Travel intro – keep on moving
This week we move onto the topic of Travel, which I plan to examine from three perspectives: holidays, visits, and the process of travel itself.
I’ll start with holidays as this is the most fun aspect (or at least it should be!) If your holidays aren’t enjoyable then maybe there’s another blog or forum you need to check out for some help! Holidays can include trips to resorts, as well as going more native or off the beaten track. They can include everything from all-inclusive packages, organised trips or DIY arrangements. Some holidays can be interest-specific e.g. birdwatching, skiing, diving, golf etc. or age-specific e.g. SAGA, kids’ holidays, 18-30 etc., whilst others could be inter-generational. Holidays typically aimed at older people can include foreign tours, cruises, exotic locations, coach tours or holiday parks close to home. Some people like to continuously explore different locations whilst others prefer the comfort of the same resort time and time again, maybe even owning a holiday home or a time share. Choice of holiday can depend on our life phase, mobility, budget, who we’re going with, the type of holiday, familiarity of destination etc. I’m pretty sure that one person’s dream is probably another’s nightmare, irrespective of age.
I’ve classified visits separately from holidays, but they don’t necessarily need to be any less enjoyable. By visits, I’m referring to those to and/or from friends and family. Visiting or accommodating friends could encompass lifelong friends or old acquaintances and may depend on how much we and they have travelled and moved around through the course of our lives. Entire friendship groups could be located in the same town or could be dispersed all over the world! We could also have new friends that we’ve met online, through work or interests or from previous holidays. Benefits of visits may include cost savings (no accommodation costs, although travel costs could be high depending on distance and method of transport) or comfort and cosiness over hotels etc. However, there could be other frustrations and challenges that may need addressing in terms of comfort, habits, timetables, mobility, equipment etc.
Likewise for family visits, whether visiting close family members or those further away. Some visits may be for pleasure, others more out of a sense of duty: especially with sick or elderly relatives, or to perform a specific function. More joyful times include celebrating the birth of a new arrival (human or animal) or to attend weddings, christenings or other family gatherings. Visits involving both friends and families may be wonderful (or not so great) and we will look at some strategies to try and ease these for all concerned.
Finally, we’ll consider travelling with purpose. We appreciate that travelling is not just for holidays or family events: most people need to incorporate some kind of travel within their daily lives, even if under their own steam. Common methods of travel include driving, walking, cycling, taking the train, bus, tram etc. We’ll look at the reasons that people need to travel including shopping, attending medical and other appointments, taking pets to the vets, cars to the garage, volunteering, attending activities etc. Being able to get out and about may represent a lifeline for many and the ability to do this gives them a sense of freedom and independence. Destinations, frequency, motivations and method may all need to be adapted as we get older to ensure that we are still able to satisfy needs, albeit in other ways. We’ll also look at alternatives to travelling e.g. online shopping, skype conversations and webinars, inviting people over instead of going out, forums, downloading audio and e-books etc. We’ll also look at some age-related travel specifics e.g. bus card, rail card, adapted cars and mobility scooters, taxis and volunteer car services and assistance at stations and airports etc.
Whatever your life phase and travel experiences to date, I hope you’ll follow me to hear more about how travel fits in to the Age Life Balance journey in my following articles.
Thank you for reading. For more interesting articles, visit my blog at www.agelifebalance.com to learn more.