San Diego Beach and Pier at La Jolla Shores San Diego, California, United States.
San Diego Beach and Pier at La Jolla Shores San Diego, California, United States.

Summer is here and there’s so much to do and see in San Diego. Just living in San Diego is expensive, so enjoying extracurricular activities can be pricey. One of the big perks of ‘vintage’ status is the senior discount, and whether you love or loathe the label, you can’t argue with the savings! Summer is the perfect time for caregivers, care companions and loved ones to explore, try new things, and make new memories in America’s Finest City. While most national chains, stores and restaurants offer a discount that seniors can take advantage of anywhere from age 55 on up, there are some advantages that only living in San Diego can bring you!

There are many resources for older San Diegans looking to maximize their summer dollars, but the best way to get a senior discount is to ask for one. Now that 60 is the new 40, you may not be offered one automatically, and we’ve all heard the horror story that ends with, “And then she offered me A SENIOR DISCOUNT!” Just be prepared to show your ID if you’re looking good – and wouldn’t that be nice! To start off, Sharp Healthcare offers a list of stores, restaurants, travel sites and cinemas on the discount list.

The website The Senior List updates their Senior Discount List every year, and breaks it down by Grocery, Prescriptions, Restaurants, Retail and Travel. The financial website The Motley Fool offers an eclectic list of discounts open to seniors that includes cell phone service, shipping and college courses. And campers can see the National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands for a song. For just $10, U.S. citizens or permanent residents can get a lifetime “America the Beautiful Senior Pass”, which gives free access to all federal recreation sites that charge entrance or “Standard Amenity” fees.

But San Diego is made for fun in the sun, and San Diego residents can get some special perks in a variety of places. Right now, the San Diego County Fair is going on at the Del Mar Fairgrounds, and Thursdays are Senior Days. Everyone over age 62 gets in for just $8, every day, but on Thursdays for the duration of the Fair – which ends July 5th – seniors can enjoy special afternoon concerts, competitive exhibits, and contests. So grab your prize squash, or your ballroom dancing partner, and enjoy Seniors’ Day at the San Diego County Fair.

Golfers everywhere know that Torrey Pines Golf Course, home of PGA Tour events, is one of the premier courses in the country. But did you know that San Diego residents can play at Torrey Pines for a special residents’-only rate? With a City of San Diego Resident card,  golfers can play where the pros play, without all the pressure and paparazzi. Get a deal on your greens’ fees, and play from whichever tees you like – we won’t tell.

San Diego senior campers who love their RV but hate all that driving can camp in a San Diego County Park at a discounted rate. Nature lovers 62 and over who live in San Diego County can get their Senior Discount Card for just $15, and then save $4.00 off weekday camping and full hook-up RV sites, $3.00 off weekday camping and partial and non-hookup sites, and $1.00 off per night Friday, Saturday, and nights prior to holidays. Plus, that pesky $5.00 reservation fee is waived. That may not seem like a lot, but if you enjoy camping, then you already know how to appreciate the small things in life.

Sometimes we forget that San Diego has more to offer than just the beach, because the beach is so beautiful! When the marine layer isn’t cooperating, Old Town Trolley Tours are a fun way to see the historic parts of San Diego. San Diego County residents with a Hometown Pass can take the Trolley Tour for free when they have at least one adult paid guest in tow. Getting the Hometown Pass is free and easy and gives homecare companions or the out-of-town family something new to see. Use it on the Trolley Tour, San Diego SEAL Tours, and the Old Town Trolley’s Beach Tour.

Finally, culture vultures reign supreme on Tuesdays at Balboa Park. On successive Tuesdays, museums, institutes and centers at the park offer free admission to San Diego City and County residents with ID, although you may have to pay to see special exhibitions or films. Visit the park website for the schedule, and make a plan to soak in the best that Balboa Park has to offer.

Have a memorable summer!