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The Mature Traveler

Clubs for Seniors Who Want Travel Companions

January 02, 1994|HANK KOVELL

A number of singles clubs for seniors have started in recent years. Most of these clubs attempt to find travel companions or roommates for solo senior travelers who may be widowed, divorced or have spouses who don't enjoy travel.

Since all of these clubs require payment of dues for membership, seniors are advised to send for complete information on costs, benefits and other details before remitting any fees.

The largest singles travel club is New York-based Travel Companion Exchange, now in its 13th year of operation. TCE's bimonthly newsletter is filled with information on available tours, hotels, resorts, cruises, best destinations, air-fare discounts and other bargains, and tips on how to avoid single supplements.

TCE also publishes a newsletter that lists persons looking for travel companions. For a free membership application, including details and prices, write to TCE, Box 833, Amityville, N.Y. 11701. For a copy of the current issue of the Travel Companions Newsletter, enclose a check payable to TCE for $4.

Other singles travel clubs with appeal to seniors:

* Partners-In-Travel, now in its 14th year, offers a free bulletin for new members: "More Travel for Less." It gives money-saving tips on accommodations and transportation, and other helpful hints. Miriam E. Tobolowsky, who operates the club, says that although the group is open to travelers of all ages, about 90% of its members are 50 and over.

Partners-In-Travel will run a personal listing in its travel directory for anyone who requests it. Membership is $25 per year; the club will send an outline of benefits as well as a questionnaire suggesting details to include in your listing. Send a long, self-addressed stamped envelope to Partners-In-Travel, 11660 Chenault St., No. 119, Los Angeles 90049.

* Partners For Travel calls itself "a travel resource for single, divorced and widowed men and women over age 50." New members fill out a profile detailing their interests, background, travel plans and what they are looking for in a traveling companion. The information is used to put members in touch with others who have similar interests.

For more information on Partners For Travel, plus a free calendar of travel events for single seniors, write 801 N. Venetian Drive, Suite 1102, Miami, Fla. 33139, or call (800) 866-5565.

* Although Golden Companions, based in Pullman, Wash., has been in business only about seven years, it has become a popular medium for singles over the age of 45 to find travel companions of similar age and interests. The more-than-1,000 members range in age from 46 to 89. Golden Companions publishes a membership directory that contains an outline of members' interests (including travel, sports, hobbies and social activities).

Annual membership, which includes the companion listings, is $85; a six-month trial membership is $48. For complete membership information and an application form, write Golden Companions, P.O. Box 754, Pullman, Wash. 99163. Add $2 for a copy of the newsletter.

* Solo Flights founder Betty Sobel believes that single mature travelers should be able to enjoy what she calls "adventuresome travel." She offers tours ranging from one to two weeks, with Costa Rica, the Caribbean and Mexico as primary destinations. For descriptive material on Solo Flights, write 63 High Noon Road, Weston, Conn. 06883, or call (800) 266-1566.

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