Back to Resources
How Do Assisted Living Residents Run Errands and Get to Appointments?

How Do Assisted Living Residents Run Errands and Get to Appointments?

Are you considering a move to assisted living but are worried that it will limit your independence? Are you wondering how you’ll be able to get to doctor’s appointments, the pharmacy, get haircuts, or go out to see a play or a baseball game if you don’t have a car? 

The good news is that most assisted living communities provide some sort of transportation service and other amenities that enhance your independence rather than limiting it. Many states require assisted living to help with transportation in order to be licensed.

So, how do assisted living transportation services work? Some communities, like the Mission at Agua Fria, provide residents access to daily chauffeured transportation on a schedule. Smaller communities might provide transportation only for medical appointments or help residents book other transportation. 

The following article provides a brief overview of the different options you might find when exploring assisted living communities.

Scheduled Transportation Services

Usually, assisted living communities will have a designated van or small shuttle bus to take residents where they want to go. This type of assisted living transportation service allows residents to schedule transportation when they need to get to medical and other appointments and nearby shopping and dining. In addition, many assisted living communities offer regularly scheduled recreational and cultural outings for the residents and provide transportation to and from, so residents never have to worry about traffic or parking.

Although scheduled transportation services are usually provided directly by the assisted living community, there might be cases where the community works with a local transportation company rather than keeping a vehicle on the property.

Concierge Services

Some assisted living communities do not directly provide transportation services but have staff members or a concierge service to help residents with their transportation needs. Staff can book a ride with local transportation providers if a resident needs to run errands or has an appointment.

Several rideshare services specifically tailored for seniors make it easy for staff and residents to make transportation arrangements. These services generally do not require an app or technology, making them a popular choice for seniors who prefer not to use computers or smartphones. Some of these rideshare services include:

  • GoGoGrandparent is a subscription-based service that allows seniors to call a phone number, talk to an operator, request a ride, order a grocery or meal pick-up, and get prescriptions delivered.
  • Arrive – another subscription-based service that connects seniors with vetted drivers from Lyft and Uber by calling a phone number and speaking to an operator.
  • SilverRide is a unique service where all its drivers are trained to assist seniors with a wide range of physical support and assistance needs. Rides can be scheduled by email or phone, but SilverRide is only available in a limited number of cities.

Although Lyft and Uber generally schedule rides through an app rather than using an operator service, they now also provide additional services specifically for seniors and healthcare providers. Lyft Healthcare and Uber Health allow healthcare providers to reserve a ride to get their patients to and from their appointments. In addition, seniors can use Uber Health or Instacart to get prescriptions delivered.

Shuttle Service

Some assisted living communities provide shuttle services with a specific route and timed schedule rather than transportation services that can be scheduled as needed. These shuttle services generally run between the assisted living community and nearby popular destinations (e.g., entertainment districts, shopping centers, downtown areas, etc.) or medical centers. Since the shuttle runs on a set schedule, residents can easily plan errands and appointments accordingly.

Assisted Living Amenities

In addition to transportation services, many assisted living communities also provide a wide range of on-site amenities to accommodate residents’ needs and encourage their independence. Having easy access to necessary amenities and services can significantly reduce stress. 

For instance, assisted living communities might have:

  • Barbershop and beauty salon
  • Exercise and wellness center (with therapy options)
  • Library
  • Dining services
  • Convenience store
  • Pharmacy
  • Game room
  • Media room
  • Scheduled classes and social events
  • Visiting doctors

The convenience of having all of these amenities right outside your door means that residents can pick and choose when they want to venture out to run errands. 

Questions to Ask About Assisted Living Transportation Services and More

As you tour different assisted living communities, it’s essential to understand the services and amenities that they offer. Consider asking some of the following questions:

  • Are transportation services included in monthly fees (all-inclusive pricing), or are there a la carte options where I can pay for only the services I use?
  • What types of trips are covered? Is it only for medical appointments?
  • Does the assisted living community provide escorts to appointments if I need additional assistance? If so, is there an added cost?
  • What is the transportation service area? What are my options if I want to travel beyond the service area?
  • Do I need to schedule transportation services in advance? If so, how far in advance?
  • Is there a limit to the number of trips I can take daily? In a week?
  • Are the community’s vans or shuttle buses wheelchair-accessible?
  • Does the community organize offsite social activities and recreational outings? If so, what types? How often? Can I run nearby errands before and after?
  • What onsite amenities do you have? Are there additional fees for these?

At the Mission at Agua Fria, we aim to help every resident thrive and live well. We understand that your independence is vitally important, so we provide an impressive range of services and amenities, including assisted living transportation services, to facilitate that independence. 

Whether you use our on-site exercise and wellness center, dining services, media and game rooms, classes, and activities, or beauty salon, or take our transportation to explore nearby Peoria, AZ, we think you’ll love living here! Contact us today to schedule an in-person tour or learn more about us and our Live Well program.