The senior traveler and the growing market of the "silver economy" has attracted the attention of many industries due to the increase in life expectancy, quality of life and disposable income. It is not surprising that, as a result of this, their ability to travel has also increased.
A large percentage of people with high incomes are over 65 years old. Therefore, in many developed countries they are the type of traveler who has the money and time to take a trip. Active older people consider traveling a way to meet their life goals, finally have time to explore. It is about living life to the fullest, with the desire to leave your loved ones a significant legacy in experiences and values.
These travelers want human interaction to play a key role in planning and organizing their trips. The three themes associated with this group of travelers are: self-actualization, valuable legacy and relationships of trust.
The trips of older people as a whole are changing as this group grows. While cruises are still incredibly popular, unusual destinations, experiences and goals influence the way older adults travel today.
Adventure trips for the elderly
Active and adventure-based vacations are one of the fastest growing segments in the industry. This also applies to older adults, especially those who seek to mark the elements of their "wish list" as they get older. Older adults say that staying physically active helps them stay young both in body and spirit.
Common adventures for seniors include: hiking, wildlife viewing, riding in off-road vehicle, fishing and camping.
Educational tours for the elderly
Older people are expressing a renewed interest in the so-called "educational" holidays. They say that learning and expanding their horizons helps to keep them young and also to relate better to their families and the world in general. Educational tours can range from visits to villages on foreign islands to bird watching tours, but the goal is the same: to learn while they are entertained.
Common educational trips for seniors include: activities focused on getting involved with local residents, animal education and / or shelter missions or skills development trips that teach older adults how to do something new.
Luxury trips for the elderly
Perhaps the most notable trend in travel for seniors is the movement towards high-end tourism. Older adults, although they report that they are aware of the costs, are not as limited by budgets as their younger counterparts. They are willing to spend more for an experience whether that means better accommodations, easier transportation or customized travel itineraries for them.
Visits to the spa and services such as massages, spas, skin treatments, first class food, are just some of the best examples of this type of tourism.
Out of boredom
Older people say that traveling fulfills three things for them. One is to move away from everyday life, especially important when the stagnation of retirement has begun to take over their lives. The second is to reconnect with friends and family, which leads to a marked increase in the number of multigenerational trips each year. The third is to relax, a term that means different things to different people.
For the elderly, "relaxation" does not have to mean "boring". Traveling for the elderly is not what it used to be, and that's a good thing!