Travelling is always fun, isn’t it? Exploring a new place, meeting new people, trying different cuisines, engaging in adventures, etc. are all quite wonderful and positive experiences. However, despite all the fun associated with it, travelling could be complicated too; especially if we do not prepare for it the way we should. This also changes, and becomes more relevant with age, especially during midlife. As we progress towards and gradually settle into our midlife, we may need to change the way we travel. We might need to change the way we plan for our midlife travel, change the way (or the things) we pack for our trip, or even change the way we go about holidaying. Not that we are unaware of what exactly needs to be done to make travelling in midlife easier, however certain good travel tips from those who have been there and done that always help. So here’s a list of the 10 best midlife travel tips that potentially would make the journeys a lot more comfortable and manageable.
- Contact & consult a travel agent
We may or may not be acquainted with the chosen holiday destination. Also, unless we are good at looking for information and deals on various portals on the internet, it would be a good idea to hire the help of a travel agent for booking the flight tickets, hotel booking or the holiday package. Even though it sounds a bit old school, but services from a travel agent could prove to be really useful especially when we are in our 40s and aren’t as spontaneous as we were in 20s. Generally, the Travel consultants/booking agents would know about the cheapest and quickest flights and packages for the chosen destination and they can help us book the most ideal one. The bonus is that It usually won’t cost us an extra dime to hire their services.
- Book a proper vacation tour package
If it is just our wish to go on a holiday and enjoy, without worrying about our meals, identifying which local attractions to visit, which hotel to stay at, etc. then it helps to consider booking a vacation tour package. There are a number of reputed service providers in this sector who will take care of everything pertaining to a trip such as accommodation, food, sightseeing, airport transfers, professionally guided tours, etc. Remember during midlife, we are better off just enjoying your holiday rather than worrying about structuring it. After all the vacation in midlife is to rejuvenate ourselves without the stress and worries about organising and managing things hence it would be better to leave that to the experts and enjoy the precious time.
- Pack as if you may lose your bags
People lose their luggage all the time. No matter how organised or vigilant we may be about our luggage, catastrophe could strike at any time! To avoid facing such a situation, a good travel tip would be to keep a practice of packing our bags as if there is a 50% chance for losing them. This essentially means spreading out the stuff across the bags, not packing all the clothes in one suitcase, not putting all the medicines and essentials in one bag. It goes unsaid midlife or not, never to keep all the cash and bank cards in a place. Being stranded in a foreign place without a dime in your wallet is not a fun thought, isn’t it?
- Do not schedule every minute of your vacation
When talking about midlife travel hacks, there is one of the absolute ‘must follow’ ones. A lot of us make the mistake of scheduling every hour, every minute of the vacation. Planning for something is always helpful but like everything in life, it should never be overdone. After all scheduling, everything in advance will take away the fun and possibility for spontaneous activity. An art gallery that wasn’t on the schedule but is really a must visit. Very important to leave some time for spur-of-the-moment occurrences and to do ‘nothing’. Yes, you read that right! Just spending some time with yourself in a foreign setting is quite beautiful in its own right. And for all you know, it may even be insightful!
- Put comfort over style when packing
This is one of the more unpopular midlife travel tips but we are going to put it out anyways. During midlife travel exertions, always prefer comfort over style. Not that we shouldn’t pack in our most attractive clothes or try to look good, but to avoid doing that at the cost of our comfort. It is always advisable to pack clothes that would allow you to explore the place freely also equally essential to pack the essentials for the type of climate that is expected at the travel destination.
- Carry a decent quantity of food along with you
Not everyone could live on foreign cuisines for the entire duration of a holiday. While that can be done during the twenties, it might prove to be a long shot in our midlife. As we age, our digestive system functions less efficiently. We become more prone to stomach bugs than in our youth. So it is advisable to carry some food along so that just in case we do not like the cuisines on offer, or our stomach decides to spoil the party, we still have an adequate supply to keep us going. Does that mean carrying full meals? No, just stuff like cereal bars, rice cakes, chocolate bars, etc. They tend to come in really handy on the road.
- Carry a few ‘over the counter’ medicines
While almost everyone carries prescription drugs while on a trip, only a few pay attention to regular, over the counter medicines. But why should we? They would anyways be available at chemist shops at the holiday destination, right? Well, that may not always be the case! What if the chemist has run out of stock? Or what if the nearest chemist is 5 miles away when medicine is required urgently? So, packing some painkillers, antacids, band-aids, anti-diarrhoea pills, etc could potentially save the day.
- If you plan to get adventurous, start getting in shape at the earliest
Now if the idea is to participate in some adventure sport on the holiday, then it would be imperative to start preparing both physically and mentally, from a few weeks before the scheduled departure date. Last minute preparations, or no preparations at all, would usually mean struggle to participate in and enjoy in whatever adventure that has been planned. Taking some probiotics a month or two before the trip also helps prepare the body to adapt to the new food.
- Embrace technology
Smartphones and tablets are just invaluable for modern-day travellers. They can help us get access to all relevant information within seconds. We certainly will need a lot of information on our holiday, it could be for translating a local menu, pulling up a map, finding the opening and closing hours of a local tourist attraction, or anything else that might be the need of the hour technology should be at our disposal to do all that. Getting connected to the wi-fi networks at the resort or at the hotel or even at the airport is something that should be on our to-do list. Lastly, having the connection to a network service provider /SIM Card operator allowing us to avail of adequate international data in case there are no wireless hotspots is a must.
- The harsh truth, Prepare for poor sanitation
If visiting a developing country, then it is reasonable to expect some sanitation issues. To avoid the risk of getting infected in such a situation, it is very important to carry antibacterial gels, antibacterial wipes, latex gloves and some disposable face masks along. This is, yet again, one of the more underrated yet extremely important midlife travel tips.
With these midlife travel tips, it should be possible to enjoy the holidays a lot more than otherwise. There is nothing wrong with being prepared for some unexpected situations and ensuring that the plans aren’t ruined. Follow and implement these midlife travel hacks to get the best out of your holiday!
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