src="//"> seniors travel | Boomers & Beyond
Jun 042017

(NC) Travelling by air in the busy summer season can be challenging, especially for seniors with limited mobility or

Thursday, September 15, 2016 – Calgary, Alberta – Calgary International Airport (YYC) is shown on Thursday, September 15, 2016 for security protocol and how non-passengers screening works for The Canadian Air Transport Security Authority. Photo by CHRIS BOLIN / For CATSA –

specific medical needs. Here, the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority shares their top tips and information that can make the passage through security a little easier.

Most liquids, aerosols and gels in carry-on baggage must be in containers of 100 millilitres or less, but this rule doesn’t apply to prescription and over-the-counter medications. To assist screening officers, leave these items in the original manufacturer’s packaging or with pharmaceutical labels intact so they can be easily identified.

While passengers are often limited to one or two carry-on bags, medical supplies, equipment and mobility aids don’t count toward that limit.

For those with mobility issues, CATSA has ceramic canes available to traverse the walk through the metal detectors. Passengers in wheelchairs or with implanted medical devices — such as pacemakers, ostomies or joint replacements — have additional options and should communicate their needs clearly with screening officers. A private search is available on request.

Find more air-travel tips on CATSA’s website. Agents will also take questions toll-free at 1-888-294-2202 during regular business hours.

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May 122017

(BPT) – It can be hard to admit your vision isn’t what it used to be, especially when it comes to driving. Maybe you’ve noticed some difficulties reading traffic signals, or you’ve found it challenging to drive at night.

If you’re a family member noticing these warning signs in a loved one, pointing out these challenges may seem like a daunting and delicate undertaking. But when it comes to being on the road, safety is one thing you can’t ignore.

Encouraging your loved one to prioritize safety can be hard, especially when it feels like their independence is at stake. That’s why it’s important to have an open and honest discussion to determine the best options for maintaining independence outside the home.

Step 1: Address driver safety

Vision is the most important sense for driving safety. Annual vision screening is important for everyone, but it is especially critical for older people, since the sensory data used for driving is predominantly visual.

For seniors still able to drive, a defensive driving class can be beneficial. These classes allow students to brush up on skills while gaining confidence and introduce them to alternative transportation options for the times and locations of their preference. What’s more, many insurance companies provide discounts to seniors who complete these courses.

Giving up driving doesn’t have to mean choosing between all or nothing. For example, start limiting driving to daylight only, non-rush-hour periods. Then look into supplementary transportation options that eliminate the need to drive while still allowing you to get where you need to go.

Step 2: Research transportation options

It’s important to educate yourself or your loved one about locally available transportation options for seniors. When you know there are reliable, cost-effective transportation options available, it can help maintain a high level of independence for a trip to the grocery store or a doctor’s appointment.

Rides in Sight is a nationwide, online database of senior transportation options built by ITNAmerica, a national nonprofit organization dedicated to providing sustainable transportation options for seniors. Visit and enter basic information like your state or zip code, and you can find the ride option that’s best for your situation. If you prefer to access information by phone, call 1-855-60-RIDES (1-855-607-4337).

Rides in Sight makes it easy to find customized transportation, no matter what a person’s needs. For example, you can find wheelchair accessible transportation options or door-to-door driver assistance if that’s what you need.

Step 3: Implement a trial period

Giving up the keys is easier if you do it over a period of time. Pick a date and schedule your first ride with a transportation service during a time you normally drive. Any change takes time to adapt to, so try it out for a while before reassessing and making any necessary adjustments. After this trial period, you should feel more comfortable with someone else driving you, and you get to be in control of your mobility.

For older Americans, it’s important to be able to maintain independence when they limit or stop driving. When they are encouraged to create their own driving transition plan, more emphasis can be placed on finding new passions and activities to engage with their communities. The result is a positive impact on people of all ages.

To have that impact, reliable, secure transportation is essential. Having the necessary conversations and researching appropriate transportation options helps keep everyone happy, healthy and safe.

Dec 172016

(BPT) – If you love to travel, chances are you have a bucket list filled with once-in-a-lifetime destinations you simply cannot wait to visit, whether you dream of exploring the homeland of your ancestors, cities renowned for their culinary feats, or a place known for its wildlife.

If your focus is the latter, no bucket list is complete without an authentic African safari that provides the opportunity to step into the native habitats of Africa’s big five animals, rare birds, and great apes. If this type of intimate animal experience is on your must-do travel list, here are five reasons Uganda is the perfect destination for your African adventure.

You can get up close and personal with mountain gorillas and chimpanzees

Uganda is home to more than half the world’s population of endangered mountain gorillas, and trekking to see these majestic creatures in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and Mgahinga Gorilla National Park is a top bucket list item for nature enthusiasts. The country is also a prime location for those hoping to catch sight of chimpanzees, as Budongo Forest Reserve is home to 700 of these playful primates, including three groups that have been habituated and can be visited by humans.

See it all at Murchison Falls National Park

You can see it all at Murchison Falls National Park, which is a four-hour drive northwest of the capital city of Kampala. Bisected by the Nile River, Murchison Falls boasts 76 species of mammals and 451 species of birds. The park is home to iconic African game such as elephants, lions, leopards, buffaloes and giraffes, as well as river-loving animals like crocodiles and hippopotamuses. The dramatic falls, created by a remnant rift that plunges water 150 feet down the valley wall, provide a picture perfect photo opportunity.

Catch a glimpse of the southern white rhino at Ziwa Rhino and Wildlife Ranch

Ziwa Rhino and Wildlife Ranch is home to 15 southern white rhinoceroses and is the only place in Uganda to see this majestic creature. The ranch, a collaborative effort between the Uganda Wildlife Authority and Rhino Fund Uganda, serves as a sanctuary where the animals can live and breed in a protected environment. In addition to the rhinos, more than 40 species of mammals, reptiles, and birds call Ziwa home. Those who visit leave invigorated by the power of conservation and the work the ranch is doing to protect its residents for generations to come.

Queen Elizabeth National Park is for the birds, and you

Bird is the word at Queen Elizabeth National Park in southwestern Uganda, where 600 different species of birds can be found – more than any other park on the eastern half of the continent. Here, you will have a chance to see some of Africa’s most sensational birds such as the Shoebill, African Broadbill, Martial Eagle, Black-rumped Buttonquail, African Skimmer and Pink-backed Pelican.

Seize the opportunity to enjoy authentic, immersive cultural experiences

Uganda is home to more than 50 distinct tribes, and meeting individuals from any of them offers a unique opportunity to experience their way of life and make lasting personal connections. Join the Batwa Experience for a glimpse into the living history of a tribe that once called Uganda’s forests home. You can also learn the art of basket weaving or beekeeping from communities across Uganda who use these arts to sustain their villages. A number of lodges connect travelers directly to these local communities, providing the chance to experience unique cultural performances of dance, music and song that will leave a lasting impression on your heart and soul.

Uganda is often referred to as “The Pearl of Africa,” and those who visit quickly understand why. Some of the continent’s most diverse wildlife viewing, dramatic landscapes, and mesmerizing cultural interactions await adventurous travelers, and there is no better time to plan a visit than right now. To get started, head to and begin preparing for the African adventure of a lifetime.

IMAGE CAPTIONS: ——————————————- Caption 1: Mountain Gorilla trekking in Uganda’s Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is one of the world’s top wildlife experiences. Caption 2: The Nile River spills over Murchison Falls in Uganda’s largest and oldest conservation area.

Dec 062016

(NC) Between last-minute packing, security and making your way through crowded airports, flying can at times be an unpleasant and stressful experience. But did you know that if you have any problems with your air travel experience, like a delayed flight or lost luggage, there’s somewhere you can turn to for help?plane

Anyone who is flying to, from and within Canada can file a complaint with the Canadian Transportation Agency — even if you’re not Canadian. Flight delay or cancellation? Delayed or lost baggage? Bumped from your flight? These are some of the problems the Agency’s free and impartial complaint service can help you resolve.

Once the Agency receives your complaint, it will work with you and the airline to solve the problem through facilitation — a fast and easy informal resolution process. Most complaints are resolved this way, but if it doesn’t work you can try mediation, where a neutral and impartial mediator will assist you and the airline in reaching a settlement.

When these less formal processes don’t do the trick, the Agency can also adjudicate, which is a much more formal and court-like process. Adjudication can also be used when you feel that the airline’s terms and conditions (tariff) are unclear, unjust, unreasonable, or discriminatory.

The next time you run into trouble when flying, you can easily submit a complaint online at, by email at, or by calling 1-888-222-2592. Remember that filing your complaint swiftly can lead to a quicker solution.

Nov 282016

(NC) Lost baggage, flight delays, bumped from your flight? Unfortunately, air travel can sometimes be stressful and unexpected things can happen. If you’re planning on travelling during this busy season, follow these tips to help lower your stress:88763h

  1. Call ahead if you have special requests. If you are carrying sports equipment or musical instruments, have dietary restrictions or special needs, you want to call the airline at least 48 hours in advance to make sure they can accommodate your requests.

  2. Make sure you have all your travel documents. It is your responsibility to have the proper documents to enter a foreign country and to return to Canada. Ensure you have the appropriate visas (if required) for the duration of your trip as soon as possible — ideally when you book your tickets. Ensure your passport remains valid for your trip. Expiration dates may vary. Contact your airline or your Consular office ahead of time.

  3. Double check your flight’s status. Confirm your flight in advance by checking your flight’s status at least a day before departure and again just before leaving for the airport.

  4. Know your airline’s baggage limits and fees. There are different limits for carry-on and checked baggage and possibly extra fees. You want to know what these are to avoid delays or costs at the airport.

  5. Pack smart. Always include your contact information and your destination contact information inside each piece of checked baggage. This helps identify baggage if any outside tag is damaged or lost. Always keep essential and valuable items with you on board, such as your passport, identification and return tickets, medicines and medical devices, money, jewellery, electronic equipment, and essential overnight items.

  6. Check in early. If available, check in online up to 24 hours in advance. This can help avoid problems with overbooking by the airline and you missing your flight.

  7. Read the fine print. When you buy your ticket from the airline, it comes with terms and conditions. Make sure you know what to expect if your flight is delayed, your luggage is lost, or you experience any other problems by reading your airline’s terms and conditions.

Bonus tip: If you do experience a problem while flying, you can file a complaint with the Canadian Transportation Agency. Their job is to help resolve complaints between passengers and airlines. Find more information online at

Nov 152016

boomers(NC) Save yourself some stress and enjoy a relaxing winter escape with these tips for planning, packing, and travelling for your next holiday.

  1. Pristine packing. Your precious items shouldn’t be checked-in — keep them with you in your carry-on baggage. This includes your passport, identification and return tickets, medicines and medical devices, money, jewellery, electronic equipment, and essential overnight items. Always include your contact information and your destination contact information inside each piece of checked baggage. If you’re travelling with someone or are checking more than one bag, divide up your contents. This way, if one gets lost, you won’t lose all your belongings.

  2. Be wary of tight connections. Unforeseen issues like weather or mechanical problems can disrupt your flights, so it’s wise to leave yourself some extra time between connecting flights in case of an unexpected mishap. Remember that it’s better to spend an extra hour browsing the duty free shop than missing your flight.

  3. A discount isn’t always a bargain. Discount fares, sometimes known as seat sales, give passengers less flexibility and may be available only for a short period. Be mindful of any restrictions. In contrast, full fares are the most costly but have the fewest restrictions and give you the most flexibility to book, change, or cancel a reservation.

  4. Know your passenger rights. The air carrier’s tariff covers your rights and obligations as a passenger and your carrier’s rights and responsibilities to you. If something goes wrong, read the tariff to find out if your ticket is refundable, how the carrier will handle problems with your bags, and what it will do if flights are cancelled or delayed or there are changes to your itinerary or reservation.

  5. Know what to do when you’re stuck. If you experience a problem with your airline such as a flight delay, denied boarding or schedule change, you can file a complaint with the Canadian Transportation Agency. Their job is to help resolve complaints between passengers and airlines. Find more information online at

Aug 292016

(BPT) – Before those magical summer days vanish into fall, now is a good time to pack your suitcases, load up the car and escape on a final summer adventure.d13acaffb3a4238f84d41d5bb9294bf5

The late days of summer offer much to enjoy for a new segment of traveler: the Seekender. They are bold adventurers who take advantage of the weekend to pursue their passions.

Professional surfer Bethany Hamilton knows a few things about the Seekender lifestyle.

“With my family, we seek to live the life we love together, especially on the weekend of busy work-filled weeks,” Bethany says.

Does this sound like you and your family? Get out the map, choose a place you haven’t experienced yet and get ready for a fun weekend. This is how Bethany does it:

Put a cap on drive time: Don’t waste the weekend with hours and hours in the car. Bethany tries to avoid ultra-long travel days, so her little one can get a nap in. Find a destination you can reach without hassle within three hours or so, while the kids doze and relax in the back seat. On Saturday, you’ll wake up at your getaway spot, ready to seize the weekend.

Think simple: Don’t book every hour of the day with an activity. Back off a bit on the planning, and set your sights on one or two spots you’d like to visit each day. Leave some space for relaxation and spontaneity. Go with the flow and consider letting the kids help make the plans for the day. Involving them in the planning will keep everyone’s mood elevated and allow for a stress-free trip.

Be on the lookout for family friendly activities: Along with the usual parks and museums, don’t forget to check for special weekend events in your area. In the final weeks of summer, for example, fair and festival season is in full swing. Set aside some time for the destination’s local festivals or state fairs, where the kids can enjoy carnival rides, local music and food.

Get outdoors: Embrace the outdoors and the warm weather before it cools down in the fall. Did you know that the National Parks Service maintains 397 parks and 2,461 national landmarks? Bethany has added Yellowstone National Park to her travel bucket list and hopes to experience its natural wonders with her family soon. Check out this interactive map to see if you’ve missed any exciting stops in your region. Or if you’re feeling more adventurous, this is a perfect time of year to visit the mountains. In the summer months, the parks often offer alpine slides and mountain biking trails, which makes an excellent day trip outing under the sun.

Pick the right hotel: Choose a hotel that offers a variety of locations so your entire family can have a good night’s sleep wherever you land. For example, with over 2,100 properties globally, Hampton by Hilton is the perfect option for your family weekend getaway. With a free hot breakfast for every guest and takeaway bags for families on-the-go, you don’t have the hassle of planning breakfast — plus there’s plenty of fresh tea and hazelnut coffee to keep parents caffeinated. Downtime at the hotel is also easy and relaxing, with free Wi-Fi, and, at most locations, an exercise room and a pool.

Pack up the bags and begin planning your next three-day weekend trip with your family. For inspiration, follow Bethany’s Seekender adventures on and join the conversation on social media at #Seekender.


Jul 202016

(NC) Packing your bags is probably the toughest part of any trip — you don’t want to forget anything and want to be prepared for everything, but also don’t want to over pack and lug around too much extra weight. Over-packed luggage and improper lifting and carrying techniques are movecommon causes of injury to the back, neck and shoulders.

Fortunately many of these injuries can be easily prevented. The following tips from the Ontario Chiropractic Association can help take the pain out of your vacation:

  1. Choosing your luggage:

• When shopping for new luggage, look for a sturdy, lightweight piece that is easy to carry. Avoid purchasing luggage that is heavy or bulky when empty.

• A bag with wheels and a handle will go a long way to lighten your load.

• A good quality backpack with adjustable, padded shoulder straps and a waist strap makes an ideal carry-on. When worn properly, backpacks can evenly distribute weight.

  1. Packing your luggage:

• Over-packing is an easy pitfall, but large and heavy luggage leaves you more susceptible to neck, back and shoulder injuries. Try to pack only what you absolutely need.

• When possible, place items in a few smaller bags instead of one large luggage piece.

• Ensure your carry-on luggage does not weigh more than 10 to 15 per cent of your body weight.

• Keep the contents of any carry-on luggage to a minimum. Pack heavy items at the bottom of the bag and make efficient use of the bag’s pockets.

  1. Lifting and carrying your luggage:

• Lifting your luggage can’t always be avoided, even if it has wheels. Safe lifting techniques can substantially reduce your risk of injury.

• Move slowly and break the action into smaller parts when you can. For example, when placing luggage in an overhead compartment, first lift it onto the top of the seat.

• When lifting your luggage, get close to the load and stand with your feet shoulder-width apart.

• Bend at the knees and let your leg muscles do the lifting rather than your back.

• Hold the load close to your body.

• Avoid twisting. Instead, turn your feet in the direction you are headed and turn your entire body in that direction.

• Do not carry bulky luggage for long periods of time. Make sure to check heavier items when travelling rather than carrying them for the duration of the trip.

• Try to carry light pieces in each hand rather than a single heavy item on one side.

• If using a backpack, use both shoulder straps and the waist strap, and adjust them to minimize the bag’s movement.

• If using a duffel or shoulder bag, switch sides often to reduce strain.

Attention editors: This article is for distribution in Ontario only.

Jun 082016

(NC) With the low Canadian dollar and seasonal commitments for everything from weddings to camp programs keeping you at home this summer, why not take the opportunity to explore a city right here in our home and native land? Here’s a handy guide to 5 great Canadian cities that are perfect for that last-minute getaway and offer the best in food, culture and unique

  1. Calgary: If there you want to follow in the royal footsteps of Kate Middleton and Prince William, you only need one reason to visit this Albertan city — its world-famous Calgary Stampede which happens every July. Also enjoy breathtaking views at the Calgary Tower, visit your favourite animal at the Calgary Zoo and revel in first-rate shopping and dining on Stephen Avenue. Stay at the Calgary Marriot Downtown hotel and be close to it all.

  2. Quebec City: This provincial capital has more to offer than wintertime Carnaval. For culture, check out the Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec or the Musée de la civilisation, and for animals visit the Parc Aquarium du Québec. Don’t forget to tour architectural buildings like the Basilica of Sainte-Anne-de-Beaupré. Visit late June for the Saint Jean Baptiste Day celebrations or in July for the Quebec City Summer Festival.

  3. Toronto: Explore the southern tip of the city by staying at the sleek Delta Toronto Hotel, and be at the heart of Toronto’s top attractions including the CN Tower, Ripley’s Aquarium and Harbourfront Centre. Plan your trip to catch your favourite artist in concert at nearby Air Canada Centre or Rogers Centre, or to cheer on a Torontonian sports team on home turf.

  4. Ottawa: Our national capital is a must-visit any time of year. Explore world-class museums like the National Gallery of Canada, the Canada Aviation and Space Museum and the Canadian Museum of History, which is technically in Quebec but only a short walk across a beautiful bridge away. For nightlife and great dining, head over to ByWard Market — the Heart and Crown is a local favourite with delicious pub fare. Bonus tip: Parliament Hill tours are free but fill up quickly so be sure to come early morning to reserve your spot.

  5. Vancouver: The gorgeous west coast locale plans to become the greenest city in the world by 2020. Get in touch with nature with Vancouver’s close proximity to oceans, mountains, river and lakes. If you’re feeling extra adventurous, know that Vancouver is the home port for Alaska cruises now through October.

Pro saving tip: Nowadays most people book their hotel online, but you can find the best rates and special promotions to earn points for future stays by going directly to the hotel’s website. Find ways to save on your hotel stay at these and other cities in Canada at

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