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7 Mistakes Seniors Make When Planning Their Trips

Traveling is always rewarding and the same goes for traveling during senior years. However, there are always preparations to be made. Often, it takes more planning for a senior than for others. While it may appear to be exciting to go wherever the mood strikes, that may not be the case. While a teenager may be willing to sleep almost anywhere, that does not translate for seniors.

Here are 7 important tips for travel that seniors should keep in mind:

1.  Make the necessary reservations and plan your trip ahead.

Reservations need to be made and more often than not, more planning needs to be accomplished. Special medical needs always need to be considered. In addition, security is always an important item. Seniors and their traveling companions are often targets of scams and rip-offs and may need to consider restricting traveling to areas that are known to be unsafe for tourists. Tours and cruises may be more amicable to the senior traveler. If any special needs are present, often that tour and cruise companies will accommodate the senior.

2.  Request for special assistance for travel during reservation.

If there are certain medical issues or conditions that need to be met, request for:

  • Special assistance from your airline upon making the reservation.
  • A seated assignment to make sure you are seated most comfortably.
  • When necessary, you may also request for a wheelchair at no cost.

Remember that all these things need to be requested at the time you’re making your reservation.

3.  Dress comfortably.

Remember those old days when you would dress to the nines when traveling? Well, that used to be the social norm but things have pretty much changed now.

  • Wear comfortable, appropriate clothing.
  • Wear shoes that are safe yet easy to remove. You will most likely go through the TSA (Transportation Security Administration) so you’d be asked by the security personnel to remove your shoes for inspection.

Moreover, you need to inform TSA regarding any medical condition and present necessary documentation on your medical condition or whether you have implanted steel in any part of your body as this could set off alarms at the security checkpoint.

4.  Prepare all the necessary documents.

You think you’re all set for travel, arrive at the airport on time, and only to realize that you left your passport at home. Not a pleasant scenario. So be sure to have all these documents in check:

  • Passport
  • Visa (if applicable)
  • Reports on any medical conditions
  • Driver’s license or any acceptable ID for travel
  • Prescription or statements from your physician or medical treatment center
  • Medicare and insurance cards
  • Travel ticket and itinerary

To be sure, make at least two photocopy sets of these documents, with one set stored in your luggage and the other set placed in your hand-carry bag for quick access at any point you need to present any of these documents.

5.  Pack smart.

Pack light and only bring things necessary for your travel. Note that airlines have specific luggage size and weight requirements so you need to check it out with your airlines and make sure you meet those. Also, find out fees for checked-in luggage.

Additionally, there are certain rules for liquids and other items that are not allowed as carry-ons. Your prescription and over-the-counter medications can be placed in your carry-on bag. Put them altogether in a zip-lock back to keep everything organized.

6.  Secure your money.

Pickpocketers are prevalent in busy areas so be sure to always keep your carry-on purse or bag close to you at all times. If possible, refrain from carrying cash and instead use credit cards when paying. When traveling overseas, be sure to notify your bank or credit card companies in advance that you’re going out of the country. Otherwise, your card may be placed on hold since the bank may perceive such overseas transactions as fraudulent. And you don’t want this to happen while you’re paying at the grocery store or a flashy restaurant in a foreign place. To avoid this kind of inconvenience, call your bank or the credit card companies and advise them as to your dates and places of travel.

7.  Again, don’t forget your medication.

If you are taking prescription medications, remember to pack enough for them to last the duration of your trip. Otherwise, ask your doctor for the generic equivalent name of your prescribed medication in case you run out of medication during your travel and you may need to purchase them overseas. Again, place your medications in your carry-on bag to keep them secured and accessible should there be instances of lost luggage or where flight has been delayed and you need to take your medications on time.

Don’t find yourself starting an exciting trip that has been eagerly anticipated only to find yourself waylaid by lack of efficient planning. Lack of planning may turn an exciting trip into a disaster. Don’t let this happen to you!

Do you have some other traveling trips that older people need to keep in mind? Share them with us by leaving a comment below.



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