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For many Americans, along with retirement comes the luxury of time to travel. After decades of working, seniors relish the idea of hitting the road in their RV or taking to the skies for a European vacation.
Here are some suggestions to help seniors have a more organized, safe and cost-efficient trip:
Leave a Detailed Itinerary -- Give a detailed travel itinerary to a friend or family member including the names, addresses and telephone numbers of the people and places where you will visit, plus flight information and airline ticket numbers. If traveling overseas, the U.S. State Department's Bureau of Consular Affairs suggests also including a passport number, date and place it was issued, and credit card and traveler's check information.
Pack Medications Properly -- Refill prescriptions before leaving for your travels, and keep phone numbers for doctors and pharmacies close at hand. Also, consider packing a note from your doctor explaining why the medication is needed. If traveling overseas, be sure to pack medications in carry-on baggage and always in their original bottles.
Carry Prepaid Phone Cards -- Include prepaid phone cards on your travel checklist. According to the Independent Traveler, a comprehensive online travel guide, prepaid phone cards are the easiest, simplest and cheapest way to make calls when traveling, especially during hotel stays and when traveling internationally. Cards such as the Sprint Prepaid PhoneCard have low per-rate minutes and can be used throughout the United States and internationally. Travelers will never have to scramble for payphone change or rack up hotel calling charges again.
"About one-third of vacationing Americans use prepaid phone cards as their primary means of communicating while on the road," said Brad Kropf, director, prepaid solutions at Sprint. "By offering prepaid phone cards that are both convenient and affordable, Sprint is helping seniors stay connected while traveling throughout the country and abroad."
Take Preventative Measures -- If traveling overseas, research the country or countries you plan to visit and determine if you should be immunized against any endemic diseases, or if you need a vaccination against diphtheria, tetanus, polio, typhoid or hepatitis A.
Avoid Overexposing Photos -- If you are traveling by airplane and returning home with exposed film of your adventures, pack it in your carry-on luggage -- never check it, as the baggage x-ray machines will overexpose those precious shots. X-ray machines for carry-on luggage are considered safe, but you can always ask for hand inspection.