Traveling is fun for people of any age. From young to old, there are activities for everyone.
For senior citizens, there are several options and discounts available to create the perfect vacation. But, any great adventure begins with a great plan. In the next five minutes, learn all about planning luxury adventure travel for seniors.
3 Stages of planning luxury adventure travel for seniors
1. STAGE 1: Self-assessment:
The first step to planning adventure travel for older adults? Self-assessment. Ask yourself these questions before you plan your next luxury adventure trip:
1.1. What are your interests?
Once you know what you want to do, it becomes a lot easier to narrow down your destination choices.
1.2. What do you want out of your travel experience?
Do you want a cultural immersion experience where you can take a walk with the locals, understand their traditions, or even share a meal with them? Organizations like Foreign Language Immersion & Cultural Immersion (FLSAS) have a Cultural Homestay experience program. With this you will be matched with a local family who shares your interests.
If you wish to travel to a new country and learn the local language, try GoAbroad’s Tico Lingo Adult Spanish Immersion Program. For instance, it allows you to learn Spanish, stay at a local’s home, and enjoy relaxing Yoga classes.
Those with a desire to volunteer and give back to the community can enroll in Projects Abroad’s “Grown-Up Specials” program, specifically for senior citizens. One of their programs, which has fixed dates throughout the year, involves staying with a local host family at the Galapagos Islands and doing conservation volunteer work.
The programs listed here are just the tip of the iceberg. Do a bit of research to find more exciting opportunities, and choose the one that’s best suited for you.
1.3. Are you planning to travel solo or in a group?
Tours for seniors traveling alone can be a very rewarding experience for older adults, provided you’re physically and mentally equipped for it. It’s a great way to enjoy your freedom and do things at your own pace. But, if the thought of solo travel is daunting and you feel that you will need help, then consider traveling with a group of seniors. Look for small senior travel groups of around 20 people for the best possible experience.
1.4. What level of physical activity are you comfortable with?
Senior citizen luxury vacation ideas include activities ranging from hiking to safaris. Choose depending on your comfort level. You don’t want to be hiking in high altitudes if you can’t handle three flights of stairs. So, if you think you’re packing some serious stamina, try hiking the 2,200-mile Appalachian Trail that runs between Georgia and Maine in the U.S., or scuba diving off the Surin Islands in Thailand.
If you want a more laid-back luxury adventure trip, plan a whale watching trip in Kaikoura, New Zealand, a savannah safari on the Serengeti in Tanzania, or even barge-cruising on the 300-year-old Canal du Midi in Southern France. There is an ocean of possibilities waiting for you to explore.
Now that you have your answers, let’s move on to the trip planning stage.
2. STAGE 2: Planning your luxury adventure trip
2.1. Zero-in on your destination
How to plan a luxury trip for senior citizens once you’re done with your self-assessment? Gather information on your destination. Read travel websites and blogs, ask your friends about the best places they’ve visited, scroll through gorgeous pictures of holiday destinations on Instagram and Pinterest, or even pick up a few books on destinations you’re fascinated about.
2.2. Figure out the best time to go
Traveling during the offseason is a great option, provided the weather conditions aren’t going to be a deal-breaker. Not only can you dodge the crowds, but you can save quite a bit of money, too. If you’re headed to Europe, then try planning your trip in the shoulder season (April through mid-May, or late September through October) to beat the heat.
2.3. Make the right travel choices
- Book your transport and accommodation as early as possible
- Book flights on weekdays to get great deals
- Rack up those loyalty points and miles by flying on the same airline and staying in the same hotel chain wherever you go. Use them for your future vacations
- Search for hotels that offer the amenities of your choice. These could be complimentary breakfasts, healthy food options, free Wi-Fi, and room service.
2.4. Buy insurance to avoid unnecessary expenditures
Nothing could be more crucial than insurance, especially on an adventure trip. Imagine getting a knee injury while hiking and having to pay huge amounts for your treatment. Buy a travel insurance or travel medical insurance plan before you go. Also, be sure that your insurance plan can provide coverage for every activity you intend to take part in.
3. STAGE 3: Getting ready to travel
3.1. Pack like a pro with these amazing hacks
- Roll your clothes to save a lot of space
- Packing cubes and compression sacks (or even gallon-size see-through Ziploc plastic bags) are also excellent ways to organize your clothes
- Pack clothes that you can mix and match. For instance, you could take three pairs of trousers, which you could match with six or seven shirts.
- Attach colorful luggage tags to your bags for easy identification
- Pack one set of clothes in your carryon in case you lose your checked baggage
3.2. Packing checklist
3.2.a. Medications and relevant documents
- If you’re on any medication, carry enough dosage to last you your entire trip plus a few days in case of any delay. Keep your critical meds in your carryon
- Keep copies of your prescriptions
- Find out the generic names of the medications you’re using, in case of international travel
3.2.b. Travel documents
- Carry copies of your passport, visa, and other necessary documents
- Email copies of all your travel documents to a close family member or friend, in case of emergency
- Ensure that your passport is valid for three to six months beyond the projected end of your trip.
3.3. Travel apps that you should know about
- TripIt: This app helps you stay on top of your itinerary. Forward your hotel and flight reservation confirmation emails to [email protected], and TripIt will organize them all into one master itinerary. It sends you real-time alerts if your flight gets delayed or canceled, and also helps you find alternate flights.
- Dayuse.com: This one’s handy if you’re stuck at an airport with a long layover and need a hotel room for only a few hours. Dayuse.com helps you find hotel rooms at rates between 30% and 75% less than a regular overnight stay.
- Rebtel: Rebtel is useful when you need to call your contacts back home without blowing a hole in your budget. It works without the internet by connecting to local phone lines.
3.4. Things to remember during your trip:
- Try eating only two meals a day to keep the calories to a minimum.
- Stay hydrated
- Ditch the expensive jewelry, fancy DSLRs, and other valuables, as you do not want to be a target for pickpockets
- Wear comfortable shoes
Planning luxury adventure travel for seniors can be the best gift
You have carried out all your duties with diligence. Now is your time to enjoy. I hope this guide told you everything about planning luxury adventure travel for seniors. So, what are you waiting for? Plan your next luxury adventure trip right now.
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