1. Getting out and about
If you’re over 60, a great way to save on expensive rail travel is to get a Senior Railcard. It costs just £30 and it'll save you a third on rail fares throughout Great Britain for a whole year. You can apply here. Also make sure you apply for an older person's bus pass. It means you can travel for free on local buses once you reach state pension age. Find out more here.
2. Government boost
If you are of qualifying age, and you've an income of under £151.20 a week, or £230.85 for couples, you may be able to qualify for pension credits on top of your basic state pension. Check if you're entitled by calling 0800 99 1234. To help with a host of things from fuel bills to studying there are lots of benefits and grants available so it’s worth a check to make sure you aren't missing out. You can find out more about grants here.
Prescriptions in England are expensive! If you are over 60 though you could save £8.05 per batch plus you are entitled to free NHS eye tests. Those under 60 can get free test with Tesco Opticians and you can book up here. Make sure you take advantage.
A TV licence is free for over 75s
4. TV licence
It’s free for over 75s and could save you £145, plus it covers other household members. Apply online or phone 0300 790 6144. Remember to have to hand your National Insurance number.
5. Get online
Going digital is increasingly important, not only is it great for your social life but it is also key to money saving. If you want to switch your energy supplier for a better deal, for example, the best place to go is a comparison website., like Yours Switching. Thankfully there are lots of free computer courses if you a feeling a bit nervous. Age UK, or your local library will have details of local courses and computer.
6. Now switch
Don’t be a sticky customer and switch. You could save over £200+ on gas & electricity bills, and £100s on car & home insurance. Plus cashback when you switch. And remember that over-50s policies, are often beatable – so shop around. To find a cheaper broadband provider click here.
These are a great way to save and increase your savings totally tax free! So grandparents, instead of buying your grandchildren the latest toy, put the money away into an Isa where it can make up to 2 per cent with a fixed rate by Nationwide. Remember too that if you have been saving money into a tax-free cash ISA you do have the right to transfer it, which can instantly boost the interest you earn. But don't simply take the money out, you will need to set up an account with a new provider and ask it to transfer the cash across for you. You can find out more about ISAs here.
8. Friends clubs
Retirement can be seen as daunting chapter, but it can also be a new lease of life with the opportunity to try new things. Joining clubs and hobbies doesn’t have to break the bank and websites such as OverFiftiesFriends advertise walking, cycling and art activities, which are either free or only cost a small amount. Alternatively, it is a great way to socialise with coffee mornings and lunch events so meeting new people is made easier and doesn’t cost the earth. Our Friends of Yours section aims to connect people looking for friendship, or more. visit our online dating service by clicking here.
9. Eating out
Grab yourself a free Diamond club card which can get you 25% off meals or meal deals for over 50s at 100s of pubs and restaurants. Some will only be valid on weekdays or at certain times, so do check! Just sign up online here and the card will be with you within 28 days or go in to one of the qualifying restaurants, fill out the form and you can pick it up there and then. The best part is once you’ve got one card, you don’t have to reapply – it’s good for life. Many other places will offer discounts and offers on food for older people – don’t be frightened to ask!
10. Take in a lodger
Not for the faint-hearted but if you are willing to rent out a room in your house for some extra money, perhaps think about a lodger or going down the Air bnb route. If you want the weekends to yourself, consider going down the weekly lodger route. Try website MondaytoFriday for starters. It's a good way to earn a bit of extra money but make sure you do your research as you will have to comply with rules.
- Thanks to Share Radio’s Consumer Champion and presenter of the Consuming Issues Show, Georgie Frost, for sharing these tips.