In the coming weeks, many people well be taking to the road and skies to visit loved ones for the holidays. If you’re a family caregiver who is planning on doing a bit of traveling with a senior relative, then your experience may be a bit different. Here are a few tips on how to make your holiday travel go as smoothly as possible.
The best way to make sure that your holiday travel plans go off without a hitch is to plan ahead. Start packing several days in advance so that if your loved one remembers he or she has forgotten something, you’ll have the opportunity to grab it before you go, instead of being stranded at the airport without the item you need.
If your relative is receiving Alzheimer’s care, it may be difficult for him or her to remember that you will be traveling, or where you are heading this season. In such circumstances, you may be tempted to remind your family member frequently about your travel plans. However, bringing it up too often may be overwhelming, and he or she is could very well forget about your plans again before its time to ship out. If possible, save your reminders for when you’re approaching the date of departure, or when you need your loved one’s help getting ready to travel.
Going by car
If you are heading off on a road trip in the coming weeks, you’ll need to make sure you are well-equipped for your senior loved one. Bring plenty of blankets and warm clothes like thick jackets, hats, gloves and scarves. Though you may have temperature control in your car, you never know when you may blow out a tire or break down, and you’ll be thankful you packed extra winter weather items. Also, be prepared to take more frequent stops so the senior in your life can get out and stretch his or her legs and use the bathroom.
Traveling by air
If you are taking a flight this holiday, then make sure to get to the airport with plenty of time to spare, as it may take your senior loved one extra time to get through security and to the gate. Try to reserve the seat on the plane that would be most comfortable for your loved one, like the aisle if you expect he or she will be getting up frequently.