20 People Got Candid On How Their Travel Preferences Evolved Over The Years
While we took a breather from all travel during the pandemic, it’s back with a vengeance and folks are back to their explorations with pent-up gusto. Of course, having had a little breather in-between has caused most peeps to change quite a bit in their travel expectations and that’s reflected in their travel style.
One curious netizen sparked a unique discussion on the subject asking folks how and why their travel style has shifted over the years. Scroll below for an interesting read on new habits, tips and personal stories shared by folks explaining their most surprising travel-style evolutions.
#1 Someone told me that you’ll never remember how much that cool thing you want to do cost, but you will always remember the cool thing. It made sense to me. Thinking back at my trips I can’t remember how much any single event was. Going in the Colosseum or eating a nice meal, whatever it may be.
#2 I’ve lost pretty much all interest in night life. I’ve found that bars/clubs are pretty much the same everywhere. I like having one nightcap, getting to bed early, and waking up refreshed.
#3 Valuing personal comfort more: comfy bed, private bathroom, upgraded seat. Once you get a fancy airplane seat it’s hard to go back. Also, I mostly travel solo and I’m not as shy talking to strangers — either other travelers or locals. This has made a big difference
#4 We used to fly every vacation. It gave us the possibility to go to some wonderful places. But now with how bad the airlines are I have zero interest in flying. We are doing more road trips and are much happier for it. Even though it limits our range.
I need extra days off when I get back…. I used to be able to work the next day after coming back.
Image source: lowhangingpeach
I have tried to get into the mindset that for vacation travel the fun starts when you leave the house so finding ways to enjoy the drive to the airport, the wait in the airport, if having to lay over have longer ones to reduce stress. Airport restaurants might not be the best but browse and find something to enjoy, shop the shops even if not buying anything, have a friend drive you to the airport/pick you up and use that time to connect, have a good book to read…. I used to work hard to minimize the time in the airport, showing up just in time, short layovers… but I realized the stress wasn’t worth the gain
As our family grew to 6 we realized that most of the middle to higher end chains have occupancy restrictions that are a bit tough to beat with 4 kids running around.
But we have found that the old school motels with all of the rooms having their own door to the outside have become KING. They don’t see/care how many kids you fit in there. No hallways to carry your s**t down.
And at the end of the night, we can close the door with them safely in bed and sit outside our door and enjoy a drink together, something that absolutely can’t be done in modern hotels.
Finding really cool rehabbed ones has become our travel goal
#8 I don’t do restaurants except for dinner. I go to the grocery store periodically as I travel and buy fruit, bread, cured meats, wine, and something sweet, then work my way through it as I go. Healthier, cheaper, and a fascinating experience.
#9 In the last year or so, I’ve stopped trying to do everything. I’ve found that my happiest travel moments were when I made no plans and just did whatever felt right in the moment. Sometimes that might be just finding one spot I want to be and just soaking up my surroundings for the day. It’s hard to stay present when I’m worried about trying to do it all and see it all.
#10 When I first started traveling – it was hostels all the way. Now I couldn’t ever imagine myself going to one. Why share a room with people who have alarms set for their 5am flight and need to share one bathroom
#11 When I travel somewhere, I always save a day and plan nothing. Then I’m able to fit in things I come across as I travel (but didn’t plan for) or I just roam and recharge and go where the day takes me. I call it my Ferris Bueller day
Paying more for fewer flights also reduces the chance of one delayed flight causing missed connections and having to spend even more time in transit. Arriving exhausted after long layovers and already long flight times requires more recovery time before I can get to the fun part of the trip.
I know it’s a luxury, but I also can’t imagine going back to economy for long flights. I can’t afford first class, but that mid-tier with bigger seats and adequate leg room is such an improvement and worth the extra money if I have it.
Image source: punitive_tourniquet
#13 Less is more. Less planning, less luggage, less expectations, less stress. Less is more
#14 How much I love staying in fully equipped apartments, especially with a little one. Having one or even two bedrooms and a washer dryer is an absolute game changer. I’m definitely willing to spend more for that added comfort.
On that note, I’ve learned you need to account for comfort and not everything needs to be walked to or going on public transport. Taxis/Ubers are worth the money when you’re tired or can’t get there conveniently.
#15 FOOD TOURS. What an amazing interactive way to not only learn about the food, but also culture and history. They’re pricey but soooo worth it. You get to discover so many new local foods that don’t usually make it onto “must eat” lists.
#16 Tours. I’ve mainly traveled alone. When I was younger, it was easier to think I knew all about what I should see and what I was seeing. Now I appreciate being in a small group, whether just for a day or several, and having someone talk me through it a bit.
EDIT: I should have specified: we’ll-vetted, small-group tours. I don’t want to be on a bus stopping for obligatory photo-ops and listening to pre-recorded descriptions.
AirBNB vs Hotels: I love the concept of AirBNBs but I’ve had more and more issues with them. I stray towards hotels mostly now.
Flights: I detest economy. I value my comfort. Anything longer than 90m and I’ll go up a comfort level. If that means I travel less, so be it.
Flights: I opt for no layovers whenever possible now. It sometimes costs a bit extra or means I have to use ground travel when I arrive, but cancellations on my 2nd leg has caused me enough problems that I don’t want to deal with it anymore.
Airport lounges: I pay for access now. Having a more comfortable seat and access to free coffee (and snacks, food, drinks if available) is worth it for me. If it means I don’t get to travel as much as I want, so be it.
Cruises: I didn’t understand the draw of cruises. Finally took one. Cruises are now solidly in my rotation.
TL;DR — as I get older I get grumpier and value comfort, ease of travel and avoiding the unknown as much as possible.