A considerable part of senior living is traveling, and cruising is still one of the most desirable options, notes Chris Dube, sales manager for Dube Travel in Lewiston. “Not because of what it’s about, but because of the value,” he continued. “Cruising is 85 percent inclusive; the only things it doesn’t cover are beverages, gratuities, the casino and any extra shore trips you choose to take.” Currently, the top cruise destinations are, in order, the Caribbean, Europe, Alaska, Panama Canal, Bermuda, Mexico and Hawaii.

Dube has been with the company his father started 46 years ago since 1990. In that time, he’s seen certain trends come and go, but some places seem to be forever destinations. “Las Vegas is always a popular area because of the activities,” he said. “There are so many things to see and do.”
Interestingly, back in the 1970s, most senior travelers chose Florida for a month’s respite, he pointed out. “They’d sit on the beach and just relax,” he said. “Today, more seniors want to be active on their vacations, and along with Vegas, Branson (MO) is another popular option.” Branson is a hot spot for entertainment ranging from country to rock n’ roll, magic and comedy to musical theater, Gospel, small intimate shows and major world-class productions.
Seniors also tend to like traveling in groups, he observed. “Some may not have traveled much while they were working and raising families, but they’ve saved for this day, so if they’re not sure of things, going with a group of local senior citizens gives them great value, and there is comfort in numbers.” If guests have problems or questions, their escort or guide can answer and help handle any issues that may arise. Another option includes group trips hosted by local celebrities.
Acknowledging the increasing availability of Internet booking for flights, hotels and other vacation packages, Dube said sometimes that’s not going to be your best deal. “The Internet has a great allure,” he admitted, but it’s important to make reservations with someone you know and trust. A local agent can usually get the same or better deals than you get on the Internet, he said, noting agents have knowledge of the destinations you’re considering, the know-how to get free upgrades, air ticketing tricks and lots more.”
He also recommended purchasing travel insurance. “We always recommend this,” he said, especially when there is the potential for losing several thousand dollars, such as when seniors (or others) will be traveling for extended periods of time. It provides cancellation protection before the trip, travel delay accommodations en-route and health coverage during the trip.
Dube offers these other helpful suggestions for senior travel:
Be flexible, keep your bags packed, your passport handy, and take advantage of last minute opportunities.
Look for group deals.
Ask what discounts (senior or otherwise) may be applicable.
Don’t assume the best price is the best deal.
Pay with your credit card.
Use the Internet as a resource, but book with a reputable travel agent.

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