There are a ton of boxes you must check off before you travel miles away from home. The baby boomers of the world might need to bring and pack a tad more compared to the other generations. Some travel essentials need to be brought along with boomers to keep them organized, comfortable, and to ensure that the most memorable trip is to come.
Being prepared for your entire day requires planning ahead for the items you will use throughout the day.
Consider a day bag for reading glasses, medication, and sunscreen. You will quickly find that a well-prepped day bag is one of the great essentials while you travel.
When choosing a day bag, the packability, security, size, and style should be the key points for you to look for.
Packability: Look for day bags that have zippers and pockets. Having these components in your travel bag will help keep you organized and gives you the storage space that you potentially will need.
Security: Having a day bag that is not easy for pickpockets to access is a fantastic thing to have. A crossbody bag is recommended so that way it will remain attached to you rather than hanging off your shoulder.
Size: While choosing your bag, look for something bigger than your purse. Think about the snacks and water bottles you will want to bring, along with your other essentials.
Style: At the end of the day, you still want to look fashionable. Choose a day bag that you adore, catches your eye, and something you can potentially use outside of your vacation.
When traveling, you often have a ton of documents such as airplane tickets, receipts, excursion itineraries, and more. It’s best to keep all of these documents organized in an easy-to-reach folder. If you want to be extra prepared, assemble the documents in the order of which you will need to present them to a representative. For instance, have your flight documents first, followed by your hotel reservation, and so forth.
Another thing you can create and store in this folder is a pre-made list of all the places you want to visit during your travels. This list will help you with ideas of things to do when that point in your trip comes where you aren’t sure what to do next.
You see them everywhere! Those c-shaped neck pillows have been all the rage since they were created. There’s a good reason why frequent travelers usually have several neck pillows – because, without them, your travels would be a pain.
Whether you’re flying or going on a road trip, a neck pillow is a definite travel essential for boomers. No one wants to start their vacation off with an aching neck. If you forget your neck pillow at home, be sure to stop by the airport gift shop or a gas station to pick up a new one. You won’t want to be without a neck pillow.
Much like the neck pillow, earplugs are essential, whether you’re on a plane or in the car. While your partner is driving and listening to music, you may want to take a nap. You’ll want earplugs to drown out the background noise. If you’re on a five-hour flight, you’ll want earplugs to mask the cries of any babies or loud snorers who might be on board. These, too, are easy things to find if you happen to forget yours at home.
And believe it or not, there are several types of earplugs. However, if after trying out the various types, you still can’t find a pair you like, try headphones. Headphones can provide you with the quiet time you’re looking for, and you can listen to soothing music to help you sleep while in flight.
Most baby boomers currently take at least one medication. If that’s true for you, too, then make sure you get all your essential medications refilled prior to setting off on your trip. Running out of a necessary medication could be detrimental to your health. Also, if you were to need to refill your prescription while on your trip, your Medicare Part D plan may not cover you as well as it does in your hometown.
Be sure to contact your doctor and let him or her know that you will be traveling soon, and you want to make sure your prescription bottles are full. Depending on the medication, you may not be able to get an early refill, so you’ll want to plan for that as well.
A second form of identification
Traveling can get messy at times, especially if you lose an important document or card. Always travel with a second form of identification, so if you lose your primary form of identification, you’re prepared with another one. Having a spare form of identification can also help you replace the one you lost. But be sure to store them somewhere safe when you aren’t using them. For instance, if your hotel room has a safe, save your important documents and spare cash there. Some forms of identification you can take with you include:
Social Security card
The way to capture your dream vacation and reminisce on your memories is with a good old fashion camera. What better way to look back on your trip than with a good quality camera? A lightweight camera or even a Polaroid will fit just perfectly in your day bag. It is understood that the iPhone can take great pictures but take a leap and leave the phone at home. Avoid social media and taking phone calls and soak in your adventure. Watch yourself, enjoy yourself more! Bringing a good quality camera will give you the opportunity to unplug for the week and still capture your most cherished moments. You will thank yourself later by being fully present and soaking up all your surroundings.
If you are planning on being a tourist during your vacation, one of the most critical essentials will be packing a comfortable pair of shoes. If you already have your outfits planned, you will want to go ahead and plan otherwise. The number one regret you do not want to have is creating blisters or having sore feet at the end of your day.
Correlating a comfortable pair of walking sneakers or flats will be the most significant thing you packed in your suitcase. If you are not used to wearing heels, let’s not try them out when you are miles away from home. Also, wearing shoes you are comfortable in will reduce the chance of falling. Having support on your feet will help improve your mobility on your trip, and you will have nothing to hold you back.
If you are traveling to a place where the sun is shining bright, and you plan on enjoying that sun, you will want to pack your favorite sunscreen. You will want to avoid the harmful UV rays that you might not be really used to. Invest in a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF at the lowest 30. Investing in a good pair of sunglasses will also protect your eyes and will keep you comfortable under the sun.
Entering a new climate can take a toll on your skin create flareups, so packing your favorite cleanser and moisturizer will be necessary. Keeping a skincare routine throughout your stay should be a priority, as entering a new climate tends to dry out or irritate your skin.
One thing that you do not want to happen on your trip or when you get back is getting sick. Becoming sick is one way to ruin your vibe and energy. Bringing and using hand sanitizer on the plane, off the plane, after your cab ride, at your hotel, at the restaurant, etc., are just a few recommended times to keep your hands clean. While entering a different state or different country, you may be too busy enjoying your time and not really thinking about your surroundings in detail, and that is okay. But, staying in a foreign place for quite some time, you could have the potential of catching some type of virus or germ that you have never been exposed to before. You will want to put effort into trying to remain clean and healthy throughout your whole trip.
Traveling for Boomers should be nothing but smiles and a fantastic time. Do some research and investigate what the weather will be like, what excursions you will want to take, and where you will all be walking to. Knowing what to pack and planning can at times be a tad tedious and challenging but planning will make things go more smoothly and will relieve any stress you may have. Enjoy this time to surround yourself with adventures and your loved ones.
Danielle K. Roberts is the Vice President and co-founder at Boomer Benefits, where her team of experts help baby boomers with their Medicare decisions nationwide.