Travel is arguably one of the most exciting experiences in life, but sometimes, new experiences can put you out of your comfort zone. Whatever your age or travel destination, it helps to properly prepare before you go to protect your health and belongings. From travel insurance to senior discounts and mobility on the road, our travel tips for seniors will help you get the most out of your next holiday.
We all like to imagine our trips will be smooth sailing but unfortunately sometimes situations arise that are out of our control. We can't stress enough the importance of travel insurance.
Always purchase travel insurance as soon as you book your holiday so you're covered if you have to cancel or postpone the trip. Your travel agent will run through a number of policy options to ensure you have the right coverage to suit your needs, especially for any pre-existing medical conditions – which you must always declare.
In the odd case you fall ill or find yourself at the mercy of Mother Nature, look for an insurance provider that offers 24-hour worldwide assistance. Flight Centre also offers 24/7 customer assistance from an Australian-based team.
Remember: You get what you pay for so a cheaper policy may not always be best. It always pays to upgrade your insurance to avoid paying an excess, especially if you need to make multiple claims from the one trip.
Comfort All The Way
For the flight, DVT circulation socks will ease any discomfort and reduce potential swelling of the legs. Good walking shoes with cushioning are also a must.
If you're flying long-haul, a stopover is always a given from Australia in order for the aircraft to refuel or pick up other passengers. If you have the time, consider a holiday before the holiday with an extended stopover. Not only will this break up the tiresome journey and give you a chance to rest, but you can explore another destination without having to pay for an extra plane ticket.
But if you don't have time to spare, consider pre-booking lounge access so you can freshen up, relax and have a bite to eat in comfortable surrounds. Frequent flyers with gold or platinum memberships usually have access to partner airline lounges so always check with your airline.
Remember: Once you arrive at your final destination, it's worth booking a transfer to your accommodation. Having someone waiting for you at the gate is convenient and takes the stress out of navigating a foreign airport.
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See your doctor a month prior to departure to obtain any relevant vaccinations you might need and extra medication for the trip. Don’t forget to request a note from your GP declaring the type of medicine you will need to carry with you. Medications that are properly labelled with professional identification makes for a smoother airport transition. Pack all medication in your carry on just in case your bags get lost.
Remember: Your travel agent can arrange tailored airline meals if you have any specific dietary requirements. These special meals need to be organised ahead of time.
For travellers with mobility issues, we recommend arranging airport assistance. A representative will meet you and escort you in a wheelchair through check-in before you need to board the plane, and then meet you again at your destination for further assistance.
If you have a wheelchair, make sure you talk to your travel agent as the regulations onboard vary between airlines.
Remember: If you have any special needs or require assistance at the airport, always notify the airline prior to departure.
Before You Go
Register your travel plans online with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. The government website allows you to log your whereabouts, accommodation details and contact numbers in case you or your family members need to be contacted in an emergency.
Remember: Double check the visa requirements for the countries you are visiting and make sure your passport has at least six months' validity.
Every extra dollar you can save means more funds in your travel kitty. If you've travelled with a company before, your travel consultant may be able to award you a repeat booking discount, especially for tours or cruises.