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Is AARP Membership Worth the Investment?

Although an inexpensive investment, this senior insurance company may not be exactly the membership you need. This is a guide about is AARP membership worth the investment?
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Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

January 16, 2011

My husband is turning 50 years old in a couple of weeks. I'm just wondering if it would be worth it for him to join AARP? I know it's only $16 a year, but I'm wondering if the benefits are worth it and who better to ask than the wise Thrifty Fun family? Anyone care to share their advice or opinion on the matter? Thanks!

By Judy

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January 17, 20111 found this helpful
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I haven't joined. I already get discounts for hotels through AAA but there are even cheaper deals on line and in coupon books. I used to read my dad's Modern Maturity magazine which has some good articles, but I feel they are out of sync with most post 50's people. To entice me to join they offered me a free lunchbox with AARP in screaming white letters on it. I would be mortified to carry that to work. I'm at an important juncture in my career and carrying an AARP lunchbox does not fit.

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January 17, 20110 found this helpful
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I joined AARP when I turned 50, but found that AARP and AAA discounts are almost the same and I always have AAA, so did not renew AARP.

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Anonymous
January 18, 20110 found this helpful
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The thing to keep in mind is that you can get discounts on so many things without paying a yearly fee to AARP by doing some research of what you're looking for. Also, should you decide to use any of their insurance discounts they will only be in effect as long as you continue to pay the yearly fee so you have to do the math as to whether or not you're really receiving actual discounts on any particular insurance policy.

I was an AARP member for four years and decided it was a silly waste of money overall and also decided because of things I found out about AARP that Lorelei mentioned in her post. I did not renew after that because I am not going to support anything that undermines my personal beliefs. I wish I would have checked in to the details of what the company actually does and stands for before I ever joined. That $16.00 can be put to far better uses. Oh, and even at just age 50 many stores and restaurants offer Senior discounts so just ask. ;-)

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January 18, 20110 found this helpful
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I recommend it, but look online. I bought a 3 year membership for much less than the ads say. Have no idea why. They send out two magazines a month and they are my favorite magazines. Lots of good info for seniors. I dropped AAA and now pay $4 a year for towing insurance through my car insurance company. Most offer it. I found the $60 for AAA was too high, since I can get the same discounts through AARP!

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January 18, 20110 found this helpful
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I highly recommend AAA. I have them and have gotten my money back that it cost to sign up in different ways. I had to have my car towed home and it was nice not having to pay anything. Also discount on hotels are nice.

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January 19, 20110 found this helpful
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I, too, was a member of AARP for several years and found that it really didn't benefit me. I did use their car insurance through Hartford for several years. The first year I saved about $300, but I noticed that the premiums kept increasing. I never ever had an accident or ticket, yet they kept increasing. Finally, I started shopping around for car insurance and found I saved money by going with the company which insured our house. I don't know how long I'd been paying the higher premiums with AARP, but I was pretty upset when I found out.

There are so many other discounts available. Even at hotels, other discounts were better than AARP. I haven't been a member now for about 3-4 years and found I really have better things to do with my money.

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January 21, 20110 found this helpful
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I joined to get their magazine, not for the discounts, and I've been satisfied with their publication. You can also get their newsletter via e-mail and sign up for on-line groups for discussion.

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January 23, 20110 found this helpful
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Yikes! $16 a year? When I renewed my membership 2 years ago, I think I paid about $13 for THREE years! I have a year to go, and I'm not sure about renewing again.

I'm on the fence about them. I enjoy the online Discussion groups and participate all the time, since joining them (as JingleBelle). There is a lot of good info in these discussion groups - people are very helpful toward each other and share valuable tips, just as the ThriftyFun community does. The magazines are interesting and informative too. Years ago, Modern Maturity used to have beautiful cover photos, both front and back, and on the insides, usually nature photos. That was back when my parents were members. ;-).

On the other hand, I never took any of their insurance because I do better on my own. I have only benefited once from any discount. I do not always agree with their positions on many issues, especially the Medicare supplement programs. AARP really is mostly a marketing company and they get a lot of revenue from their affiliations with their advertisers.

I don't like AAA at all, I had it for a couple of years and the service was abysmal. They do not have enough garages signed up in my area of Long Island NY, which is surprising, there ought to be 100s. I had terrible responses to my calls. The last time, I waited over 2 hours for someone to come. I kept calling AAA back. They claimed the guy couldn't find me, utter hogwash as I was on the shoulder of a major road (Sunrise Highway) in plain sight. Not only that, but the guy in the AAA office was nasty and hung up on me! Road service never did show up. Someone pushed my car into a parking space in the railroad station and gave me a ride home. I told off AAA and switched to Texaco RoadStar, now Shell, and have had much better service.

So, is it worth it to be a member of AARP for the magazines and online forums? That's something I'm trying to decide for myself. We each have to weigh what we get out of it.

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January 30, 20110 found this helpful
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I have AARP membership ever since I turned 50, and have used the grocery, meals and insurance travel discounts over the years. My home, umbrella and auto insurance (http://aarp.thehartford.com/) through AARP is a better deal than other carriers so I find it useful. The AARP magazines are also good reads for lazy afternoons sometimes.

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Anonymous
October 21, 20150 found this helpful
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I have both AARP and AAA, and I primarily use both for travel discounts. Since the basic AAA provides towing coverage for the person and not the car, it does not cover my children when driving my car, I found the towing coverage of my auto insurance policy covers my cars no matter who is driving them-and for a lot less than AAA. Newer cars also come with a few years of towing coverage by the manufacturer. The hotel and other travel discounts provided by AAA are no better than AARP and cost a lot more as well. In the old days, my parents used AAA's trip planners which are now replaced with GPS.

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