A lot of seniors will tell you, the best part about retirement is the opportunity to travel. For many, it is a dream they were unable to fully realize throughout their adult years. Work and family can certainly take up a lot of time. When we retire, we look to the things we have always wanted to do. Travel is high on any list of fun ways to enjoy your senior years.
Traveling For Pleasure As A Senior
At the same time, it is important to remember that you aren’t traveling as a thirty-year-old. Or even a fifty-year-old! Acknowledging age, which can present many (manageable) challenges, can ensure planning a trip that gives you everything you could ever want from seeing the world beyond your zip code. None of what we say here is meant to discourage, or suggest you have to deny yourself the things you’ve always wanted to do.
Simply put, traveling as a senior simply requires a little more planning. This can include looking for travel services built around seniors, or even arming yourself with one of the cellphones for seniors that are currently on the market. You have a lot of simple measures that can let you focus on making timeless memories.
Easy Travel Tips For Senior-Age Adventurers
From making sure any mobility issues are addressed before leaving, to packing the right supplies for the trip you have in mind, a lot of these tips benefit from being very straightforward. Keep them in mind, the next time you fall in love with the open road, or finally make that visit to Europe you’ve always imagined:
- Consider travel services built around seniors: This isn’t a requirement, but it can give you some unique options to make the most of the trip. Whether you are flying, driving, taking a cruise, getting on trains/buses, or a combination of things, research travel companies that have a lot to offer seniors. Discount programs are not as prevalent as they once were. However, there are specialized services and more available through many airlines, cruise companies, tour companies, and so forth.
- When do you plan to travel? Even with the freedom of more time offered by retirement, you should still do some research to pick an optimal time to travel. Chances are, you want to beat the crowds, and you don’t want the temperature to be in the triple digits. These are significant concerns for seniors traveling to Europe. The time of year can influence the experience you will have on many different types of trips. Knowing what to expect can help you decide if it is the right time to go.
- Take care of insurance: This is one of the first things you will want to take care of. Obviously, you will want to wait until you know exactly what you are doing/where you are going. Travel insurance can be particularly important for seniors. Older travelers sometimes face an increased risk of catching an illness or getting injured. There is also the possibility of being delayed in your travels, which can lead to running out of medication. Travel insurance for seniors rarely costs more than a couple of hundred extra dollars. There is a strong argument to be made that this is not a lot to ask for comprehensive peace of mind on any of the issues we mentioned.
- What about diet? Most of us like to indulge when we travel. That often includes trying the local favorites, regardless of where you happen to be in the world. While treating yourself is fine, you should still take a little extra care in what you eat. Make sure none of your medications will have negative interactions with what you’d like to try while traveling. If you have any issues with certain foods in your day-to-day life, consider cutting them out, or at least limiting them. Traveling while fighting indigestion and similar problems is never fun. This is a good example of knowing what your body can take, and keeping in mind that you may not be able to find a bathroom while in transit.
- Simple packing tips: Packing for a trip as a senior is not significantly different from packing for a trip at any other age. One thing you will definitely want to do is keep your medications in a single place. Many recommend a 1-qt zip-lock bag to hold everything. As far as medications are concerned, make sure you have the prescriptions and other documentation you may require, should you find yourself in need of a refill. At the end of the day, the focus should probably be on packing as light as possible. A rollaboard suitcase and medium carry on with a solid shoulder strap can probably handle everything you are planning to take along. This is a simple setup that works well with planes, buses, trains, and making sure you get your belongings to your actual destinations.
- Make sure you can communicate: This might be a good time to look into smartphones and cellphones for seniors. There are some excellent smartphones, traditional cellphones, and even outdoor phones available in this day and age. Such devices are streamlined for senior use, while still making sure you have all of the features and benefits you will need. To be sure, you want something that is easy to use while traveling. You can take things a step further by making sure friends and loved ones know where to reach you. A senior cellphone can also make it easy to check in with those worried kids of yours!
Enjoy Your Next Remarkable Adventure
If you plan to travel abroad, look into mobility/health conditions that can cause issues at TSA security checkpoints. If you are concerned about communicating these things effectively, ask someone to help.
Simple planning in the present can make sure your experience is a memorable one. The time has finally come to knock as many items off your travel bucket list as possible. Don’t let anything get in the way of that!