Experiences > Things: Spending money on travel means investing in your happiness
Millennials seem to have unabashedly adopted, more so than any other generation, the philosophy that the secret to happiness does not lie in the possession of goods - but instead in the quality of life experiences. Millennials are less concerned with owning a car or buying a new home in the suburbs, and more interested in eating out, going to festivals with friends, or traveling the world. As a general trend, the large majority of millennials would rather travel to see the northern lights in the Arctic, taste beer in the Czech Republic, or watch the sunset from a Nicaraguan volcano than buy the latest television or expensive purse. Things, are a thing of the past.
Dr. Gilovich, a psychology researcher at Cornell University, conducted a long term study and found that the overall happiness from buying a material object versus an experience is similar at the time of the purchase, yet the satisfaction from the material possession quickly fades away and becomes a part of the norm. This type of happiness has been named the “puddle of pleasure,” given that it quickly evaporates. On the other hand, the happiness from an experiential purchase actually continually increases. Memories last forever and bring you much more happiness than any material good. Even negative memories improve with time and end up becoming life lessons or funny stories at the dinner table! Due to the fleeting nature of experiences, people often think that spending money on an experience is not a quality investment since you don’t end up with anything physical; however, investing in an experience is an investment towards your happiness, so it clearly is a good idea. After all, at the end of the day, happiness is what we all strive for.
A different study from San Francisco State University showed that people who spent money on experiences rather than on material goods were happier and also felt their money was much better spent. So, what are you waiting for?
The thrill of new items quickly fades
Today’s consumer-driven society has indoctrinated the idea that buying new things will make us happy. Indeed, it’s true that most of us enjoy the immediate satisfaction that comes from buying or receiving something new. The first few weeks after you get a new phone are really exciting, you clean your phone screen twice a day, keep everything really well organized and you show it off. After a while though, the phone itself becomes a part of the norm and blends into the background. Instead of bringing you happiness, it leads to new expectations and makes you wonder about your next purchase and how it will be superior to the last one. We enjoy the gratification of buying, and to keep that feeling going, we prepare for the next big purchase. Studies have even shown that size doesn't matter! A large purchase will not make you happier than a small purchase. Unfortunately, the happiness from a new possession never lasts as long as the item itself.
Unique experiences = Lasting memories
The beauty of experiences is that they are completely and solely yours. Nobody else can have that same experience. You may travel with others, but nobody will feel the same emotions and think the same thoughts you did while skydiving over the Portuguese countryside or scuba diving in Indonesia. These sensations are yours and yours alone. And the best part? The memories and stories last forever. You may not remember what you got for Christmas three years ago, but you definitely remember your last trip abroad. Experiences, unlike things, don’t lose value over time. The fact that they are ephemeral makes them so unique!
Experiences shape us
Experiences shape who we are and who we become - they are integrated in our identity and constantly help mold our world view. Most of us can agree that travelling is one of the experiences that brings the most joy or self-reflection. Experiencing new places and cultures opens your eyes to the world and allows you to experience sights, emotions, smells, and tastes that you never could have imagined. We are the sum of all our experiences, so let’s make sure they are meaningful!
Experiences help form relationships
Experiencing things together helps build deeper bonds between friends and loved ones. Spending quality time with your loved one, without the distractions of quotidian life, is essential to any relationship. There is a reason people say that a couple who travels together, stays together: because they share a common purpose and become part of each other’s cherished experiences. They can think back fondly on their memories together. Stepping out of the norm and allowing yourself to experience new things is what life is about!
The Gift of Travel
Buying gifts for anyone is tough! Even if you know the person really well, it’s really difficult to buy something meaningful and useful, not something they will just keep in their cluttered drawers. Having too much stuff creates stress and anxiety, so instead of adding to that stress, give the gift of experiences - give the gift of travel.
It may be tempting to buy a present meant to be used for travel, like a backpack or water bottle, and though it may be useful, it is much more appreciated to actually give somebody a little piece of long-lasting happiness.
Although gifting a trip can be very difficult if you don’t know where and when the recipient would like to go, Jubel offers full flexibility when planning gifted trips.
There are a number of different ways you can give the gift of travel with Jubel:
The classic safe option: You can buy your friends or loved one a Jubel gift card. You can chip in and pay for part of a trip, get together with friends to crowd-fund a journey, or if you are feeling generous, you can pay for an entire trip yourself, without the anxiety of having to sort out the details. With this gift card, the person will be able to take our survey and choose their exact traveling preferences!
Be brave: You can plan the entire trip in advance and give the trip proposal as the gift, just take the survey! Check out a sample proposal here! You may know exactly what your partner/friend likes and want to plan all the details in advance. If you are not sure about the dates, you can show the proposal before paying, and later confirm the dates (just don’t take too long to decide, airfare and hotel prices can be unpredictable).
Do it together: You may consider the experience of planning the trip together to be part of the charm. Go on a nice dinner and take the survey together to begin the process of planning your perfect trip.
Surprise-ception: Jubel offers surprise trips anywhere around the world! How does this work? You take our survey, let us know you want a surprise trip, tell us your travel style, budget and preferences, and we’ll send you a proposal with the specific destinations hidden. Only at the airport will you discover your first destination, and be given the dates to reveal the next destinations. Surprise your loved ones with a surprise trip, and join in on the excitement yourself. A surprise within a surprise!