Retiree who ‘walked around world’ steps out on mission to demystify pensions

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Retiree Who ‘Walked Around World’ Steps Out On Mission To Demystify Pensions Retiree Who ‘Walked Around World’ Steps Out On Mission To Demystify Pensions
Retired business consultant Vinod Bajaj, 71, wrote the book during lockdown. © PA Archive/PA Images
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By David Young, PA

A Co Limerick retiree who made headlines for his walking feats during lockdown has now written a book on Irish pensions.

Retired business consultant Vinod Bajaj, 71, said his self-published work Pension Without Tension is the first dedicated guide to the pension system in Ireland.

“No better man to write about pensions than a pensioner,” said Mr Bajaj, who wrote the book in three months during lockdown.

There is also a charity aspect to the book, with a percentage of any profits made going to suicide prevention charity Pieta House.

Vinod Bajaj from Limerick (Niall Carson/PA)

Mr Bajaj, who was born in India but has lived in Ireland for 44 years, is already known for his epic walking exploits around his home city of Limerick.

In 2016, the married father-of-one set himself the goal of walking the equivalent distance of the circumference of the earth – 40,075 km – and said he completed the milestone last year amid the pandemic.

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Mr Bajaj, who says his total walking distance is now up to 55,000 km in five years, has based the book on his own experience building a personal pension during his business career.

“My aim is to give people a simple pension message,” he said.

“These days people have got myths and misconceptions about pensions, they think it’s very complicated, and what I have done in the book is made it in the language of the common man.

“So it is simplified, there are no graphs and charts and it is easy to understand. It’s just letting people know that you cannot ignore the pension message – it’s important.”

 

Mr Bajaj, a former senior vice president of a multinational company, claims Ireland is facing a “pension time bomb”, with millions of people not saving enough for their retirement.

“You should be starting a pension yesterday, not today,” he said.

The book covers topics such as pension tax, pension transfer, winding up of pension schemes, pensions during divorce or separation, pensions on death, fees and charges, pension contribution holidays, and retirement options.

Mr Bajaj has placed Pieta House’s logo on the front cover of his book.

“Mental health issues are a problem in this country, we all know that, but during Covid people have gone through a very tough time mentally and Pieta has been at the forefront of the charitable work in that area of suicide and people doing self harm, so I said no better charity to go and support while we are all going through a tough time during Covid,” he said.

Mr Bajaj said he was also prompted to help the charity after someone close to his family took their own life.

For more information visit www.pensionwithouttension.com

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