Are you older than 50 and thinking of taking a trip with your pet? If so, it’s a great time for pet friendly senior travel. That’s because many of the large hotel chains are offering savings opportunities that you should take advantage of. And, hey, if you’re in your 50s and early 60s and don’t think of yourself as a senior yet, just consider it a baby boomer discount.
First, with regard to the numbers, AARP reports that Americans own 305 million cats and dogs, which is an increase of 85 million pets over the past decade. According to AARP, those 50 or older account for sixty percent of that growth. And since older owners are more likely to be divorced, widowed, separated or to live alone, their pets often play a more prominent role in their lives, including when they travel.
Hotel chains understand this and offer many discounts to this demographic. While most of them are geared to people 62 and older, there are some chains that offer discounts to pet owners in their 50s as well. The key to is to be a savvy shopper. You will often get a better discount by just being a member in a rewards program offered by a particular chain so, if you travel regularly, that is an option to consider. Also, you should check whether you can “stack” discounts. For example, if you’re a military veteran and over 62, find out if you get both discounts or are only able to choose the one that offers the largest savings. As with everything, doing your homework will pay off with regard to the money you save.
Here are six popular hotel chains and the discounts they offer:
You can save 10% or more on room rates at Best Western if you are 55 or older. The discount is not available at all Best Westerns and is subject to availability, so be sure to enquire before you book your room. Proof of age will be required at check-in.
You can save up to 10% with Choice Hotels (which includes Comfort Inns, Quality Inns, Sleep Inns and many others). Choice offers a tiered program depending on your age, from 50 to 55 to 60+. Choice Hotels also offers a Senior Travelers email newsletter that you can subscribe to to find out the latest specials and promotions for that age group.
IHG is made up of many popular brands such as Candlewood Suites, Holiday Inn, Holiday Inn Express, and Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts among others. If you are 62 years old or older, you may be entitled to get a discounted room rate at any participating hotel. Check each property for availability.
If you are 65 and older, you can get special savings at La Quinta Inns & Suites. La Quinta stipulates the discount may not be used together with any other offer or discounted rates. Seniors can get discounted rates not only in participating hotels in the U.S. and Canada, but also at LQ Hotel in Mexico, Colombia, and Honduras.
People 60 years or older are entitled to a special 10% Senior Rate discount at each of their 1,300 plus locations. The discount can be applied to a maximum of two rooms for six consecutive nights per stay. Proof of age must presented at check-in.
If you are 59+, you can save 10% year round. Restrictions are based on availability and age status will verified at check-in, so be sure to have your ID.
Stay tuned to the Weekly Bone to find more hotel-related discounts in future articles.