This Sunday on the 19th of November, Hong Kong celebrates its many elders on Senior Citizens Day.
Over 2,000 restaurants, retail shops and social enterprises have pledged to offer discounts or other concessions to Senior Citizen Card holders for their purchases on that day.
The Senior Citizen Card Scheme was launched by the Social Welfare Department all the way back in 1994 to, as they said then, to promote care and respect for the elderly population of Hong Kong. Under this program, Senior Citizen Cards are issued to Hong Kong residents aged 65 or above for them to enjoy concessions such as cheaper public transport or discounts offered by government departments, public organizations, and private companies. More than 2.33 million Senior Citizen Cards have been issued since its launch in 1994.
Currently, Over 2 600 companies and organization outlets are providing the service, not just on November 19th but every day to aid people with the Senior Citizen Card, according to Special discounts and concessions offered for Senior Citizens Day on November 20 (info.gov.hk)
It is estimated that Hong Kong has a little over a million citizens who are eligible to get the Senior Citizens Card
Where to find the best offers?
Offers on November 19th do vary quite a bit, with some businesses treating their elderly customers to a 5 and 10% discount, whereas the median discount is about 35%, but where do the Senior Citizens get the best offer?
On the other end of the scale, Tsui Wan Jade in Tuen Mun has a whopping 80% off according to the Social Welfare Department.
Other great offers to look out for are at Premier Optical, which has 60% off all spectacles and lenses.
You can apply for the Senior Citizens card at Senior Citizens Community Support if you are over 65. You do not have to renew the card, so it is eligible until you do not need it anymore.
But does all of this make a difference to the elderly population of Hong Kong?
One senior citizen does not seem to think so, even though it is a nice gesture
“The general benefits of the Senior Citizens Card outweigh this one day. I enjoy having cheap public transportation, and all the other benefits the card gives me, but I do not wait to make my purchase for this day. Maybe I will go out and have a cheap dinner with my wife,” says local Zang Zhongwei.