult. You have to ask for it.

Some amusement parks offer discounts as well as small theaters throughout New England.

The travel industry still offers a few perks for seniors. Check the cruise lines, Amtrak and the bus lines. What is considered a senior also varies. As for air travel, many of the discounts have gone away.

At 62, you are eligible for a lifetime Senior Pass that allows free admission to National Parks and other recreational areas. And a 50% discount on camping fees, fishing licenses, etc. And there are lots of National Parks in Massachusetts.

A bargain may be found at home. Some towns offer discounted dump stickers to those age 65 and other tax reduction programs.

And your local bank may have some savings for you. There are reduced fees in Massachusetts for the 65 and older crowd. You have to ask for it. Referred to as 1865 law.


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