- Seniors Preparing for a Road Trip – dieraecherin
There are many sights to be seen in the northern United States and Canada which senior citizens from the southern states may want to take trips to in the warmer months of the year. Similar to snowbirds who actually live in the north in the warmer season and in the south in the winter, some seniors wish to take advantage of good weather for their traveling. There are a few things to consider which would make such trips more enjoyable.
Seniors Plan for Food and Special Dietary Needs for Car Trip North in Summer
Some seniors have a need to eat on a regular basis to avoid energy loss and/or blood sugar problems, so some planning may be in order. For example, in some more remote areas of Wyoming and Montana, some of the filling stations may not have food to meet an older adult’s individual dietary requirements.
So care needs to be taken to pack enough non-perishable items like nuts, crackers, juice, tea and other items to maintain energy on long jaunts between grocery stores or restaurants. Some urban areas may have a Subway or other eating establishment which work pretty well for dietary requirements of older people.
In packing items to have handy in the car, non-perishables are first in priority. However, if some perishables, including medications, are necessary, ice can be obtained at the motel before leaving in the morning. Refrigerate only a few drinks, replacing them as they are taken from the ice chest. When motels have a freezer, drinks can be placed there during the night, making them just right for later in the day when a cool drink is so needed.
Some travelers save on ice chest space by just pouring their drinks over a bit of crushed ice in a cup or covered drink container. Then the drinks can be stored elsewhere, and only the ice takes up space in the cooler. Take the time to stay hydrated, giving the body a chance to adjust to changing climates.
Taking Medications and Meeting Medical Needs on Long Car Trip North
Some older adults must take certain medications several times a day. Not only can daily meds be already counted out, but bottled water or other drinks need to be readily available for taking doses on the road. Some seniors prefer to take them with pre-packaged puddings – which are easy to carry and a good non-perishable choice. Dosage times may have to be adjusted if a medication makes the senior driver sleepy or is otherwise contraindicated during the active part of the day.
Make sure prescriptions are filled with enough to last the entire trip. Consultation with medical provider may be helpful before the trip. Taking the prescription bottle (even if the pills have been put into a daily dosage container) provides proof that the medication is really for the actual traveler, in the rare case that is called into question.
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It needs to be noted that a trip north in the summer doesn’t always mean less heat since temperatures can reach triple digits there too. This might cause some seniors and boomers to choose late spring for such trips. Attention to this issue might involve traveling less miles per day, being sure to find air conditioned accommodations, and other adjustments in order to meet an individual’s medical needs.
Seniors Planning Appropriate Clothes for Travel by Car Through Changing Climates
Time spent giving attention to which clothes are packed can pay off big. Early summer and late spring may require some cool weather clothes. Dressing in layers will help since it may require one kind of clothing in the morning and another many miles up the highway at noon, etc.
Take a blanket, sweater or jacket which can be worn with anything, and keep it in an easily reachable place in the car. Clothing adjustments may need to be made when filling up with gasoline due to changing temperatures.
Timing and Pace Important to Older Adults on Road Trips
Seniors traveling north may escape the heat of the south during late spring and early summer. However, timing can be important. For taking a road trip in the spring, it is vital to wait till danger of icy roads is over. Yet it can be advantageous to go before schools are out for the summer in order to avoid traffic and crowds. It also makes for a better trip if done before northern areas become too hot in the summer.
Set a pace which allows for ease of travel as well as a bit of sightseeing. Cell phones make it possible to do some last minute planning and changes of schedule. Yet waiting too late to reserve nighttime accommodations can add undue stress, so plan ahead in order to have a room ready when a day’s driving is done.
Retirement sometimes allows more free days to travel, so the pace doesn’t need to be hurried. Even though mapping out an itinerary can help, be willing to make changes as situations demand. For example, there may be a heavy rain which would point toward less miles that day, or there might be a sight or event which is worth taking the time to see in a leisurely manner.
In addition to train trips, seniors may enjoy long RV excursions or car trips north in the spring or summer months. Proper planning for food, medications, and clothes can make the trip much more enjoyable and stress free. Timing of such trips and pace during the travel can be important to assure pleasant travel for seniors. Seniors who live in the south may find late spring and early summer road trips to be a nice change of pace to escape the early heat of southern summers while taking advantage of wonderful destinations and sights to be seen in the north when the weather is not cold.