Travelling Solo as a Senior Citizen – Things to Remember
You might have heard of the terms ‘bucket list’ and ‘solo travel’, if you have been surfing today’s websites, social media platforms or if you are living with a millennial. Travelling solo is a fantastic prospect, especially if you have the will and desire to explore the uncharted territories.
If you, too, have a bucket list that is unfulfilled, there is no reason why you shouldn’t work towards ticking things off it. The fact that you are getting older is no reason to question yourself about planning a solo trip. In fact, if anything, the older you are, the more likely you are to fully enjoy and appreciate new experiences in novel destinations.
You deserve to travel and explore new places since the time that you have post-retirement is the beautiful phase when you should prioritize yourself and do things that you love!
Planning a solo trip? Here are 5 things to consider as a senior citizen
If you are comparing destinations, make sure you do thorough research on what each place has to offer. What is the best time of the year to visit a specific country or region? What kind of food is available at the destination that suits your choice? . Where ever you may plan to visit, it is important to take safety precautions to ensure that your belongings are secure throughout the trip. While researching the destination, booking hotels or your transport, go through several reviews and ratings before you zero-in on your accommodation and modes of transport. In case you are planning the trip via a travel agent or agency, make sure that you can trust them with your money. In the case of overseas trips, consider things like the currency, language barriers, local transport and acceptance of debit/credit cards.
If you suffer from one or more medical or physical conditions, it is important to make sure that you carry your medications for the entire duration of your trip. Also do some research on whether these medications are readily available in the destination of your choice, along with access to emergency healthcare (should the need arise). For senior citizens, simple-yet-effective aids like medication reminders and pill organizers come in handy when travelling. You can also pack a comfortable travel neck pillow to make your journeys discomfort-free. Also, ask your travel agent to provide you with travel insurance, this will help you in case of medical emergencies.
It is essential for your family to know that you are safe and are having a great time on your solo trip. On that note, invest in a user-friendly phone for senior citizens that can help you stay in touch via calls and messages. Carry a phone that has a powerful battery, allows you to set alarms and medicine reminders, and includes features such as SOS buttons (to call for help) and a flashlight. Make sure you give your contact number (as well as an emergency contact number) to the travel agent, hotel concierge and tour guide, too.
4. Special Services
Being a senior citizen is a privilege more than anything else! In most places and scenarios, you will find that there are special discounts, offers and waivers for seniors. All you need to do is a request for this special service citing your age – make sure you have a valid government-recognized ID proof to validate the same. This can truly make your travel, accommodation and dining out experience better, affordable and hassle-free. Remember, people are kind and considerate when dealing with the elderly, this will benefit in enhancing your travel experience.
When you embark on a solo journey, it is a given that you will meet and interact with a lot of strangers. One thing to keep in mind is that in most cases, people are kind and welcoming. If you ask someone for help, there is a very little chance that someone will refuse to assist you. Whether you need help with directions or need some assistance crossing the main road, you can trust strangers to guide you properly. However, in certain regions, within India and some countries notorious for theft and other petty crimes, it is vital that you stay alert and limit your interactions with people who give off a negative vibe or appear to be overfriendly.
There are several other tips that can help make your solo travelling dream a cakewalk. Packing light, picking the right luggage bags, carrying travel sling bags for the trip to keep your travel documents handy, carrying books to keep you company through the relatively dull parts of the trip, choosing the right footwear and travel socks, carrying a lightweight walking-and-trekking stick for additional mobility support, etc.
We wish you a fantastic solo trip. Let us know your experiences in the comments section below!