While a lot of folks might want to visit faraway lands while they’re still young, there’s something to be said for traveling during retirement. You’ll finally have the spare time and the financial means to go to the destinations on your bucket list — plus, you’ll have the life experience which will allow you to really appreciate your trip. Of course, traveling as a senior citizen may not always be easy. After all, there are more than 10,000 people who reach the retirement age of 65 every day, and there are lots of other considerations that may take precedent over a getaway. But if you’re able to take a much-deserved vacation, here are three tips to keep in mind.
Know Where To Go
According to a Priceline analysis, Baby Boomers are active travelers. Around 37% of families say vacations make them happy, but because seniors aren’t tied down by young children or by work obligations, they’re able to choose when they want to travel and where more freely. That said, there are certain destinations that seniors like to visit more than others. Retirees really seem to love Chicago, Orlando, Denver, Las Vegas, Phoenix, New York City, Seattle, Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., and Portland, in particular. While the costs and availability of attractions vary, it looks like seniors would rather travel domestically and see the beauty the US of A has to offer. Typically, seniors will fare better if they keep flight times short, ensure their activities aren’t too terribly strenuous, and that costs are often included to help them budget. Which brings us to our next tip…
Ask For a Discount
Travelers of all ages need to keep their costs low. But 15% of Baby Boomers say that budgeting is their biggest challenge when trying to plan a trip. You may not be one to ask for a hand-out, but using your senior status to your advantage could save you a lot. Travel-related discounts can range from 5% to 25% off, and some businesses won’t even readily advertise them. While the senior discount may actually not provide the most substantial savings available, it’s a fairly consistent one. AARP members can save quite a bit on transportation and hotels, and many attractions will offer reduced senior admission rates. Although not every establishment will be able to give you a discount, it truly doesn’t hurt to ask. Who knows — with the money you save, you could end up being able to afford a swanky restaurant or take that tour you hadn’t counted on.
Get Everything In Order
Preparing for a vacation comes down to far more than looking at the weather forecast and choosing what clothes and shoes to bring along. Although having the proper documents and medications may be just as essential for younger travelers, senior travelers may need to take extra care here. Be sure to pack enough medications — and a list of the ones you take — for your trip and beyond for your carry-on baggage. If you wear glasses, bring along an extra pair in case you misplace them or break them during your trip. Be sure to bring sunglasses, comfortable walking shoes, and sun protection. You should also check and make copies of all documents well before your departure; that way, if you need to renew your passport or lose a ticket, you’ll have time to obtain a replacement. Not only should you give a trusted relative copies of these documents, but you should also provide them with your itinerary for your trip, as well as contact information for where you’ll be staying. You can never be too careful when it comes to travel preparation, particularly if you have any special conditions to be concerned about. If you take the time to think ahead, your trip will be a lot more enjoyable.
Now that you have the time to spare in retirement, it’s the perfect time to get away. As long as you follow these tips, your trip should be worry-free and totally relaxing.