Free eBook – Navigating the Retirement Jungle

Email lovebeingretired@hotmail.com for your free copy

While writing LoveBeingRetired, I have discovered and shared what I believe is some very useful information to be help us better navigate the jungle that is retirement planning.

To summarize the journey so far, I have put together a short book covering the most important lessons learned.

Your free eBook will help you better understand:

* How to evaluate when you can afford to retire

* What is the real cost of building that nest egg beyond what you need

* Guidelines to living a frugal yet enjoyable retirement

* How to identify and pursue what is really important as you approach retirement

* Pointers on staying healthy so you can enjoy your retirement life

* How to identify and pursue your passion

To receive a free copy of “Navigating the Retirement Jungle”:

Send an email to lovebeingretired@hotmail.com.

In the subject line put Navigating the Retirement Jungle.

Let me know what you think – comments are encouraged.

It’s all about sharing what works to give us a little helpful guidance along the way and your input is greatly appreciated!

Enjoy the book and enjoy the journey.

Dave Bernard

lovebeingretired@hotmail.com

Senior Citizen Discounts – Get Your Money Worth

Everyone loves a deal and one benefit of getting up in age is the discounts you now qualify for. Get ready for travel deals, vacation packages, weekend getaways, and discounts across the board. And with the 75 million baby boomers starting to enter retirement, get ready to let the good times roll! Join me on a journey through some of the deals out there for retired folks – some are just too good to pass up.

Before we set sail, I discovered a service today called Groupon which sends you special deals daily for everything from restaurants to spas to leisure events in your local area. If you like the offer, you sign up and if enough others sign up to justify the special price being offered (businesses have to make money too and if enough people sign up, they do) you get it. For example, today my special offer is from a local Mediterranean restaurant offering $15 worth of food for $7 if I buy the Groupon. Put your collective buying power to good use.

Where the deals are

Travel – A good place to start your travel planning is http://expedia-aarp.com/ , a powerful partnership between our friends at AARP and Expedia. A familiar Expedia front end with AARP driven senior discounts.

  • Hotel dealsHyatt Hotels & Resorts – 62 and over receive up to 50% discount in Continental US and Canada; Choice Hotels International – 60+ earns you a 10% discount with advanced reservations http://www.choicehotels.com/en/deals/senior-rates?sid=tSoy._Oaj0g06L.1 ; Marriott Hotels offers 15% for 62+ seven days a week; Best Western – minimum 10% discount for 55+.
  • Airlines – so I ran down the usual suspects and visited their websites in search of senior citizen specials on airfares. My challenge was finding any specifics as no senior discounts were specifically mentioned. I recommend you work directly with the airline or through an aggregator like Expedia or Travelocity. But here are a few helpful details from www.cheapflights.com :
    • American Eagle and American Connection may offer senior fares in some domestic markets for seniors age 65 or older.
    • United Airlines – Travelers age 55 and older can enjoy savings on travel and other travel partners – as much as 50 per cent off at luxury hotels and resorts – by joining Silver Wings Plus.
    • Northwest offers senior discount fares in select markets.
    • Continental offers senior fares to select travel destinations for passengers who are 65 and older.
    • Delta Shuttle offers senior fares for travelers age 62 and above.
  • Amtrak – 15% discount on adult rail fare with some exclusion for ages 62+.

Entertainment

  • Restaurants – kind of challenging as we have different restaurants in our neighborhoods. But here are a few: IHOP offers 10% discount for 55+; Mrs. Fields 10% for 60+ (mmmm); AppleBees offers a Golden Apple Card for 55+ patrons with discounts and deals.
    • If you are willing to buy a coupon at a discount to sample a local restaurant, take a gander at Restaurant Discount Center www.restaurant.com. Enter your zip code and view the options in your own backyard. And remember Groupon that I mentioned earlier.
    • Fast food places have a wide variety of different offers for seniors from coffee to fries.
  • Movie discount dealsAMC Theatres – guests 60 and over receive 20-30% discount on general admission
  • National Parks – with $10 purchase of America the Beautiful Senior pass – valid for the lifetime of the owner – free entrance. http://store.usgs.gov/pass/senior.html

Shopping Kohl’s offers 15% discount for 62+ on Wednesdays (day may vary by store, you can find Kohl’s coupons and promo codes at http://www.couponsherpa.com/kohls/); Ross has 10% off Tuesdays for 55+

Health and WellnessKmart – Gold K prescription discount program offers up to 20% discount on prescription medication for ages 50+.

As I said, this is but a sample of many discounts available to senior adventurers. If you want to do some additional research, here are some  good links to investigate:
http://www.seniordiscounts.com – register for access to discounts on pretty much everything. The only requirement is that you are over 50.

http://www.shopathome.com/Free-Coupons.aspx – free coupons for just about everything based on your location.

And don’t forget our tried and true friends at AARP. Visit their site http://www.aarp.org/benefits-discounts/services_discounts/ for a long list of available discounts. For the annual membership fee of $16, it is hard to go wrong.

If you have a favorite link or insight into good senior citizen discounts, feel free to comment or send an email my way.

Don’t forget to pick up a free copy of my Navigating the Retirement Jungle, available upon request by mailing to lovebeingretired@hotmail.com.


Happy Retirement

Like many of you, I have spent the past 30+ years of my life in corporate America, working at numerous technology start-up companies in the Bay Area. My main focus has been within sales, specifically inside sales. Along the way, there have been good times and bad times with uncertain times scattered liberally throughout. Overall, it has been a good journey, I have worked with some wonderful people, and I have been able to feed and raise my family successfully.

So how is it that at the tender age of 52, I am now receiving regular mail from AARP? American Association of RETIRED Persons – isn’t that for old people – well at least OLDER than I am? Wasn’t it just yesterday that my parents were crossing this same threshold to become AARPites?

Retirement should bring visions of carefree days spent with a loved one traveling, reading books, relaxing in the knowledge that we have paid our dues and are now reaping the rewards for our labors. The Golden Years – our days in the sun. Retirement life should be our time to do what really matters.

But if recent times tell us anything it is that nothing is guaranteed and the only certainty is uncertainty. The massive mortgage collapse, financial institutions implosion, health costs sky rocketing, 401k savings reduced by 50% – welcome to our scary reality. How can we prepare ourselves for this inevitable event?

I started LoveBeingRetired.com for two reasons – (1) to attempt to navigate the HUGE amount of retirement information currently available on the internet and distill into accurate, succinct information. In effect, create a checklist to identify NOW those things that we can do so our retirement is the best possible. (2)  Equally important to discuss and share what we can do to help assure a QUALITY retirement, filled with fun and adventure and excitement that makes each day worth getting out of bed.

From day one, which is today, I invite you to share what you do now or plan to do to maintain your sanity when you are no longer working, when your time is truly your own.

LoveBeingRetired.com is intended to be a discussion. Some of you are retired today and have much wisdom to share with the rest of us – please do. All of you will retire at some point and if you are not thinking about it today, hopefully these discussions will help to get the juices flowing.  The goal is to learn together and benefit from sharing thoughts, recommendations, warnings, fun experiences, and life-long-optimism. Remember, retirement is only the beginning.

Don’t forget to pick up a free copy of my Navigating the Retirement Jungle, available upon request by mailing to lovebeingretired@hotmail.com.