British teens travelling further than ever before as parents indulge kids with long-haul holidays – The Sun
THE average child will have travelled more than 3,500 miles around the world by the time they reach 15 – almost twice as far as their own parents had at the same age.
At this point they will have already been on four holidays abroad, catching numerous flights and visiting continents as far-flung as the Middle East and South America.
In contrast, at the same age parents had travelled just 2,185 miles in total, rarely going further than a European destination.
Commissioned by Heathrow Express, the study of 2,000 parents with children up to 15 also found six in 10 reckon a holiday abroad is the perfect place to create family memories.
A spokesman for Heathrow Express, which offers free travel to kids aged 15 and under, said: “It’s brilliant to see the world of travel has opened up for a new generation.
“It’s clear the world is smaller than ever before and a world of opportunities for travel has opened up for the young generation of today.
“Air travel is now much more accessible, making it possible for millions more youngsters to expand their horizons all over the globe.”
The survey also found nearly two thirds of adults hadn’t been on a plane at all by the age of 15.
Money topped the list of reasons grown-ups didn’t explore more of the world when they were younger.
However, nearly a fifth said it simply ‘wasn’t the done thing’ for kids to be jetting off around the globe, in decades gone by.
PARENTS KEEN TO TAKE KIDS TRAVELLING
Another one in 10 said their parents didn’t want to travel with young kids in tow, so kept holidays closer to home.
Sixty-four per cent do wish they’d been able to visit more foreign countries when they were children though.
And now, three in 10 of those polled, via OnePoll, say they don’t consider a holiday to be ‘real’ unless it’s abroad.
Parents are now trying to make up for the young travelling experiences they missed, with nine in 10 believing travel is important to a child’s upbringing.
Half say it’s important for kids to get out of their normal day-to-day routines, and 29 per cent would like their children to learn another language.
It also emerged 45 per cent also believe it’s better to take their family on fewer holidays that are bigger and better, than more smaller trips.
On average, kids today go on their first holiday at just two-and-a-half years old – with a quarter travelling internationally before their first birthday.
Almost seven in 10 parents also report their children are much more culturally aware than they were at the same age, due to their extensive travels.
Heathrow Express’s spokesman added: “Our results were really positive in terms of finding out how much travel means to the nation.
“If people weren’t able to get away as much as they would have liked when they were young, they’re going the extra mile – literally – to ensure their kids have that option.
“Going abroad to somewhere far-flung and exotic is a really great bonding tool for families, and can create fond lifetime memories.
“And with kids 15 and under travelling free on Heathrow Express it’s now even easier to get away.”
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