Many people think about their retirement for years before they actually stop working their regular job. Travel is usually on the top of the list of activities they want to do, mainly because it is so difficult to do with children and just one annual vacation.
The retirement years are perfect because people can travel in the off seasons and save a lot of money, and they can take advantage of cheap, all-inclusive resort packages for couples.
The main problem for retirees is that they are usually on a fixed income and need to be very careful how they spend their money. Even if they have budgeted for travel, it may not be enough for the destinations they have in mind.
It is popular these days to get a part-time job after retirement to supplement a pension or investment income.
This is also a good way to boost the travel budget. Here are a few great retirement trips that promise fun and relaxation as well as the chance to visit famous historical and natural sites.
1. Las Vegas
Visitors do not need to be into gambling to enjoy Las Vegas. There are many fun and interesting things to do and see because most of the big casinos want to attract families, so they provide entertainment.
For example, the Bellagio Fountains show, the Mirage volcano eruption and Caesars Fall of Atlantis are all shows worth seeing.
Many places offer free drinks at certain times of the week such as Thursday night at the Red Rock Resort, free Sake at Katsuya on the last Monday of every month, and The Venetian offers free wines and spirits in a free class called The Whiskey Experience at 7pm on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays.
The Fremont Street Experience is free and full of entertainment. For the outdoor enthusiast, Red Rock Canyon offers natural beauty, swimming holes and hiking and mountain biking.
Las Vegas also offers cheap accommodation even in some of the big casinos. The price of the rooms changes with the seasons as well as where the rooms are situated. If the visitor is willing to take a long walk down the corridor to the elevator bank, the room rates are cheaper.
There are also B&Bs and private homes that offer accommodation to couples. Retirees can look at Hipmunk or Airbnb for comfortable and cheap accommodation in Las Vegas.
2. Take A Cruise
There are many advantages to taking a cruise to visit famous places. For one, the traveler does not need to worry about accommodation or major travel arrangements.
For another, there is a lot of entertainment on board as well as plenty of good food and drink. Several cruise ship lines offer cruises that cater only to retired people.
This may be a plus for some, but not so much for others. However, there is nothing like cruises for relaxing and fun retirement trips. The most important thing for the retiree to do is research several cruise companies to find the best deal.
It is not difficult to find a destination. They travel around the Mediterranean, to Scandinavia, Alaska, and through the Panama Canal, around the Caribbean and many more places.
To keep the price within budget, there are some tips for paying the lowest prices. First, the retiree either should book months in advance or try to get a last-minute price.
Both of these strategies should result in a cheaper fare. In other words, the retiree needs to be flexible to get a cheap price on a cruise.
The only problem is when the retiree waits until the last minute, he or she may not have a choice of the destination. However, last minute has a broad definition for a cruise.
It means 60 to 90 days before departure because this is the amount of time allowed for people to cancel their booking without penalty. At that time, the cruise line will know exactly how many cabins it needs to sell.
Another consideration is time of year. Retiree cannot expect to get low prices even at the last minute just before Christmas or New Years.
Off season is cheaper for just about everything connected to retirement trips, including air tickets, hotels, restaurants and car rental.
Many cruise lines offer discounts to senior citizens and vacationstogo.com is a good place to find a cheap cruise.
3. Costa Del Sol, Spain
The Costa Del Sol, Spain is a wonderful place for a retiree to vacation for several reasons. It is warm and sunny, has great people watching and is close to world famous art galleries, historic sites, and charming villages where visitors are welcomed with open arms and great food.
Airfare to Spain is relatively cheap, and the sunny coast offers many excellent, first-class hotels and resorts that have all-inclusive packages. Travelers can compare the packages on TripAdvisor and Thomas Cook to find the location and amenities they want.
Beaches are just the beginning of the attractions on the Costa del Sol. Malaga is a city many people bypass on their way to the hotels on the beach. It is within walking distance from the beach and has a Roman amphitheater, the Alcazaba and the Picasso Museum.
Visitors will likely come across the rich and famous in Marbella and there are great clubs along the Golden Mile. For those who require some outdoor activity, the Nerja caves are amazing with labyrinths of stalagmites and stalactites.
There is even a music festival in the caves during the summer. The nearby El Torcal Natural Park has some magnificent rock formations.
Having the time and inclination to travel is one of the great advantages of retirement, but it is important for retirees to make sure they do not jeopardize their future lifestyle by spending too much on travel when they are young retirees.
If they are willing to travel during the off seasons, and look for discounts for seniors as well as all-inclusive packages, they will be able to visit many of the places they have only seen in glossy travel magazines.