France, Social PortraitEdition 2018

France, Social Portrait is for everyone who would like to learn more about French society.

This cross-cutting publication in the “Insee Références” collection throws the spotlight firstly on people aged 65 or over. Two reports then offer an in-depth analysis of the effects of social and fiscal reforms on household income and inequality. Lastly, around forty themed information sheets summarise the main data and provide European comparisons, to complete this social panorama.

Insee Références
Paru le : 20/11/2018

Activities of senior citizens: decreasingly diversified past the age of 75

Sébastien Grobon, Thomas Renaud

As a consequence of ceasing professional activities, leisure time accounts for a large proportion of the daily lives of people aged 65 or over: in 2010, it occupies one-third of their timetable (on average 7 hours and 33 minutes over the 24 hours of their day). Two-thirds of leisure time takes place at home. Television holds a prominent place in these domestic leisure activities: in 2010, senior citizens spend 3 hours and 6 minutes per day in front of the small screen. On average, men living as part of a couple have two hours more leisure time per day compared with their partners. This additional free time is mainly dedicated to DIY, gardening or watching television.

Advanced age entails an increase in passive activities. Senior citizens aged 85 or over rest on average 1 hour and 46 minutes more per day and spend 37 minutes more watching television than those aged 65 to 74. This gradual restructuring of one’s timetable with age relates first of all to a reduction in travel time and outdoor leisure time. Subsequently, at the most advanced ages, it occurs to the detriment of time spent on domestic tasks or gardening and DIY.

Up until the age of 75, the most affluent senior citizens watch television less often (- 48 minutes) and undertake more varied activities than the least affluent, which include more travel, professional or volunteer work and time spent at a computer. These differences in standard of living then diminish with age.

Time spent socialising is a notable exception and, as such, appears to be a particularly significant aspect of the everyday lives of senior citizens: not only is this time equal among both affluent and the least affluent senior citizens, but it also remains stable with age.

Finally, over 25 years, the sleep time of senior citizens has reduced in line with their going to bed progressively later, in favour of more time spent in front of the television (+ 45 minutes between 1986 and 2010).

Insee Références

Paru le : 20/11/2018