There are two different types of passengers who are now traveling with fewer stamps in their passports.
The first group must stay at a certain age; for some teens, it’s 15 and they just can’t get enough of flying. But for travelers over 40, they’re hard to miss in economy.
Powered by a crazy amount of legroom and being able to eat something you should really be eating when you’re in the air, there is also a long list of reasons to travel with less: driving the bad economy. Many older travelers are downsizing their lifestyles in the hope of not having to come to work for 30 years.
These early stages of downsizing can be confronting and fearful for any traveler — but especially when dealing with air travel. This group is getting through the 50s, 60s and 70s with road rage flying down the air traffic control towers: “I’ll have to circle till the 99th flight attendant crawls out from under a shelf in the back of the plane.”
This new generation of downsizers are tough on airplanes, but they are getting through the screening checkpoint; they might be at the airport early before the general public because they just can’t afford to have to wait around for the lines to get out of the subway station or on the train when their flight is delayed.
Racial profiling is increasingly widespread in the United States and carriers are being scrutinized like never before. They also have to deal with new intelligence and law enforcement intelligence about security of the air. In the future, the old generation will have a hard time convincing the new generation to fly. And for the older Americans, that’s fine.
For a look at the future of our culture — the way it’s going to look and how our world is going to look — check out our film on photography and humanity, “Capturing America.”