If you’re retired or awfully close to retirement, have you considered writing out a travel bucket list? With more free time, perhaps it can be time to visit Rome, or maybe Machu Picchu is calling your name.
Jump ahead to these sections:
- American Airlines’ Senior Discount Policy Explained
- 5 Things You Can Do to Save on Your Airfare
- 6 Special Accommodations That Are Available Through American Airlines
When you travel for pleasure, you have the benefit of having ample time to find the best prices. Since you are not booking same-day flights, you can take time to analyze the fares offered by all the different airlines. You can find out how far in advance you need to book your flight to receive the best rates.
However thanks to retirement and the abundance of senior discount offers widely available, there might be some airline savings you haven’t found out about yet. Curious to find out how to stretch your wings and fly? There might be some additional tips to use when booking a good deal with an airline like American.
American Airlines’ Senior Discount Policy Explained
American Airlines does not explicitly advertise a senior discount on their website.
With that said, when booking travel, customers are able to distinguish between a regular adult ticket and a senior ticket for passengers 65 and older. It doesn’t seem as if the prices vary depending upon what type of ticket you choose, but some websites claim that a 10 percent discount may be available to seniors traveling to specific markets.
To check on senior discount rates aside from the website, you can call American Airlines’ reservation number at 800-433-7300.
5 Things You Can Do to Save on Your Airfare
It is frustrating when airlines aren’t upfront about the types of discounts that may apply to senior citizens. However, you can also use one of these methods to save on your airfare.
Although no one likes booking early morning flights or flights with several layovers, you may be able to save money on your ticket by scheduling travel during less populated times. Of course, the price also varies based on the day of the week as well.
If you are retired and can be flexible about when you travel, spend time on the American Airlines website to determine the cheapest time to fly to your desired location.
Learn about senior discounts by reading retirement magazines and websites
Look at the ads in your favorite retirement magazines to learn about special packages that the airlines have created for senior travelers.
Instead of scouring the airlines’ websites looking for those special deals exclusive to seniors, search for sites that are targeted to older adults. Compare the rates with the airlines’ websites to see if they are genuinely discounted or not.
Join the rewards club
Join the American Airlines frequent flyer program, called AAdvantage, to start building points that may result in free or discounted travel. The program is free to join.
Check the website for lower prices, even after you have already booked your tickets
Isn’t it frustrating when you buy something only to have it go on sale a week later? When booking travel, you may be able to get the cheaper rate if the price drops after you purchase your ticket.
Contact the American Airlines customer service department to see if they can give you a lower rate.
Look at travel websites for exclusive deals
Visit your favorite travel website to learn about special deals on flights. Sometimes you can get bargains when you purchase a bundle that includes your airline tickets, hotel, and rental car.
6 Special Accommodations That Are Available Through American Airlines
Perhaps you may be more concerned about receiving special accommodations during your travel than you are about acquiring a discounted ticket price.
American Airlines’ website offers clear instructions on how to receive assistance while traveling. Here are some accommodations that they offer.
Canes and walkers do not count as one of your carry-on items when you travel with American Airlines. Contact a special assistance representative before your flight if you will need to have access to your cane or walker during travel. Otherwise, your cane or walker may be checked or placed in overhead storage.
Let your reservation agent know if you use a wheelchair. Wheelchair storage is available but limited. When you make reservations, you may need to know the measurements of your wheelchair as well as the type of battery that it uses.
Portable oxygen concentrator
If you require the assistance of a portable oxygen concentrator (POC), tell an agent at the gate when you arrive for your flight.
Make sure that your battery is fully charged and would be able to last the duration of the trip, including any possible delays. Your POC must be able to fit underneath the seat in front of you, just as a carry-on item would.
Let your reservation agent know if you are hearing impaired. Your flight attendant will offer accommodations that will allow you to hear flight updates and safety information. Call 800-735-2988 for assistance.
Tell the ticket agent at the counter if you need special accommodations because of visual impairment. Call the same number above to find out more.
If your body extends more than one inch beyond the seat’s armrest, or you need a seatbelt extension, you may require an extra seat. Make sure you make those accommodations when booking your flight. The reservations clerk will make sure that you pay the same rate for two adjacent seats.
The reservations clerk may suggest that you purchase a seat in a higher class since those seats are typically larger, which means you are likely responsible for the difference in fares.
Traveling with medication
Depending upon where you are going, you may need to carry medical documentation with you that details your medical prescription use. The American Airlines website specifically lists Australia as one of those destinations.
Failure to provide appropriate documentation may mean that you have to dispose of your medication when arriving in the country.
Some airlines offer a discount to passengers who are traveling for a funeral. Sometimes you are required to submit proof that you are going to a funeral for a family member to receive the cheaper rates.
Learn more about American Airlines’ bereavement rates by reading this article.
Flying Doesn’t Have to Break the Bank
Everyone likes to save money on traveling, and all plans require some thought ahead of time. If you’re looking to keep things in tip-top shape to travel happily around retirement, consider starting your end-of-life planning sooner rather than later.
Not only will your survivors not have to second-guess your desires, but you can have the ease of mind knowing that everything is organized. And it can give you peace of mind as you embark on retirement and your travels.
- “Special Assistance.” American Airlines. www.aa.com/i18n/travel-info/special-assistance/special-assistance.jsp.