Trip with senior citizens? Make sure these tips are not ignored!
If everyone could have it their way, they would travel the world during the prime of their health. Unfortunately because of financial concerns and other responsibilities, traveling only becomes a viable option for a lot of people only after retirement and when their kids are well settled in to their own lives.
Traveling for seniors is a dip in to the fountain of youth. What you need to realize is that is this trip is all about them. They deserve for every second to be enjoyable. Your beloved parents, uncles, aunts or even grandparents are entitled to this trip, so you have to plan it around their limitations and stamina. They move at a different pace and have different physical needs, even so you can have a great time!
To make this vacation fun and easy, here are few quick tips that you should keep in mind.
- First and foremost, go to doctor. Get his professional option about whether or not it’s all right for the senior to travel.
- Pack any and all medication that they may need during the trip. Your family doctors prescription may not be honored when you’re overseas and you don’t want to waste any vacation time trying to get a new prescription.
- Carry a first aid kit at all times. It doesn’t matter whether you’re just going to a museum or a picnic, medicine should always be close by.
- Bring a blood pressure monitor along on your trip to check their blood pressure daily. They’re neat little battery operated devices that you can get at any decent pharmacy. They hardly weigh anything at all, so they won’t weigh down your luggage.
- Bring an extra jacket along even if you’re going to a warm location. Sometimes the air conditioning in the plane is too cold, or even when you’re touring an indoor space. You wouldn’t want them to be cold and have their arthritis act up.
- There’s no concrete evidence to prove a substantial correlation between arthritis and low temperatures, but it’s a common complain between senior citizens that it does get more uncomfortable when it’s cold. So if you plan on traveling during the winter months make sure you’ve planned ahead in terms of warm clothing and a room with plenty of heat.
- At the airport, the queues are long and the lengthy walks from one end to the other are tiresome. To avoid fatigue, inform your agent when you’re booking your airline ticket that you’re traveling with an elderly passenger who needs a wheelchair. Not only will you avoid the queues, but you’ll also be the first people to board the plane.
- Another thing to keep in mind while booking your ticket for a plane or the train is that you should request for either a vegetarian meal or a low calorie meal. This way whatever they serve on the plane won’t be injurious to the health of the person that you’re traveling with.
- Request for an aisle seat in the plane or train. That makes it easier for elderly people to go in and out without disturbing others around them. If you’re traveling in a sleeper train, then you should request for a lower bunk so that they don’t have to climb over any berths. In case you don’t get a lower bunk, you can always request an exchange with a younger person who may be traveling with you.
- It goes without saying that you’ll be helping them with their luggage while managing your own at the same time. To keep things simple you should probably consider having both bags lightweight and on wheels.
- One of the main essentials while traveling with senior citizens is that they should be wearing comfortable shoes. While waiting in line or walking around, cushioned sole shoes will help ease the pain by absorbing shock and reducing the amount of friction felt.
- Most locations nowadays are handicap friendly, hence they’re bound to have escalators and elevators. Use those while moving around, because going up and down the stairs can be stressful for the knees.
- While taking the metro or riding in the bus, keep an eye for seats reserved for elderly people. These are normally located right in the front of the bus, and the corner seats of each metro berth. They give the senior citizen more leg space and they’re closer to the doors as well.
- When you’re the planning your trip, you need to reconsider the time that you would normally take for day to day tasks.
◦ Keep in mind what time they wake up and how much time they need to get ready. Also, schedule a appropriate amount of breaks. They need to rest now and again.
◦ Since their pace maybe slower, give them an ample amount of time to go at their own speed.
◦ Choose to do activities that the both of your can enjoy. Shopping, strolling in the park or browsing through a museum are some of the less stressful activities. In case you get bored, you can always let them enjoy sightseeing while you relax and catch up at a near by coffee shop.
- Show them how to use a cellphone. It’s the most efficient way to keep in touch in case you guys get split up. It’s also a convenient way to keep in touch if you choose to do different activities during the day to best utilize your time.
Initially it may seem like a hassle to go on a vacation with elderly people, but think of how much they used to take care of you when you were a child. This may even a great opportunity for you guys to reconnect and share old memories. They’ll love spending more time with you and getting to know more about your grown up life.