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With the restrictions on international and interstate travel introduced during COVID, many Australians were forced to give up their plans and dreams for exploring the wider world or even their own backyard. Now that the world and Australia has opened up once more, we’re seeing the travel industry experience a big rebound in demand. It’s led to travel website Expedia coining the term GOAT – Greatest Of All Trips.1 If the queues for new and renewed passports are anything to go by, it seems that GOAT has definitely been a thing for Australians. Research also tells us that one in two Australians were saving for a holiday in 2022.2 In this article we explore emerging trends for Australians travelling in retirement and share tips for planning and budgeting to make sure a ‘GOAT’ lives up to expectations.

Where are Australians travelling in 2022?

As state and international borders began to open early in 2022, most Australians weren’t yet ready to travel overseas. According to a survey only 25 per cent were planning for their next holiday to be an international one, with 75 per cent of holidaymakers preferring to plan for a break here in Australia.3 Taking a look at preferences among Australians age 50+ we see a similar trend, with 1 in 3 more likely to take a domestic trip compared with two years ago, while only  1 in 10 are more likely to travel overseas4. In spite of this, Europe is still the number one destination for older Australians looking to travel in 2022 (29 per cent), closely followed by travel here in Australia (23 per cent)5.

Is your bucket-list trip in your retirement budget?

Enjoying the trip of a lifetime in retirement is something most Australians feel they deserve. According to the 2022 Seniors Travel Survey from Australian Seniors and Core Data, 93 per cent of Australians over 50 feel they have earned the right to spend money freely and enjoy themselves on their travels. But right now, they’re also very conscious of the rising cost of travel, with 4 in 5 feeling that holidays are less affordable as the cost of living surges6.

If a bucket-list trip is back on your agenda – either here in Australia or overseas – it’s important to look at how this could impact your finances and think about your whole budget for retirement before spending big on travel.

Three tips to help you budget for travel in retirement

  1. Save on travel costs – when you’re retired you’ve got more time on your hands for travel. That means you can plan to stay places for longer, and spend less each day as a result. AirBnBs are often less expensive than hotels as they allow you to make meals at home instead of dining out. Not only can this save you money, but you can also get to know the local area better. House swaps or house sitting can also be an ideal way to save on the cost of accommodation and really connect with the community you’re visiting.
  2. Budget for extras – even with careful calculations for flights and car hire, accommodation and food, it’s important to allow a little extra in your budget for the unexpected and for gifts and activities that are hard to pass up when you’re visiting somewhere special. It’s also vital to have travel insurance to give you protection in case your trip is disrupted by delays or a health issue. 
  3. Put money aside for travel – instead of funding travel from your income for everyday expenses, it can make sense to pay for travel from a different ‘pot’ of money. Having some of your super in an account-based pension can give you the flexibility to withdraw the extra you might need for big ticket items such as an extended trip around Australia or around the world.

What about your Age Pension?

If you’re planning to travel for a longer period, it’s worth remembering there are rules about when you can get Age Pension when you’re travelling or living outside Australia. You may still be eligible for your Age Pension payments for the time you’re out of the country, even if you’re leaving to live overseas.

Thinking about retiring?

Knowing your options is key to making sure you have the money to fund the lifestyle you want when you retire.

To find out more about your options go to or call us on 1800 620 305 to book an obligation-free appointment.

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The information contained in this article is given in good faith and has been derived from sources believed to be reliable and accurate. No warranty as to the accuracy or completeness of this information is given and no responsibility is accepted by Aware Super Pty Ltd or its employees for any loss or damage arising from reliance on the information provided.

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