The Government's decision to spend $600,000 on digital literacy training for users has been applauded by SuperGold card advocates.

The Government will also spend $7.7 million to enhance the SuperGold card scheme to help show senior citizens how to maximise their card's usage.

The move was given the thumbs up by SuperGold cardholders spoken to by the Bay of Plenty Times in Tauranga's central business district yesterday.

Waihī resident Lynne Tattersell, who turned 65 last year, said she applauded the move.


"If it allows more people to tap into the computer skills they need to take full advantage of SuperGold card benefits, including me, it's a great idea," she said.

Tattersell said she mainly used her SuperGold card on the buses, certain shops and at the local supermarket on Tuesdays.

"If the revamp also allows more people to get out and out about rather than staying at home and doing nothing that's got to be a good thing," she said.

Marilyn Mercer, 76, from Judea also applauded helping seniors to access the full benefits of having a SuperGold card.

"I think it's a great idea. Lots of people would take advantage of the computer training course, including me as I have a computer but I'm scared of it and need some training."

Age Concern Tauranga manager general Tanya Smith said she was pleased to see education on digital literacy would be available.

"Learning new technology can be daunting for the older person but with the right environment and educators it can open up a new world," Smith said.

"Technology can bring people together, a tool that can help combat loneliness and social isolation.


"Businesses in our community should take this opportunity to participate and register, with our growing ageing population in the Bay. It's a win-win for everyone."

Tauranga Grey Power president Jennifer Custins said the extra funding for digital literacy training was a "brilliant" move by the Government.

"But there are lots of seniors who don't have a computer or a smartphone and others who are an age where they could not take advantage of this initiative.

"However, I accept we do need to build for the future and ensure people have the digital skills to take advantage of these improvements."

NZ First leader and Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters, who made the pre-budget announcement at Grey Power's annual conference said the Government was giving the card a "serious revamp".

"The world has changed, all sorts of technologies have changed and we're going to bring it up to date and [make it] a super, SuperGold card."

The app and website changes will kick off at the end of this year.

Latest figures showed there were more than 750,000 SuperGold cardholders nationwide.

SuperGold Card scheme changes

The Government is setting aside $7.7m for seniors in its Wellbeing Budget to upgrade the SuperGold card scheme with a new digital platform.

It includes the creation of a new SuperGold app linked to an updated website set to be launched before the end of the year.

For more information visit the SuperGold website.