One of the great things about being older is having time and resources to do the traveling you wish you could’ve done when you were younger. To make sure that your adventures land you safely back home, with a minimum of hassle and a maximum of great memories, check out these great tips:
1. Know your limitations and plan accordingly.
Don’t expect yourself to be able to walk for five hours on the streets of Rome if you could not do it in your neighborhood. If you were planning on doing a vacation that requires you to be more active than average, increasing your regular activity can be a great way to boost your motivation towards fitness, with a beautiful goal to make it all worth it. If training up for the trip is not a possibility, find what other accommodations can be made or how you could structure the journey to eliminate some of the physical stresses. Travel and sleeping in different places tax your energy on its own, so don’t expect yourself to be feeling 110%; plan for about 80% and if you’re doing better, that’s just a bonus!
2. Pay close attention to your valuables.
As an older traveler, the things you need to be aware of include your money, your travel documents, and your medication. Never pack any of these into your checked luggage and be extremely careful where you leave them. Hotel rooms are not as secure as you wish they were, and leaving the door hanger on the hotel room that says “please clean this room” can be an invitation for break-ins. You may think that your heart medication wouldn’t be of any use to anyone else, but thieves generally don’t look up the medications in a drug guide. They bag them and find out what they do later.
3. Consider travel insurance.
Travel insurance can provide some peace of mind and the safety net if something goes wrong during your vacation. Having had experiences with family members going into a hospital while on vacation, far away from usual resources, I can tell you it’s a lifesaver.
4. Try to blend in.
There’re plenty of ways that travelers make themselves more likely to encounter problems, but the easiest to fix is decrease the amount of “bling.” By looking less affluent, you can get less of the wrong kind of attention.
5. Plan your trip in advance, and make sure others know where you are.
Like it or not, “I’ll just get there and see what happens” is something only 20-year-olds should do. (In my experience is still a pretty bad idea). Take the time to plan your trip well and make copies of your itinerary to leave with people that you trust. Throughout your journey, check in with those people and let them know where you are and how are you doing.
A little prior planning can make a world of difference. Get out and enjoy the summer! There is a world waiting for you!