Top Safety Tips for Seniors and Elderly People Traveling Alone

Many seniors and elderly people like to spend their golden years on the road. Some travel with groups and some like to explore alone. Here are some important tips to improve the safety of elderly people traveling alone.


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elderly woman looking out train window as she travels alone

Seniors shouldn’t be afraid to get out and see the world during their golden years! Retirement means you finally have the time to do the things you’ve always wanted to do. Now is the perfect time to check off your bucket list and take the trip of a lifetime!

Of course, it’s important to take precautions when traveling, especially when you’re on your own. These tips will help seniors and elderly people traveling alone!

elderly people traveling alone social share image

1. Make Sure You Have Access To Medications

If you take any sort of medication, you’ll want to keep that medication stored in your carry-on bag. If your luggage gets lost, your medication could get lost too. That’s a risk that you won’t want to take!

In addition to bringing prescription medication with you, you’ll want to carry a first aid kit. When you’re traveling, it won’t always be easy for you to pick up essentials like heartburn medication or painkillers. You should stock up on everything you need before you leave.

2. Watch Out For Cons

Many con artists specifically target seniors. Because of this, you’ll want to make sure you’re familiar with common cons in the area you’ll be visiting. For example, if someone on the streets of Spain offers you a rose, you won’t want to accept it! If you take the rose, you may be asked to pay a large sum of money for it.

If you’re aware of the cons, it will be easier for you to avoid them. Read up on common tourist scams and take steps to protect yourself. Con artists may see seniors as an easy target, but you can learn to see through their ruses.

senior woman holding passport and giving a thumbs up

3. Let Friends And Family Back Home Know Where You’ll Be

You don’t have to take the whole family with you when you want to get away! However, you will want to give copies of your itinerary to people you trust. You should also plan to check in with friends or family at specified times.

If something happens to you during your trip, you’ll want to ensure that you’ll be able to get the help that you need. If you miss a check-in, people will know that something is wrong. They’ll be able to notify the proper authorities and use your itinerary to let people know where you might be.

4. Work To Stay Healthy

The dry air on airplanes can weaken your body’s resistance to viruses and infections, which means you’ll want to make an extra effort to keep yourself healthy while you’re away from home. After all, no one wants to spend a vacation cooped up in a hotel room!

Make sure you have ample time to recover from jet lag and give your body the sleep that it needs. When you’re planning your schedule, you should try to take it easy on the first day of your trip. You should also make sure you stay hydrated. You may want to invest in a stainless steel water bottle.

ALSO READ: Tips for Successful Air Travel for Seniors

senior man taking photos while on vacation alone

5. Be Careful When You’re Talking To Strangers

Part of the fun of traveling alone as a senior is getting to meet new people and make new friends. However, you’ll want to avoid revealing too much to the people you meet. Certain information, like the hotel you’re staying in, should stay secret.

You should have fun, relax, and soak up the local culture. Just make sure you’re careful about what you share with people. Keep personal information to yourself. When you’re making conversation, focus on the sights, the food, and all of the fun you’re having.

6. Leave Expensive Belongings At Home

You may have worked hard to save up for a luxury purse or handbag or a designer watch. Unfortunately, those items should stay at home when you’re traveling. Carrying flashy accessories can make you a target for thieves. You shouldn’t flash your wealth when you’re abroad, especially if you’re traveling alone.

7. Keep A Map With You

These days, most people use their smartphones rather than a paper map when they need directions. However, since you can’t always accurately get a wifi signal when you’re traveling, you might want to handle things the way you did in the good old days.

Bring a paper map with you and check it whenever you need directions. Instead of fumbling with your map on the street, you should step inside a nearby shop and check the map. You may want to ask for directions as well.

8. Stay Safe At Your Hotel

If there are a lot of sights you want to see, you may not want to spend much time at your hotel! When you are in your hotel room, however, you’ll want to take extra precautions to keep yourself safe.

If possible, choose a room on an upper floor that can’t be accessed from the outside. When you’re in your room, use the security lock. When you’re out of the room, you should leave the lights on so that it looks like the room is still occupied.

Do you have other tips for elderly people traveling alone that you would like to share? What other precautions do you recommend? Please share them in the comments below!

About Scott Grant, ATP, CRTS® 305 Articles
Assistive Technology Professional, Custom Wheelchair Specialist, Medical Equipment Guru, Dad and Grandfather
I am a lucky dad to four awesome daughters and grandfather to three pretty terrific grandkids. When not working as a custom wheelchair specialist at a regional home medical equipment company, I enjoy early morning runs and occasional kayak trips. I am also a self-admitted nerd who loves anything from the 1980's. Learn More

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