Friday, April 04, 2014

The price of travel?

ITV2 has recently announced a new TV show in which Tom Daley goes backpacking around the world. Now, don't get me wrong, I do love Tom and it is likely I will end up watching the TV show, but I am a bit peeved about this concept.

What bugs me about it mainly is that these celebrities already have a significant amount of money behind them from previous things they have done, yet they are being paid by TV stations, in this case ITV2, to do something that many people have to save years for.

This is something that has really ruffled my feathers recently because travelling is something that I really want to do after I graduate next year, but after a massive reality check I realised that there is pretty much no way in hell that I will be able to afford to do this until a few years after graduation. Some of you may think that I should be patient and stop complaining, but as someone who will come out of university with debt exceeding £50,000 and a degree that I probably won't be able to start a profession in for many years due to budget cuts in the Ministry of Justice, I want to get as much life experiences under my belt as possible before I have the opportunity to settle in to a full-time job. 

Travelling is something that many people tend to do on a gap year, or normally when they are a little older further on in life. However, due to the shit nature of the industry I want to work in, there is a possibility I can get a job straight from university or I could go back to working in a cafe and have a grueling few years job hunting. Travelling offers life experience and the opportunity to see the world that is otherwise almost impossible to get - and travelling is something of a bit of a passion for me, and I love nothing more than seeing new places.

Don't get me wrong, the program will probably be a good watch and I will watch it to see the places they visit. The trailer for the program shows Tom and his friend experiencing many adrenaline-fueled activities including bungee jumping, skydiving, off-roading, camel riding and many more activities that the average person would have to pay hundreds of pounds for to be able to enjoy. They also get the cultural side of travelling, with something different in each country. The ITV2 website states that it isn't all "VIP packages and hotels" and that they "rough it backpacker style" - what is wrong with that?! I would absolutely love to do that, and definitely wouldn't call it 'roughing it', it's all part of the experience and would be incredible!

The show sees them go to 6 countries over six weeks including Japan, Australia, Thailand, Morocco and New Zealand - which happen to be some of the most expensive places to visit. It costs on average approximately anything around £10,000 to travel similarly to what they have done in this program. It will take me around 5 years to save up to be able to achieve that sort of level of travelling, and I would also like to travel Europe on top of this.

What I don't understand is why ITV2, or any other television company, doesn't pay a normal bunch of friends to go travelling and experience these activities and opportunities. It would be an authentic reaction and probably pretty good viewing on television, and would provide that group with an experience they could probably only dream of. Or even allocate a budget to the group and follow them as they plan, book, and embark on their own journey, without the interference of anyone else. This would definitely be something I would watch, and could turn in to something that inspires many people to go travelling! 

I am definitely volunteering myself and my friends for this if anyone wants to take up my proposition! 

I am expecting a significant amount of backlash from this where people are saying I am ungrateful, or that I should have done a different degree, or not gone to university at all if I want to do all these things. I went to university to better myself as a person - it has significantly changed me for the better, and I went to hopefully get myself a better career in a few years time than just being stuck in waitressing all my life. Travelling is something that has always been on the agenda for me, and I didn't take a gap year because of the sheer fact I knew I wouldn't then go to university and I would regret it for the rest of my life. The opportunity to travel will probably be very small, or I won't get to do it at all, but it is my goal whether it takes me 5 months or 5 years to save for.

So this is my rant over, for any of you wishing to watch Tom Daley Goes Global it starts Thursday April 10 at 9pm on ITV2.

As always thank you for reading, don't forget to follow me on all my social media over on the right, and I will see you next time!