Senior Travel Surprise: Vacations Are Actually Splendid for New Couples!
We met in our 50s, both divorced and disgruntled with relationships. I agreed to go on a blind date for dinner because I like to eat. Despite our best intentions to remain single forever, we were holding hands by dessert. Life has been sweet ever since.
Over the past eight years, we’ve enjoyed several vacations. Some memorable trips included our combined children and grandchildren, while others were lovely escapes with just the two of us. It’s been said that you never know anyone until you take a trip together. For us, the journey is the reward in the relationship.
Here is why vacations are splendid for new couples over age 60.
The Children are Grown
When we’re relaxing around the pool at a resort, we notice families wrangling noisy, demanding kids. We don’t need to do that anymore. We smile at the parents and nod encouragement.
You’ve Earned the Break
We’ve both worked at demanding jobs for several decades. We know the value of time away from the office. We value every minute as our reward for going to work, being responsible and doing our part to pay taxes and improve the universe.
You Appreciate Another Chance
Failed marriages can leave people bitter, desperate or awkward. We accept the fact that we never knew each other during the years of our peak physical appearance, but that’s okay. We both have wrinkles, age spots, and weak knees, but that doesn’t limit our passion. His hair is silver, and I have no idea about the color of my hair. I’ll stop coloring it someday.
You Don’t Need Permission
We’re in our 60s, and we do whatever we want to do. All four of our parents have passed away, so we don’t need to care for their needs anymore. All four of our children are doing fine as young adults. This is our time.
You Have Resources to Pay for Vacations
After working and investing for more than thirty years, we can budget for fun excursions. I remember how difficult it was as a young mother to plan family trips with limited funds. We’re not rich, but we can plan and pay for a few annual trips.
On vacation, I notice the older people who need walkers, or portable oxygen tanks or various medications. I’m grateful that they can still travel, but I want to be proactive with a regular exercise routine and healthy living so I can be as self-sufficient as possible. My biggest vice is red wine, but it’s good for the heart. That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it.
You Anticipate Travel Problems
After years of traveling, we know that flights will be cancelled, resorts won’t look anything like the photos in their brochures and a bag of chips and a six-pack of beer isn’t a good meal. We were often too impatient in our younger years and overreacted when something went wrong. Now we calmly accept the dilemma and adjust our plans.
You Keep Active
Most of our excursions involve golf, and we always use the gym at resorts. Even with all-inclusive meal plans, we know that the options include plenty of fruits and vegetables.
You Learned from Your Parents and Children
Our parents didn’t take too many vacations, mainly due to budget and job constraints. Late in life, his father developed Alzheimer’s and my mother suffered from dementia. We are trying to keep our brains active so we can negotiate senior travel plans without needing assistance.
My kids have inherited my love of travel, and they plan regular excursions with kids, dogs and friends in tow. I never traveled as much in my 30s as they do now, but I admire their energy. I hope they continue to explore life and wonder what is around the next corner.
You Stay in Contact through Technology
Even poolside, my husband conducts business with his office through the Internet. I can write and publish blogs from remote locations, including this one from Loreto, Mexico. The only problem for me is the extra baggage: I often carry a laptop computer, iPad, camera, iPod and cell phone plus all the chargers. I’m not ready to wean from them, yet.
Couples over 60 can enjoy vacations, whether on a quick weekend trip or during an adventure over several weeks. Planning the next vacation with someone who enjoys your company is the reward we get for still being alive and active. We’re not ready – yet – to retire to the couch.
What are some vacations you enjoy as a couple over age 60? What lessons have you learned from travel experiences earlier in life? Do you have any tips for those wanting sensible trips for seniors? What excursions have you done alone after age 60? Please join the conversation.
Elaine Ambrose is a #1 best-selling author of 10 books, including Midlife Happy Hour and Midlife Cabernet. She is the author of one of the most-read posts in the history of The Huffington Post, which was subsequently translated into six languages and published around the world. Ambrose, who lives in Eagle, Idaho, is the recipient of numerous awards, including awards from the Independent Publisher Book Awards (IPPY) and ForeWord Magazine Book of the Year Awards. Please visit her website at ElaineAmbrose.com.