Are Discounts for Seniors Unethical?

business_ethics_highlights_2Is giving a discount to seniors an unfair form of age discrimination? The writer below wonders about this, in both the context of business transactions, and in the context of government services, municipal taxes, etc. But the overarching point is this: if you charge one age group less, you are necessarily charging other age groups more. So a discount for those over 60 could just as accurately be called a surcharge on those under 60. Is that fair? >>>

Time to scrap the seniors’ discount

…discounts offered to one segment of the population must inevitably be recouped from the pockets of another: Whenever a senior gets a cheap bus ticket or swim pass, someone from a younger and poorer generation ends up footing the bill…..

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One comment

  1. There’s a lot to think about here, but such discounts amount to charging some people more based on youth, which seems unethical on the face of it — discrimination on a non-relevant basis. There might be exceptions if, for example, a business were courting a particular age group (e.g., McDonalds offering “coffee and a newspaper” for a dollar to seniors in the morning, because they know that lots of older folks might be looking for something to do and could be coaxed into otherwise empty stores.

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