Put Down Your Phone: Millennial Men Hope To Meet ‘The One’ while Traveling
With the help of the digital revolution that has reshaped our lives beyond recognition, everything we do now has a new dimension – an “online” reality that allows for remote working, genuine reviews, and a wealth of information at our fingertips. But one trend that took the world by storm, and that I never really got the hang of, somehow dwindled as fast as it developed.
Digital empowered online dating, but ever since the millennials started working remotely and building their lives around opportunities to travel and see the world, it has somehow fallen off the grid. Now we’re looking at a whole new approach to finding romance, and its main fuel is your wanderlust.
The paradox of digital
The digital realm has many facets, all of them intertwined with each other, making our lives infinitely more complex and simpler at the same time. As soon as I got my first computer, I was ecstatic to get in touch with our family abroad, but then I discovered ICQ, and soon the social media exploded. The same friend who lived two tiny streets away and spent every day with me now sent me weekly emails, as she was too busy to see me. We were in high-school.
In college, it was a huge trend to set people up on a blind date or hook up online, both of which I refused to do and ended up single for three years despite attending dance classes, martial arts and volunteering. But geographically speaking, my options were limited, and men preferred the aforementioned two dating styles; so, in the world of unlimited connectedness, I felt lonely.
The modern-day dating realm
As my generation of millennials started embarking on their entrepreneurial journeys and gaining greater financial independence, travel slowly transitioned from a luxury into a lifestyle. I’ve heard people say that they’d rather book a spontaneous flight to a new city than spend that same money on a date, and it turns out that more than a third of millennials share this point of view.
And as a result, those same millennials who prefer to satisfy their wanderlust are eager to meet someone during their travels. Specifically, one in eight men in the same study expressed this attitude, showing a great shift in the modern millennial mindset. People are open and attracted to new cultures and the language barrier is almost non-existent, which completely alters the playing field.
The changing travel tendencies
I used to believe that my yearning for genuine, authentic, personal experiences was simply my own preference, but it seems that a great portion of every millennial’s life is focused on these values. Technology is on one side a way to connect, but it’s devoid of intimacy and real closeness, so it’s no wonder online dating and apps are slowly being replaced by more meaningful experiences.
The same values are reflected in the way we travel – instead of cookie-cutter vacations and templated travel arrangements, millennials prefer a tailor-made, personalized experience and a genuine peek into the worlds we’re visiting. Instead of bland hotels, we would choose to share accommodation any day, and little-known hiking trails are our first choice as opposed to balmy beaches chock-full of tourists.
The millennial way to connect
Yes, there are those who slouch over their phones and raise their heads only when it’s time for a selfie, you see them in every café or every city in the world. But those who are on a real soul-searching and soul-mate-searching adventure are the ones who are growing in numbers and thus shaping the dating scene. The digital serves us as a means to an end, whether that is to book a flight or look for an available apartment abroad, but not to establish meaningful social connections.
On the contrary, we, the digital generation, crave eye-contact, real-life experiences and a face-to-face conversation to connect and bond, especially if it’s for life. And it makes sense to meet the one while traveling, doesn’t it? It means you’d come across someone who felt drawn to the same place and the same energy at the same moment in life as you did. And finally, what are the chances that you share even deeper values beyond that one serendipitous encounter if their passion for travel defines them as much as it defines you?