Is It Irresponsible To Make Travel A Priority?

I love writing questions as blog titles, it makes me feel like Carrie Bradshaw. Well this is quite a Carrie Bradshaw post really… This is a question I ask myself a lot: Am I still allowed to prioritise travelling in my life?

As a 28 and two thirds year old woman, there is a lot of pressure on what I’m meant to do next. Sure when I was roadtripping around the US at 21, backpacking Southeast Asia at 23 and doing my working holiday in Australia at 24, it was acceptable for me to be travelling. These days it’s totally normally to take a gap year after uni and to clock some air miles in your early twenties. You know, get your travelling done before you “settle down”…

Tubing in Vang Vieng

Then in my mid-twenties I was a total cliche, house-sharing with fun girlfriends, having parties on the regs, putting my degree to use in an entry-level job and starting a travel blog on the side. It was all very millennial of me. Travel blogging was like a cute, quarter-life-crisis thing for me to do.

But at 28?

Now life is taking a weird, adult turn. As I approach the dreaded 30 milestone, it seems to be seen as selfish for me to still be putting travel in my crosshairs. Am I not done yet? Shouldn’t I be focussed on more grown-up activities like building a future? Should I be spending money on travel when I should instead be saving it for a house deposit or a wedding or my future offspring?

Quite frankly, fuck no.

Singapore skyline

Don’t get me wrong, I wholeheartedly back anyone who wants to do those things. I have friends that I’m quite proud of that have managed to get onto the property ladder and I love that some people want to get married and have children as soon as possible. It’s nice. But there’s no pressure on them to sort their lives out. According to society, they’re doing it right.

But the thing is, travel is what I love. And travel blogging in particular. So why should I give that up just because I’ve hit a certain age? It’s all just weird.

I do get the responsibility thing though, maybe I should be thinking about my future. Me and Josh talk about all the things we want from our lives but they’re all so expensive that it just seems ridiculously impossible. Whereas travel is an accessible goal we can actually do. We’d have to save for a decade to afford a house deposit but a trip to somewhere fabulous only needs a few months of saving really. So there’s that.

Riomaggiore, Italy

But then there’s long-term travel… Well, I’m not done yet.

I know there will be some form of career sabbatical in my future because there’s no way I’m just working until retirement now without long life-changing trips to break it up. But I’m not an entry-level graduate any more either. I have an actual real-life job that I really like and pays me a nice salary – not big enough for all those expensive life goals but enough to go for a cheeky Nando’s and not be worrying about my bank balance afterwards. So when am I allowed to do the long-term travelling thing again? Retirement??

Ugh, it’s all just very hard, figuring life out. Maybe I’m starting the “turning 30” freak-out early.

I don’t really know the point of this post other than to rant about how unfair it is that I get judged for choosing travel over responsibility. But really, can’t we all just do what the fuck we want?

What do you think? Am I getting too old to be gallivanting the world and blogging about it? Should I be settling down with a mortgage, a husband and 2.4 children? Am I actually Carrie Bradshaw right now? (Please say yes.) Let me know in the comments below or tweet me @HeelsInBackpack!

Montblanc, Spain

9 thoughts on “Is It Irresponsible To Make Travel A Priority?

  • 4th October 2016 at 8:09 am

    I am also 28 and have gone back to uni part time for 2 years but once I’m done then I’ll be either traveling across Canada or heading back to Australia. It’s my life and I will live it how I want and not how others think I should.
    If I’m asked whether it’s responsible or not then I will say it is far more responsible than getting pregnant when you aren’t in a secure relationship or financially able which seems to be one of the norms these days.

    • Kara // Heels In My Backpack
      4th October 2016 at 8:54 am

      Wow, I’m totally all about those adventures. The way I see it, it’s more stories for my future kids right? And I’m with you, being financially able beforehand is a lot more responsible than jumping the gun straight out of uni.

  • 4th October 2016 at 9:10 am

    Absolutely not, I’m 38 and still going, camino last year, I’ll get in a short camino this year hopefully. I’m going out to Australia for a year or two in December, there’s still so much to explore in Europe that I’ll have to come back. I’ve friends who are about to enter their 50s and they aren’t done yet. It’s just the requirement to work that stops me from travelling full time.

  • 5th October 2016 at 7:31 pm

    I’m glad I found this post! At 29 I’ve been having the same thoughts! Save now and travel, assuming at retirement age I’m still as mobile, later or travel now? Why wait? The world is out there and I want to see it all now!

  • Pingback:Blog Posts I’ve Enjoyed Recently – Francesca Andrews

  • 26th October 2016 at 7:55 pm

    I am 33 hun as I love travelling and I have so many places to visit before I settle down get married and have kids,but everyone else keeps telling me to save up and get married now.its like no one understands that I have plenty of time to do that.does everyone think that once you get past a certain age then u have to settle down or are we the new generation who does everything they want before kids and marriage

    • Kara // Heels In My Backpack
      26th October 2016 at 9:02 pm

      I think it’s definitely a generational thing, the world doesn’t work the way it used to. I mean I’m completely questioning the need to buy a house at all in my life. I think you’ve got plenty of time, Kelly! Go explore! Thanks for your in-depth comment, much appreciated 🙂


Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: