Going on vacation with an elderly parent can be a great way to spend time together and create lasting memories. However, it’s important to do some preparation before you go to make sure that everything goes smoothly. Otherwise, things that can go wrong include your parent getting lost, or not taking their medications.
Here are three ways to prepare effectively.
Make a Clear Plan
Before the trip, it’s important to pick your parent up from their assisted living facility and make a clear plan. This means discussing what the itinerary for the trip will be, where you’ll be staying, and what activities you’ll be doing each day.
- Write everything down. You can document everything in a handy notebook or on an online document that you both can access.
- Be flexible. Just because you have a plan doesn’t mean that everything will go perfectly according to it.
- Make sure your parent is comfortable with the plans. If they’re not, try to accommodate their concerns as much as possible.
In addition to packing your usual vacation essentials like passports and clothes, there are a few extra things you’ll need to bring along when vacationing with an elderly parent.
- Medication. Medicine is a top priority when packing for a vacation with an elderly parent. Make sure to bring along enough of their prescription medications to last the entire trip, plus a few extra days in case of delays. You’ll also want to pack over-the-counter medications like pain relievers and stomach remedies, just in case.
- Medical records. You should also bring along your parent’s medical records. This includes things like their list of allergies and their doctor’s contact information.
- Aids. Most elders need aids like eyeglasses, hearing aids, and walking canes or walkers. Be sure to pack these.
- Emergency contacts. Be sure to have a list of emergency contacts with you, including your parents’ doctor, close friends, or family members, and the contact information for your hotel or rental property.
Another important thing to consider when vacationing with an elderly parent is travel insurance. There are a few different types of travel insurance, so make sure to do your research to find the best policy for your needs.
Here are some options:
- Medical insurance. This type of insurance can help cover the cost of medical care if your parent becomes ill or injured while on vacation.
- Trip cancellation insurance. This can reimburse you for non-refundable trip expenses if you have to cancel your vacation due to a covered reason, like your parent getting sick at the last moment.
- Lost or stolen belongings insurance. This can help replace any items that are lost or stolen while you’re on vacation.
Traveling with an elderly parent can be a lot more challenging than traveling solo or with young people. However, if you plan and pack smart, it can be a fun and enjoyable experience for both of you. Don’t forget to buy travel insurance! It can give you peace of mind knowing that you’re covered in case of an emergency.