Travel With Grandchildren In Retirement
Even throughout the recession, holidays both abroad and in the UK are still a precious commodity for British families, especially when you've retired and have time to enjoy your family holidays. However, travel takes time and you have to fit in family holidays with school holidays, many retired couples are choosing to combine their trip with extended family members to pool resources.
This trend seems to suggest the decline of the traditional nuclear family, in favour of the return of the extended family, with many retired people choosing to invite their grandchildren, stepchildren, or cousins.
With families jumping on planes for exotic climes or piling up the 4x4 (with the dog too) for a country weekend break, there is definitely more to consider when travelling with a larger party.
Amber Howard reminds us of some useful travel tips to tick off the checklist:
Passports And Entry Requirements
Keep your passport up-to-date - when travelling abroad remember that some countries require six month validity on passports before they allow entry into the country. When travelling with a group, it is really important to check that each person has a valid passport to ensure that you aren’t turned away on arrival. And if you're taking your grandchildren on holiday in your retirement, check they have their own passports too and any other travel documents are in order.
Health For Travel
Is everyone fit for travel? If travelling with anyone over 60 years old, make sure that everyone is ‘fit to travel’. For example, some airlines require a fit to fly certificate for anyone who requires assistance, and pregnant women can be refused boarding without a fit to fly certificate.
Always check you have the right vaccinations for the destinations or that the injections are up-to-date. When travelling with grandchildren who use prescription medication, take a photocopy of their prescriptions and a note of the dosage just in case you need to obtain medication abroad. Some countries prohibit certain medications, so double check this before you leave home to make sure that yours is OK in your hand luggage.
A vital part of holiday planning should be purchasing quality travel insurance which meets the requirements of your trip. Without travel insurance you will be vulnerable to holiday disasters like cancellation, medical emergencies or missing possessions.
Anyone with medical conditions (even those people who suffer from asthma) should ensure that they have declared these to their insurer, and that the conditions have been accepted in writing. Even if the conditions are well controlled, declaring them should ensure that you are covered for most eventualities.
Some extended families or retired grandparents with their grand-kiddies may struggle to find a ‘family’ policy which covers more than two adults; however group and individual policies are readily available for those who don’t meet the criteria. If grandparents are taking their grandchildren away, just double check that this is covered, as different insurers have their own rules about dependent children.
Technology And Gadgets
Many extended families choose to travel with gadgets, for example tablet computers, MP3 music players and e-readers, so you should check your home insurance to make sure these are covered abroad (under the ‘All Risks’ section of your policy). Alternatively you should double check that your travel insurer can provide this cover and check any excess limits.
Amber Howard is a Kent-based brand manager for specialist travel insurer Holidaysafe.co.uk. Miss Howard has a background in travel and tourism PR, and aims to provide tips and advice to anyone wishing to plan the perfect trip and avoid a holiday disaster. She is passionate about all things travel, and her adventures have taken her to Europe, the USA and Africa.