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Although we all love and value vacation time getting to our final destination can present challenges for people of all ages. The “art of travel” is sometimes more of a juggling act, from maneuvering through airports to navigating foreign cities and public transportation. However, traveling with elderly loved ones can sometimes produce unique setbacks. Whether the length of the trip or the distance traveled, taking a journey with your aging loved ones is a fun way to connect and spend time together. In addition, taking a multi-generational trip can provide priceless time for grandparents to spend with their children and grandchildren. As the spring and summer months approach, travel will be on the rise, so below, we will discuss some helpful tips that can make traveling with your aging relative easier.

traveling with elderly

Extra Time

When traveling with older loved ones, remember that you may need to account for extra time in your travel plans. You don’t want to put too much strain on these family members and make them feel stressed or rushed, so giving yourself extra leeway with time will help make everyone feel comfortable while still remaining on schedule. 

Medications & Other Medical Information

Before taking off for a trip with your aging family members, consult with their doctor. This ensures that your travel plans are permitted and that your loved one is well enough to join you. You should also keep their phone number on hand in case of emergency while you are away. Check out our tips to help manage the travel aches and pains that your elderly companion might endure.

Once you receive approval from their doctor, you should make a detailed list of all medications that will be required and when they need to be administered to ensure you have enough to last your entire trip. Additionally, make sure you have written down their insurance information in case they need immediate medical attention while you’re away. Finally, while you’re considering their medical needs, review your travel plans and ensure that you have an adequate travel insurance policy. 

traveling with elderly

Air Travel Assistance

If you are traveling by air, you may want to set up air travel assistance before your departure so you have adequate help while navigating through the airport. Whether you need a wheelchair for your loved one or other accommodations for necessary medical equipment, make sure to organize any assistance that is required beforehand so that you aren’t left on your own once you arrive at the airport.

Additionally, if your family member requires on-flight support, make sure this is arranged separately with the airline, and consider getting TSA pre-check, clear, and global entry for them. This is often available for seniors and makes the security checkpoint much easier for them to maneuver. 

Necessities for car travel

Whether you’re traveling by car or renting one once you reach your final destination, you should be aware of your aging family member’s abilities and limits when it comes to vehicle travel. Even though this is often seen as a more simple option than flying, there are still some potential limitations. For example, they may need more frequent stops to use the restroom and stretch their legs, so be sure to consider these extra breaks in your travel plans.  Traveling by car might be the best option when traveling with your elderly loved ones, or possibly a cruise. If planning to roadtrip within the United States, check out our list of phenomenal family resort destinations.


Above all, it is always exciting to hit the road with your loved ones at any age, though keep in mind that there may be additional steps to take when traveling internationally or for an extended period. Be perceptive of any difficulties your elderly loved one may be experiencing throughout your travels, and make adjustments accordingly. Even though you may put in some extra time in preparation, you will be happy you did to enjoy the moment and focus on making memories together while on the trip. 

If planning to roadtrip within the United States, check out our list of phenomenal resort destinations.

Bailey Schramm is a writer from Happy Writers, Co.

 

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