Summer Travel Tips for Seniors
The 2016 summer travel season is in full swing for folks with a sense of adventure, such as Jim Peters, 92, a resident at Grand Oaks Assisted Living Residence.
Peters was born in Loudon County, Va., just outside of Washington, D.C. After 35 years living near the nation’s capital, Peters left the hustle and bustle of the city for a life of leisure and luxury. He always liked the Cayman Islands, so he travelled to the Caribbean and drove around until he found a perfect spot in Grand Cayman (pictured below), home of the famous Seven Mile Beach. “For years, I lived on a real nice little stretch on the water,” Peters says. “It was wonderful.”
Golden years can be some of the best times in life for exploring new pastures, but traveling (and especially relocating) as a senior citizen can present some challenges. Before seniors set their sails this summer, the U.S. Department of State recommends taking the following precautions:
- Make sure all travel documents, including passports and/or passport cards, are valid.
- Bring an ample supply of all medications to cover the duration of your trip, plus a few extra days in case of delays.
- Medicare is not valid outside of the U.S., except in very limited circumstances, so obtain medical and dental healthcare that will cover you overseas.
- Bring all information about your medical conditions and medications from your doctor, in case of an emergency.
- Beware of scammers who target seniors to get money in exchange for something of personal gain (ex: helping someone in trouble).
- Leave emergency contact information and a copy of your passport information with family or friends.
- Carry emergency contact and medical information with you at all times.
- Beware of accessibility and accommodation restrictions.
It’s also recommended that seniors travel light, request a ground-floor room if stairs are a difficulty, and ask about senior discounts at all sights, restaurants, and accommodations.
Peters doesn’t travel much these days, but “if I had my choice, I’d be back in my house on my island,” he laughs. “But the facilities here at Grand Oaks are quite good, and the people are just super, too.”