Aging is a complex, multifactorial process that is driven by the progressive accumulation of several types of cellular damage. Functional impairment at the cellular level causes a multitude of pathologies and disorders in aged individuals. The goal of the aging field is to develop novel therapeutic interventions that extend human health span and reduce the burden of age-related disorders. To explore the molecular determinants that drive cellular aging, as well as how to slow them, researchers have utilized the highly genetically tractable budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Indeed, every intervention known to extend both cellular and organismal health span was identified in yeast, underlining the power of this approach. Importantly, a growing body of work has implicated the process of autophagy as playing a critical role in the delay of aging. This review summarizes recent reports that have identified a role for autophagy or autophagy factors in the extension of yeast lifespan. These studies demonstrate that yeast remains an invaluable tool for the identification and characterization of conserved mechanisms that promote cellular longevity for a number of reasons. Principal among them is the facility with which yeast can be genetically manipulated, as well as the fact that its genome has been well characterized. These features, combined with ease of growth and a short doubling time, conspire to make yeast highly amenable to a variety of high-throughput screening procedures. The use of yeast as an experimental system also allows for incomparably rapid lifespan experiments. Perhaps most importantly, since many of the pathways regulating longevity are conserved from yeast to more complex eukaryotes, including mammals, novel pharmaceutical or nutritional regulators of these processes that are identified in yeast will likely be translatable to the ultimate goal of delaying aging and improving the health span of humans. These studies also demonstrate that the process of autophagy has been implicated in nearly all known longevity-promoting manipulations and thus represent an ideal target for interventions aimed at improving human health span.