Traveling with your loved ones can be a fun and memorable experience, but there are also challenges to consider when it comes to planning travel with elderly parents. It’s important to prioritize safety, comfort, and enjoyment for them on your trip, and to be prepared. To help you with your next trip, we’ve put together 10 tips for traveling with elderly parents.
- Make Doctor Consultations – Consulting your parents’ healthcare provider prior to a trip is vital. Discussing their conditions, medications, and needs can help you to prepare ahead of time. This will make it easier to decide on destinations and activities that are accommodating for their comfort and safety.
- Plan Frequent Rest Stops – Sometimes older adults need to stop frequently on a long trip, whether it’s to stretch their legs or use the restroom. Be sure to plan a route that has consistent places to stop along the way. It is also important to check and make sure the rest places are clean and accessible for them.
- Book Accessible Spaces – When you’re booking your hotel or vacation rental, make sure to find accommodations that are senior-friendly. Features like bathroom grab-bars, comfortable bedding, and wheelchair accessible rooms can make a big difference in their comfort.
- Pack the Essentials and Medications – One of the most important tips for traveling with elderly parents is to pack enough of their medications and other essentials. Trips and vacations come with unexpected moments, and having all that you need for your loved ones is crucial. Pack essentials like copies of prescriptions, first aid kits, and medical documents.
- Invest in Travel Insurance – Travel insurance can be a lifesaver when traveling with elderly parents. Unexpected medical emergencies can happen that could lead to trip cancellations and other travel mishaps. Travel insurance can cover these events and offer you and your parent’s peace of mind that you can get your money back if this happens to you.
- Cater to Dietary Needs – If your parents have any dietary restrictions, it’s good to look ahead at restaurants when you travel. Researching the places you have in mind can help you find menus that offer options that will accommodate those restrictions. It’s also wise to pack snacks and meals while you’re traveling, just in case.
- Make an Accommodating Itinerary – When you’re planning your schedule, look for activities that aren’t too physically demanding for your parents. Strenuous activities can be exhausting for them, or even pose a health risk. Keep an eye out for things like sightseeing, cultural experiences, and leisurely outings.
- Have Mobility Access Available – Depending on your parents’ mobility level, it may be necessary to have mobility assistance available to them. If your means of transportation allows it, make sure to bring their wheelchair or mobility scooter. If not, look for options near your destination where they can be rented. This can help them navigate spaces while reducing physical strain.
- Stay Hydrated and Comfortable – With changing temperatures and a higher risk of dehydration in elderly adults, it’s important to keep hydrated on your trip. Pack extra water bottles and encourage your parents to hydrate and dress in layers to best adapt to changing weather conditions.
- Be Patient and Communicative – Frequent communication is one of the key tips for traveling with elderly parents. Having open conversations with your parents about their concerns, preferences, and any discomfort they may have will help you plan for them. Be patient and empathetic with them and let them set the pace for the trip and make decisions alongside you to keep the trip enjoyable and comfortable.
Parkwood Home Care Is Here for You
Traveling with older family members like your parents can be stressful at times, but with careful planning and proactive approaches, it’s possible to have a great trip. With patience, understanding, and the tips provided above, you can create a travel plan that allows for a memorable experience for you and your family.
At Parkwood Home Care, we value the comfort and safety of your loved ones. We provide trusted home care services that aid in keeping your family members safe and happy. Contact us for more information or to book an assessment today.