PSSST…..Over 60 years of age? Time to get a Senior Discount Card

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By Donneley McCann

SEDESOL  –  Secretaria of Desarrollo Social (Secretary of Social Development) is the Mexican  federal government department that is in charge of INAPAM – Institute National de Las Personas Adultos Mayores or the National Institute for Older Persons in english.
This is a branch of DIF – Desarrollo Integral de la Family (Integrated Family
Development).   DIF is the office that issues INAPAM senior citizen cards to any natural or foreign citizen or resident.  With an INAPAM card you will be able to save considerably as there are many goods and services that offer discounts to seniors in Mexico.  From shops to restaurants, bus lines to basic services, it can save you money.
To apply for your senior’s discount card, you must attend personally at a DIF office. In La Paz, the DIF building is the next block past the Volkswagen dealer on Abasolo.  It is on the corner of Abasolo and Colosio/Gulfo de California.
The requirements at the La Paz DIF, INAPAM office for the card are:
– your passport
– your immigration form (Residente Temporal, Residente Permanente or whatever your legal status)
– your telephone, water or electric bill (to prove residency)
– your CURP card
– a passport size photo
Copies of each of the items above are necessary. Also be prepared to provide information on a contact person in the event of an emergency.
You will then be asked to return at a time the card is expected to
be available.  On this visit you then need to provide a fingerprint and your signature. If you have a long name, practice signing small as the space provided is just over an inch long!
This senior discount card is free and never needs to be renewed.  Foreigners are entitled to this benefit because the Mexican constitution forbids discrimination.
With your TARJETA INAPAM in hand you should be entitled to:

  • 50% off on inter-city bus travel
  • 50% off on municipality buses in La Paz
  • Free or reduced entrance to museums
  • A discount on property taxes
  • A discount on your water bill
  • Discounts at stores—some offices will give you a booklet listing them when you apply for the card. The discounts tend to run 5-15%.
  • Discounts at some movie theaters
  • Discounts—usually about 10%—at restaurants, including some well-known Mexican chains like VIP’s. You should ask the restaurant.

According to the INAPAM website, many clinics, labs, pharmacies and hospitals also take part in the program. Some dentists honor it and it sometimes works when getting eyeglasses. So always show your card and ask for if they honor a senior discount.

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