Travel can do a lot for us – it can enable us to see our families and friends, it can satisfy our need for adventure, or it can provide us with opportunities to learn and grow. For this reason, many seniors want to continue traveling as much as they can.
If you are planning to travel this summer and beyond, these tips can help make your journeys go smoothly – before you reach your destination and after.
For many seniors, travel preparation is the hardest part of vacation planning. Whether you’re exploring the beauty that exists in the United States or are going on a tour of Asia, Africa, or even a guided tour of Europe, the good news is that basic travel preparation needs will remain similar. Before getting overwhelmed with all there is to do prior to your travel plans, check these items off your list.
Prior to traveling, schedule a visit with your primary doctor so they can:
- Discuss any necessary travel precautions
- Evaluate your health and wellness
- Update any vaccinations
- Prescribe supplements beneficial to your travels
- Assess your medications and times you should take them according to time zone
When traveling, it’s a good idea to make additional copies of important documents. Consider making two copies of:
- Driver’s licenses
- Insurance cards
- Tickets and boarding passes
Keep your health provider’s contact information and a detailed list of allergies and medications with you. This sheet should include:
- All prescribed and over-the-counter medications
- What each medication is for
- Medication dosage and times they should be taken
- How to take them – with food or without
- Medication, food or other allergies
Keep two copies of this information with you – one that’s with you on hand, and one in your suitcase.
Many seniors prefer to purchase travel insurance in the event of an unforeseen circumstance. This can help cover the costs of:
- Delayed or interrupted travel
- Lost luggage
- Medical emergencies
Plans may vary, so if you’re considering this, be sure to learn what they cover prior to purchasing and traveling.
- Pack as light as possible
- Make navigation easier with roller bags
- Carry medications with you in their original containers for easy identification
- Keep at least one outfit and your most necessary items with you
- Book a nonstop flight to avoid a missed plane connection
- Alert the airline of accommodations you may need ahead of time
- Be ready to share any medical conditions that may set off alarms, like implants or prosthetics
- Take frequent breaks to stretch or get some physical activity after a long flight
- Drink plenty of water, as low humidity on planes can dehydrate during an already hot summertime
- Be sure your phone allows international calling, or see if it can be activated
- Alert your bank and credit card companies where you’ll be during your trips
- Learn the basics of the language where you’re visiting, if needed
- Consider a reputable tour guide; try small group travel or senior group tours
- Do not announce that you’re leaving – for home and personal security
- Have friends check your home, get your mail, and water plants
- Give yourself time to rest, relax, and build up your energy levels after jet lag
- Avoid nighttime travel and read up on scams
- Keep valuables out of eyesight
- Check for age-related discounts
If you don’t plan on traveling this summer, you can still enjoy adventures and new experiences right where you are living. In fact, some of the best vacations, hidden gems and special moments can be experienced right where you are – or nearby.
- Get outdoors and explore your area’s parks
- Plan a road trip to explore national parks close to you
- Become your grandchildren’s ‘professional travel guide’ and show them around your favorite local places
- Research companies designed to provide senior travel experiences, like Road ScholarⓇ
- Participate in a world tour through food, trying a new restaurant or dish each time
At Waterstone of Lexington, we will provide a range of programs, cultural opportunities, events, and trips that will foster your love of travel and exploration. Whether on campus or throughout our local area, there will always be something to enjoy.
If you prefer to pack up and go wherever you choose, Waterstone of Lexington will make it simple to travel. Enjoy being free from worries about who is watching your home, taking care of your plants, or mowing the lawn; instead, travel with ease.