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10 Travel Tips For Seniors Going On An Adventure

10 Travel Tips for Seniors Going On An Adventure

 

      1. Annita-Thomas-Tips-for-Senior-Travel

Recording from the Bill and Joel Morning Show

 

Top 10 Travel Tips for Seniors Going
On An Adventure

So many people ask me “How do you continue to travel as you get older?”  I know their questions stem from the challenges one can face as we age.  Stiff knees and cranky hips are just the beginning. My days of trekking around all day and going out for a group dinner over several hours into the night are long gone. I usually make it to my bed just in time to go face down and deep into a “hard” sleep.  I know it’s a hard sleep because I’ve been told by my younger travel mates they can not believe how fast and sound I go to sleep.  But, that’s part of the getting older phase of life.

The great thing about getting older and continuing to travel is freedom from many of the responsibilities younger career building friends continue to sort through.  I also find I have greater clarity with where I want to go and what I want to do.  And, I am comfortable just taking it easy.  No need to feel I “must do” all the adventure activities in the area.  I can appreciate a lively conversation over a great meal, hearing all about a local friend’s life and experiences.  These days I love exploring destinations and hearing how historic events have brought us to today; taking it slow and easy works just fine.

My philosophy is you are never too old to travel.  There is always an adventure, big or small waiting for you to grab it.  But, as we age, there are some considerations to keep in mind.  Or if you are traveling with someone older, these tips will keep everyone and everything moving in the right direction.

10 Travel Tips for Seniors Going On An Adventure

 

1. Consult a travel agent or travel advisor for the latest information and trends at your desired destination. Their knowledge and expertise is invaluable for ensuring you make the right choices with hotels, attractions and restaurants.  Travel agents have relationships in the travel industry allowing them to make arrangements on your behalf and ensure your needs are taken care of.

2.  Make arrangement for assistance you will need during your travels.  Think ahead about any assistance which will make getting around easier and more comfortable throughout your trip from start to finish. Will you need assistance with a wheelchair at the airport or while visiting a museum?  Does your tour guide need to arrange drop off close to the stops on your itinerary?  When choosing excursions, what will you need to traverse cobble stone streets, narrow steps and steep hills?  Traveling is no time to become super man or woman.  There is no shame in needing assistance. Speak up, ask and pre-arrange.
10 Travel Tips for Senior Travel Going On An Adventure
A medical check-up can help you prepare for an upcoming trip.        Photo credit: Mark Adams

3.  A medical check up is advised, especially for any chronic conditions.  A check-in with your doctor to make sure everything is a go should be high on your list.  Plan your visit to include a conversation about your destination and how you should respond to any side effects or symptoms of your condition.  Your doctor is in your corner when it comes to staying active.  He/she will be your cheerleader in helping you get out and about.  If there are any limitations – you’ll know from the person who helps you stay heathy throughout the year.

4.  Purchase travel insurance which includes medical insurance.  I am a strong supporter of travel insurance to protect your trip investment.  In addition to reimbursement for your expenses, travel insurance can also cover medical emergencies and illness.  In a medical emergency, the cost of transportation to return home can be in the thousands of dollars. Travel medical insurance will take care of not only the costs but also the arrangements of getting back home for medical care.  Travel Bags With Annita works closely with Allianz Travel Insurance to help travelers of all ages enjoy their vacations without worry and stress.

5.  Medications?  If you are planning an international getaway, review each medication to ensure they are not illegal in the country where you are traveling. Check each country you may visit, even if you are just transiting or visiting overnight.
This may sound surprising, but there are medications which are perfectly legal in the U.S. but totally illegal in other countries.  A quick check with your doctor and pharmacist or a call to the CDC (Center for Disease Control) can help you find the answers and rest assured your medications are on the “ok list” in the countries you plan to visit.
Also, keep medications on you and not in your checked bags.
10 Travel Tips for Senior Travel Going On An Adventure

6.  Pack light – and make a list of what you need to take, based on where you’re heading.  A packing list may appear to be another step in your planning but they work with organizing and scaling back, or adding items too.  A list is there to help you take only what you’ll need.  Unless you are traveling with someone who will handle lifting and stowing your luggage, take only luggage and bags you can handle yourself.

Check weather conditions where you planning to visit. Bring along a light jacket even if you’re visiting a warm destination. Restaurants, museums and local tourist sites can be cold and a warm jacket will be a welcomed item while touring.

If you are visiting historic sites, ask about the walking and mobility conditions around the site. Will you be able to park nearby or will you need to walk several blocks? Is the street or side walk covered in cobble stones and uneven surfaces?  If the answer is yes, bring along slip-resistant sole shoes to avoid stumbles and tripping.

I always pack a pair of socks; even in warm areas.  Walking on the hotel room floors can be cold on your feet.

The main point here is you don’t want to arrive needing something that you thought about packing but decided to leave at home.  And, you don’t want to arrive with a suitcase full of clothes and you can’t possibly wear all of them on such a short trip. There is a fine balance, seek to pack as light as possible with all the things you’ll need to keep yourself comfortable and healthy.

7.  Flying?  Move around during the flight. Deep vein thrombosis is real. Stay active. It’s so easy to sit and watch a movie, read a book or sleep on a long flight.  Once you are settled in, you may feel it’s now all about comfort and not wanting to bother your seat mate. Get up and move. Walk up and down the aisles and stretch your legs near the door area where there is room to move.  Keep blood flowing and joints loosen.  On long flights without any activity, DVT (Deep Vain Thrombosis) can be a real concern.  Get up and move.

 

10 Travel Tips for Seniors Travel On An Adventure
Relax and enjoy your time together.
8.  Keep your itinerary light and easy.  A vacation doesn’t need to be all rush, rush, see it all. Choose the things you are excited to see and spread them out over your stay. There is no need to come back to the hotel too tired to enjoy your evening. There is always dinner time and you will want to be energetic enough to enjoy a conversation with your travel mates.

9.  Take advantage of senior discounts.  Yes!!  Who doesn’t love a discount. There are many out there to take advantage of.  If you are planning your trip with a travel professional ask them to inquire about discounts.  Planning early allows you to create a budget with actual costs and fees to ensure you are managing you well thought-out budget properly.  Also, you may save so much money with discounts that you can enjoy additional activities!  How cool would that be!

 

10 Travel Tips for Seniors Going On An Adventure
Share a copy of your itinerary with love ones at home.                          Photo credit: Rawpixel
10.  Share your travel plans with family & friends at home. Your love ones at home will want to know that you’re doing well and everything is going as planned.  Ease their minds by providing a detailed copy of your itinerary. They can check it each day and feel they are with you on your getaway. And, if there is a problem, someone will know where you were scheduled to be and who should be contacted to start any investigation or follow up.

Go explore! You can do it with limitations, cranky knees and all. There is an adventure out there waiting just for you. Get up and go visit a museum in your city, a historic site in your state or make the dream vacation a reality this year. Go do it!  The world is waiting!!

Note:  Travel Bags With Annita is a travel partner with Allianz Travel Insurance.

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