A quick stroll through your Instagram feed will help educate you what are the things that millennials like defining themselves by. The bio of a person is enough to give you an insight on how they like to describe themselves. Sapiosexual, Gym Freak, Book Lover, Potter head. These are some of the most common bios that you’ll come across online. However, there’s none more common that Wanderlust, which you’ll probably find on every second profile online.
If we go by the Cambridge Dictionary, Wanderlust refers to “the wish to travel far away and to many different places”. And boy do millennials have that as a priority. According to a recent survey by Realty Mogul, 47 percent of young people between the ages of 18 and 34 would rather spend their money on travelling than buying a house, compared to only 26 percent of those ages 45 and older who said the same. Another research conducted by Adara found out that about 79% of the millennials prioritised travel above any other expense.
Why are Millennials Obsessed with Wanderlust?
Indian millennials follow the global trends as well. While travelling in itself is not an issue and certainly has its perks, travelling for the sake of travel and social media popularity certainly is. A study conducted by Ixigo showed a damming statistic. 36% of Indian millennials are choosing destinations based on its 'Instagrammability. “If I would say that clicking pictures that can be posted online is something that’s not on my mind when I’m on vacation, I’d be lying. While obviously, I don’t choose a destination based on how the photos would come out, but that thought certainly holds some merit while travelling” says Megha, a college student who usually can be found travelling almost every month.
Put it simply the only reason millennials are so eager to travel is so that they can make picturesque posts from exotic locations, kind of like what they see on their feed on a daily basis.
While taking pictures is one thing, travelling just for the sake of it is another, and there’s a fair amount of millennials that’re doing exactly that. The fact that millennials are looking to travel just for the sake of posting pictures on their Instagram with the over used caption of “ Not all those who wander are lost” is worrisome. “I try to get out of the city whenever I can. We usually have a 6-day working week, so whenever there’s a holiday coming up, I do everything I can to make a trip out of it. Lonavala, Igatpuri or even Imagica. I’d do anything to just get out of here for a while!” said Achal.
The Problem With The Wanderlust Obsession
Travelling for pleasure is fair enough, but why do millennials have Wanderlust put up on their social media bios? “I don’t know I put it up at the start only. It’s just a vibe nothing more” says Dhrumin. On being asked when was the last time he went for a vacation or did something to feed that travel bug of his, the reply was pretty interesting. “I haven’t had a chance to travel in a while, my parents are pretty strict and I’m broke half the time!”
The obsession with Wanderlust is problematic for the reason that it is driven by what social media and travel blogs show us, and is not something that we feel intrinsically. Even while travelling, the obsession to post stories of what we’re doing every minute holds more importance than basking in your surroundings and actually relaxing during your time off. We’re constantly looking to emulate what some travel blogger did on his trip or are checking Tripadvisor to find the top-rated spot. Rather we should be focusing on exploring the place ourselves and having our own unique experiences.
Wanderlust In The True Sense
The love for Wanderlust is not all frivolous and vain though. “ I use the word in my bio because it serves as a reminder to me to take a break from my daily hustle and just visit someplace that I would not usually,” said Kavya. “ It’s there in my bio because that’s what I want to do with my life. Whenever I’m having a bad day, I tend to go through my memories of the places I visited with friends and family, and that kind of keeps me going. So yes, while I don’t travel as much as I would like to, whenever I do, I try to make the most of it” said Daksh.
All those who wander are not lost after all.