Travel is one of the most memorable gift you can give your parents or even grandparents this season; an experience that seeks to rejuvenate as well as give them a different perspective on life. According to Travel advisors at Jovago.com, a lot of queries on travelling with the elderly mostly border on the best destination, special requirements and travel assist. Whether you will travel with them or let them off unaccompanied, here are a number of tips to ease off any travel anxiety you may have.
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Before you embark on the booking, talk to them and find out what their dreams are; you’ll be surprised to find out that what you thought would be their perfect holiday is planet apart from their wishes! Once you both agree on where to go, do your research on the destination and its current situation. Of importance would be tourist help centers, medical facilities, crime rate and security as well as access to communication and connection. If staying with a host family or relatives, prep them up on your elders’ needs and any special expectations. You may consider having a discussion with everyone involved to ensure that respective expectations are addressed before hand.
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Unlike the young and energetic with a knack to try out any adventure that comes calling, the senior’s idea for a holiday maybe quite different. On top of things to consider, find a travel organizer with specified packages for the elderly. The arrangement should ideally fit in factors such us senior assist, short break outs along the trips, comfortable transport and dietary needs if any meals are to be provided en-route.
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Passports, vaccinations and any clearance involving a third party should be put in place long before the travel dates. That done, a full medical checkup should follow with any requirement for referral letters at the destination noted and signed. Also do request for authorization letters from the doctor on prescriptions that may need to go on flight for security clearance. You will also need to have copies of signed letters with a note on surgical chips, braces and any kind of necessary body implants that might upset the security system.
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If flying to the destination, it’s important that you check ahead of time for any special facilities as well as the extent of any assist provided by the staff before, during and after the flight. Some airports have a special check-in counter as well as ground staff assigned to the elderly. Check in advance the possibility of bringing on-board mobility aids such as crutches, walking canes and wheelchairs at the time of your booking. Depending on the passenger’s health and preferences, you might want to request for the front aisle and a vantage seat position to ensure easy movement. If it’s too much strain, or causes anxieties to let them travel solo, and where the flight attendants are not able to accord extra attention, either travel with them or find trustworthy company.
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For as much as possible, stick to a carry-on and a roll-aboard suitcase. This will not only make the check-in process easier but also helps cut on time wasted on the conveyor belt. Pack on-flight prescriptions in the carry-on, as well as copies of all documents.
To make security checks less taxing, the elder should wear light and comfortable slip-on shoes. Buy a travel pillow for comfort that can be carried in hands to avoid bulking up the luggage.
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Older people are often at higher risks of contracting diseases and communicable infections. Also, chronic ailments maybe provoked by change of weather conditions while those suffering from poor sight, limb coordination and chronic osteoporosis will be more prone to injuries in new and unfamiliar settings. Always declare pre-existing conditions in advance; to both the insurance provider and the transport service where necessary.