Can I Take My Loved One Out of Assisted Living for a Holiday?

An older adult woman having lunch with her family outdoors.

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Holidays are a great way to spend quality time with your loved ones. Many families plan vacations or trips during the holiday season to create wonderful memories and strengthen their bond. If you have a loved one living in assisted living, you may wonder if it’s possible to take them out for a holiday.

The good news is that, in many cases, residents of assisted living are allowed to leave for holidays with their families. However, it is essential to plan this well in advance. You’ll need to communicate with the care home’s staff to understand their policies and any requirements they may have. Some assisted living may have specific guidelines in place for residents leaving the home temporarily.

Informing the assisted living

Once you have decided to take your loved one out for a holiday, it is crucial to inform the assisted living as soon as possible. Some strategies to ensure that the trip goes smoothly include:

  • Schedule a meeting with the staff. Set up a meeting with the care home team well in advance to inform them about your plans. This will give them time to make necessary arrangements and ensure that your loved one is ready for the trip.
  • Discuss any specific care needs. During the meeting, discuss any specific care needs that your loved one may have. This could include medications, mobility aids, or dietary needs. Make sure to provide detailed instructions and any necessary documentation.
  • Provide emergency contact information. It’s important to update the care home with your current contact information and that of another emergency contact in case they need to get in touch with you during the holiday.
  • Arrange for medication and supplies. Make sure to pack enough medication and any necessary medical supplies for the duration of the trip. It’s also a good idea to have a doctor’s note or prescription in case you need to refill any medications while away.
  • Inform about itinerary changes. Keep the care home informed about any changes in your holiday plans, such as flight delays or unexpected events. This will ensure that they can make the necessary arrangements for your loved one’s care.

Planning a Holiday with an Older Adult

Before planning a holiday, it’s crucial to consider your loved one’s health and abilities:

  • Are they physically able to travel? 
  • Do they require any special accommodations during the trip? 
  • Will they need assistance with medications or daily tasks while on holiday? 
  • Do they have any medical conditions that may require extra care during the trip? 

It’s essential to discuss these factors with the care home staff and your loved one’s healthcare provider to ensure their safety and well-being during the holiday. 

Once you have a clear idea of your loved one’s needs and capabilities, you can start planning your holiday. Here are a few things to keep in mind:


Choose a destination that will be suitable for your loved one. If they have mobility issues, consider destinations with easy accessibility and minimal physical activity. If your loved one has a medical condition, make sure the destination has adequate healthcare facilities. It’s also essential to consider their preferences and choose a place that they will enjoy.


Depending on your loved one’s needs, you may need to arrange for special transportation or accommodations during the trip. For example, if they use a wheelchair, you may need to book accessible transportation or hotel rooms. If they have a medical condition that requires special equipment, such as oxygen tanks, make sure to arrange for these in advance.


An older adult couple spending time with their family outdoors.

When planning the holiday, consider activities that your loved one can participate in comfortably. Look into wheelchair-friendly tours and attractions if needed. It’s also essential to plan breaks and rest periods throughout the day to avoid exhaustion.


Keep in touch with your loved one’s care home staff and healthcare provider during the trip. Make sure they have all the necessary contact information and discuss any potential issues that may arise. If your loved one needs assistance with medications, make sure to have a plan in place for administering them while on holiday.


Make sure to have all the necessary documentation with you, including medical records, insurance information, and emergency contacts. It’s also essential to carry any required medications with you in case of unexpected delays or emergencies.

Be Flexible

Despite your best efforts and planning, unforeseen circumstances may arise during the holiday. It’s important to remain flexible and be prepared to adapt plans if needed. Remember to prioritize your loved one’s comfort and well-being above any pre-planned activities or schedules.

Planning for the Return

Before heading home, make sure to arrange transportation and any necessary accommodations for your loved one. If they require specialized care or equipment, discuss making arrangements for their return with the healthcare provider. Having a plan in place for the return journey can help alleviate any stress or confusion and ensure a smooth transition back home. 

After returning from holiday, it’s also important to schedule follow-up appointments with your loved one’s healthcare provider. This will allow them to assess their overall health and address any issues that may have arisen during the trip. 

Specialized Care for Unique Needs at Juniper

Traveling with a loved one who requires special care can be challenging, but it’s also an opportunity to create cherished memories and bond in a new setting. With careful planning and flexibility, you can plan a safe and enjoyable holiday for both you and your loved one.At Juniper Senior Living, we understand the importance of including older adults in holiday plans and provide specialized care for those with unique needs. Contact us today to learn more about our services or book a visit to one of our communities.

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