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Front Page » March 21, 2013 » Focus » The Senior Trip
Published 558 days ago

The Senior Trip


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It doesn't seem that long ago that many seniors were taking their high school senior trip. You know, the one that a lot of teenagers used to take right after they got out of high school.

But now it has been 40-50 years since that adventure, and most of the people who took those trips to Disneyland or New York City, have been working, growing families and contributing to their communities on a regular basis. These activities have probably limited, not only time wise, but financially the chance to do other trips with the freedom they felt when they were 18.

Retirement either looms for those that age or it has already come. Those who have said goodbye to the work-a-day grind now have many hours to settle down and relax. People who have continually put off vacations in lieu of other responsibilities may now have all the time they need to explore the world.

Traveling for seniors can be rewarding and relaxing. Those with a substantial retirement nest egg have numerous destinations at their disposal. Mature vacationers travel more frequently and stay longer than any other age group. Travel ranks among the top leisure activities for men and women over 50, according to the Web site Suddenly Senior.

Seniors can find several travel advantages at their disposal. Also, thanks to special senior discounts, travel may be even more affordable than first expected.

While certain destinations are not always practical for certain age brackets, there are many places to which seniors can visit comfortably and enjoy a wealth of memories.

Theme parks: Although theme parks may seem carved out entirely for the adventure-seekers, there are many other more placid activities that would appeal to those who prefer to keep their feet firmly on the ground rather than looping through the air on a rocket-propelled coaster. With animal preserves, water parks, fine dining, and a bevy of hotels either in the park or directly on the outskirts, theme parks provide many activities for older travelers. Although theme parks require a lot of walking, many provide wheelchairs or motorized scooters for those who need to get off of their feet. They also make a great option for seniors who will be traveling with the entire family, including children. It can also be a good idea to meet up with family at theme parks. It provides some special time to spend with grandchildren, while the kids parents can have some fun too with the built in baby sitters on site.

Beach resorts. Provided flying is medically safe, a beachside vacation can be the ideal trip for seniors looking for the utmost in relaxation. For those who have passports, the possibilities are endless. Those who prefer to remain on relatively domestic soil can retreat to Puerto Rico, south Florida, the California coast, Hawaii, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Cruising. Cruising is a preferred vacation choice for the 50+ set because it offers the convenience of an all-inclusive package and transportation all in one. With the myriad activities offered on board, cruises are a versatile vacation option for seniors. Also, there is no need to worry about traveling far for meals and other entertainment options, as everything is self-contained on the cruise ship. For more active seniors who enjoy the daily getaway, excursions in ports of call can provide the variety desired.

Guided tours. Seniors who want to experience a piece of history can sign up for tour packages backed by reputable companies. The tours may involve train or bus travel, and various attractions will be visited. At the end of the tour, individuals can choose to extend the vacation by checking into a hotel nearby.

RV trips. Another self-contained vacation that is entirely up to the people traveling is vacationing by recreational vehicle. Seniors can customize their routes depending on which areas they want to see. Companies like Cruise America RV enable people to rent an RV so they needn't worry about the expense of buying one outright. However, should RV traveling become addictive, there always is the option of buying a camper, trailer or fifth wheel later on. Setting an itinerary and then establishing the pace enables travelers to tour the country or cross the border as desired. From beaches to national parks, many areas offer RV hook-up areas and amenities. This is also a chance to visit family that may be spread across the continent.

Exotic tour. Seniors who were never able to afford or spare the time for an extensive vacation may now want to visit those exotic locations that have beckoned for years. Now could be the time to book a ticket for Europe and visit all of the cities that have made the history books. Those looking for even more adventure can travel to the South Pacific and explore tropical islands. Others may want to go "down under" and experience the rugged Outback or the culture of Australian city centers.

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