As much fun as it is to travel, traveling with seniors can be disruptive and stressful to everyone’s routine if attention to pre-travel planning is overlooked.
Key senior travel tips can help establish a travel plan the minimizes the stress of travel while opening doors to multigenerational travel. Families can share in revisiting past travel experiences while encouraging new experiences. Autumn is the perfect season to plan a short day trip, a weekend family outing or a destination to a favorite location in the woods or by the sea.
Check out some of these senior travel tips for ideas on how to lessen the stress of travel while opening doors to multigenerational experiences that can be enjoyed by the entire family:
- Make sure all medications are refilled ahead of time. If possible, get travel duplicates of medications so they may be packed ahead of time.
- Plan a menu. Flights may be delayed. You may hit traffic. Be prepared with pre-made food that your loved one would normally eat at home. Avoid blood sugar dips by packing healthy, protein rich snacks.
- Conserve energy. If you are flying, alert the airline that you will need wheelchair assistance. Even if your loved one can walk, the stress of traveling will use up energy that could be conserved for enjoying the trip. The airline can provide the wheelchair. Plan ahead by booking seats close to the front of the cabin.
- Provide reassurance. If your loved one has his or her memory intact you may start explaining your itinerary several weeks before your trip. Answer any questions about the schedule or the destination. Be prepared to answer the same questions again if needed.
- Provide earplugs, a pillow, and an eye mask. Too much stimulation, visual or audio, can be very taxing to someone who is used to sitting in a quiet, familiar area. Allow your loved one the comfort of eliminating these stressors by providing a means to escape whatever is overstimulating.
- Prepare yourself for travel. Proper planning will allow you to feel calmer and more able to focus on having positive energy during your trip. You will then be in a better place to be patient and provide additional reassurance to your loved one during the trip.
Traveling with aged loved one can be challenging, but with a little careful planning your next trip can be low stress. Also, checking out travel-oriented resources such as the Centers for Disease Control and other sites may help with other pre-travel plans.