Your senior loved one does not need to stop leaving their house or stop traveling just because they are getting older. In fact, when you are older is when travel means more. Your loved one has a lifetime of knowledge that allows them to fully appreciate the new experience they are having. After all, if not for travel, why did they work so hard for so many years?
Getting older does mean, however, that your senior loved one cannot travel the same way that they used to. This does not mean upgrading to a proper hotel from a hostel. What this refers to are the physical and cognitive limitations many seniors need to work around. Thankfully, there are some steps you and your senior loved one can take to keep them safe while traveling out of the house.
1. Get it in Writing
It is important to make a list of all over-the-counter medications, prescriptions, and supplements that your senior loved one takes. This list should include the dosage, what time the medication should be taken, and what they are for. You can ask your loved one’s healthcare provider or pharmacist to help you create this list. It is also a good idea to have them review the list for accuracy. Also, the list should include both the brand name and the generic name of the drugs and the amount your loved one should take while on their trip. Ask your senior loved one’s healthcare provider (including providers from home healthcare businesses) for a list of all his or her current medical problems and how exactly they are being treated. Also, it is important to have contact information in writing for all your elderly family member healthcare providers.
2. Keep All Medications in Their Original Containers
Keep all medications, over the counter and prescriptions, in their original container with their labels. By doing this, your trip through customs will also be much easier.
3. Carry-All Medication in Carry-On Luggage
Be sure to follow airport procedures for carry-on luggage and carry medication in approved bag or containers for easy retrieval.
4. Arrange for Transportation Inside the Airport
All airports offer buggy or cart rides for their passengers with disabilities. They also offer these rides to those who require some extra assistance getting from one terminal to another. Prior to your loved ones travel to the airport, contact them to make a reservation for one of these types of vehicles. This way, there will be someone ready and available to chauffeur your elderly loved one around the airport as needed.
5. Arrive at the Airport Early
It is important to ensure no unnecessary anxiety and stress is put on your senior loved one. Therefore, help them plan their trip carefully to make sure that they arrive at the airport on time. One way to do this is to make sure their transfer flights are not booked too close together. If not, they will end up having to rush from one terminal to the other to catch the flight. Try to arrive at the airport approximately 1 1/2 to 2 hours prior to the flight leaves.