Tips for Traveling With Your Elderly Loved One

Be realistic, plan, pack, and enjoy.

Traveling as a family can create wonderful lifetime memories for everyone involved. However, if you are traveling with an elderly parent or other family member there are certain considerations that should be taken into account. By knowing what these are, and planning accordingly, you make this vacation fun and pleasant for everyone involved.

Here are some tips for traveling with your elderly loved one.
  • Be realistic in your choice of destination. While you may love to visit a faraway land, (across many time zones), that requires several flights, you must clearly understand the realities. For many elderly, waiting in airports, traveling through many time zones, to reach a faraway destination is not a vacation, and can result in an exhausted senior, before the trip even begins. This is not to say that you must stay close to home, when traveling with a senior you must be realistic in the abilities of your loved one, as far as extended travel is concerned. In addition, you must consider the destination itself. While you may be willing to walk miles of scenic paths, or travel by horseback to a remote cabin, can your senior family member comfortably do the same? While you can still participate in rigorous activities, you must be able to provide alternates, for family members who are not up to it.
  • Do your planning early-Now that you have settled on a destination, travel experts advise planning early. If you traveling by air, or land transportation, you should seek the most direct and shortest travel times, to increase the comfort of your elderly family member. While most senior discount fares for airlines, no longer exist, it can save you money to enroll everyone in a frequent flier program. This should give you access to the lowest fares, and possible services at the airport and aboard the flight. When making reservations you may want to request seat assignments in the rows that are designated for disabled travelers. If you need to, you can also request cost-free wheelchair service, at every airport origination, connection and arrival location. If there is meal service aboard, advise the reservation system of any dietary needs. Keep in mind that if you do not make, and confirm all of these requests at the time of reservation, the airline, train, or bus line has no obligation to make them available on check-in or while en route. In addition, if you need to make sure that you book a handicapped hotel room or cabin, if your senior needs extra help in their accommodations.
  • Plan in some down time-No matter how active, or how dependant on care, your elderly loved one is you should plan in some down time, for everyone on the trip. Most seniors do not want a non-stop itinerary planned for them. Make sure there is time on the trip for everyone to relax by the pool, take a nap in their room, or just have time to do whatever they want. Your elderly parent or family member may want that time alone, away from the hustle and bustle of everyone else on the trip.
  • Make sure that you have everything they will need-Travel is a relatively new thing, for many people of the older generation. Even if your parents, or other senior members of the family, have traveled, they may need reminders about medications, travel restrictions, packing help, and reminders to bring all insurance cards, and necessary documentation. You do not want to reach your destination only to find out that a necessary medication has been forgotten, or some needed paperwork has been left at home.
About The CareGiver Partnership. The CareGiver Partnership helps caregivers and their loved ones with answers to their caregiving questions, including information about home health care products and supplies, from our Wisconsin-based team of Product Specialists who are all current or former caregivers. The company’s Web site provides the largest online library of resources on subjects most important to caregivers — from arthritis to assisted living, and Parkinson’s to prostate cancer — as well as access to more than 3,000 home care products for incontinence, skin care, mobility, home safety and daily living aids. The CareGiver Partnership was founded in 2004 by Lynn Wilson of Neenah, Wisc. Visit to learn more or call 1-800-985-1353.


Andria @ live in care jobs said...

My husband and kids love traveling. But I can’t take my mother for faraway places because she is 70 years old. Also I can’t leave her at home and go with kids. Therefore I plan my holiday trips very carefully. Thanks for your useful tips. This would make my hard work easy.

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