A recent survey by ME found that Australians think being well travelled is more important than buying a home, with many choosing to take on, or delay paying off, debt in order to travel.
According to an ME travel survey of 1,000 adults conducted in October 2019 by research provider Pureprofile, one in three Australians values travel over home ownership.
The desire to travel over getting onto the property ladder was more prevalent with young adults – those aged between 18 and 24 – with 50 per cent saying they would rather be well travelled than own a home.
The survey found that travel has become such a priority for Australians generally that a third of respondents stated they have delayed life goals – such as buying a home, getting married and having kids – in order to travel overseas.
Moreover, the cost of an overseas holiday (which was found to be $8,000, according to the survey) was worth the expense for 93 per cent of respondents.
Indeed, 19 per cent of those surveyed said they had gone into debt in order to travel, while 14 per cent had taken an overseas holiday before paying off the entire debt of a previous trip.
The other big-ticket items Australians said they were willing to go into debt for are: home ownership (58 per cent), education (29 per cent), and a business venture (28 per cent).
“Younger people’s tendency to value travel more than home ownership could be a factor of youth, but also the current price of housing may be playing into the choice as home ownership becomes less attainable,” commented ME’s money expert, Matt Read.
“ME’s survey highlights travel is a high spending priority for Australians, and given the costs associated, it’s worth saving for in advance as you would for a car or home.
“Travel can also be costly given it’s a highly emotional experience – it’s easy to get swept up in the romanticism of spending on holidays. Being careful and putting some limits on your spending can ensure costs don’t get too out of hand,” he said.