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Boomers Turning 60

During 2006, the first wave of baby boomers turns 60. This AARP telephone survey of a national sample of 800 boomers born in 1946 explores their thoughts about the significance of reaching this milestone, and assesses their satisfaction with their lives up to now, personal goals and expectations for the future.

  • While substantially satisfied with their lives, most are optimistically making plans for making the future even better. Only 1 percent see age as a barrier to achieving their goals.

  • Virtually all have some substantial life change they want to make:
    • 87 percent want to take better care of their physical health
    • 72 percent plan to spend more time on interests and hobbies
    • 47 percent want to do more volunteering

  • Work is likely to continue to play a major role their lives. Currently...
    • 54 percent are still working (compared to 74 percent of all boomers)
    • 54 percent of those still working plan to quit as soon as they can, but 37 percent plan to work “until I drop”
    • 14 percent of those not working plan to go back to work in the next few years

  • Comparing the significance of turning 60 with turning 50...
    • 37 percent feel it is more significant
    • 30 percent say both are equal
    • 17 percent consider it less significant

The survey was conducted for AARP by ICR/International Communication Research between March 23rd and April 10th, 2006. (Although not intended as a survey of AARP members per se, 46 percent of respondents identified themselves as members, compared to 30 percent of all eligible boomers.) Further information about the survey may be obtained by contacting Linda Fisher of AARP Knowledge Management at 202-434-6304. (26 pages)

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