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I'm An Older Adult and I Travel Differently

Evelyn Hannon

Now that I'm an older adult I'm often asked if I travel differently today than when I hit the road during my younger backpacking days. My answer is always an emphatic, yes. While I still love a good travel adventure I am very aware of the fact that both my physical abilities and the travel world around me are changing.

It's not just me. Canvas any group of savvy seniors and ask what their primary travel concern is and you will probably hear health related issues first. We all fret about accidents and illness on the road.

It's for that reason that we must review our travel insurance policy carefully before each and every trip. Will you be going to a dangerous part of the world? Will you be trying a new sport? If yours is a yearly policy, report any new health issues and medications you are taking. Check on the number of days you are insured per trip, stay within that limit or purchase more time if necessary. Read the small print and be positive that you have adequate coverage. Any mistakes on your part can make your insurance policy null and void.

Emergencies (by their very nature) strike without prior warning. A close relative has been rushed to hospital or someone in your immediate family has died and you need to either cancel your upcoming trip or return home as quickly as possible. That's where travel cancellation insurance lessens the already heavy burden of stress. This type of coverage can be invaluable both for changing flight dates or to receive any refunds on hotel or excursions you paid for in advance.

Think ahead. Be prepared for medical issues that could arise while you are on your journey. Jot down your doctor's email address; ask him for the names of trusted colleagues you can consult at your destination. Pack an extra pair of eyeglasses or a copy of your eyeglass prescription so you can easily replace them if necessary. Keep a list of all your medications and dosages along with the phone number and email address of the pharmacy they were filled at.

Think back twenty years. It used to be so simple and civilized to fly from one destination to another. Today custom regulations have became more stringent and airlines are charging more while offering less leg room and fewer helpful amenities. It is a tiring exercise that wears us all down and challenges our health.

Pack light. Don't risk a bad back or pulled muscles because you insist on traveling with a heavy suitcase filled with your 'what if I need these' items. Having six different T-shirts instead of three are just not worth the shlepping.

Standing in long lines at the airport makes you tired before you even begin your flight. Keep your purse or backpack as small and light as possible. Try to wear slip on shoes that come off easily and don't require sitting to put them back on again. Keep your energy up with a snack bag of raisins and almonds.

Once on the plane, understand that if you sit in the same position for any length of time it will make you feel stiff and sluggish. Lack of movement can slow down your body's circulation and oxygen will not reach your joints and muscles. Be proactive. Get up during the flight and stretch those arms and legs. This will keep your muscles flexible as you head to your destination. Check your seat pocket for their airline magazine and other instruction cards. They usually contain exercises you can do at your seat to avoid extra stiffness.

Hydrate with lots of plain old water during your flight. It's the best thing for you. Avoid dehydrating coffee, tea and wine. Save those beverages for a lovely café in a sunny courtyard or a memorable restaurant experience at your destination. Guaranteed they will taste better and be served with infinitely more grace.

Stay healthy everybody!

 

Sponsored Stuff - This post contains sponsored links. All travel tips are Journeywoman's own.

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