Travel is said to be an elegy in old age. Looking forward to visiting friends in another country? Planning a beach vacation? Feeling super charged up for a hiking trip? Why not?

But let’s face it, your body needs a little extra care now, after all these years of wear and tear. So don’t forget to pack these few essentials before you rock your next trip.

1. Important Documents

Double check, triple check, and quadruple check that you have your passport before you head to the airport. Also make sure that your passport is valid for at least six months from your date of travel. Don’t forget all other important documents like travel insurance, visas, e-tickets, and hotel bookings among other things. If you’re tech-savvy and have it all on your phone, remember to have your phone fully charged before embarking on your adventure! 

Other than that, bring senior citizen IDs (certain attractions give seniors amazing discounts) and few copies of your passport and ID just in case you accidentally lose them. Also, have your debit card, credit cards and copy of credit card numbers. Do not forget to write down important contact numbers in case of emergency or if anything happens to your phone.

2. All Prescribed Medications and a Basic First Aid Kit

This is another absolute must-have. Ask your doctor for an extra prescription of your medicine in case you extend your trip. Carry the medicine in their original package, the doctor’s prescription, a list of medicine you consume and doctor’s name with his/her contact number. 
Assemble a basic first aid kit so you don’t have to frantically make your way to a pharmacy or lose precious holiday time looking for basic provision when a minor incident occurs. A word of caution - never pack your medicines with the checked-in luggage as there is a chance of your luggage getting misplaced, delayed or even lost. Medicine is important for your well-being and it is best to carry itin your carry-on.

3. Extra: Pair of Prescription Glasses and Batteries for Hearing Aids

Keep an extra pair of prescription glasses just in case you happen to break or damage the one you are using by accident. When you’re abroad, it’s difficult to get another pair instantly as you need to book an appointment, get an eye test and order the new pair of glasses. Don’t forget the added difficulty if you’re in a country where you don’t speak the language. And if that’s not a challenge enough, prescription glasses may take a few days to be made. So best to plan ahead and pack an extra pair of glasses for your next trip.

If you wear hearing aids, put spare batteries in your travel kit. Finding a specific size/battery is not always an easy task, particularly if you’re going to a remote area or a country you don’t speak the language of. 

4. Comfortable Walking Shoes

Nice and comfy walking shoes are essential if you want to enjoy your travel. To get through your daily walking, wear flat, supportive shoes so that you are less prone to strain your feet. Selecting shoes with velcro instead of laces is a wise choice for convenience as you might have to take your shoes off a few times while traveling, including at airport security and sightseeing in cultural spots in a some countries. 

5. Travel Size Toiletries

Keeping a stock of travel-sized toiletries becomes important while traveling. First, the airlines do not allow passengers to carry more than a 100 ml of liquid, drinks, toothpastes, cosmetics and toiletries. And secondly, the travel sized toiletries make a more compact fit in your luggage. 

Apart from those obvious travel-sized toiletries, you might find yourself looking for those antibacterial wipes and tissues. Dry airplane conditions make one susceptible to picking germs up so you can use them to wipe the table and your hands in between handling objects. Tissues are helpful for a myriad of reasons (but we don’t think you can ‘chope’ a table with a pack while abroad). Likewise, never underestimate the importance of sunscreen. Slather some on from time to time to protect your skin and keep a tube of aloe vera gel to soothe your sun-kissed skin. 

6. Jacket, Hat, Rain Gear

Regardless of where you are going, packing a jacket, hat and rain gear is always a good idea. A light jacket can come in handy in cold air-conditioned airports and transportation as well as preparing you for unpredictable weather on your holiday.

7. Neck Pouches or Money Belt

Ensuring safety is of utmost importance whether you are travelling far or near. Neck pouches are significantly more practical than belly packs for keeping your possessions safe. Pickpockets can be found anywhere and the neck pouch (under your clothing) is a safer defence in busy touristy destinations. Women should also keep watch of their purse.

8. Books

Been meaning to read a particular book for a while now? Tuck it in your carry-on so you can utilize your leisure time constructively. An extra handy tip is to bring a small notebook with you in case you want to jot down reminders or any important information. Details like your hotel’s address, room number or metro stops can be noted down along with important contact numbers. Books are one of those things we plan to pack, but always end up forgetting. 

9. Snacks and Mints

Having something of your own to eat is always better than grabbing a bite of anything suspicious-looking when you the hunger pangs strike. Also, including mint or gum to keep your mouth from becoming too dry is helpful when you are on a plane or when you are hopping from one tourist attraction to another.

10. Camera to Record all the Memories and Adventures

Remember to keep your camera in your carry-on luggage. Not only is a camera fragile, sometimes check-in luggage goes missing. You don’t want to either lose out on taking all the photos of your trip or have all those lovely photos go missing! With numerous things to finish before heading to the airport, folks often miss this chief gadget amid all the anxiety. A small compact camera is good enough to record all your beautiful memories and adventures. Or else, there is always your smartphone. 

Just go through this terse checklist before you wave off your family and saunter out that door. Bon voyage!


Contributed by Trip 101. A one-stop travel guide for travel enthusiasts around the world. Practical guides, reviews and tips are created by travel experts, digital nomads and travel bloggers, providing inspirational and useful information to help facilitate travel in a fun and meaningful manner.

Tags: Travel Tips /3 Generation Family /Grandparenting