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Tips for Retirees Travelling and Volunteering Overseas

Travel is often the first thing on many retirees’ to-do list, and it is easy to see why. Retirement is often the first real opportunity that many people have to leave Australia and explore the world.

The big advantage retirees have when traveling is the luxury of time. You can leave when you want and take all the time you want to. This makes it easier to see everything you want to see, and to save money by traveling during the off season.

However, going overseas for the first time can be both stressful and costly. Fortunately, you can control costs and reduce stress with a little planning and preparation.

Steps You Can Take To Reduce the Cost and Hassle of Travelling Overseas

Steps You Can Take To Reduce the Cost and Hassle of Travelling Overseas

  • Sign up for email updates and RSS feeds from major airlines like Qantas and Virgin so you get the latest flight deals sent straight to your inbox.
  • We recommend using American Express’ FX4You service, which is available to all Holiday Coast Credit Union members, to order travellers cheques or cash in foreign currencies before you leave. This will help you avoid high exchange rates and save you the hassle of exchanging your cash at the airport.
  • Buy travel insurance before you leave. We recommend that you purchase your policy from Allianz.  Allianz offers a 7.5% discount to Holiday Coast members that purchase insurance online.
  • Basic or comprehensive travel insurance is a must because both include medical insurance. Medical insurance is needed because Medicare will not cover you when you are outside of Australia. We also note and advise the national health insurance systems in most countries will not cover tourists.
  • Comprehensive travel insurance is the best deal, because it provides the most coverage for the lowest price. This includes medical coverage, cancellation fee coverage, luggage coverage and more.
  • Before you leave and before purchasing a travel insurance policy, always allways check to see that your travel insurance will cover you in a particular country. Also and importantly understand what is not covered; for example, rental cars are not covered in some countries.
  • Cruises can be a cheaper and more comfortable means of seeing many famous foreign destinations. First time travellers and those who are uncomfortable in foreign countries are often more comfortable on a cruise. For more information and the latest deals, checkout the various cruise companies websites
  • Volunteering overseas can be both fun and rewarding. It is a great way to meet people and experience the local culture. You should take a short-term assignment first to see if volunteering is right for you.
  • Volunteering can save you money because the sponsoring organisation often pays for food, accommodation and local travel.
  • Carefully research volunteer organisations and opportunities before you sign up. It is always a good idea to talk to somebody who has been there before to learn what it is really like and to validate the legitimacy of the foreign company.

Overseas travel and volunteering can be one of the most rewarding parts of your retirement; all you need is a little careful preparation.

We at Holiday Coast will be glad to help you plan your financial needs for your overseas adventure. Just call 1300 364 7 24, or drop by one of our branches. We will be happy to answer any questions that you have.


This article provides general information only and should not be relied upon as financial product advice.

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