Poll reveals what older travellers want

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Adventure travel is not strictly the domain of younger travellers, with a study conducted by Rough Guides showing that older travellers still want adventure.

It’s true that ‘adventure’ travel information is aimed at young backpackers. However, recent research conducted by Rough Guides revealed that many middle-aged and older travellers are still working through their adventure travel wishlists.

Rough Guides is now tailoring tours to accommodate this growing demographic.

“While many of our loyal readers would never travel without their Rough Guide, they perhaps want an itinerary that is a little less rough. And accommodation that’s not rough at all. So as part of our commitment to continue to serve adventurous travellers of all ages, we’re proud to launch our tailor-made trips,” says Rough Guides CEO René Frey.

The poll of 2000 adults aged 40 and over showed the average 40-something still has seven countries to visit on their travel bucket list, with the majority saying they have only visited a quarter of the countries on their wishlists.

older male traveller seeking adventure

It also revealed that three in 10 are more ‘adventurous’ with their holiday choices now than they ever used to be, with 38 per cent preferring to go off the beaten track when they travel abroad. One-fifth of over-40s have tried snorkelling on a trip abroad and more than one in 10 have been on a safari.

Nearly half of over-40s polled say they go on more holidays now than at any other point of their lives, with six in 10 putting this down to having more money now than they did in the past. Around 25 per cent say it’s easier to get away because their kids are older, while 46 per cent have more time. Another 40 per cent say their lives have simplified enough so they now have more freedom – in their 50s or beyond – to travel the world.

YourLifeChoices’ own research also shows that adventure is a high priority for older travellers, right behind relaxing/recharging, connecting with friends and family and escaping (in that order).

“The great thing about travel is you can get out of it exactly what you like. If you want a wild adventure, then go ahead; if you’d rather chill out on holiday, that’s fine too. But often our tastes change as we get older, and it’s great to see an appetite for adventure isn’t limited to anyone under the age of 25,” said Rough Guides editor Aimee White.

“Travel is no longer the sole preserve of the young. It is important that the travel industry gives older travellers the same opportunities to have adventurous travel experiences as younger people if they want to and not dismiss them as being too ‘old’ or ‘boring’.”

Do you feel you now have more time to travel? Do you have the money to see the globe? Is adventure a high priority when you travel? What do you deem ‘adventurous’?

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Written by Leon Della Bosca

Leon Della Bosca is a voracious reader who loves words. You'll often find him spending time in galleries, writing, designing, painting, drawing, or photographing and documenting street art. He has a publishing and graphic design background and loves movies and music, but then, who doesn’t?

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1 Comments

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    Gee, older travelers are over 40’s…..makes me feel ancient in my 70’s and still traveling adventurously. Dont do bungee jumping due to a fear that my false teeth would fly out and anything too physical might be beyond me but it’s certainly an adventure to roam too far from a toilet.


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