RESEARCH: British retirees are adventurous travellers | More than 40% choose adventure travel | Golden Gap Year trend gains popularity

survey TOURISM

With the ‘Golden Gap Year’ trend entering the travel market, more than two-fifths of British retirees (42%) aged over 55 say they want to take adventure trips in this interim period, according to the findings of a new survey.

37% of retirees who participated in the Fred Olsen Cruise Lines survey described themselves as adventurous.

Nearly a quarter (24%) of those over 55 said they have become more adventurous over time and three in 10 (29%) admitted to traveling more now that they are retired than in the past.

Over a third (34%) of retirees claimed they have never made the same trip twice and 38% said they plan to visit multiple countries in 2024. While, 35% of respondents said they choose cruising as the best way to explore multiple destinations.

The survey of more than 2,000 consumers found that people are actively choosing to put money aside for travel when they retire, with over a quarter (27%) already having a fund available for this purpose.

The over 55 retirees plan to spend an average of £4,800 per person on holidays in 2024 alone, with the average savings for travel after retirement rising to £14,000. This coincides with the latest figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), which show a 37% increase in overseas travel expenses for the over-65s over the last four years.

Fred Olsen Cruise Lines’ Travel Experience Coordination Manager, James Moss said: “The ‘gap year’ is usually a rite of passage traditionally associated with school leavers, but our research shows the prevalence of what has been labelled ‘the golden gap year’, where people over the age of 55 are travelling more than ever before, particularly after retirement, which seems to further ignite a sense of adventure. This is a category that takes advantage of the freedom to travel and experience new experiences more than any other. They have worked hard all their lives and have looked after others and now is the time to enjoy what life has to offer and really seize the day.”

He added: “Our customers are adventurous, restless and excited about the world around them. They recognise the value of cruising as a way to visit a multitude of countries, immerse themselves in new cultures, taste new foods, explore the hidden gems of destinations, embrace the wonders of nature and are excited to know and experience new things.”

According to him, they love our smaller ships, which can take them to more interesting places, such as the more remote parts of Norway’s lesser-known fjords, through narrow, watery roads and canals, and into the heart of some of the world’s most beautiful cities.

“We are also chosen for our friendly, warm welcome and for our on-board itineraries and experiences, which are designed to help make the most of the destinations we visit,” concluded Mr Moss.

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