Summer is almost here, and with that, travel season is upon us. Traveling can be done at any age, but for seniors it’s important to remember these few tips.
Pre-planning for your vacation: Many travel agents specialize in senior travel. Be sure to research about local medical facilities, climate, language and culture. Purchasing a guide book is the best way to learn about your destination. Also, be sure to buy travel insurance that covers pre-existing illness.
Packing: Using a suitcase with wheels makes it easier to travel with. Include a medical kit in your carry-on bag, for all your medications and utilize a pill box clearly marked with the days of the week, as your daily routine often will become disrupted when you are away from home.
Traveling with a disability: Plan ahead by calling airports, airlines, hotels, and the local tourist authority at your destination to make necessary arrangements during your travel. Let them know what your disability is and what your requirements are. This is to avoid any hassle during your trip.
Pre-trip medical checkups: Always consult with your doctor for a complete medical check-up prior to departure. Consider vaccinations and discuss any health concerns, such as dietary changes, time zone differences and medications.
Traveling with medication: When visiting abroad, be sure your medication is legal in the country you are visiting, by contacting the country’s embassy or consulate. Be sure to speak with your doctor to discuss the medicine you will require and have him/her write you a letter describing your medication, dosage, and that it is for personal use. Keep all medicine in its original, labeled container to avoid confusion and troubles with custom, as well as for dosage instructions.
Clothing: Wear comfortable clothing during travel to allow blood to circulate more easily. Compression stockings can be helpful for some seniors when flying, and always avoid tight socks or stockings.
Exercise: Exercising, especially during long trips, is important for your muscles, joints, and overall circulation. Standing, walking, and stretching a few times midflight will alleviate any stiffness. Drinking fluids is also important due to the low humidity on planes, which can easily leave you dehydrated.
Must have information: Make sure to have your doctor’s number, emergency contact numbers, airline, and U.S. embassy (if traveling abroad) numbers, in case of emergency.
Whether near or far, remember these important tips for senior care during traveling, and enjoy a relaxing vacation.