Travel habits naturally go through changes over the years, mostly thanks to new technology, major events, and shifting lifestyles.

We’re on the verge of liquids being allowed on planes (no more hassle with the 100ml bottle limits). Do you remember how young people used to travel with their PC’s to attend a LAN party with their mates? (This always makes me think of SouthPark). Now, they can game together from the comfort of their own home.

Of course, let’s not forget that air travel is now more regulated than in the 70’s and 80’s. It seems almost unimaginable that people used to smoke cigarettes on planes and board their flights without rigorous security checks. So, what else has changed over the decades?

Solo travel became popular

Travelling alone wasn’t as popular several decades ago, as most people preferred to explore new destinations accompanied by friends or family. Gen X began changing this in the 90’s, and us Millennials followed, with a boom in solo travel.

Nowadays we can see travel companies are starting to target this audience and have guides and pages all around the subject, while bloggers such as myself try to share tips and advice for people who are taking on a new adventure alone.

Back a few decades ago, the majority of solo travel was predominantly car based rather than by plane, with road trips to see mates being a popular option.

The perfect example of this was the previously mentioned LAN party. The availability of the internet and the subsequent rise of online gaming made these gatherings rare. But in the 90’s and 2000’s, it was perfectly normal to pack your computer and travel for hours just to join your friends in a LAN party where you played your favourite video games together in the same room.

The emphasis on sustainable travel

Sustainability was a rarely discussed topic back in the day, but climate change has made us all more aware of the environment. People want to help restore our planet and are willing to spend more time researching travel destinations to reduce their carbon footprint and find eco-friendly accommodation, not to mention more ethical ways of travelling for a holiday.

Communities around the globe are gradually embracing these changes, and many countries, big and small, are making gigantic steps toward sustainability through different programs that promote local businesses and wildlife preservation. Therefore, sustainable travel is the future!

Tighter air travel security

The attacks on the World Trade Center were a pivotal moment that changed the way we travel forever. The security measures at border crossings and airports are completely different to just a few decades ago. Many of us couldn’t even imagine that it was allowed to hang out with friends at the boarding gate until it was time to enter the plane.

Nowadays, travellers are required to go through several security screenings to ensure that everyone on board is safe. The luggage is checked before boarding the flight, and each passenger is required to show their documents to the authorities. Passengers themselves have to be aware of the list of items prohibited on planes and follow the rules of air travel. That’s before you realise you left your laptop in the bag and you have to wait 20 minutes for the airport staff to sift through your bag.

Nomadic working

While digital nomads were somewhat an alternative lifestyle in the 2010’s, the Covid pandemic confirmed that it’s possible to work from home and stay productive without being present in an office. Remote work opened a whole new world for people who wanted to explore but felt bound to a single location. They say the office workspace developed 10 years in the space of 12 months.

Bosses were forced to accept that you didn’t need to take on a brutal commute and be in at the crack of dawn to prove you’re working hard.

You’re now free to visit several destinations in a single year and continue working. I know a number of people who have taken half days and worked while abroad in the morning, then had the afternoon off to enjoy the sights.

The freedom of movement and the ability to set up a workspace regardless of location could be quite beneficial for the overall mental health of the workforce. All you need is a reliable internet connection!

The less frequented destinations

Popular tourist destinations are often crowded and too noisy. After all, millions of people visit cities like London, Paris, Rome, New York, and Tokyo every year. Frequent travelers are now more willing to explore less frequented destinations, commonly known as ‘hidden gems’. Luckily, the internet makes it easier to find such places and make all the necessary arrangements (maybe not so lucky for the locals who want some peace and quiet).

Many bloggers and vloggers are commonly sharing these beautiful areas that people might not be aware of, getting you off the beaten track and allowing you to see some breathtaking views. So, if you want to visit a different location during your holiday and avoid overcrowded touristy places, you’ll find some unbelievable tips on YouTube (or blogs like this one).

Social media inspiration

The influence of social media on modern travel is undeniable, and it’s hard to imagine it wasn’t as widely available just 20 years ago. Tourist boards of many countries use it to reach potential visitors with eye-catching content. Plus you have a vast range of influencers and celebrities who are always on the lookout for the next Instagrammable location.

A reel on Instagram or a clip on TikTok can provide thousands of impressions and inspire people to take their next holiday. Looking back, most people got inspiration from word of mouth, TV and magazines, but the digital landscape has evolutionised the source of travel inspiration.

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