The majority of us like having the freedom to roam the city at our leisure, going anywhere we choose, whenever we please. We take it for granted that we can hop in a car, drive, and just go without having to make any preparations.
However, a rising proportion of the senior population finds it increasingly difficult to complete previously simple tasks like travelling to the grocery store, library, social gatherings, or doctor’s appointments. As we get older, we run the risk of developing health problems that would make it difficult for us to drive, leading us to find alternative modes of transportation.
The necessity of transportation for seniors
Despite the fact that they might be endangering not just themselves, but also others, their communities, and themselves, many older people are unwilling to give up driving. Driving is an essential part of maintaining daily routines, as well as serving as an indication of one’s level of independence, which is valuable to most seniors.
A driver’s license is the form of identification that is most frequently recognized. Consequently, giving up one’s driver’s licence also means giving up one’s sense of authority, independence, and mobility.
Additionally, research shows that senior citizens who are unable to drive attend fewer doctor’s appointments, go shopping and eat out less, and visit friends and family less frequently than older adults who are still able to drive.
Even though losing the ability to drive might be a devastating blow to an elderly person, they do not have to become housebound and lose the opportunity to participate in interesting activities and retain social connections.
Getting around costs a lot of time, money, and wear and strain on a vehicle, but many older people rely on their family members to fulfil this need. In most cases, family members cannot provide all of an older relative’s transportation needs. Seniors who are unable to drive alone can benefit from some community transportation services.
Ontario 211 bus service
A community and social services hotline called Ontario 211 offers transportation assistance to elders. The 2-1-1 hotline is available 24/7 for anyone who requires assistance getting their loved ones where they need to go. Alternatively, the senior or their family might visit the Ontario 211 website to look up a list of local transportation options.
The website is a government-sponsored initiative in Canada with the goal of lowering poverty levels and offering all individuals efficient and effective services. In a recent United Way research, nearly all of the participants indicated satisfaction with the 211 services in the locations where they are now provided.
The Ontario government has pledged more than $13 million over four years to expand the 211 hotline across the entire province in 2011. This will be done with the help of neighbourhood partners like the United Way.
Today, more than 50% of Ontarians have access to 211 programs. Over 150 languages are supported for user-to-operator communication, including nearly all of Ontario’s indigenous languages and dialects.
British Columbia transportation options
The province of British Columbia offers a wide range of senior transportation options, such as public transport. Seniors who live in British Columbia are given a British Columbia CareCard or a British Columbia Services Card for residents 65 and older. These cards offer reduced rates for BC Transit and TransLink (for Metro Vancouver/the Lower Mainland) (for the rest of B.C., including Victoria).
The aged and disabled from low-income households can also get a yearly bus pass at a discounted price. These are only a few public transit choices for seniors.
Carpooling is still an option for the elderly relative even if they are unable to drive or don’t own a car. Think about arranging a ride-sharing or carpool with a neighbour or a friend. Since the route won’t be uncomfortable, the senior can take a ride. Sharing a ride can help you save money and reduce your carbon footprint.
In some areas of the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), senior and community services provide volunteer drivers as a means of transporting the elderly. Private companies may also provide transportation services, though they often charge a hefty fee.
Online taxi services
Seniors can also use ride-hailing services as a private mode of transportation. To fulfil the requirements of senior citizens and those with disabilities, businesses like Uber and Lyft are working to offer more accessible vehicles and service options.
These businesses are making these efforts despite the fact that there are certain obstacles to accessing these services, such as the requirement for a smartphone and some technological know-how. GoGoGrandparent is one such service that does away with the requirement that senior adults own a smartphone in order to call for a ride using Uber or Lyft.
Home care services
Home care for seniors in Ontario is commonly thought to entail assisting an elderly person with light housekeeping, meal preparation, and activities of daily living (ADLs) such as bathing and clothing. All of these services are provided inside the client’s home.
However, in addition to helping seniors in their homes, in-home care companies can also support seniors in a variety of other places. Professional personal support workers or caregivers can take your loved one not just to medical appointments, but also on errands, to social gatherings, and to leisure activities.
They can help seniors get into and out of the car, as well as accompany them on their errands, if that is what the senior prefers. They also provide transportation services. This is a great option for the elderly who want company and/or require assistance with daily activities including walking, toileting, and cooking. The price of this service is covered by private resources.
Want to learn more?
Please reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call us at 1-855-410-7971, and we will be happy to help you arrange care for a loved one.