10 tips on how seniors can travel safely and sensibly | Tech US News


One of the advantages of getting older is having more time for leisure and travel.

According to the US Census Bureau, there are approximately 52 million people who are 65 or older in the United States. With a total net worth of $1.6 trillion, seniors spend more on groceries, pharmaceuticals, and travel and leisure than any other demographic. International travel agency Virtuoso says the average retiree spends nearly $12,000 a year on travel.

Age does not have to restrict the ability to travel, and with age comes experience and more opportunities to enjoy travel. Before taking off for parts unknown, men and women over 50 can take steps to ensure their excursions are as safe as they are memorable.

1. Consider the risk. The 2020 coronavirus pandemic taught the world that situations can change quickly. Before booking any trip, weigh the risks and benefits of a trip. Determine if Covid-19 is spreading where you live or at your destination. Older adults are at greater risk of serious illness caused by the virus.

The elderly were among the first groups of people to receive the Covid-19 vaccine. Travel resource Go Backpacking says vaccination is now one of the main requirements for entry into destinations around the world. If you have not been vaccinated, now may be the time to discuss the vaccine with a doctor.

2. Travel in off-peak hours: mid-afternoon and early evening are usually busy travel times. No matter how you’re traveling, avoiding crowds can reduce infection rates. If possible, travel early in the morning or in the evening, when fewer people will be out and about.

3. Avoid destinations with high infection rates. The World Health Organization provides daily case counts on its coronavirus dashboard. Visit Covid19.who.int for more information.

4. Pack accordingly. Along with the usual travel gear, bring hand sanitizer, antibacterial wipes, masks, and disinfectant sprays. Eliminate common touch points in hotel rooms, such as doorknobs and remote controls.

5. Dine out. Many people safely returned to indoor dining. But if you want extra protection, ask to be seated outdoors at restaurants. Try to limit the time you spend in other public places if they are crowded. That includes bars, clubs or even museums.

6. Use friendly services for the elderly. Find travel services that offer the best benefits for older adults. Many travel providers no longer offer senior discounts, but may offer other benefits such as early boarding or assistance traveling from gates to baggage claim areas.

7. Get travel insurance. According to Liz Dahl, co-founder of Boomer Travel Patrol, a website that offers expert advice aimed at the Baby Boomer demographic, travel insurance can be essential for older travelers. Older travelers may be at greater risk of falling or becoming ill, and some may need additional medication if travel is interrupted or delayed. Travel insurance can provide additional cover for a relatively low price if something goes wrong.

8. Don’t announce your absence. It can be tempting to upload photos of your beachside vacation to social media while you’re immersed in paradise. Unfortunately, the elderly are often targeted by thieves because they are seen as vulnerable. Don’t make the job easier by announcing that you’re out of the house. Also, have a neighbor pick up your mail periodically and put lights on timers to give the impression that you’re home even when you’re not.

9. Share your itinerary. Keep loved ones informed of your general travel itinerary, especially if you’re traveling alone, AARP recommends. Keep your cell phone handy at all times.

10. Pack copies of important documents. In the event that documentation is lost during travel, request copies of prescriptions and/or statements of medical conditions from each physician and medical treatment center to have a second set. Also keep copies of your passport, driver’s license, insurance cards, travel tickets and other documents.

Seniors have the ability to travel much more than other age groups. Make the experience enjoyable by focusing on safety.


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