This is a guest post by Chris Jensen,
Go for your travel dreams but ‘Stay Safe When You Travel’!
None of us are getting any younger, and that’s a fact! So if we have travel dreams we need to get out and go for them now.
If you are the type of traveler that wants to finally climb Mt. Sinai or see the ancient Egyptian pyramids, being over fifty doesn’t matter one bit, and there are certain ways to ease the anxiety of traveling overseas too.
As far as safety goes, the most important thing is to know what your body can handle, as well as your mind.
Do you have any medical problems that make it hard for you to walk for long distances? Make sure you know the distance and route from the airport to your choice of lodging, and take a taxi or the subway (the most frugal way to get around) if your destination isn’t within your ability to walk. You’ll also want to make sure you have reservations. You don’t want to be walking around a foreign city looking for a hotel that will take you.
On the same level you must care for your mind, just because you are traveling doesn’t mean you can’t have a day of downtime. Everybody needs rest, and without it you may become a little worse for the wear. You don’t want to end up needing a vacation when you get back from your trip!
How to stay safe when you travel
Another safety concern for most travelers over fifty (and most human beings) lies in avoiding getting mugged. This is the most worrisome thing for me when I travel, but you have to remember not to try to be a hero, it could cost you your life if you struggle to give up a wallet. Stay in well-lit areas, don’t carry too much cash with you (or any important documents), and if you are travelling to a known high crime area, you could even keep a fake wallet in your back pocket.
Supercharged safety: pick a welcoming place
My wife and I loved Australia the first time we explored the continent, and eventually decided to move there for good. Everyone was so welcoming to us – Australians are famously kind to foreign visitors. You will find that even some of the countries that are known to be less tourist-friendly will give you a welcoming reception if you go in with the right attitude. Always have an open mind and be interested in and courteous to other lifestyles and cultures. It won’t be safe to go to a place in the red though, no matter how accepting you are, you may not be as lucky.
Hostels are a great way to save money on travel expenses. Lodging can get so expensive, so staying at a hostel for a couple of nights a week really helps save a lot of money. I know what you’re thinking, “I’m not staying in a cramped little dorm room with teenagers who take shots every hour while blasting rock music!” Fair enough, but just know that most hostels are not the crazy, bouncing atmosphere you might be thinking of when you hear the word ‘hostel’ (although there certainly are many of those too).
Hostels can actually be quite luxurious, and they almost always have a private room option for just a little more money, but still much cheaper than a hotel room.Look into the online reviews of a couple of hostels in the area to get an idea of the noise level, amenities, and general atmosphere. Who knows, you might reconnect with your youthful self!
As I stated in the safety section, try not to take taxis but instead take the public transportation system such as the subway or bus.
Make sure you are insured
Having up to date health and life insurance is essential to a smooth travel experience. If you get sick or heaven forbid something were to happen to you, you will want to have insurance for medical bills and life insurance to protect your family. Most life insurance policies do not cover you once you leave your country of residence, so look into international plans. Better safe than sorry!
I think the most important thing to remember when planning your trip abroad is to have fun. It isn’t better for those who do it when they are young; it is just usually more convenient. Be safe, save a little money, and see the world.
This is a guest post by Chris Jensen, an insurance adviser and writer with Australian Personal Life Insurance providers, GIO.com.au.