Travel

Senior citizen travel is on the rise.  After decades of working, seniors are now enjoying expanding their horizons whether visiting family or new places.

Senior Citizen Travel

AARP, in their publication “Real Travel” speculates, in an article called “2015 Boomer Travel Trends, that, in 2015, the average baby boomer took 4 to 5 trips.  About half of those traveling stayed in the U.S.

  1. Seniors travel to experience a change in routine.
  2. They travel to visit family.
  3. They want to relax when they travel.

The least amount of senior citizen travel is done in the winter.

Using Public Transportation

Flying

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Despite higher ticket rates, the number of people flying world-wide continues to grow.  This is true of the number of seniors using air travel.

The majority of senior air travel is on domestic flights.

 

SMALL PERKS MAKE FLYING FOR SENIOR CITIZEN TRAVEL EASIER

  • People over 75 don’t have to take their shoes off for security.
  • Seniors, if they request it, can leave on light jackets through security.
  • Older people with medical equipment can request a pat down.
  • Seniors can carry medical with prescription on the bottle.
  • Those over 65 can request boarding during pre-boarding.
  • Assistance with carry on luggage can be requested.
  • Discounted prices should be requested.

Seniors who travel by air face the same issues as any other traveller….luggage, transportation, weather, availability just to mention a few.  With proper planning and a bit of luck, the convenience and speed of air travel can benefit seniors.

Seniors traveling by air should:

  • Ask about discounts.
  • Book “in terminal” transportation.
  • Request early boarding.
  • Secure the seating of their choice.
  • Receive all the concessions possible going through security.
  • Report all medical conditions.
  • Arrange travel to and from the airport.
  • Move about during flights of more than 2 hour duration.

Watch a movie.  Have a snack.  Take a nap.  You’ll be there before you know it.

The Train

Rail used to be the only reliable means of travel over any distance.  Replaced by the family car, train travel is making a comeback among seniors. With time for travel, sitting on a train watching the countryside roll by is a favorite pastime for many seniors.

Fares are relatively inexpensive.   Amtrak.com reports,  “And since Amtrak travelers 62 years of age and over are eligible to receive a 15% discount on most trains, it becomes an affordable alternative.”   Amtrak.com invites you to:

Learn More About the Onboard Experience

For those who can’t afford the comfort and convenience of a roomon a train, experienced rail travelers have great advice.  Plan your trip well.  Travel by train for city to city.  Stay in a hotel each night and get on the train when you are ready to roll.

Train travel is safe, convenient, comfortable interesting and relaxing.  Plan a small trip to see if you enjoy it.

The Bus

Up until the 90’s bus was an inexpensive, convenient  way to see the country. With family cars and air travel, long bus trips the number of people taking long bus trips has declined.  Many people still travel with national and local carriers.

Excursions

Bus Tours

Bus tours are popular with for senior citizen travel because they are comfortable, safe, relatively inexpensive and destination specific.

Things to Check when Considering a Bus Tour Package.
  • Bus Tour Company Reputation
  • Tour Group
  • Destination
  • Route
  • Accomodations
  • Price – Inclusive or A La Carte

Bus tours are booked around regional tours, seasonal features or specific destinations.  For example, bus tours to view fall foliage in New England are popular. Tours, from a number of cities in the U.S. travel to for Las Vegas.  Capitol cities of Europe is a popular tour in that part of the world.

Bus tours are highly scheduled.  Personal Itineraries must be planned keeping the bus itinerary in mind.

If traveling with a group of like minded people is something that you enjoy, a bus tour may be just the thing.
GotoBus

 Cruises

Cruising is becoming more popular daily for senior citizen travel.  Some seniors are choosing to live on cruise ships for the experience of continuously travelling in pampered comfort.

Smartertravel.com in an article entitled, “Best Cruises for Seniors” states, “We want a comfortable experience. We love to visit several ports without the hassles of having to pack and unpack at different hotels in different cities. And we want to be pampered a little bit more—with good food and service, great entertainment and activities, and a good value for our vacation dollars.”

Things to Think about before a Cruise:
  • Cruiseline Reputation
  • Price
  • Ammenities Included
  • Shipboard Activities
  • Ports of Call
  • Cabin Configuration
  • Dining Diversity
  • Dining Protocol
  • Accessibility
  • Dates

Cruises can be months long or an overnight to a special event or destination.  They can be on a lakes, rivers or on the oceans of the world. Consequently, there is always a new cruise to be enjoyed

One the Road

More seniors than ever are taking to the open road to visit family, see new sites or just get away.  The number increases yearly because senior health is improving and society, in general, is becoming more mobile.

Of course, the family car is the number one choice of seniors taking road trips.  But, many seniors are opting for taking a bit of their home with them in an RV.

“A recreational vehicle (RV) is, in North America, the usual term for a motor vehicle or trailer equipped with living space and amenities found in a home. Several definitions exist for RVs and vary by region, including “camper van“, “caravan“, and “motorhome“, but are also used to designate different types of vehicles outside North America, hence “RV” is preferred.”  Wikipedia.com

 

There a lot of types of recreational vehicles on the road today as demonstrated by this list provided by Wikipedia.

Price, size, furnishing, storage, bathroom, and vehicle handling all most factor into choosing an RV.

The best way to find an RV is to visit a dealership and walk through every model.  Look at everyone within your price range to find the one for you.

This class “C” is on a truck chasis.  Its small but perfect for two people and their dog.

 

great for senior citizen travel

Camping World

Whether driving 25 miles to visit grandchildren or flying halfway around the world, if you’re a senior who travels, you are part of a trend that grows annually.  After years of work, seniors want to see new things at their own pace.

Take a moment to leave a comment below.  Are you a senior who enjoys traveling?  What’s your favorite way to travel?  What’s your favorite destination.

  • I’m not quite there yet but I’ve been doing some research for my mom. She has always loved to travel but since my dad passed away 9 years ago she hasn’t done much traveling. My mom is 82 but extremely healthy and on no medications. Her only issue is mild arthritis but that doesn’t stop her from walking 2-3 miles every day. After reading your article, I think that cruises sound like what she’d most enjoy. How far in advance would she need to book a European cruise starting from the US?

    • Thank you for your comment. I think a cruise would be a great choice for your mother although she would certainly need someone to accompany her. My rule of thumb is to book an excursion at least 3 months out. I don’t know a lot about the European cruises other than that many are much smaller than even the regional cruises in the US. So, local or regional cruises could be full despite the fact that there is plenty of room for her transcontinental portion of the trip. Your mother should get her preferred dates in. Sometimes, bookings that are made a month before departure are offered really great upgrades because rooms aren’t filling up. Here are a couple of other tips. If she can afford it, balconies are great. Rooms on higher decks close to mid-ship are the most comfortable in terms of even slight rocking. I hope she has a wonderful cruise.

  • As a recent retiree my goal is to travel. I fly more now than I ever did and your tips are really good to know.
    It’s really helpful to know things when you’re traveling because it’s a nice convenience to be one step ahead.
    I don’t travel much by bus except on a senior trip.
    I always wanted to travel by train and that’s one of my goals too. Great tips on accommodations here.
    I’m going to bookmark this site because it will come in handy for my next trip and trips. Thank you!

    • Hi, Rob.

      Thanks for stopping by the site.  I am in the process of posting a few more articles.  I am particularly interested in how seniors can participate in of activities like boat charters and national park educational events.  I am finding that some are not as easy to access as one may think.  I hope you take that train ride soon.

      Jim

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