Traveling is a favorite pastime for people of all ages, but it can become more difficult as you get older. Limited mobility, cognitive issues and other limitations can make travel challenging. Taking more time to plan and account for your special needs can make it easier to travel safely while enjoying everything you see and do. Here are some tips to help with your upcoming travels.
Travel planners who work with seniors can help you choose an ideal location and anticipate potential issues to make your trip go smoothly. Look for a travel agent who specializes in senior travel to get the best help. They can help you explore different types of trips that you might not think of yourself, and they can let you know what types of services, support and discounts are available based on your age and special needs.
When narrowing down the destination options, consider what type of vacation you want. If you prefer a quiet, relaxing trip, a destination known for high-adrenaline activities isn't the best match. You can often find tours that cater to older adults with activities that might be appealing to you. It can also be enjoyable to travel with a group of other people who have similar interests.
Look at the accommodation options available once you choose your destination. Some vacation rentals might have lots of stairs and lack the accessibility you need, for example. If you stay at a hotel, you can often request things, such as a room on the main floor or a room with a walk-in shower.
It's a good idea to schedule a checkup before you leave on vacation to ensure you're in good health. Let your doctor know about your upcoming travel plans, and discuss any concerns or activity restrictions you should observe. Your doctor can also make sure you're current on vaccinations and have refills available for your medications.
While traveling, it's important to keep up with your medication and other health needs. Ensure you have enough medication to last for the length of the trip, and keep it in a safe place. If you're flying, put your medication in your carry-on luggage to make sure it arrives with you. It's also a good idea to carry copies of your prescriptions and any medical documents that describe your health conditions or treatments. Ensure you have your health insurance information and contact info for your doctor with you as well.
If you're traveling with mobility devices or have mobility limitations, contact various travel agencies for your trip before you leave. For example, you might call the airline to discuss flying with your wheelchair. You can often pre-arrange assistance and special accommodations when you contact those travel companies in advance.
Don't be afraid to ask for help while you travel, even if you didn't call ahead for assistance. At the airport, most airlines offer free wheelchairs, someone to push your wheelchair and sighted guides if you have vision impairments. Contact the airline before you travel to arrange assistance if you need it. You can also ask airline staff members for help with bags or other things while you travel. At hotels, you can often have your luggage taken to the room for you.
You can often find senior discounts while you travel, which can make your trip more affordable. Ask about senior discounts every time you book part of the trip. You can often get senior discounts on various means of transportation, such as including buses and trains. Check with museums, amusement parks and any other attractions you visit for discounts, and check on restaurant discounts as well.
It's always tempting to pack in as much fun as possible when you travel. However, overdoing it can leave you tired, dehydrated or injured. Be realistic about how much you can handle during the trip. You might plan one activity per day and leave the rest for downtime. If you're still feeling good, you can fill in with additional activities. When you head out for the day, keep your purse or pack light to avoid extra strain.
If you're used to a fairly structured routine, try to stick with it while on vacation. Keep your meal times similar, so you don't get too hungry or have a drop in your blood sugar. Eating regularly can also be necessary for certain medications, which you should also take on the same schedule as you do at home. If you're used to taking naps or rest time, work them into your daily agenda while you travel.
Let your loved ones know about your travel plans. Provide them with flight information, hotel contact information and your travel plans. It's also a good idea to check in with your loved ones while you travel. There are many apps to stay connected, including FaceTime, Facebook and Skype. Don't forget to let them know when you make it back to your cozy home at Autumn View Gardens, so they can rest easy knowing you're home safe.