It seems 40 is the new 20 when it comes to travelling. With young people saddled with student loans, rising levels of debt, and ever-increasing house prices, the early 20s is no longer the only chance we have to get out and explore. Waiting until after you hit 40 to go and have the time of your life is becoming ever more popular.

With so much focus on younger travellers, older travellers can sometimes feel ignored by the travel industry or can feel stereotyped as wanting things to be gentle or unchallenging. Here at Rough Guides we wanted to find out more about travelling habits of people over 40, and the results were enlightening.

More Money, More Time

Nearly half of over 40s polled say they go on more holidays now than at any other point in their lives, many saying this is because they have more money than they used to. It also helps when the kids have flown the nest of course, affording older travellers more time to jet-set around the globe. In fact, 40% of the 2,000 people polled think their lives are simpler now they’re older, so they feel they now have more freedom – in their 50s and beyond – to see the globe.

Adventures Please

And it’s not just cruises and coach holidays. 30% of over 40s reckon they are more adventurous with their holiday choices now than they ever used to be, with nearly 4 in 10 preferring to go off the beaten track when they travel abroad. Rather than sitting by the pool, a 20% of over 40s have tried snorkelling on a trip abroad and more than one in 10 have been on a safari. And perhaps surprisingly, more than 1 in 5 have also ‘gone travelling’ – meaning they’ve taken a month or more off work to visit different countries.

Aimee White, editor at Rough Guides said: “It’s great to see an appetite for adventure isn’t limited to anyone under the age of 25. The world is more accessible than ever before, and as a result holidays are something many people can enjoy.

“As a society, we need to get away from this assumption that only young people want to travel and have adventures whilst stereotyping older travellers as wanting a particular type of holiday.

“It’s 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’.”

And this is just what Rough Guides aims to do with the recent launch of its new tailor-made adventure trips service. A local travel expert creates a unique trip based on your criteria, making sure it is full of new experiences and ‘off-the-beaten-track’ elements. And as we take care of all the accommodation and transport, you can have all the ‘rough’ bits but still have your creature comforts. The best of both worlds, and open to anyone who fancies travelling with a bit of a difference.

Start planning your dream trip now.

Most popular destinations

The research also showed that the average 40-something still has seven countries to visit on their travel bucket list.

The top 20 countries on Brits’ wishlists are:

1. New Zealand
2. Canada
3. Australia
4. Mainland USA
5. Italy
6. The Caribbean
7. Hawaii
8. Japan
9. Maldives
10. Greece
11. Spain
12. Portugal
13. France
14. Austria
15. Thailand
16. Germany
17. India
18. Singapore
19. Holland
20.China

Share

Book your trip with Rough Guides

Tailor-made travel planned by local experts

At Rough Guides, we understand that experienced travellers want to get truly off-the-beaten-track. That’s why we’ve partnered with local experts to help you plan and book tailor-made trips that are packed with personality and stimulating adventure - at all levels of comfort. If you love planning, but find arranging the logistics exhausting, you’re in the right place.

Learn Morechevron_right

Book through Rough Guides’ trusted travel partners

chevron_leftPrevious feature
Explore the Liberation Route of Europe with Rough Guides

Explore the Liberation Route of Europe with Rough Guides

Next featurechevron_right
Top vacation spots in Chile

Top vacation spots in Chile

Sign up for weekly travel inspiration

Sign up to our newsletter for weekly inspiration, discounts and competitions

Sign up now and get 20% off any ebook

Privacy Preference Center

Necessary

Mandatory - can not be deselected. Necessary cookies help make a website usable by enabling basic functions like page navigation and access to secure areas of the website. The website cannot function properly without these cookies.

PHPSESSID,aelia_cs_selected_currency,cookie_notice_accepted,RS,bp-message,bp-message-type,id,UIDR,w3tc_logged_out,__cfduid
__cfduid

Statistics

Statistic cookies help website owners to understand how visitors interact with websites by collecting and reporting information anonymously.

__utma,__utmb,__utmc,__utmz,_ga,_gid,__atssc,__atuvc,__atuvs,di,dt,ssc,ssh,sshs,uid,uit,xt
__utma,__utmb,__utmc,__utmz,_ga,_gid
__atssc,__atuvc,__atuvs,di,dt,ssc,ssh,sshs,uid,uit,xtc

Marketing

Marketing cookies are used to track visitors across websites. The intention is to display ads that are relevant and engaging for the individual user and thereby more valuable for publishers and third party advertisers.

__gads,PISID, BEAT, CheckConnection TempCookie703, GALX, GAPS, GoogleAccountsLocale_session, HSID, LSID, LSOSID, NID, PREF, RMME, S, SAPISID, SID, SSID,__utmv, _twitter_sess, auth_token, auth_token_session, external_referer, guest_id, k, lang, original_referer, remember_checked, secure_session, twid, twll,c_user, datr, fr, highContrast, locale, lu, reg_ext_ref, reg_fb_gate, reg_fb_ref, s, wd, xs
__gads,PISID, BEAT, CheckConnection TempCookie703, GALX, GAPS, GoogleAccountsLocale_session, HSID, LSID, LSOSID, NID, PREF, RMME, S, SAPISID, SID, SSID
__utmv, _twitter_sess, auth_token, auth_token_session, external_referer, guest_id, k, lang, original_referer, remember_checked, secure_session, twid, twll
c_user, datr, fr, highContrast, locale, lu, reg_ext_ref, reg_fb_gate, reg_fb_ref, s, wd, xs