Travel is an important part of our life. It exposes us to different cultures and backgrounds, and above all, it gets you out of your comfort zone. In the latter part of our lives, time seems to suddenly speed up, and travel is no longer about the destination or distance you travel, but the fact that you’re doing it at all. But stepping out of your comfort zone doesn’t necessarily mean traipsing around the world, instead it's about putting your toe out of your regular routine and widening your net of experiences.
As you enter a new horizon in your sunset years, you are no longer hindered by the responsibility of work. The world is filled with a plethora of sights and cultures to enjoy, but it might seem overwhelming at first to cross off all the countries on your travel list. It’s important that if you're planning on visiting many different locations during your travels, you prioritise experiences. I’ve put together advice on how to make sure you get the most out of your travels during your sunset years:
Go in knowing you’ll be making new connections
Travelling requires social skills as you need to be able to communicate your needs and preferences. You’re likely to make new friends along the way, maybe a stranger sitting next to you on a guided tour or your Airbnb host! Might not seem like an adverse change to your regular lifestyle, but it does take a little bit of social engagement and attitude adjustment!
Making the most of senior discounts
On your travels, it is always tempting to go all out and splurge on food, stay, and experiences. Contrary to popular belief, reaching 60 means you’re entitled to a plethora or benefits and offers. While you might be familiar with enjoying a 5% rebate for senior citizens at your local grocery store, it's also important to look out for senior discounts during your travels when it comes to museums and guided tours. Here is a list of Travel and Discounts Guide for Seniors for whenever you decide to embark on your globetrotting journey!
Make travel companions on your journey
Don’t get too rushed
While the prospect of travelling the world on a lifetime’s worth of savings can be exciting for anyone, remember to pace yourself. Many people try to cover as much ground as possible, so in getting swept away tend to miss out on important landmarks. The beauty of retirement is that you have time. Instead of rushing from one destination to another, cherish the places that you do visit and make the most of where you go.
Take time to plan - it's the best part!
Who doesn’t love a last minute adventure!? While it’s exciting to make last-minute detours on your itinerary, it’s important to have some kind of plan to follow for the upcoming months of travelling. In fact, according to research, planning and anticipating your trip makes you happier than actually doing it. It also helps you manage your time and allocated budget for the trip.
Be realistic about how far you can go
After a certain age, there is only so much your body can handle. In trying to cancel as many countries off your travel bucket list, it’s important to note that your health needs to always come first. However, this doesn’t mean cutting down your list and visiting less countries. In fact, it's quite the opposite. Through virtual travel, you can experience more of the world on a lesser budget and saved time. Popular landmarks tend to be overcrowded and tourist-infested and only leave you exhausted by the end of the day. Keep the physical-intensive activities (like hiking) on your itinerary for when you travel, and save the experiential learning for virtual travel (like cities that may be inconvenient for you to travel to). Through Port, you can join live, interactive guided tours in countries all over the world, and meet other globetrotters like yourself too!
Skip the walking tour
For the days you want to be on the move but are just too exhausted, consider investing in a guided bus tour. With all the various expenses that go into your trip, investing in a bus tour can take away a lot of your stress, and maybe even save you money when it comes to covering more of the touristy areas.
For the solo traveller
River cruising is a great option for solo travellers! It’s a unique chance to meet tons of people, choose activity levels that are most suitable for you, and some even offer many special features for the adventurous solo traveller. For instance, AmaWaterways keeps an odd number of seats at many tables so solo travellers don’t feel left out. Bonus: a lot of river cruises have reduced prices for the single traveller too!