While I recognize as people retire they often suggest that they look forward to travelling more in their latter years, but aren’t they also the ones less willing to spend money, a reader of my column in the Winnipeg Free Press asked?

Given their growing numbers and their desire for budget travel, one could assume that their influence would create a deteriourating  effect on the quality of travel packages available around the world?

In fact, I found that as I did some research, if one of the giants in the travel industry is correct, the opposite effect is taking place.

Amadeus, the worldwide organization that has been around a long time, says their analysis shows this burgeoning demographic could be the driving force in growing demand in the luxury tourism market.

Today’s retirees, they suggest, are more fit that ever before. They are healthy, have more income at their disposal and are educated and interested in destinations previous generations may have not even considered.

While they continue to contribute to the rising popularity in cruising, including luxury cruising, Gallipolis, Thailand, Argentina, and Tibet and so many other exotic destinations are part of their of their travel plans, which they perceive as realistic and fully intend to follow through with.

With unencumbered schedules, they can take longer journeys, with the averages ranging from 12 to 16 days.

Check out a Canadian magazine like Zoomer, directed to the 50-plus market and you will see many stories that fulfil the travel aspirations of the new ‘boomer.’

There is no question that not everyone has saved for a high-end travel retirement, but there is more wealth in the hands of those who are retiring today than ever before as well.

I should have known this without the research.

I see it every day in the seniors who drop into the Journeys store at the corner of Donald and Wardlaw in Winnipeg. While we don’t have a demographic measurement for our online purchases, it is apparent from some of the conversations we do have with online seniour customers that the results are the same.

Seniors want quality.

We can see it in their purchases of Tilley Hats and clothing. In their selection of travel accessories, and in quality they look for when purchasing luggage.

The world may be changing demographically but there is no dumbing down of tourist product because of the demands of the retiring boomer generation. If anything they are driving quality expectations higher.

If you have travel questions forward them to askjourneys@journeystravel.com. I will answer them by email and publish them in my weekly column, in this blog, and talk about them on my weekly one hour travel show which you can listen to live on CJOB every Sunday at noon Central Time.

You can read previous Ask Journeys on line and you can listen to previous radio shows as well.

Safe Journeys Always

Ron Pradinuk