When you reach the big 80, the last thing you are probably thinking of is getting out there and traveling the world. Sticking to your old routine and the easy life may be a more attractive option, but seeing the world as a senior is totally possible and brings about a world of benefits.
Traveling is no longer a young man’s game, and retirees and seniors are increasingly heading out to travel and to go on those long trips that they were unable to whilst working their 9 to 5. We all have a list of places we would love to see in the world, from the sights of Milan to the architecture of London, but so few people actually achieve their traveling dreams, with age or money holding them back.
Don’t let age hold you back. If you are in good health, 80 is a good as age as any to see the world and make the most of your time. Research from the charity Age UK has shown that elderly people well into their 80s are choosing to see the world and travel, and in 2011, people over the age of 80 were responsible for a third of travel insurance policies sales, with sales increasing by the year.
Traveling is a wonderful activity for elderly people, an enriching experience that improves mental and physical health, keeps the brain active, helps you to meet other like-minded people, make friends, learn and try new things. It gives a great boost to social life, something essential in improving mental health and stamina.
Keeping busy and active is the most important thing to maintain and better your health and state of mind. New experiences and the illusion and excitement that comes with travel help keep spirits high, and the exercise that comes with it can reduce risks of disease and lower blood pressure. When on holiday, you can go on beautiful walks, hire bikes and even swim in hotel pools or in the sea.
Whether you feel capable of planning and organizing your own trip with your partner or prefer to do it through an agency or to go on an organized trip with a group of other like-minded travellers in the same age group, nothing should stop you achieving your dreams at 80. The great thing about this age is that you can make the most of senior discounts on travel, public transport and entrance fees, just some of the many benefits of retirement!
Of course, you will have to think about health insurance and prepare the necessary things before you plan to see the world. You never know what might happen, and if you are traveling in another country or outside of Europe, you will need to be insured and covered for health purposes or accidents.
With more people traveling the world at all ages, many travel insurance companies are starting to tailor policies to take into account various age groups. You can now purchase travel insurance for seniors over 80 which takes into considerations all likely pre-existing medical conditions one may have prior to travelling.
As so many companies are quick to refuse insurance policies to those over the age of 80, the charity Age UK is one of several which are taking steps to help elderly people achieve their traveling dreams, and they have their own special travel insurance available to keep them covered. While it may seem expensive an tempting to wing it and travel without insurance, this is an absolute no-no as it could leave you in danger and well out of pocket should something go wrong.
Traveling prepared and covered means you can go about your trip with a relaxed mind and not have to think about what could happen. When travelling, always ensure you pack any necessary medication, drink plenty of water and take care when it comes to cleanliness. Though tempting, you should go easy on alcohol and know your limits, and whatever happens, always keep your EU health card to hand! Most of all, enjoy, and don’t worry. This is your time to enjoy and see the world at 80.