How Ridesharing Promotes Independence Among Older Adults

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This sponsored post was contributed by Lindsay Engle of Medicare FAQ. Read more about Lindsay below the post. 

One of the most painful decisions older adults have to make — often with the help or insistence of family members — is to stop driving. Besides the significant loss of independence, there is also the practical matter of getting to appointments, buying groceries, and running errands. The good news? There's never been a better time to be in need of transportation or food delivery services, thanks to smartphone apps and online ordering.

Getting Around Town
Using rideshare services has become the norm for millennials, Gen-Xers, and Baby Boomers, so why not for their parents and grandparents, too? One service that caters to older adults is GoGoGrandparent. They act as a third party connection to larger rideshare companies like Uber and Lyft. An extra service that GoGoGrandparent offers are updates for family members about where the customer is going, when she leaves home, and when she arrives at her destination. These updates can be especially useful for those who don't live nearby older family members.

Rideshare services can be a great resource for older adults. According to AARP, as many as 30% of seniors miss specialty medical appointments because they are unable to find transportation to the doctor's office. Senior resource hotlines say the number one issue for user calls is the need for transportation, often to medical appointments.

Linda Marie, owner of Eternally Beautiful Women, says that “Uber has made a huge impact on my ability to care for my mother. After she could no longer drive, I had to take her to all her medical appointments and help run her daily errands. Uber has helped give my mother back some of her independence.”

Grocery and Household Goods Delivery
Filling the refrigerator and pantry with healthy food can be a daunting task without a car, along with the physical challenge of carrying the bags filled with food to the kitchen, then putting away the purchases. Grocery delivery services help take some of the difficulty out of buying food by filling orders and delivering them straight to the front door. Instacart is a good option, offering discounts from local grocery stores.

Amazon Prime is convenient for ordering just about anything a person could need for their home, from a quart of milk to a set of sheets. For an annual fee of $99 (monthly payments are available), Amazon Prime will deliver — sometimes within hours — anything offered through its Prime service without a delivery charge.

Meal Delivery
There are meal delivery services that offer a range of options. If seniors enjoy cooking but not the shopping that goes along with preparing a meal, companies like Blue Apron and Sun Basket delivery fresh, healthy meals that are fun and simple to make. Services like these eliminate wasteful spending on excess amounts of ingredients needed for a recipe.

For older adults who prefer not to cook at all, there are options that are much more nutritious and tasty than store bought frozen meals. Balance by BistroMD has a wide variety of meals to choose from at reasonable prices, and customers can opt for meals tailored to weight loss, diabetes, or low sodium needs. 

YOUR TURN: Have you used any of these services for an older loved one? What was your/their experience? Tell us in the comments below. 


About the Author
Lindsay Engle is the Marketing Specialist at MedicareFAQ, a learning resource center for Medicare beneficiaries. Lindsay loves working in the senior healthcare industry. Aside from her job, she has a great passion for animals and loves boating.