Travel for the over 50’s no longer has limits. Traditionally the over 50’s have been marketed “soft” tour options such as 5 star beach resorts, cruise ships offering Bridge and Croquet; and gentle coach tours through Southern France. Only recently have they been recognised as a market for Adventure Travel.
The over 50’s are an affluent market; they have disposable income, time to travel, desire to experience the real culture and want more adventurous travel. Whether climbing the Himalayas, overland camping safaris in Africa or multi-day trekking tours through developing countries, the over 50’s market is rapidly expanding.
With more over 50’s being computer literate they are seeking out options over the internet and are confident to book their ideal tour.
Where has this shift come from and why has it taken so long?
The 20-30 year old market has traditionally been the market with expendable income and time to travel. Over the past 10 years as the work culture has shifted to longer hours and less job security, housing markets have skyrocketed and the culture of living on credit is out of control. The 20-30 year old consumer has become less lucrative for the adventure travel market.
We are seeing fitter and more active over 50’s who have paid off the mortgage, kids have moved out of home; coupled with the age of internet and cable television making the global village more attractive and accessible. More and more are deciding that in their retirement there is more than just gardening and playing bridge on Wednesday night; they are wanting to break away form the norm and travel to places once seen as too hard and inappropriate for this age group.
It certainly has taken a very long time for the Adventure Travel market to recognise and value the over 50’s as prospective consumers of the global adventure travel. But as more and more recognise this market; options are set to increase in the future.
Deborah Thiele is Director of Africa Expedition Support; a safari company based in East Africa. Deborah has worked in the tourism arena for over 7 years in Africa, South America and the Middle East within an administrative role, tour leader and on-road trainer. She has completed 4 Trans Africa (UK to Cape Town) overland and lead hundreds of tours all over the World. Deborah is originally from Adelaide, Australia. More information is available via email email@example.com or http://www.africaexpeditionsupport.com