To travel is one of life’s greatest privileges. Seeing the world, discovering new cultures and beholding some of the greatest sights the planet has to offer need not be justified, though sometimes the cost involved can be difficult to justify for even those with the most intense wanderlust.
Passing the age of 50 is a bellwether moment for many, particularly with regard to something as profound as travel. Retirement edges closer, and the feasibility of certain experiences starts to fall. As someone approaching middle-age, how should you think about your next holiday experiences?
First Things First – Budget
As someone approaching retirement age – welcome or not a fact as that may be – you should be open to a holiday free of budgetary restrictions. Your holidays, from now on, should be the type that worry less about scrimping and saving. However, this, perhaps counterintuitively, requires budgeting all of its own.
You might already have a retirement plan in place, encompassing your pension, savings and investments. This is all well and good, but the cost of large one-off or impulse events is often not taken into consideration. In order to finance your once-in-a-lifetime trip, you might need to think more carefully about options like equity release in order to preserve your savings kitty. With more capital at your hands, you can go all-out on the holiday you deserve. Speaking of which…
Japan is a bucket-list destination for a great many people, being a small island jam-packed with activities and experiences. A visit to Japan can be as surface-level or as deep as you like, whether you choose to immerse yourself in the neon lights and arcades of central Tokyo or the Arashiyama bamboo forest of Kyoto. And this is saying nothing of the incredible Mt. Fuji views that can be accessed and enjoyed within an hour’s bullet train ride from pretty much anywhere…
Italy is much closer to home, and a much more accessible holiday destination for the average citizen. As such, you might have already visited once or twice – but the time, freedom and new interests that middle age affords you makes Italy so much more of a playground. With a little more money, too, you can spend more time there, soaking in some of its best locations – be they the vineyards of Florence or the posher restaurants of Rome!
Across Europe and down into the Iberian Peninsula, we come across Portugal – an extremely underrated holiday destination, often overshadowed by its football team’s global stature. Portugal is an eminently excellent option for an extended holiday trip, though, for numerous reasons. Its cultural highlights, from the ancient ruins in Porto to the museum pieces of Lisbon, beg to be explored; the coastline and weather are certainly not to be sniffed at, either.