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What is AARP?

AARP comes with a wide range of benefits and a low membership fee.  Getty Images

As you near retirement, frugality may become more important. After all, many retirees live on fixed incomes. And, living on a fixed income can be difficult in today's inflationary environment. According to the National Council on Aging, about 40% of retirees rely completely on their Social Security benefits. But, according to Bankrate, the average monthly social security check is just $1,778.24.  

The AARP, previously known as the American Association for Retired Persons, may be able to help. An AARP membership comes with discounts on a wide range of products and services, which could help you cope with rising prices. And those discounts aren't the only way an AARP membership may be able to help you become more financially stable. Learn more about what AARP is and the benefits it provides below.  

Sign up for your AARP membership now

What is AARP?

AARP was formed in 1958 as a non-profit organization, which it still is today. The organization is centered around improving the lives of the those over age 50 community by helping these older Americans achieve financial and healthcare security and personal fulfillment. That noted, you can become a member as early as 18 years old. Here's a breakdown of what AARP does, how much it costs and why you should consider joining:

What does AARP do?

AARP is a consumer advocacy organization that focuses on the aforementioned community in the United States. The organization often lobbies on behalf of older Americans to bring about changes that can improve access to financial and healthcare services on a state and national level. The organization has also partnered with a wide range of brands, offering members discounts on products and services like hotels, restaurants and more.

But, AARP isn't a staandalone organization. It's more of a parent organization that employs the help of three subsidiaries. Those include: 

  • The AARP Foundation: This is a non-profit organization that works to make sure that elderly consumers with low incomes have access to necessities like affordable housing and food.  
  • The Legal Counsel for the Elderly: This non-profit organization is centered around lobbying. It advocates for the rights of members over the age 50. 
  • AARP Services: AARP Services is the organization's quality control arm that takes care of oversight of any product or service that's offered by independent providers through the AARP network.   

Get access to everything AARP has to offer today

How much does AARP cost?

An AARP membership costs $16 per year. But, you can also take advantage of discounts by signing up for autopay or opting for a longer membership period: 

  • Sign up for autopay: If you sign up for autopay, you'll only pay $12 for your first year. 
  • Opt for a 3-year membership: You can save $5 by paying $43 up front for a 3-year membership.
  • Opt for a 5-year membership: You can save $17 by paying $63 up front for a 5-year membership.  

Why should you join AARP?

At first glance, you may think of AARP as a way to get discounts at a large number of major brands. And, it does offer discounts on travel, restaurants, groceries, insurance and more. But, those aren't the only reasons to consider signing up. 

If you're looking for a job, AARP may be able to help. The organization offers a job search tool that helps you find jobs that fit your needs and skillset. It also offers a free resume review through a third party. And, you can enjoy discounted resume writing services if you don't already have one or if yours needs improvement. 

AARP also provides discounts on insurance products, like long-term care insurance, car insurance and even health insurance. Members also have access to a social security resource center and a wide range of retirement planning tools alongside financial products like high-yield savings accounts and certificates of deposit (CDs) through financial institutions that AARP partners with. 

The bottom line

AARP is a longstanding organization with a strong history of advocating for the rights and fair treatment of those over 50. AARP memberships are relatively inexpensive at just $16 per year if you don't take advantage of any discount opportunities, the benefits of membership stretch far beyond discounts from leading brands. Whether you need to find meaningful employment, a quality insurance product or you need access to retirement planning tools, AARP can help. Sign up for your membership now.  

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