Why are millennials so obsessed with #EuropeSummer?

There’s a strange (and growing) chasm between finishing high school and settling down with kids, a steady job and buying a house *I laugh as I reach for my avocado*. The pressure to launch straight into a university degree or a career after graduation has eased slightly, leaving the vast majority of us flailing around trying to figure out what to do with our lives. It’s during this time that Australian millennials look at taking that big, defining trip before they become another cog in the wheel.

With dreams of free-pour alcohol and 24-hour bakeries, we leave winter behind and flock to Europe for a few weeks of boozy sailing trips, fast-paced Contiki tours and countless club ventures marked by questionable sleeping arrangements and late-night kebabs.

three drunk people dancing in a kiddy pool at Ushuaia, Ibiza

An extremely flattering photo of my two new travel buddies dancing in a kiddy pool at Ushuaia, Ibiza

The increasing affordability of air travel has brought aspirational destinations so much closer. Last year, people were losing their minds over Scoot’s announcement of $600 return flights to Greece. This brought Europe within reach of people working crappy hospitality jobs between Uni lectures. So what if you have zero leg-room and exactly 26cm to squeeze your bum between arm rests? Strap me to the wing for all I care.

Just over a year ago, I was one of those sun-kissed, carefree Instagram fiends, far removed from the stresses of education and employment. Oh, how the tables have turned! Now I’m the one scrolling through my newsfeed, pining over Santorini sunsets and Spanish fiestas.

Girl floating on pool toy in Hvar, Croatia during Europe SUmmer

Floating away from the problems in Hvar, Croatia. Photo: Nicholle Cooke-Hayes

I like to think I’m a loving person, but man it’s easy to hate those people when they’re drinking a Spritz on the Amalfi Coast, working on their Birk tan, while the only rays I’m getting are from the blue light of my laptop screen.

So before you share a meme or a condescending Betoota Advocate article bagging people for jumping on the ‘Europe Summer’ trend, get off your high horse and book a plane ticket yourself.