Hingham, MA— Audrey and Michael Straight, who live at at Linden Ponds, an Erickson Living developed and managed retirement community in Hingham, MA, travel every year to Washington, D.C. (their former home) with occasional trips to the West Coast, the Southwest, the Caribbean and England.
Last December they left Linden Ponds for a 70-day around the world trip (mostly Southern Hemisphere).
According to a recent AAA Travel survey, nearly 100 million Americans are planning a vacation in 2019.
Erickson Living residents have two distinct advantages when they travel. First, they leave with peace of mind knowing their apartment home and belongings are secure (in contrast to needing house-sitters). Second, many Erickson Living communities employ a special trips coordinator who plans everything from day trips, to shopping excursions and concerts, theater events and more.
The Straights plan their trips on their own and with all their travel experience, they have shared some travel tips:
1. If you use an iPhone or other smartphone calendar, be sure to include the time zone for all travel times and appointments outside your home time zone. Otherwise, if you're in Boston when you add a 2pm appointment in Los Angeles to your calendar, the iPhone or smartphone calendar will—upon your arrival in the Pacific time zone—change the appointment time to 11 am (which is 2 pm in Boston).
2. If you're going to take a planned tour or cruise, try, if at all possible, to get to the location a full day early. You don't want to miss your tour or cruise because of a flight delay. Use the time for rest or a local tour or gallery/museum.
3. Make sure your travel insurance meets your specific needs, especially if you will be on a multi-day tour or cruise or if you will be staying at any accommodation that won't refund your payment if you must cancel.
4. Unless you are familiar with specific hotels or chains, always look at online reviews such as Trip Advisor or Yelp before booking reservations--and definitely look at refund policies in event of cancellation.
5. When selecting seats for your flights, don't forget that some seats can be quite awful, especially on long flights. Go to seatguru.com and insert the airline, flight number and date of your travel-----you will find which are the best and worst seats.
6. Don't assume that you can go to foreign countries without a visa. Check immunization requirements too.
7. Consider hiring a personal guide if you will be on a somewhat strenuous tour. We got one for Machu Pichu, a wonderful decision because it would have been most unpleasant for us to try to keep up with a group tour.
8. Check on the recent history of places you will visit, especially overseas.
9. Keep all of your medications in carry-on bags, and take lists of the medications and dosages.
10. Don't overschedule events. An hour-long tour plus seeing a gallery or two may be plenty for any day.
"We love to travel and love knowing while we are away, our home will be safe and sound," said Audrey. "We had a great trip and it was great to get home!"
About Linden Ponds: Linden Ponds, one of 20 continuing care retirement communities developed and managed by Erickson Living®, is situated on a scenic 108-acre campus in Hingham, Massachusetts. The not-for-profit community of more than 1300 residents and 800 employees is governed by its own board of directors, affiliated with National Senior Campuses, who provide independent financial and operational oversight of the community. Additional information about Linden Ponds can be found at LindenPonds.com.