Why Senior Citizen Discounts are Bad Business.


Senior citizen discounts are bad for business for a number of reasons:

  • everybody does it.

I’m not talking about the Florida eat-at-4-pm deal. I  understand how that make sense. Get the codgers in early and get them out early so the Xers with ankle-biters can move in and destroy the place.  No, I’m referring to the standard, everyday, defacto “real” price for Seniors!. . . 10% Off! Mayhaps when we are more senior, we will start shopping harder and actually seek the restaurant/liquor store/car wash that offers. . . 10% Off! As it stands now, we go to Lonestar, Toot’s, Red Lobster, etc. etc.  order what we order and at some point during the meal remember we are Senior Citizens and tell the waiter to deduct our 10% Off!

  • we keep forgetting to ask and nobody volunteers the discount. This happened a lot on vacation in Boston. We would decide to take a tour, pay the price, and at later back at the hotel room, I would read in the tour book or brochure there was a Senior Citizen’s discount.

I guess this is an acquired habit: Just ask wherever we go, whatever we are doing. But would it kill the merchant to offer us a discount when we forget to ask? I have to show I.D. to buy beer at the ballpark. I wouldn’t mine showing an I.D. to get a Senior Citizen’s discount. I would feel good about that 12 year old working at Dairy Queen for having the kindness to give me a discount. I might even forego the sneer when s/he says “there ya go” instead of “thank you.”

  • the Senior Citizen’s discount is usually given to people who were going to be there anyway. Kroger. Kroger has Senior Citizen’s Day the first Wednesday of every month. I guess it’s to get those Social Security check shoppers.

Nancy never shops anywhere but Kroger for groceries. Sometimes she shops on the first Wednesday of the month – and HATES it. She says the place is full of old people who don’t know how to park their cars, can’t maneuver a grocery cart, and pay by check.

  • anybody can get the Senior Discount. At some places the age break is fifty-five! I have been missing out on some deals for years!

Here’s the deal business owners:

Instead of offering $9.99 entrees and skimping on portions to increase your bottom line, just stop giving away your profits to Senior Citizens. We won’t quit coming to Waffle House or Denny’s or McDonald’s or Francois’s House of Crepes & BBQ just because you stopped your discount. We don’t eat out because it’s cheap. We eat out because we are
1. too lazy to cook,
2. are social, or
3. want to look at other people, rather than the droopy eyed dogs begging at our feet.

Other hard goods merchants? Like gifts and oil changes and liquor and golfballs. . . shopping at your establishment is not a price deal, everybody price matches these days. We shop at your place because it’s a selection or service deal. We like the stuff you sell or the way you treat us. We won’t stop coming back if you keep that 10% Senior Citizen’s discount.

Senior Citizen Discounts are bad for business. But as long as it’s offered, I’m taking. I’m also asking for it every place I go.

The irony? About the only business that doesn’t offer a Senior Citizen’s discount is the medical business. Now there’s a deal worth shopping for: 10% Off!. . . MRI’s! Tuesdays Only!

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Comments

Why Senior Citizen Discounts are Bad Business. — 6 Comments

  1. Perhaps no one volunteers the senior discount because you and Nancy look so young.

    I know medical offices that offer discounts to customers who pay cash, regardless of age.

    As a business person, I can tell you that business owners don’t mind giving discounts to seniors, but they HATE clergy who always expect discounts or even free services/merchandise.
    .-= Catch Her in the Wry´s last blog ..State of Emergency =-.

  2. Yes, fat people do tend to look younger, the wrinkles are stretched out.

    Cash discounts for Med Offices would be a smart move – collections must be horrendous in that biz.

    Business owners may not mind, but it’s still bad business, brought on mostly by rich seniors “on a fixed income” (stock and bond and trust fund dividends.)

    As far as the clergy? I’ll let you rant about their demands. :)
    .-= Going Like Sixty´s last blog ..Why Senior Citizen Discounts are Bad Business. =-.

  3. I’m still a little puzzled as to how senior discounts are bad for business. As you say “Nancy never shops anywhere but Kroger for groceries. Sometimes she shops on the first Wednesday of the month – and HATES it. She says the place is FULL of old people”….If the place is ‘full’ it must be good for business?

    Also, many businesses realize someone who is 55 is not a senior, however starting a discount at 55 rather than 65 will ultimately attract more people….if it’s an attraction offer or promotion.
    .-= Jason´s last blog ..Learning in the third age =-.