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In 2014, the last group of Baby Boomers celebrated their 50th birthdays, while 2016 sets its own milestone with the first group of Boomers turning 70. Does that mean the original cool kid generation will begin to slow down their notoriously active lifestyles? Heck, NO! Baby Boomers are just getting started!

Naturally, there will be plenty of Baby Boomers getting ready to retire (or more realistically, semi-retire) and begin traveling to all the places they’ve spent the past few decades dreaming about. And after waiting and working for years to reach this point in their lives, don’t expect Boomers to skimp on any luxury… they are going all out!

While it’s hard to make generalizations about 78 million individuals (especially this trailblazing demographic), surveys, statistics and travel bookings do point to certain trends among Boomer travelers.

Want a better idea of what these Baby Boomer, jet-setters have in mind for this year’s travel plans? Take a look at our list of top 7 Baby Boomer travel trends for 2016.

#1 – 99% of Boomers will travel in 2016.

With so many hitting the age of retirement in the first wave, it makes sense that many Baby Boomers are planning to travel this year.

According to AARP’s survey, the number of Baby Boomers traveling in 2016 will reach an all-time high of ninety-nine percent—the majority of which have already planned and booked their getaways.

As one of the largest groups of Americans, the statistics found within this survey show a serious trend and “boom” to the travel industry. Furthermore, it validates what we already knew, that you can’t slow down the Baby Boomers!

We can’t say for sure which locations and activities will attract the most travel attention from the Boomers until the end of the year, but knowing Baby Boomers, it wouldn’t be surprising to see that they visited places known for adventure and risk-taking. Bring on the sky-diving!

How will they get to where they’re going? Naturally, the answer to that question depends somewhat on where the ultimate destination is (you know… since there are not many trains going from NYC to Tahiti), but within the realm of what’s feasible, the modes of transportation are widely varied between flights, drives, train rides and cruise lines.

Not only will the transportation industry see an influx in Baby Boomers, a unique blend of lodging types will be utilized, from the typical hotels and resorts to camping and home/space rentals.

#2 – Boomers will boost their travel budgets… big time.

Traveling costs can and usually, do add up rather quickly (airfare, car rentals, lodging, meals, activities, etc.); however, that doesn’t appear to discourage Baby Boomers from seeking a little R&R at their chosen destinations.

According to the survey, nearly two-thirds of the group stated that cost wasn’t a determining factor in their vacation planning.

The high percentage of Boomers who aren’t letting budgets interfere with their desire to “get away” reflects the carefree, somewhat rebellious nature often associated with America’s original cool kids. It’s as if to say “Hey, we’ve worked hard and now it’s time to enjoy the fruit of our labor!”

That’s just one idea on why Boomers are less concerned with travel costs, there is another component that undoubtedly helps in alleviating travel costs and, therefore, makes budget less of an issue—fuel prices.

average retail price chart

Chart Data Courtesy of GasBuddy.com

In 2008, fuel/gas prices reached a staggering high that kept many people at home. After that, it dipped dramatically, only to rise again, then slowly decrease over the following years. In 2016, fuel prices have reached an average price per gallon below the $2 mark. In turn, transportation services of all sorts have reduced their ticket prices and made travel not only more affordable but clearly more appealing.

#3 – Time to start working on the “bucket list”!

The infamous “bucket list” will be one of the biggest trends for Baby Boomers this year. After waiting for years to be in a place financially, professionally and personally that would allow them the freedom to do the things they’ve always dreamed of doing, Boomers are finally at the time in their lives where they can act on those dreams!

Roughly a third of Baby Boomers have planned a “bucket list” vacation for 2016, as noted by the AARP survey.

These vacation destinations include exotic locations that appeal to the Baby Boomer’s sense of adventure and desire to live life to the fullest!

Unlike the generations that proceeded them, this awesome generation of trendsetters is veering away from typical and, dare we say, cliche vacation spots, in favor of more adventurous locations that offer ways to rest and relax as well as delve into new and exciting activities and adventures.

America’s Boomers are increasingly interested in activities like skydiving, whitewater rafting, parasailing, hang-gliding, mountain biking and so forth. In fact, those are just an example of some items on the best bucket list EVER! If your vacation just so happens to include multiple bucket list items, you can always expand the list to include a few new reasons to go on your next trip!

Where do you plan to travel in 2016?

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