Donalds Mazda

Millennials would rather buy a car than travel the world

Millennials are prioritising new cars over travelling the world – unlike older generations, new research has revealed.

The research, conducted by Wonga, asked millennials (18 to 34 year-olds) and baby boomers (55+) to rank a series of key life milestones and experiences to determine the differences between generations. They also asked the older generation which milestones they wish they had prioritised, to understand how spending priorities have changed over time.

Millennials may be stereotyped in the media for a love of avocado on toast that leaves them unable to get onto the property ladder, but the research revealed that saving for the deposit on a house is actually their most important milestone. It was also the most important life milestone for over 55s.

In addition, the research looked at which specific experiences people value most. Travelling was the experience baby boomers considered most important, but for millennials it was buying a car.

Millennials Baby boomers

1. Buying a brand new car Visiting Europe for a long weekend

2. Seeing your favourite band live Seeing your favourite band live

3. Going to university and living away from home Buying a brand new car

4. Visiting Europe for a long weekend Going to university and living away from home

5. Adrenaline activities Seeing iconic landmarks in the world

6. Going to a festival Going to a festival

7. Taking a gap year Owning a pet

8. Owning a pet Adrenaline activities

9. Renovating a house Taking a gap year

10. Seeing iconic landmarks in the world Renovating a house

When asked which experiences they wish they’d had when they were younger, only 8% of the over 55s chose buying a brand new car, but half wish they had travelled the world.

Asked about their main priority in life, unsurprisingly both millennials (52%) and baby boomers (56%) said that being happy was top of their list. However, 14% of 18 to 34 year-olds saw having a good job as their main priority, compared to less than 2% of the over 55s. Being surrounded by friends and family was the top priority for over a quarter of baby boomers, but just under one in ten millennials.

“It is really interesting to see which experiences each generation values the most, and the differences between millennials and baby boomers,” James McMaster, Wonga’s Head of Marketing, said. “With the differences between the two generations widely documented in the media, it’s particularly interesting how the older generation prioritises travel experiences and even wished they had travelled more.”