Boomers Will Be Dirt Flirting This Year, Say Trend Forecasters

And Gen Z is all about ‘rest stops’

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They’re sticklers for proper grammar, make a mean meatloaf and are loyal to their jobs—this much we know about the boomer generation. But if you think that this particular cohort is predictable, think again.

In their 2024 Pinterest Predicts report, the image sharing service forecasted a somewhat surprising travel trend for boomers (and Gen X) specifically: dirt flirting. And it’s just as adventurous as it sounds.

The report reads: “In 2024, Boomers and Gen X will load up their 4x4s and make for the mountains—or at least look like they are. Whether you flirt with dirt or you’re down to get dusty, off-roading can be an aesthetic or a lifestyle. Time to gear up and add some gravel to your travel!”

Pinterest went on to list trending search terms related to dirt flirts, such as overland gear (up 110 percent), off-road camping (up 90 percent), off-road wheels (up 70 percent) and adventure car (up 80 percent).

So what does this mean exactly? Grandma doesn’t want to go on a river cruise or hang out with other retirees in Florida! If her Pinterest boards are anything to go by, she wants to hit the road in her Hummer, park up by the woods, go hiking and set up camp by the lake.

Or maybe she just wants her home and fashion to reflect her adventurous spirit. You know, by putting on a mountain classic drawstring pack ($40) to babysit the grandkids or making her daily cup of Joe in a pour over kettle & coffee maker set ($71). Whatever they’re planning on doing, boomers and Gen X are increasingly interested in camping and outdoor gear that’s functional, built to last and aesthetically pleasing (they may be flirting with dirt, but they still have standards).

How did Pinterest pull this data, you may ask? According to the brand: “When we’re identifying trends, we establish growth and volume thresholds to sift through the billions of searches happening each month on Pinterest. We then use machine-learning backed methodologies that leverage novel technological advancements to better inform our trend identification process. We then distill our trends across a variety of categories and work with a third party vendor to ensure inclusivity and representation.”

Interestingly, Pinterest is seeing the opposite travel trend for Gen Zers and millennials. “We’re seeing older generations such as Boomers and Gen-X really lean into having more adventurous vacations with Dirt Flirts, while Gen-Zers and Millennials are really focused on relaxing and restoration in Rest Stops…laidback locales that offer the opposite of a jam-packed itinerary.” Think: staycation hotels and digital detoxes.

In other words, if a lazy, do-nothing, just relax vacation is what you’re after then call your bestie. But for something that’ll get your blood pumping, um, maybe see if your parents will take you with them on their next adventure?

The Best Gifts for Dirt Flirt Boomers

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Executive Editor

Alexia Dellner is an executive editor at PureWow who has over ten years of experience covering a broad range of topics including health, wellness, travel, family, culture and...