8 Important Tips When Travelling with Senior Citizens
Even when a person reaches retirement age and senior year, they are still entitled to travel and enjoy seeing new places. Their age should not be a problem and not hold them back to enjoy traveling. However, because of age, there may be some restrictions and there will be limitations on what they can do.
So, how to have a successful travel experience for senior citizens?
Choose a direct or non-stop flight
When booking a trip, it’s recommended to choose non-stops flights over connecting flights. In this way, it will reduce the chance of missed connection and total travel time. as much as possible, avoid booking a flight on small jets so that senior citizens will have more leg space and feel comfortable during the trip.
Make hotel requests
When booking a hotel for your trip, ask for a room on the ground floor near the entrance so it would address any mobility issues. If there are not hotel rooms in ground floor, just ask for one that is close to elevator. Here are the things you should look for booking for hotel room for oldies:
• Roll-in shower
• Raised toilet
• Grab bars in the bathroom
• Lever-type door handles
• Wider entry and bathroom doorways
• Mid-height light switches
• Automatic door opening
• Handicap parking
• Level or ramped access to public areas
• Elevator access to above-ground rooms
Search for senior citizen discounts and special travel options
A lot of airlines and travel companies are offering discounts and special packages. Take advantage of this. Other things that are designed for oldies:
• Almost all airlines allow oldies and families with young children to board the plane earlier than usual.
• Senior citizens are able to request assistance in the airport such as wheelchair from check-in to boarding gate
• Look for assistance at security, where they oldies are able to go through a shorter line
Purchase travel insurance
If you think travel insurance is not that important, think again. This is really helpful for older travelers as they are prone to get sick or need extra medication. It’s worse if oldies are in a foreign land and then experienced a terrible situation like run out of medication or meeting an accident. Travel insurance will cover the oldies if something goes wrong.
Bring all proper documentation
Before heading out of the house, ensure that all necessary documents are prepared and on hand. Make as many copies of the documents and place them in the carry-on, checked-in luggage, at home and more. Here are important documents to bring:
• Driver’s License or Passport or driver’s license
• Prescription copies
• Medical and insurance cards
• Medical statement from physicians and other health information
• Doctor’s contact information in the place where you’re traveling
Take all necessary medications
Traveling with senior citizens means they need their maintenance medicines. They need extra care when going out. It’s as important as their money and passports. Medicines should be in the carry on and not on checked-in luggage. Carry them wherever you are. Ensure that oldies have enough medicines covering the entire trip plus some extra in the event of a delayed flight or any circumstances.
As a companion, make sure to write down the names of any essential medicines they need and dosages. Take down the brand-name and the generic name as well. If you’re visiting a foreign land, try your best to find out if the medication has a counterpart or what it is called in that place.
Be prepared for emergencies
If traveling with senior citizens such as your grandparents, consider their special needs and list down possible emergencies you may encounter. Here are the things to prepare for:
• If you’re in another place, you should know who to call and where to go when emergency arises. This will include hospital and police stations.
• If you have a friend on the area, include him or her on your contact list
• Keep all important documents of the oldies such as passports. To help more, provide them identification card along with your contact details in case they get separated or lost.
• Know where the nearest toilet in public places is
• Bringing diapers for oldies is a good option as well.
Check out some special services
If you want to take a tour to a specific location, as a companion, you should search for any senior-centric tours. A lot of historical sites are offering tour guides that cater to senior citizens needs. They can also join the tour with other active seniors so they can explore the spots at a more relaxed pace. Museums are also offering hearing support for those with auditory issues. Find out if the place you’re visiting is offering shuttles and other services that help people with limited mobility get around.
Other activities that senior citizens may enjoy:
• Visit a National Park
• Explore various restaurants
• Riverboat tours
• Watch a play