4 Ways My Travel Style Has Changed As I've Gotten Older
For as long as I can remember, I have loved travelling. I was the kid who counted down to family holidays with unbridled glee, and if you've been reading my blog for any length of time, you'll know that I like to get away as regularly as possible. There's nothing I love more than hopping on a plane (or jumping in the car) and setting off to explore a new part of the world, and I can't see my inner wanderlust dying down any time soon. I genuinely hope I'm still plotting my next travel destinations even when I'm old and grey, and Sam and I love to dream about the places we might visit at different stages of our life.
That being said, I have noticed that as I creep ever closer to the big 3-0, my travel style and preferences have definitely started to change. I'm sure it's natural, and I think lots of people probably feel the same way, so I thought I'd write a little blog post all about it.
Here are the 4 ways my travel style has changed as I've gotten older...
1) I'm less influenced by other people
I think it's natural that when you're a bit younger, a lot of your choices in life are influenced by other people. Add to that the fact that I social media came along just as I was entering adulthood, and I think you can see why so many of my holiday destinations have been swayed by the Facebook statuses and Instagram uploads of my friends and peers.
However, these days, I'm much more confident in my own travel style, and I know what key components I need to make me happy on holiday. Sure, I still find myself scrolling beautiful travel photos on Instagram, but knowing what my travel priorities more has made me much less influenced by other people.
2) I'm starting to prefer slower travel
As someone who spent her early twenties thriving on quick and busy city breaks, I never thought I'd see the day when I'd actively prefer a slower way of travel, and yet here I am. Don't get me wrong, I still love a good city break, but rather than just getting in, seeing the sights and leaving, I now want to make sure I have enough time to truly enjoy a place and everything it has to offer.
I've found myself shifting from weekend trips to longer breaks, and over-packed itineraries really don't do it for me anymore. I want more time to explore and get lost in a new place, and with my work life getting busier and busier, I crave the mental space to really take a break from real life.
3) My definition of adventure has changed
I used to think that adventure meant long haul flights to somewhere exotic and new, doing semi-dangerous things like jumping out of planes, and returning from a holiday with lots of wild, booze-fuelled stories to regale to my friends. That definition of adventure served me well throughout my early twenties, but it's safe to say that my thinking has definitely shifted.
Nowadays, my idea of adventure is quite different. My appetite is satiated with wild swimming and paddle boarding on a lake, or going off the beaten path to get a better view of the wildlife when we go walking. I'm still partial to ending my travel days with a beer, but I'm most likely to be supping it while wearing a professional anorak and walking boots - 21 year old Sophie wouldn't even recognise me right now.
4) I'm no longer swayed by the cheapest option
For the past decade or so, I've chosen my holiday destinations based purely on what fitted within my budget. We've flown to European cities because Ryanair had a sale on, we've stayed in certain districts because the accommodation was cheaper, and our food and entertainment options have been chosen to stretch our foreign currency further.
As I've gotten older and my disposable income has grown a little bit, my habits have changed to focus on the places I really want to visit, rather than just trying to get as much travel as possible for my buck. It's a nice feeling to be able to spend a little bit more on hotels and treat ourselves to a nice meal while we're away, and while I must admit that I'm still a sucker for a bargain, price isn't my only deciding factor anymore.
Do you think your travel style has changed as you've gotten older? What have been the biggest shifts?