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Memories, not microwaves
Memories, not microwaves
Keywords: Lifestyles, Leisure, United Kingdom
Independent research, released recently by Unmissable.com, finds that Britons are bored with consumer durables and are looking to spend spare time and money on experiencing new things. The report, Swapping Microwaves for Memories, challenges the belief that Britons are materialistic and work-obsessed and shows, instead, that they are entering wholeheartedly into what experts have dubbed the "experience economy".
A massive 84 per cent of Britons feel that fulfilling personal ambitions is important to them, and 60 per cent have compiled a list of things they would like to experience before they die. Just 38 per cent, on the other hand, believe acquiring more material possessions is a priority. Career success too, while sought by 68 per cent, is also considered less important than other areas.
"After years of economic growth, many of us have reached a level of financial confidence", says Terri Paddock, co-founder of Unmissable.com. "Material comforts, such as televisions and hi-fis, have lost much of their inherent value because we have come to expect them. There is now a growing desire not just to acquire, or upgrade, possessions, but also to invest in memories and the experiences that create them."
Must-do experiences see Britons escaping to deserted islands, embarking on world cruises, swimming with dolphins, flying jets, blasting into space, chasing tornados, witnessing volcanic eruptions, driving Formula One cars and sailing private yachts.
Despite the desire, however, two out of three Britons do not expect to accomplish up to half the items on their list of must-do experiences, while, sadly, 7 per cent believe they will never do any. Lack of money (63 per cent of those surveyed) and lack of time (37 per cent) are the leading reasons people feel unable to live out their dreams. Accessibility is also an issue – 17 per cent think their dream experiences are impossible while 15 per cent do not know how to organise them.
According to Paddock, these hurdles are often more imagined than real. "Of the hundreds of experiences named by respondents, less than 2 per cent are truly difficult to arrange", she says. "Price need not be a hindrance either. Admittedly, some experiences, such as diving to the wreck of the Titanic, are beyond most people's pockets, but others are very affordable. The only real obstacle to people living out many of their dream experiences is making the time."
For a copy of the report (priced £100) e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org