Going on holiday is an exciting time and one that you should look forward to. There is no reason why a person living with dementia can’t enjoy a break away too, all it takes is for some careful planning and consideration when booking your getaway, whether that be in the Algarve, in other parts of Portugal or to a different country altogether.
Algarve Care Services have put together some tips and hints to help you plan you holiday when traveling within a person living with Dementia or Alzheimers.
General travel considerations
- Environmental changes can trigger wandering or confusion. Consider enrolling in a wandering response service in resort.
- It may be helpful to stick with the familiar. Travel to known destinations that involve as few changes in daily routine as possible.
- Evaluate options for the best mode of travel. Based on needs, abilities, safety and preferences, decide what would provide the most comfort and the least anxiety.
- When selecting destinations, consider those that have easy access to emergency health services and pharmacies.
- If you will be at a location for an extended period of time, consider contacting a local care company that are experienced in caring for people living with Dementia and Alzheimer’s for resources and support.
If you are traveling to a destination within the Algarve, please contact Algarve Care Services for information about our holiday care packages.
- Consider everyone’s needs and desires as you plan your trip; elaborate sightseeing trips or complicated tours may cause anxiety and confusion for someone with Dementia, keep things simple.
- If you will be staying in a hotel, consider informing the staff ahead of time of your specific needs so they can be prepared to assist you.
- Have a backup plan in case your trip needs to change unexpectedly. This may mean purchasing travel insurance if you have booked flights or hotels.
- Carry with you an itinerary that includes details about each destination. If you are traveling with other people, give copies to family members or friends you will be visiting or to emergency contacts at home.
- Travel during the time of day that is best for the person with Dementia. For example, if he or she becomes tired or more agitated in the late afternoon, avoid traveling at this time.
- Have a bag of essentials with you at all times that includes medications, your travel itinerary, a comfortable change of clothes, water, snacks and activities.
- Remember to pack necessary medications, up-to-date medical information, a list of emergency contacts and photocopies of important legal documents.
- Allow plenty of time for rest, break up your journey where possible, don’t over-schedule
If you are a family carer, you are likely to feel a little nervous the first time you travel whether you are within your home country or abroad. Try smaller breaks first taken over a shorter period and closer to home, so you have the option to return if things don’t go quite according to plan. However don’t give up, a break away in the sun or a trip to a place that is familiar with the past can be very comforting and relaxing for someone with Dementia.
If you are looking to travel to the Algarve, Algarve Care Services can provide assistance and support to you. We can help you with all care and nursing requirements, recommend suitable places to visit and offer suggestions of places to stay that offer a Dementia friendly service. If you are thinking about a holiday or visiting Portugal get in touch and one of our friendly team will be more than delighted to advise you with your travel plans