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Essential Travel Items For The Baby Boomer Traveller

Health and travel insurance blog about baby boomer travellers


With so many New Zealand ‘baby boomers’ doing their OE in later years we thought it would be good timing to include a few tips, lists and travel ideas in our blog.  

To start off, here are some essential travel items for your next overseas trip away:

Valid Passport
A New Zealand passport has been named the seventh most powerful passport in the World. But your passport will be of no use to you if it has expired, or about to expire.  Many travellers get caught out by this, especially when our New Zealand passports were only valid for 5 years.  As of last year we now have 10 year passports for adults, which is good news for those who need to renew.  Also, make sure you have more than six months left before your passport expires as many airlines won’t let you travel if it is about to expire within the next six months. Make copies of your passport by taking a photo or scanning the first pages, then email this copy to yourself and a family member in case of an emergency.

Bank Cards

New Zealand credit cards and debit cards are accepted most places around the world. Let your bank know you are going to be travelling so they can give you any important advice, phone numbers and check if you are covered for insurance purposes (if your card was to be stolen etc).

Cash is also important in many countries, for taxi rides, tipping, markets and any place where a minimum spend is required before you can use your card. We recommend using an ATM to withdraw cash as you will often get the best exchange rate.   

Travel Insurance

No we’re not pushing our own business, but insurance really is essential for any travel.  A simple broken leg for example can result in hospital bills, delayed flights, wheelchair hire etc.  Food poisoning, missed flights, ill-health, heart issues, vehicle accident etc, are just some of the common complaints that can happen on a quick trip away to a close neighbour in the Pacific or across the Tasman.  Give us a call and we will make sure you have the right coverage for the country you are visiting.

Spare Phone Chargers & Plug Adaptors

With nearly everyone using their phone as a camera, a watch and a point of contact for home, a charger is an essential item to pack.  You can pick up cheap chargers and plugs at the $2 Shop or similar.  These can be a life saver when you discover you left one behind at the airport or in a hotel room. Make sure you also carry a universal plug adaptor for the country you are visiting.

Toilet Bag With The Works!

Remember all your medication, and take any prescriptions for vital meds that could get left behind in a hotel room – it may also pay to check with your doctor if there is a universal brand name for the meds you are taking in case of an emergency. Take essential meds in your carry-on in case your bag goes missing.  But remember, don’t take your whole toilet bag in your carry-on luggage unless you have reduced all liquid to less than 100ml per item. 

Small bottles of shampoo and conditioner are useful if you are not staying in hotels, along with soap and a shower cap.  We have heard of a few people using cheap shower caps to cover their dirty shoes when packing them in their suitcase!

Insect repellent is a lifesaver in the Pacific Islands and many parts of Asia. Deet is the most effective.   Also steri-gel can be useful when using public toilets etc, as you can’t always guarantee there’ll be soap in the dispenser!

Other essentials include antihistamines, plasters for blisters, batteries for hearing aids and aspirin or paracetamol.

Spare Pair of Glasses

Whether you wear contacts of glasses, it pays to take a spare pair (or two!). These are the kind of items that often get left behind in hotel rooms. You can pick up cheap reading glasses from chemists and chain stores. Also take a couple of pairs of sunglasses for the same reason.

Comfortable Shoes

Sore feet are a common traveller complaint.  With so many great brands out there it seems silly to not have the best pair you can afford – treat yourself and you will not regret it!


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