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Easier ways to keep in touch with on-the-go seniors

28th July 2017 Print

We take our understanding of tech for granted when traveling. We have maps, chat apps, hotel booking sites, airfare travel hacks, and more. To go “old school” and drop off the grid seems alien to us. Yet, our elders are out there doing it and having a blast while traveling.

If only we could find a way to keep in touch. Hrmmm.

Now They’re on the Receiving End

Our parents and grandparents always want us to let them know when we get home safely. A simple phone call or text message will do. Now they’re on the receiving end because we want to make sure they’re doing fine when they’re on the road.

We don’t want to bog them down with tech but at the same time, we want ways to keep in touch.

There are a few ways of doing this:

- A simple phone

- VOIP and/or live video chat

- Social media accounts

- Blogging

A Jitterbug cell phone is a simple device you’ve likely seen in the commercials. This handy phone is as barebones as it gets which makes it especially great for elderly folk. It doesn’t have the bells & whistles of a smartphone – it’s designed for seniors in mind.This will make it easy to contact your loved ones when they’re traveling without the expensive costs of a data plan.

A Skype account is the next option for keeping in touch but for those seniors that know their way around technology. Skype accounts are free but also loadable with credit to make calls to landlines or setup a phone number. This is handy if the reception is spotty but they have internet access.

The other comm tech resource to consider is live video chat (which Skype can also do). Facebook is a good choice for this since they likely have an account already. FB is a godsend for keeping in touch with family when far away; your loved ones should have no problem using it if you spend a few minutes explaining how to do it.

A Twitter or Instagram account would be a neat way for the elderly folks in your life to update the family while they’re traveling. Twitter could be especially helpful if they need to get in touch with businesses for customer support which is bound to happen since travel never goes according to plan.

An Instagram account would be great if they’re the type to take and share pictures of the trip. A bit of explaining the basics of uploading pics and messaging others is in order. This will let all the family join in to see how the trip is going and make sure they’re safe.

A blog is wonderful because it would allow them to document their journey with greater flexibility found in the other options. You could set them up with a simple WordPress, Tumblr, or Blogger account where they could upload pictures, write about their journey, and respond back to comments.

Would they blog though? It depends. They’d likely get on board once they see what they can do with the platforms and how fun it can be. It gives them something fun to work on during downtime. Plus, no more needing to sit around flipping through scrap and photo books since it’s all there online!

Go Granny, Go!

It’s something special knowing our elders are enjoying their later years during retirement. They’re still active and getting out there rather than spending their days sitting around. It shows that you can still travel the “old school” way without spending the trip glued to our phones.

Give them the low-down on tech they should use to keep in touch during their trips. This way you’re not feeling like how they did when you forgot to let them know you were safe getting home.