In the time of a pandemic, you’re probably wondering why you’re reading a travel article. Why should I care about millennial travellers when I shouldn’t even be travelling right now?*cue existential crisis* Am I even still a traveller?
First of all, if you’re still craving adventures and exploration, then yes, you are a traveller still. Second of all, even in the age of non-travel, we can learn a thing or two from millennial travellers and their habits (or your habits, if you belong to the generation). Let’s take a look.
1. Money can’t buy happiness — but it can buy experience
Millennials are known for having relatively unorthodox financial priorities. Unlike older generations, most millennials gravitate toward spending on experiences instead of material goods.
In other words, a millennial would stereotypically rather buy a plane ticket than, say, a new suit. And studies have proven that this trend has worked wonders for the mental wellness of consumers. Kudos, millennial travellers!
Now that the pandemic has stripped us of most travel pleasures, what do millennials spend money on? According to surveys, most millennials are now online shopping for something that’s still very much related to experience: food! This brings me to the next point.
2. The food experience is always an investment
Did you know that millennials, more than any other generation, mostly identify themselves as foodies? On the topic of experience, food always tops the priorities of millennial travellers.
More than satiating the appetite, food, for millennials, function as a statement to the identity. What they eat translates to what they care about. With this, we’re seeing through generational food trends that most millennial travellers care about sustainability, authenticity, customisation, and cultural diversity. No wonder so many millennials are enjoying locally-made food products during this quarantine!
3. Internet connection means that information is a holler away
Tech-savviness has always been a strength of most millennials. Because of this skill, millennial travellers can score great deals, know about the best places to visit, and discover underrated gems. And while research is key when travelling, it’s also relevant for everyday life — especially now that fake news travels fast.
The next time you find unimaginable news online, remember the best of millennials: The most efficient know not only how to seek information, but also how to verify facts. Because many millennial travellers are also DIY travellers, most need the skill of fact-checking to avoid scams or other mishaps.
4. Education goes beyond the classroom
Related to the previous point: Millennials, as the information generation, recognise the opportunities for education outside school. They’re confident to learn new skills through YouTube, or discover hacks through online fora. This is also why many millennials treat travel as an investment — they understand that travel teaches people a multitude of things.
Now that we’re stuck in a pandemic, this millennial mentality can strengthen our resilience. Indeed, we can learn from just about any situation, as long as we keep our minds open.
5. The best time is now
Before COVID-19, millennial travellers hopped from one destination to the next. No regrets there, especially now that we can’t travel given the situation!
This pandemic has definitely highlighted the pros of the #YOLO lifestyle; most of the “Generation Now” probably breathed sighs of relief once they realised that it was only right that they travelled while they could.
Now that travel is discouraged, the live-in-the-moment mindset still has its place: We don’t have to delay our happiness because of the situation. We can find joy in the now, regardless of where we are and what our circumstances are.
6. Business and leisure are not exclusive of each other
During recent years, you’ve probably heard of the term “bleisure” — a portmanteau of “business” and “leisure”. More often than not, bleisure is attributed to millennial travellers who take advantage of business trips for pleasure.
The fact that millennials know how to leverage business opportunities speak a lot about them. In the digital world, the line between work and life blurs; but, millennials can use this to their advantage.
During the age of social distancing, knowing how to balance work and life is an important skill to have, especially when working from home. And when it comes to this, millennials certainly know best.
7. Everyone has a specific purpose
In the workforce, millennials have drawn flack because of their notoriety for job-hopping. Then again, there are studies that show that millennials are quick to quit because they’re always looking for something bigger.
Millennials prioritise sense of purpose over a paycheck; they avoid settling for jobs that they perceive as meaningless. Adding to the unending list of monikers, corporations view millennials as the “purpose generation” because of this passion for change and action.
Being purposeful is evident among millennial travellers. Think about a millennial traveller you know — and you’ll realise that he or she is passionate, not only about travel, but also about making the world a better place.
During COVID-19, several millennials have also been helping out those in need. Every generation can definitely draw inspiration from them. After all, millennial or not, traveller or not, we’re all in this together.