Editorial

Senior citizen plans to spend twilight years at motel chain

Thursday, February 28, 2019

With nursing homes struggling to survive, are motels missing an opportunity?

Check out one Texas manís plans, which are getting plenty of exposure on social media.

Granted, the Texan, Terry Robison, doesnít need medical supervision, but his calculations make sense.

While the average nursing home costs $188 a day, he said he could stay in a Holiday Inn for $59.23 a night with long-term and senior discounts. Once free breakfast and happy hour are factored in, that leaves $128.77 a day for food and entertainment.

Plus, not many nursing homes offer a spa, swimming pool, workout room or lounge, and then there are complimentary shampoo, soap, toothpaste and razors.

And, while a bed in a nursing home might take months to obtain, motels offer instant reservations.

"$5-worth of tips a day and you'll have the entire staff scrambling to help you," Robison said. "They treat you like a customer, not a patient."

"If you're a senior who's independent and doesn't need medical supervision, this makes a lot of sense," says financial advisor Spencer McGowan. "Think about it. If a nursing home is $188 a night and the Holiday Inn will cut you a long-term stay deal for $60 a night and throw in breakfast, there are a lot of things you can do with that extra $128 a day."

Weíve heard of similar plans involving cruise ships, but this is the first involving a motel chain.

Itís true that most of us who go into a nursing home will need more attention than Mr. Robison apparently does, but his way of thinking outside the box is certainly intriguing.

With financial pressures conventional nursing homes are facing today, creative thinking may be just what we need.

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