Money, Travel, and Vacation for Retirees: A Simple Guide

elderly couple looking over the horizon

A few years ago, when the world would’ve never thought of another plague coming, there had been a traveling mania, from people sharing booking hacks to families selling everything they own to dedicate their whole lives to traveling. The hashtag “#travelgoals” were blowing up on social media, and tourism in many parts of the world was thriving.

Sadly, COVID-19 halted this trend, limiting travel or restricting it altogether. As such, though we appreciate being safe and healthy in our abodes, it only makes us miss traveling and going on vacations more. In fact, as soon as some countries have lifted their travel bans, a few tourists took off immediately.

But if you’re still biding your time before booking flights again, this is the perfect opportunity to start managing your finances now to be able to travel more in your retirement. If you’re employed in a big company like Lockheed Martin, for instance, Lockheed pension plans can help you come up with a sound retirement financial strategy, one that you could dedicate to traveling.

But first, there are some crucial things to note before hopping onto the life of globetrotting:

Travel Vs. Vacation

Many people assume going on vacations is the same as traveling, but the two are actually different. Vacations are simply short day trips, weeklong getaways, or routine trips during the holidays. By definition, it is an extended period of leisure and recreation, usually spent away from home.

Traveling, on the other hand, is a lifestyle. It is when you rarely stay in one place for long periods. Travelers pack, fly, find shelter, and experience different sorts of inconveniences frequently. The only similarity it shares with vacation is that they both involve going from one place to another. But other than that, traveling is distinct because it’s not always comfortable. It may not even be fun all the time either.

Therefore, decide if you want to be a traveler or a tourist in your retirement. Being a tourist may require more savings, but it’d be worth it if you love relaxing, sightseeing, and staying within your comfort zone.

tourist couple holding map

Health

As you get older, your health and mobility will decrease. While you don’t need to be in perfect health to go on travels or vacations, a generally good condition will be beneficial in dealing with travel-related stress. So if you have a chronic health issue or a condition that runs in your family, check with your doctor first if you’d be fit to travel. It is also worth noting that Medicare doesn’t cover health expenses incurred outside the U.S. You’d need travel insurance to have funds ready should you get ill overseas.

Income and Savings

Vacations in upscale hotels around Europe and North America cost more, so you’d need a huge amount of income and savings to experience them. But there are more affordable accommodations that offer the same luxury, such as five-star hotels and resorts in developing countries. Modest accommodations such as vacation houses, hostels, or motels are worth a try too.

Traveling isn’t always cheap either, especially international ones. A week-long overseas trip for two people can cost at least $5,000. And of course, the longer you stay in a place, the higher the cost will become. Depending on your expectations on every trip, you might also end up spending like a tourist.

Therefore, set up your retirement savings while you’re still young, and consider the actual income you’ll need in your retirement. There is no fixed formula for determining how much you need for a life of travel or vacations; that would be on you to estimate. Once you’ve already worked out our ideal income, make a budget plan that would allow you to use your money for travel or vacations without going short.

Best Vacation Spots for Retirees

These vacation spots are suitable for both tourists and travelers. These places may give you an idea of how much you to need to save to be able to experience them:

1. Blue Ridge Parkway

If you love driving on scenic routes, add “America’s Favorite Drive” to your travel bucket list. It’d be an exhilarating experience with lots of extraordinary sights to see and places to lodge in.

2. Israel

To satisfy your inner historian or theologian, go to Israel and see Tel Aviv’s pristine beaches, Caesarea’s Roman ruins, Jerusalem’s sacred spots, and more. The crucifixion site is a must-see as well.

3. Australia

There is simply no reason to skip Australia in your vacation or travel itinerary. The country offers everything for people of all ages.

4. Southeast Asia River Cruise

If you’re a nature lover, take a cruise along the Mekong River, and experience Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam. An extended trip will also let you stay in Hanoi for a few days, and see Angkor Wat in Cambodia.

There are plenty more places to see around the world, so save patiently and spend wisely now to reward yourself with the most amazing vacations and travels in your retirement years.

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