The ongoing coronavirus situation has affected just about every facet of modern life. It’s made things that were commonplace unthinkable, and things that were unthinkable commonplace – and it’s done so in a matter of months.
One of the casualties of this period of change is the concept of a bucket-list. What fun is there in composing a list of things that you’re not going to be allowed to do for months?
Travel restrictions have brought the global tourism industry to a standstill. But the change probably runs deeper than that: we’ve all been given time to reflect on what’s important in life and what isn’t, and the likelihood is that this will effect our travel decisions long after the situation has cleared up, and some semblance of normality has reasserted itself.
So how might the bucket lists of the future look different?
The gradual easing of the lockdown restrictions will come in many stages – and some countries will doubtless progress faster than others. It’s certain that we’ll be free to move within the country before we’re able to move outside of it, and thus the next holiday you go on will almost certainly be a domestic break. This shouldn’t be viewed as a drawback: the United Kingdom is packed with gorgeous tourist attractions. You might visit a Cornish beach in August, or go on a hike through the Highlands of Scotland.
Any bucket list should account for what’s local and available – after all, you can pack in dozens of domestic trips for the same cost of one that takes you to the other side of the planet.
A related issue is the environmental cost of long-haul flights. The lapse in global travel has caused a huge drop in global emissions – which many of us will be unwilling to contribute toward reversing.
One-off holidaymakers aren’t, on the scale of things, the worst producers of carbon emissions: most air miles are actually racked up by a minority of frequent fliers, and so we shouldn’t beat ourselves up too much over our flying habits. With that said, any step you can take to reduce your personal environmental impact is surely going to be a worthwhile one. A train from Brighton to Portsmouth Harbour will allow you to see just as much as a plane to somewhere more exotic – and at a fraction of the environmental cost!