Insightsthe blog of Porter Hills
Traveling for Seniors
Mariah Busch, Wellness Coordinator
Click here to watch the WZZM13 Senior Wellness segment on this topic!
Traveling can be a great way to spend special time with family, create memories and enjoy new experiences. Even with the anticipation of a fun, new adventure, this can also create stress. Traveling for older adults can sometimes cause worry, but there are easy ways to prepare and create a successful experience for everyone involved.
There are a number of things to take into consideration when thinking about your next vacation:
Even though the choice of places to go is limitless, you might want to consider some of these suggestions before embarking on an overaggressive trip.
- Choose manageable destinations
- Determine your physical abilities, walking, temperatures, comfortable hotels, food, crowds, etc. What will be the best time for you without causing unnecessary stress. A rocky terrain in high altitudes might not be your answer to an outdoor adventure. Perhaps selecting a spot with beautiful and easily manageable walking trails will satisfy your desire for a nature vacation.
- Determine method of travel – road trips are fun, but can cause stress, take longer and be more physically burdening.
- Consider traveling with family or friends that may be able to assist you.
Traveling by Plane – Plan Ahead!
Here are some practical tips that will help make your airline trip go much easier:
- Check in 24 hours prior to departure
- Inform airlines if wheelchair accessible seating is required
- Request special services
- Wheelchair or motorized carts for getting to and from the gate areas
- Valet to carry luggage to check-in
- Find the shortest and most direct flights
- Avoid long layovers
- Ask for senior discounts
- Have documentation prepared and ready before arriving at the airport
- Takes up to 8 weeks to apply for or renew
- Create a folder with all relevant information and take with you on the trip
- Destination information
- Phone numbers and addresses
- Medication requirements and reminders
- Pack lightly with only the necessities
- Purchase a lightweight suitcase with wheels
- Checking Bags
- Avoids the hassle of carrying and watching multiple items
- Consider if you are able to lift the bag to the overhead bin
- If checking a bag, make sure to have copies of important documentation in the checked bag and the carry-on
- Carry-on Bags
- Saves time at check-in and arrival
- Avoids lost luggage
- Avoids the cost of checking a bag – often $25-30 per bag
Theft is a big issue in high traffic areas such as airports. Rather than having a large purse around the shoulder, or a wallet in the back pocket, try a money belt that is small and secure around your waist, or a passage wallet on a neck cord.
Airline staff can be very helpful. Write a note or speak with the flight attendant to give reminders when it is time to take certain medication. With advances in technology, you can also set reminders or alarms on phones to make sure medication is taken at the correct time. Also, if you are checking a bag, make sure to provide additional medication and a change of clothes in their carryon.
A nice way to make sure you are getting everything you can out of a vacation with little hassle, set up all-inclusive tours. This way you one only need to show up and the rest is taken care of!
Vacation day is here!
The day of the trip make sure to wear light easy to wear shoes. Dress comfortably and try to create a calming atmosphere as traveling can cause stress and anxiety.
Vacations are meant to be fun! Be prepared and stay in touch with your loved ones. Encourage them to not worry and to make it a great experience!