Millennials, Freelance, and Travel: What Will Our Future Look Like?

Humor me for a moment. 

Imagine not being restricted by time sheets or vacation days. Imagine booking a vacation and not having a specific return date on the horizon. You have the freedom to stay for as long or as short as you’d like. 

Now, if you have children, imagine taking them with you. Picture them learning about different environments and cultures not from a book or TV, but from experiencing them first hand. 

What kind of world do you think we’d have if everyone had that opportunity? We may be closer than you think. 

 I’ve been going through lists of statistics that show we may not be too far off from this reality. I’ve compiled some into the list below for you to review and form your own opinions.

Let’s Start With Talking About Freelancing/Remote Jobs:

Freelancing has become a viable option for those who want more flexibility and control over their schedules. Even if it means letting go of guarantees that come with working for someone else. (Like a steady paycheck and 401k)

The gig economy appeals to most millennials and Gen zs
Photo from the Deloitte Global Millennial Survey

Every year the amount of freelancers increase, voluntarily or not.

 “Millennials indicated they would not hesitate to do freelance or contract work. Overall, the gig economy appeals to four in five millennials and Gen Zs. Only 6 percent of millennials said they’ve chosen to be part of the gig economy instead of working full time, but 50 percent said they would consider it, and 61 percent would take gig assignments to supplement existing employment.”

Personally, freedom and flexibility throughout my day is why I’ve decided to be a freelancer.

Freelancing has provided this already not just for individuals, but families too. It’s been predicted that “ [b]y 2020 it’s estimated that roughly half the UK and American workforce will be freelance and that 40 per cent more children were being home-schooled in 2017 than in 2014 (48,000 in total), it’s no surprise that parents will be embracing the freedom this gives.” (CN Traveller 2019)

Now Let’s Look at Tourism

It’s no secret that Millennials and our younger counterparts Gen Z love traveling. We’d much rather spend our money on experiences than something materialistic. Traveling ranks above earning a high salary and far more than having children.

Priorities and aspirations of millennials and gen z
The Deloitte Global Millennial Survey 2019.

But those with children are still traveling significantly: 

“On average globally, travelers with Gen Alphas (those born after 2010) are taking more than three family trips a year.” (Expedia Group 2019)

The benefits of traveling doesn’t stop with family education. But also personal fulfillment.

Personal fulfillment sees travelers making their destination choice based on their own development. “Over half (56%) of global travelers agree traveling has taught them invaluable life skills, and 2019 sees a rise in people’s desire to learn something new whilst away, as well as an increase in volunteering and skills-based vacations across generations.” ( 2019)

Which Leads to Talking About Sustainable Travel.

Climate change has been a hot topic this year that has resulted in millions of people participating in hundreds of protests all around the world. The public are looking for ways to contribute to the cause and many are using travel to do it. Even something like staying at an eco-friendly accommodation.

According to the sustainability travel report, “over half (55%) of global travelers report being more determined to make sustainable travel choices than they were a year ago, but barriers include a lack of knowledge and available or appealing options when trying to put this into practice.” ( 2019)

These sustainable decisions include accommodation. “73% of global travelers intending to stay at least once in an eco-friendly or green accommodation when looking at the year ahead.” ( 2019)3. “Additionally, 70% of global travelers say they would be more likely to book an accommodation knowing it was eco-friendly, whether they were looking for a sustainable stay or not.” ( 2019)

“Additionally, 70% of global travellers say they would be more likely to book an accommodation knowing it was eco-friendly, whether they were looking for a sustainable stay or not.” ( 2019)

glowing thumb print

So What’s Next?

With demand comes supply. Sustainable travel is going to explode with new ideas and innovations. 

One thing is clear, traveling and tourism is taking off more than any other point in time and there’s no sign of it slowing down. If anything, we’re seeing the market expand with new sustainable accommodations, off the beaten path tours, family tours, along with new and increased flight options to meet demand.  

More people are working remotely, or through freelance and an ever increasing amount of children are being home-schooled, with the world as their classrooms. 

I’m hoping that as we continue to learn and grow, the world will learn how to work together again. Having an ability to travel with less restrictions about when we go or how long we’re gone will give us an opportunity to see and meet people on the other side of the planet. We’ll be able to learn that they are just like us in more ways than not. That’s my hope at least. What’s yours?

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