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Age Wave Hits New Zealand As Boomers Turn 60

1st January 2006

Age Wave Hits New Zealand As Boomers Turn 60

New Zealand Seniors Card general manager Chris Herron said that the baby boomer age wave will have a significant impact in New Zealand as the first of the post-war babies start turning 60 today.

"More than 47,000 New Zealanders will turn 60 this year, approximately 10,000 more than last year. This equates to around 20% of the population who will now be over 55 years," said Chris Herron.

"Baby boomers born between 1946 and 1964 will be the wealthiest generation to ever leave the work force and retire,"

"They will benefit significantly from inheritances but will not necessarily leave their children the same wealth. They will spend their money on travel, cars and housing and enjoy their retirement,"

"Already marketers are developing new products to target this age group." said Mr Herron

New Zealand Seniors Card, launched in January 2004 targets this growing 55 plus age group with a discount travel and shopping card. The card, with benefits available at over 2,500 businesses across New Zealand, Australia and the South Pacific taps into the active lifestyles of baby boomers.

"The number of baby boomers joining Seniors Card is increasing as they discover the wide range of savings that can be made with the card." Mr Herron added.

For New Zealand, Australia, the UK, USA, Canada and in Europe, the ageing population means a greater strain on social services and health as well as a loss of a large percentage of the skilled workforce. Future government health budgets need to provide more medical facilities (including more capacity in nursing homes) and meet the demand of higher priced pharmaceuticals as boomers live longer than their parents. The housing sector will also need to meet new demands and for future retirement villages, bowling greens may be replaced by jogging tracks, gyms and internet lounges.

About Seniors Card

Launched in 2004, NZ Seniors Card is a discount travel and shopping card with some 24,000 members and over 2,500 business discounts and benefits available with significant savings to be made. For example 10% of new cars (selected Ford models), up to 50% on accommodation, 10% on shopping and added value benefits such as free coffee or soft drinks with meal purchases.

Popular offers also include up to 30% off the Interisland ferry, 20% off InterCity coachlines and 25% off premium paint products from Resene. More than 700 businesses across Australia also accept the card with discounts on accommodation, tourist attractions, tours and cruises (save up to $24 on leading attractions such as Movie World and Sea World). Cost of the card is $24 for 2 years or $50 for 5 years, less than 30 cents a week.

Chris Herron has worked in mature marketing for the past 12 years, seven years as manager of the NSW government's Seniors Card programme. In 2003, he and business partner Kylie Roebuck formed New Zealand Seniors Card.

New Zealand Seniors Card Ltd Phone: 0800 550 001 www.seniorscard.co.nz

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ENDS

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