If you’re over 50, you’ve probably been looking forward to your retirement for years.
After all, it’s during your retirement that you’ll finally have the opportunity to see the world and to go on all of the trips you’ve been dreaming about. Before you pack your suitcase, though, make sure that you learn how to stay safe and in charge during your vacation. Many seniors don’t realize that traveling can be dangerous, especially if you’re visiting an unfamiliar location. Fortunately, there are many ways that you can protect yourself during your trip.
First off, always tell someone where you’re going. Even if you don’t want to be disturbed, make sure that at least one person has your contact details. If you’re worried that your daughter will call you repeatedly during your vacation, consider giving your contact information to a former colleague or a neighbor who will be able to reach you during a family emergency but who will otherwise respect your right to privacy. Another option would be to put your contact information, including your itinerary and hotel phone numbers, into a sealed envelope. You can then give this to one of your children and remind them not to open it unless there is an emergency. Chances are that your kids will respect your need to be alone during your trip, but it’s still important that someone know where you are and when you expect to be back.
When you’re traveling, make sure that you pay attention to your body’s physical needs. Drink plenty of water throughout your trip in order to stay hydrated. Especially if you’re driving or taking a lengthy flight, drinking water is a “must.” It’s easy for you to become dehydrated and overworked during a trip. Consider carrying a water bottle with you at all times so that you’ll always have easy access to fluids. It’s also important that you remember to eat when you feel hungry. Never postpone eating so that you can find the “perfect” restaurant. If your blood sugar levels drop, you could become faint, dizzy, or disoriented. Dealing with these symptoms in a foreign country could be dangerous and frustrating. If you aren’t sure when you’ll be able to get to a restaurant or shop, make sure that you carry granola bars or another source of protein with you at all times.
Finally, always ensure that you get plenty of sleep during your trip. Many seniors feel like a vacation is the perfect time to do as many activities as possible. While it’s certainly fine to plan a lot of excursions, keep in mind that you can’t allow yourself to become overtired for too long. If you cut back on sleep during your trip, you could become ill or seriously fatigued. Respect your body’s need for rest and always get as much sleep as you feel you need.