Senior Travel Tips
For people of all ages, but especially for seniors, travel helps improve mood and outlook on life. It strengthens relationships with loved ones far away. It allows you to commune with nature and increase your understanding of other people and cultures. Meeting new people, exploring new destinations, and engaging in activities outside of your normal routine stimulates the brain, leading to better cognition. Vacationing also reduces stress levels and helps you exercise more as you wander around new environments.
Vacationing can be a bit more challenging as you get older. There are ways to smooth the bumps in the road while expanding horizons and creating new memories. With a little planning, you can continue to enjoy all the benefits travel brings well into your golden years.
- Cruise ships are built to be handicapped-accessible, have on-board clinics, and you only have to unpack once, no matter how many countries you visit.
- Bus tours do the navigating for you and allow you to enjoy sightseeing at a leisurely pace.
- When booking hotels and B&Bs, be sure to ask about stairs, elevator service, narrow hallways, and wheelchair-accessible bathrooms. Make sure the place you are staying is convenient for your needs.
- Always ask for senior discounts for train tickets, entrance fees, and event tickets. You might be surprised at how many places offer them.
- When needed, wheelchair and electric cart services at airports help you get through security lines more quickly and make tight flight connections. Request these services when booking tickets.
- Requesting a wheelchair at a theme park can give you a break from all the walking and usually gets your whole family to the front of the line for each ride.
- Wheeled luggage, especially the upright kind with four wheels, makes bringing your clothes around the world a whole lot easier.
- If you pack very lightly and only bring carry-on luggage aboard airplanes, you can skip baggage claim altogether.
- Medicare is not valid outside the United States. Consider buying travel insurance that includes health coverage for overseas travel. It can bring peace of mind in case medical emergencies crop up while out of range of your usual medical coverage.
- Bring all the medications you will need with you in your carry-on bag. Getting prescriptions filled overseas can get tricky and time-consuming.
- Build in down time. Be sure one or two days of your itinerary is dedicated to rest and relaxation so you have the energy to enjoy your exciting new experiences.