Money in the Middle

Sandwich Generation Talking About Money Up, Down and Across Generations

Baby boomers and aging parents shun “it’s time to hang up the keys” conversation

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Driving and seniors is a touchy topic – for everyone. boomers, their parents, other drivers, state legislators setting the rules for driving tests.  A new survey says most baby boomers say neither they nor anyone else has spoken to their parents about driving safety issues.

 Baby boomers say a conversation with their parents about driving would be uncomfortable (58%) or that it would make their parents angry (38%).  However, only 24% of seniors say they would feel uncomfortable and only 9% say they would be angered.  On the other hand, 92% of seniors say their adult children “have a right” to raise this issue with them.

 My guess is it all boils down to how that conversation is conducted because no matter what you say in response to a “what if” question feels very different when confronted with the issue on a personal basis.  No matter how old…or young…we are.

 So, a new site sponsored by Liberty Mutual provides tips on how to have that conversation.  And for seniors, some tips on how to identify your driving habits.  The site also provide a simulation game “Driver Seat Game” that allows players of alleges to experience first-hand the physical and cognitive limitation that an older driver might experience.  I didn’t find it very compelling, so try it before you suggest it to a senior driver.

 AAA launched a senior driving website too.  Check it out for tips as well.

 One of the big issues facing older drivers is very simply if they stop driving, how do they get where they need to go without having to rely (and burden) family and friends.  Liberty Mutual has teamed up with ITNAmerica, the first and only national, non-profit transportation network.  The good news is that the service is low cost and is now available in nine cities and regions.  For more information, see their website at

 The costs of driving escalate with age, too.  Insurance rates increase even though miles driven decreases.  Hopefully services like ITNAmerica will expand so that there are cost effective alternatives when you decide to hang up the keys.


Written by Laura Rossman

July 22, 2009 at 12:49 pm

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