What do we look for when we travel? An escape? A breath of new experiences, or to see a new and different way of life? While the corners of the globe shrink and all blank spaces of the map fill in, what changes is how we travel.
Millennials are the largest demographic since the baby boomers of the 1950s. Roughly grouped as people ages 16-34, Millennials represent a societal shift, a realignment of perspective, and It should come as no surprise that this change affects their leisure time. New services have cropped up within the last year, each espousing the ideals supported by this outspoken generation.
Of these concepts, ridesharing, apartment or home renting, and travel dating have each grown from obscurity to the main stream. But just how serious is this trend becoming? Is this the result of a temporary fad, or have Millennials been able to change the way vacations are taken? By examining the trends, some fascinating facts are unearthed.
A New Way to Fly
A new service making the rounds with the millennials is Airbnb. Purposed as an answer to ever-growing hotel costs, Airbnb offers travelers an alternative by renting apartments or homes. Compared to other travelers, over 60% of Millennials put their faith in this service, finding the personal touch of a real living space more comfortable than cookie-cutter hotel rooms. A vacation is defined as a trip of over 100 miles away from home, and accommodations for these trips usually run upwards of $1,000 for a week’s worth of room and board. Millennials utilizing Airbnb, however, can be expected to spend only $400 for the same length of stay.
Older millennials with their own families find the services of Airbnb just as useful. Renting a house with several rooms, and more importantly several bathrooms, affords all the comforts of home without sacrificing cost. While many are resistant to this change, showing only 17% interest in the general public for Airbnb’s services, the millennials support is more than enough to demonstrate its future viability.
Baby, You Can Drive My Car
Along with sharing living spaces, ridesharing has taken a tremendous leap in popularity. Once considered a passing fad, services like Uber and Lyft have proven they are here to stay. Choosing the flexible fairs and tap-the-app ease, millennials have demonstrated that the days of hailing a cab are quickly coming to a close. A recent survey of transportation receipts revealed the truth of this trend. Uber’s services make up 55% of ground transportation receipts, and leave traditional taxis in the dust at 43%. In a historic upheaval, traditional taxi services are supplanted by their competition.
While still in its infancy, Uber offers a bevy of benefits for both the passenger and driver. Using Uber as part-time employment, drivers benefit from having experience outside the car, oftentimes being college educated. Making an average of $30/hour, the Uber driver is also better paid than a typical taxi driver at $12.50/hour. Though Uber has faced some resistance from traditional cabbies, over 120,000 drivers have registered with the service in the last 12 months, and it shows no signs of slowing.
Dating ‘Round the World
The world at their fingertips, Millennials don’t go anywhere without their phone. With apps for just about anything from car rides to dry cleaning, why wouldn’t there be an app for finding love? Though Tinder has a reputation for being used solely for hooking up, many millennials are finding it a fun way to travel the world and meet new people. With its recently released feature Tinder Passport, users are able to use their services worldwide to meet single people in other countries.
Shifting the focus away from hookups has really opened up the possibilities of this app. Connecting with people across the world enables travelers to get a true sense of the local color without paying for guided tours. Visit your new friend’s favorite restaurant, or go check out local landmarks known only to natives. Taking the sting out of traveling alone, millennials are finding company on any continent by using this simple app.
Their impact undeniable, Millennials are making some big changes in small ways. In a short time, the way we get around, where we vacation, and how we meet people evolved in new and fascinating directions. This, literally, is not your grandmother’s way to travel. A generation born to leap with technology and adapt to advances, millennials will continue to shape the trends of tomorrow, today.