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Travel Trends 2019: Baby Boomers Book Early, Unplug, Relax with Friends

Senior family couple walking together on ancient sightseeing
Written by Staff Writer

This blog post was updated on December 23, 2019.

When it comes to having time for leisure travel, baby boomers have the lion’s share of it. Being the largest and most senior generation in the U.S. retired boomers, in particular, have the most flexible schedules plus funds, enabling them to happily snap up cheap flights. And boomers thinking about retiring – namely ALL working boomers — often have more vacation days than they feel they can take due to their long tenure at companies. Because they’ve always been trendsetters and because they have the income to support their lust for travel this year, interest is keen, to say the least, in how they’ll be vacationing in 2019. So, we don’t have to tell you to read on for some highlights of ways that they’re getting away.

Booking Earlier Than Ever

Senior Adult Holding Tablet Reading

Ask any boomer where he or she will be vacationing this year, and chances are they’ll not only give you all the details of their trip but are likely to boast about one of the cheap flights or package deals that they’ve already booked. Whether it’s a response to years of self-denial (of forfeiting vacation days to get the job done), or whether it’s an improved economy, or simply an effort at saving, we’re not sure; but, baby boomers are increasingly booking their trips, especially international ones, much earlier. How can they be so confident about planning and booking their vacations? As we’ve said, the retired ones have plenty of room on their calendars, and the working ones, well, they’ve got the millennials to mind the store now…sort of (wink).

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Taking Mostly Domestic Trips

Where are they so eager to jet off to? According to AARP, of all boomers who will be traveling in 2019, half will be doing so domestically and about half will be traveling internationally. The same study suggests that, when they travel in the U.S., their destinations of choice are likely to be Florida and California and when they vacation internationally, they’re heading to Europe, preferring the romance countries of England, France, and Italy.

Unplugging from the Office (But…shh…Still Connected)

Senior Couple Relaxing In Beach Hammock

Regardless of where they’re off to, baby boomers are not mixing business with pleasure. While they may have learned from millennials that taking vacation time is important for their work-life balance, they’re not, according to AARP, bringing work with them like millennials routinely do. And they’re also not checking their email or calling into the office. In other words, they’re unplugging. But this doesn’t mean that they’re not staying connected. In fact, many boomers consider free WiFi as one of the perks they want when they pick a place to stay. But instead of checking in with work, they’re logging on to their Instagram accounts to upload their latest selfies and travel snaps and to keep in touch with family and friends.

Relaxing with Friends and Family

One of the big reasons why boomers are traveling in the U.S. more than abroad is that they’re going to visit family or friends. And by unplugging, they’re spending quality time with the people they love. So baby boomers are not just snapping up cheap flights earlier, but they’re investing in spending time with their loved ones, not worrying about doing work and focusing on rest, relaxation, and rejuvenation.

Are you a senior traveler who hopes to travel more in 2019? Tell us where you plan to go in the comments!

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Staff Writer

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