Traveller lifestyle: backpacking as a way of life
Over the last decade there’s been an increase in the number of people deciding to change their lifestyles and start a completely new life, more based on discovering and living experiences than on owning anything, as a way to connect with “real life” and get rid of the “materialistic” lifestyle by travelling with nothing else than a backpack. More recently, some industry events have started to include conferences and forums around this topic.
There are some travel agencies specialised in around the world trips, especially in English speaking countries, where doing a trip like this is slightly more common than in others, mainly due to a mix of economic, cultural and language reasons. However, something that before was just a ‘gap year’ for young students, has increasingly become much more than that and a lot of people plan their trip on their own, becoming something deeper, more personal and thoughtful, a real change in life, and although those who do it are still young, most of them are not recent graduates anymore.
Why is this happening?
After reading many different books, articles, blogs and content around that, the reasons are mainly the same for all of them: a need for taking the control of their lives, going back to the basics by living a live richer in personal experiences, learnings and fulfillment, getting rid of the scheduled live, the “social expectations” of the occidental cultures, to follow their own personal rhythm, working to live instead of living to work.
Briefly, they all share values of humanity, flexibility, humility, respect, openmindness and slowliving. At the same time, the decrease in flight prices has massively helped.
The solution for this is to find a way to continue earning money to finance this lifestyle, working remotely while travelling. The number of initiatives and programs that support this have increased dramatically.
New social values, new working spaces
Is not new to say that due to many social and economic reasons, the concept of work and workplaces has changed after the economic crisis. A new generation of entrepreneurs, freelancers and start-up ecosystems, along with an increase of co-working options, the idea of working for a hierarchy in a Mon-Fri /9-5 office is becoming an old concept and although most companies have started to offer “flexible hours” or even “working from home” benefits, sometimes it’s a promise that not always becomes as flexible as expected by the employee, not to mention that for a lot of companies these benefits are still a luxury that they can’t afford or a perception of a risk (feeling of losing control over the employee) that they are not ready to take.
However, this minority who decided to take the reins of their lives will continue to increase and to request more real flexibility and humanity from the organisations. Due to a loss of believe in the status-quo, most people are starting to believe in their own personal goals and “dreams” doing what it takes to live their life in their own way and making sure they make their dreams come true, beyond professional or social established expectations.