Being in the golden years of life doesn’t mean that your travel opportunities are reduced. As a matter of fact, senior citizens are the best candidates for travel as their decades of wisdom enables them to appreciate the new and beautiful experiences even better than their younger counterparts.
Travelling in the old age, however, can present its own fair share of challenges. As youthful as your spirit can be, there may be physical limitations that can prevent you from enjoying yourself fully or make you more vulnerable to unsavoury characters.
Fortunately, there are prudent steps that senior travellers can take to feel more protected when they travel. We’ll explore what they are below.
1. Travel Insurance is Essential
While travel insurance is an important part of an overseas trip, it’s basically non-negotiable for senior travellers. This is because they are more at risk of being ill, falling and injuring themselves, and requiring additional medication should their travel plans face delays or unforeseen circumstances. Having travel insurance ensures that senior travellers are covered temporarily until they are back home.
2. Consume Healthier Meals
You could say that travelling is not complete without indulging in the gastronomic adventures that a country offers, but it’s a different story for senior travellers. They have more sensitive tummies and are often on restricted or monitored diets. Healthier meals that are not too heavy, cheesy, or spicy are advised as these meals won’t cause gastrointestinal issues that can incapacitate a traveller, limiting them to their hotel room.
In addition, certain prescription medications that older travellers have may interact adversely with particular foods, so it’s wise to make a note of the types of food that can be consumed with your medication before leaving for your trip.
3. Keep Medication Handy
Travellers in their golden years should keep their medication within quick and easy reach in their luggage. Aside from their passport and money, medication is the next most important thing for senior travellers, so don’t put them into your checked luggage, or put them in places where they are not easily accessible. In addition, it’s wise to bring along additional medication to last an additional two days, just in case of flight delays.
To be extra safe, have a list of the essential medication, including the dosages and brand-name, along with the condition that they treat. This step can ensure that you receive the right medication should you need to get them overseas.
4. Wear Comfortable Clothing
As travelling usually involve a lot of sightseeing and walking, wearing shoes that are comfortable and stable can help older travellers to stay on their feet for long periods of time while minimising the risk of trips or ankle sprains.
The various weather conditions can also affect the physiology of older travellers as they are more prone to changes in the climate. When visiting colder destinations, ensure that there are sufficient layers, including handwear and headwear. On the other hand, hot places will require clothing that are more breathable, and perhaps a hat to provide shade from the sun.
5. Keep Loved Ones Informed
Keeping your loved ones informed of your itinerary, the hotels you’ll be staying at, and a copy of your medical history is essential so that they can keep track of your activities and also provide help should you need it. This is especially important if you’re travelling alone or as an elderly couple. In addition, should there be any emergency health situations, your loved ones can assist in providing the necessary information to help your carers, or, in serious cases, arrange medical evacuations to fly you back home.