Children travel abroad 13 years earlier than grandparents did

A young mother holds a little traveller - a baby girl in a carrying backpack
A young mother holds a little traveller - a baby girl in a carrying backpack
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Children today go abroad 13 years earlier than their grandparents did, a report has found.

The average child takes their first holiday abroad at the age of eight – nine years earlier than the average adult and 13 years earlier than their grandparents’ generation.

Nearly a fifth of parents said their child first travelled abroad by the time they were one, while a further 19 per cent said they first went abroad aged two or three. Almost three quarters of parents say their child has been to more destinations abroad than they had at their age.

However, Scottish residents are among the least well travelled, the study found,having visited an average of just 12 countries, compared to people who live in the north east of England, East Anglia and Northern Ireland who have all typically been to 16 countries.

One in ten people in Scotland admitted they had never been abroad.

Aberdeen and Edinburgh residents, however, are more likely to have travelled, racking up an average of 14 countries each.

Cosmin Sarbu, head of travel insurance at Admiral Travel Insurance, which commissioned the report, said: “People are holidaying abroad more than ever before; from the occasional city break to far-flung adventures across the globe, seeing the world has never been easier.”

“While the opportunity to travel has become more accessible, it’s fascinating to see how travel trends vary across the UK between generations and regions. It will be interesting to see if Brexit impacts these trends and whether we’ll see more people visiting destinations outside of the EU or travelling abroad less altogether.”

Topping the list for the most visited country for both UK adults and children is Spain, which also tops the list for the first foreign holiday for both adults and children. A total of 46 per cent of UK children have visited Spain. The study revealed that since the 1920s each generation has had its first abroad holiday younger than the previous generation.

Millennials who went abroad before they were 10 would have had an average of six foreign holidays before celebrating the double digit age - triple the number of holidays abroad Baby Boomers would have been on by the same age.