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Anyone done long term travel later in life?

(13 Posts)
Starfish5 Thu 26-Nov-20 07:20:02

God I miss the world, this pandemic is shit. So, when kids finish school nowadays they’re often encouraged to have a gap year which pre covid involved travel, especially the whole backpacking around Europe/Asia (at least that’s where they usually go where I’m from).

Has anyone done the whole cheap-travel-explore-the-world-for-months on-end thing later in life? I’m in my late 40s and never did and I so so so so want to. I just hope I haven’t left it too late, am I too old for that type of travel now? I have been to countries other than my own but they are the 2 week trip thing, see the highlights and go home. It’s not the same as months on end to explore and see where you end up.

Please cheer me up and give me hope with your long term travel later in life stories. Even the crap ones where it didn’t turn out the way you wanted and you went home. grin I have 7 months of leave saved up and if I still have a job after the end of this bloody pandemic I am going somewhere long haul on a plane and not coming back for ages.

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Malin52 Thu 26-Nov-20 07:31:27

At 45 I left London to move to Sydney for 6 months. At 47 I left London to travel,live and work in New Zealand. Still here.

Wellthisismorethanabitgrim Thu 26-Nov-20 07:38:32

Not yet but that's the plan! I'm 48 and waiting for 55 when I can access my pension, then we'll be selling up and heading off around the world for a year or two (assuming we still can). Will probably go back to work for a few years when we return before retiring 'properly' but I want to go while I'm hopefully still young enough and fit enough to really make the most of it rather than wait until my mid sixties (I know a lot of people are still fit and healthy at that age btw, but I figure the older I get the more likely it is that health conditions start to creep in that could make it difficult). That's the plan anyway, just hoping life doesn't get in the way!

FippertyGibbett Thu 26-Nov-20 07:40:05

I am waiting for the youngest to go to Uni, then we will be going off on an adventure or two.

mdh2020 Thu 26-Nov-20 08:20:35

My daughter had a gap year from work in her late 30s and went to Australia. She had a good time but said she couldn’t stay all the time in the hostels which were full of young people. You have to keep your belongings locked in a locker the whole time , even if you just go to the loo. She alternated hostels and hotels for a bit of privacy and comfort.

McRibpain Thu 26-Nov-20 08:31:45

My travel partner was 58. 6 months around the world. Jumped out of planes, climbed mountains and glaciers, white water rafting, partying, elephant riding, sailing, football in Rio, diving. I could go on! You do need hostels to make friends. It's never too late.

CMOTDibbler Thu 26-Nov-20 08:36:11

My great aunt (who had never been further than 10 miles from her home) travelled round europe in her new partners campervan for 6 months in her 80's

Oceangirl82 Thu 26-Nov-20 08:51:53

Have you thought of sailing, I left England in 2014 on a catamaran, with my husband ATM I am in England but husband is stuck in Australia with the boat.

Anyway lots of people crew for others, either singles or pairs. You crew, cook etc Can be a boat with just the captain, could be more people, bigger boat. The ages I have encountered range from eighteen to seventy two.

Happy to answer any questions

TheClitterati Thu 26-Nov-20 08:59:55

I haven't but when I was travelling in my 20s I met loads of old people in their 40s 50s and 60s who were backpacking, often alone.

My friend rents a small apartment in village Tuscany via air B&B. Many of his clients are people who are basically homeless, often renting out their own homes, and travelling around the world staying a month or two in each location before moving on. They might do this for really long periods of time. It's a modern alternative to backpacking. If you don't fancy the high-speed travelling of one place after another, it is always an option to just stay somewhere for a month in a nice little apartment before moving on. This Really appeals to me now as I don't have the desire to see everything but really do like to experience living in different communities.

SerafinaPekkala Thu 26-Nov-20 09:23:55

I did 6 months backpacking when I was mid 30s - superb fun, though we did tend upgrade ourselves to private rooms not dorms in hostels. We had a basic plan (it's quite a faff to get visas for Mongolia/Russia etc so this had to be planned) but kept everything as flexible as possible. The max we stayed in any one place was 3 days. And we only had to sleep on the floor once!
And early 40s I packed up and moved to the Middle East, where I am now. I am now looking at my next move - possibly Portugal or Croatia...there's a lot of world out there.

Oceangirl82 Thu 26-Nov-20 10:09:38

Forget to say I was 52 and husband 42 when we set out in 2014.

Starfish5 Thu 26-Nov-20 11:07:26

Everything sounds so interesting, I so much want to see and do it all. I love your ideas and plans. My partner is keen enough too, so once the youngest finishes school in three years I’d love to do something.

@Wellthisismorethanabitgrim I’m 48 too but can’t access my superannuation (what you call pension I think) until I’m 60. But I think we can do something smaller before then.

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Starfish5 Thu 26-Nov-20 11:14:15

@CMOTDibbler wow 80, travelling around Europe in a campervan yes please!

@Oceangirl82 I’d certainly like boating around shorelines but I’m not sure about the wide open sea! I have watched too many movies with massive swells and storms. grin We do have a tinny which we take onto the river but I’m not keen on crossing the bar and going out to sea, not even in something bigger.

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