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It's never too late to travel: A senior's guide to safe travel


No matter what anyone tells you, you should never miss the chance to travel. So long as you can walk – or have someone push you around – you’re good to go! Seniors do have a few more things to worry about than younger travellers, but that doesn’t mean you can’t do it at all. Here’s how to stay safe while you travel, no matter what your age may be.

 

 

Be medically prepared

As you get older, you may need a variety of medications and aids which help you to get through the day. Even if you only have to take them every now and then – such as indigestion or heartburn tablets, for example – you still need to make sure you are prepared for every eventuality. Prepare a sheet which lists your medications and why you need them, as well as how to take them if necessary. Keep this and at least a small amount of your medication on you at all times. If anything should happen, those that come to your aid will at least know what to do.

 

Plan realistically

Make sure you are aware of your own physical limits. It’s not nice to be reminded that we may have those limits, but it is so important to respect them. Not only could it ruin your day, but also your whole trip, if you fail to do so. When you are planning your itinerary, be sensible about your walking speed, your ability to climb, your stamina, and so on. Don’t plan to spend two hours in a vast museum which will take you all day to walk around – you’ll either miss almost everything, or rush so much that you injure yourself. It’s understandable that you might be excited about what you can see and do, but don’t over-plan. That will just lead to disappointment.

 

Be internet smart

It’s natural that you might want to use the internet while you are travelling. You might want to download a map or a tourist guide, for example, or use a video call service to talk to people back home. If you do, be smart about it. Make sure that you use a VPN while online so that you protect yourself and your sensitive data. Especially because you are far from home and might not check your bank account regularly, it’s important not to leave yourself open to online attacks when you use public or hotel networks.

 

Keep your valuables safe

Just as if you were travelling at any age, it’s really important to keep your valuables safe at all times. Try to split things up so you don’t have everything kept in one place. Your hotel safe, a secret compartment in your suitcase, inside empty shampoo bottles – these are all places where you can put money and jewellery as well as hiding electronic devices. You can also invest in a secret money holder which fits underneath your clothes without showing up on the outside, so you can keep your extra cash hidden away. Don’t bring out electronic devices in public unless absolutely necessary, and keep the money inside your purse or wallet to a minimum while out and about during the day.

 

It is possible to have a fantastic time when travelling as a senior. In fact, as films like The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel portray, it could even be the best time of your life! Don’t be afraid to jump in with both feet – using these tips to give you a little extra preparation, you will be as safe as possible. 

 

Sarah Kearns is a hard working mother of three daughters. She is a Senior Communications Manager for BizDb, an online resource with information about businesses in the UK. She loves cooking, reading history books and writing about green living.

 

Written by: Sarah Kearns
Published: 28 February 2018


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