Travel: It’s not too late for a gap year…
I have a fun little game for you. No wait, hear me out.
The average person in the Western world lives to around 80 years old. Currently, most of us in the UK won’t retire until we are in our late 6o’s. That means you will work for around 40+ years of your life and have around -20 left to do everything else. That is around half of your life spent tied to a job.
Oh, did I say it was a game? Well, I lied. IT’S ALL VERY REAL.
So, remember when you wanted to take that gap year in your 20’s, but you didn’t because of your career? That may have been a mistake. Every person I know who took a gap year came back and it was as if they NEVER left.
Unpopular Opinion: Travel is too often wasted on the young.
In fact, I think it may be more beneficial for all concerned that it is reserved for those in later life.
I hate to generalise, but the following things seem to be true when it comes to the majority of younger travelers:
- Too many just want to get pissed at Full Moon parties
- Too many are going just ‘for the gram’ or kudos
- Too many want to go to the same touristy destinations
- Too many don’t care about the impact they are having on the environment or the inhabitants of their holiday destinations
Yes, yes, Not ALL young people….got it. *rolls eyes*
Have you heard of Adventurous Kate? Check out the post she wrote on ‘How to be less of a travelling asshole in 2019’. The post is for everyone, but I read it as being for that under 30’s crowd, ya know? (don’t @ me i’m too busy being old to care).
Us oldies are much more discerning:
We don’t care about fads and friends
How can you truly soak up, appreciate and immerse yourself in another culture if you are continually checking online what your friends are doing back home? Or trying to post your ‘experience’ of the latest hot destination so those at home can envy you? The older you get, the less friends you have, the less people care what you are doing. Yes, old people are lonely old sods but we holiday better than you. K?
We have more money
Travelling on a shoestring is not as much fun as doing it with a bit more cash – trust me, I know. As you get older, you are often more financially stable. Most of us tend to start filling small pots with bits of money. Some people save for a deposit on a house, some people save for their pension, and some people save to travel. Yes we are going to bag online deals (like cheap Liverpool Airport Parking) but we will also spend more whilst on a holiday away, giving money to local economies and businesses as we go (not just to the local bars).
We won’t need to drink and rave the nights away
It’s not that we don’t want to, it’s just that we recover very differently these days. The impact of a heavy night can mean two days of sickness, achy joints and a sore head = wasted holiday.
We aren’t going to the usual places
Older people are far more likely now to travel to unfamiliar landscapes. We want to learn, experience and relax. Traveling the world is an ambition that is sought after by an increasing number of older people, the opportunity to learn from and understand new cultures and ideologies really is a wonderful experience. In short, we are no longer just booking Caribbean cruises.
Do you agree that travel isn’t just a young person’s game?
Answers on a postcard please. 🙂