Considering your retirement options

Retirement, for most people, is the time to finally do what they want, on their schedule and terms, with no pressure or need to be tied to a paycheck. While many simply want to unwind and relax after a long and stressful career, others are eager to explore new horizons, pastimes, or even new careers. Here are some ideas for creating the perfect retirement.

1. Sightseeing

Have you lived close to some popular tourist attractions or historic sites but simply never found the time to see them? Now could be the best time. With the flexibility you have, you can go during off-peak times or seasons, avoid the crowds, and possibly save a little on fees with off-season rates.

2. Relocating

Been going back to that favorite beach or resort area every year? Why not consider making it your new home? Your kids and grandkids will love visiting you, and you’ll enjoy the scenery and environment that made it your best vacation destination. Before you pull up stakes, however, you’ll want to do some investigating about the cost of living, tax implications, and lifestyle you’ll have if you do move there. You might even travel there again and take a look around from the perspective of a future resident instead of a visitor.

3. Hobbies

Been thinking about taking up painting, music, golf, woodworking, or another hobby, or wanting to do more of it? Always wanted to build furniture, or create or expand your backyard garden? Now’s your chance. Favorite hobbies provide fulfillment, as well as social interaction and a chance to make new friends. Outdoor hobbies like golf and gardening also provide fresh air, exercise, and sunshine, and those can’t be bad for you.

 4. Returning to school.

Maybe you never had a chance to finish that degree, or just have a desire to further your education? Many universities and colleges offer reduced tuition or even tuition waivers for seniors. Going back to school has become so popular that some colleges are building retirement communities near campus. You can even take free, online courses offered by top universities and interact with other students through sites like and

 5. Volunteering

Love the outdoors, or museums, parks, or historic sights? Or are you passionate about a cause and want to do your part? Many retirees are attracted to volunteerism. Sites like can show you volunteer opportunities in your area.

 6. Second career (or third, fourth, etc.)

Lots of retirees take advantage of the opportunity to explore new career fields or even take their knowledge and experience to open businesses. Part-time and consulting work are popular options. According to the Small Business Administration, over five million people between age 55 and 65 own their own businesses and the number is climbing rapidly. Although many do this to supplement their income, second careers also enable seniors to remain productive, contribute, and remain plugged in to society.

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