8 Traveling Tips For Seniors
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Traveling and exploring new places can provide an enjoyable experience and act as a great stress reliever. It is also a great way to meet new people, especially if you opt to travel with a group.

And there’s no reason to let age limit you when it comes to traveling, especially now that you have the time to visit all of those places you always wanted to go.

However, while traveling can be fun, there are several aspects you should consider before embarking on any trip. Take a look at the list below to give you some insight on what to plan for before you take your next big vacation.

1. Do Your Research

This is by far the most important aspect of any vacation. Conducting research before traveling will help you to make the most of your travels to exotic and not so exotic destinations. As a retiree you probably have the flexibility to travel at any time of the year. You can take advantage of this if you are going to a warmer climate. Try to schedule your trip between March and June, or August through September. This will allow you to avoid the heat and the crowds. You can also sometimes get deals some from travel agents if you opt to travel during a less popular time of the year.

2. Get Travel Insurance

Travel insurance is highly recommended, but will be more expensive if you are older. This is especially true if you have any preexisting conditions. And while you might consider travel insurance as an unnecessary extra expense, it is an excellent protective tool that you should incorporate in your traveling plans to avoid any untoward incident during your trip. This can be especially true if your current provider does not include an “evacuation” clause, which is an expensive operation that involves a private flight to an established medical care facility.

Lastly, sometime your regular insurance may cover some travel related health issues. But it is best to purchase standalone insurance to insure maximum coverage.

3. Pack Strategically

As we age, comfort tends to overshadow practicality and one of the things you may be concerned about is if your luggage will be able to hold everything you need to bring.

When packing for your next trip, aim for bare minimum according to the needs of your destination. And then see what you can afford to get rid off. Oftentimes you don’t need nearly as much as you think you do.

Consider that you may be required to hoof it to different places on your trip. This means it is ideal for you to carry a bag that you can manage. Packing lightly will make you feel younger. This is especially true if you opt for a wheeled bag instead of a backpack or satchel.

4. Get A Health Check-Up Before You Travel

Getting a physical before you travel may seem like a waste of money, but it can save you thousands if you have an ailment that crops up on your vacation. Consult your physician for a broad range of medical investigations including age related diseases or any pre-existing conditions before embarking on any trip.

5. Carry Adequate Medication

Before embarking on your travels, it is advisable to carry (about a weeks) extra medication with you. This will help you prepare for any emergency situations or any potential extension of the trip. Additionally, many medications are named differently in other countries or go by their generic name. Be sure to keep a list of the generic names for your prescriptions before you embark to avoid any unnecessary confusion.

Apart from only carrying medicines that are specific to a certain disease, it is also good if you can bring some general purpose medication just in case of any emergency. If you wear hearing aid for better hearing, make sure that you carry an extra pair of batteries. It might be challenging to get a particular size in a foreign country.

6. Consider Traveling In A Group

It can oftentimes be beneficial to plan your travels and tours in groups, as this can have significant benefits. Traveling with a group of people you know can be much more fun and enjoyable, and it also ensures that there are individuals who can take care of you in the case of any local or medical emergency. Also, group tours through alumni associations, tour companies, retirement community travel groups, and church programs offer a great travel savings opportunity.

Getting off the beaten path is great at any age. However, older travelers can sometimes look like an easy target for a scam artist or pickpockets. Traveling in groups is one of the best ways to ward off any potential problems.

7. Flying

When booking a trip, non-stop flights are better preferred compared to connecting flights. This helps in minimizing the chance of a missed connection and also reduces the total travel time. Book a non-stop flight even if it will mean a longer trip to the airport or higher fare. This can be especially true if you have a heavy a carry on bag, since you will have to lug it through multiple airports rather than just 1.

Pro tip: Some airports will allow you to request for an electric cart or a wheelchair if you are a slow walker.

Lastly, be sure to stay hydrated during long trips and take short walks on an hourly basis to free up fascia and reduce the chances of getting a blood clot.

8. Valuables

Although it goes without saying, ensure that you take the bare minimum of valuable items with you on your journey. You should always carry your home country's embassy number, and all other emergency contacts should be in an easy to reach place at all times. If you decide to go venturing out at night, it should be always in the company of a group. Your safety should come before anything else.

Many times people will lock their passports and values up in their hotel room. While this can seem like a safe place for them, many thieves have learned to look for door cleaning signs and break in to steal valuables, since this is an obvious indication that no one is in the room. You should always look your valuables and passport up in a safe or take it with you since hotel rooms are generally not very secure.

Conclusion

Traveling shouldn't have to be a hassle, especially if you are an aged individual. For more information about traveling abroad, take a look at the AARP chapter in your area. The AARP has an extensive library of travel articles and guides.


Street Talk

Very interesting article. I'd wish more people would read it.

Reply
  about 4 years ago
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