Monday, April 10, 2006

Boomers afraid of retirement?

As we have spoken to people, an interesting thing has happened. Our message has really expanded to encompass the whole “reinventing retirement” or “phase II life” issues. As everything in the boomers lives, they are changing the face of retirement.

A Del Webb study a couple of years ago uncovered that 45% of boomers say that travel will be their #1 expenditure in retirement, and travel related companies are getting ready for the boomers. ElderHostel has started a new program called Road Scholars that is targeted squarely at the more adventurous, independent and wealthier boomers. The cruise industry is including things like climbing walls on their ships and planning shore excursions that include hiking, biking, kayaking and other more adventurous options. The internet has spawned a whole group of sites that have trip planning help (like us!) to assist those independent research-oriented boomers to “do-it-yourself.”

What we are finding is that there is a whole group of boomers who are actually AFRAID of retirement – they say they will never retire, or not until they are “old” – because they can’t conceive of our parents retirement – golf and the rocking chair! Well, quite frankly, neither can we. What we advocate is to find your second life. Planning a long trip like we did, is only the beginning, and a great way to help figure out what your “phase II” plan might include.

Boomers are intent on giving meaning to their lives, and up until now, work has been that primary identity, and many are unsure what else there is, so they just plan to continue doing what they are doing. We believe there is a whole new set of experiences to be explored in the second half of our life. If you have thoughts to add to the conversation, please send them along.

No comments: