AA Life Insurance surveys 'bucket lists'

Travel the world? Try a new hairstyle? What’s on your list ...

Travel the world


A lot of people have 'bucket lists' – a list of things they want to do while they can. They tend to be once in a lifetime experiences such as travel the world – but some people just want to try a new hairstyle. wear something different, or get everyday things like housework out of the way.

Topping the list compiled by AA Life Insurance* was travelling the world, which more than half (53%) said they'd like to do. Learning a new skill came second (31%) and going on a road trip was third (30%).

A mixed bag of wishes

But some people's hopes are more mundane. 'Tidy up' and 'clear the loft' feature among the things some people want to tick off their list.

Many want to do something more unusual:

  • milk a cow
  • drive an articulated lorry
  • get a hole in one
  • watch a Punch and Judy show all the way through
  • go into space
  • drive a Routemaster bus
  • get a nose piercing
  • save a life
  • go naturist
  • swim with pike

AA Financial Services looks at the lists

Mark Huggins, director of AA Financial Services says: "Many of the things on people's bucket lists are the typical once-in-a-lifetime experiences like travel the world or do something adventurous like skydiving. A lot of people want to better themselves by conquering a fear or learning a new skill.

People tend to think about the extraordinary experiences they want to have while they can. But it's important to think about what will happen after you're gone, too.

Mark Huggins, AA Life Insurance

"Many are easily achievable – such as taking up a new hobby. Others, for instance travelling the world, could be quite expensive, while something like meeting an idol could simply be down to luck."

Younger respondents have the longest bucket lists, with on average five things they really want to do; in comparison over 55s have just two.

Huggins commented: "Hopefully, this shows that older people have done some of the things they wanted to do.

"People tend to think about the extraordinary experiences they want to have while they can. But it's important to think about what will happen after you're gone, too. Though life insurance can be a vital lifeline for those left behind, it can often be overlooked. In fact, less than half of adults have life insurance, which seems to be significantly less than those who have a bucket list."

Showing your age?

Though younger people have the longest bucket lists, people don't necessarily lose their sense of adventure as they age. One in 20 (5%) over 55s wants to get a tattoo, while a fashion-conscious 8% want to try a new hairstyle and one in 10 (10%) wants to wear something they've always wanted to. One in 17 (6%) has yet to learn how to cook.

Results for travelling the world and taking up a new hobby were most similar across all ages. The biggest difference between the ages is among those who want to get married and skydive, both of which are much higher among 18 to 24 year olds. Men are more likely to want to skydive or drive a sports car, while women are likelier to want to try a new hairstyle or get married.

What's on your bucket list?

See how you compare with the choices below, and the percentages of people who chose them.

Travel the world – 53%
Learn a new skill – 31%
Go on a road trip – 30%
Take up a new hobby – 24%
Conquer a fear – 19%
Drive a sports car – 16%
Get married – 16%
Skydive – 15%
Build a house – 15%
Go scuba diving – 14%
Meet an idol – 13%
Change jobs – 13%
Wear something I've always wanted to wear – 11%
Try a new hairstyle – 10%
Get a tattoo – 10%
Learn to cook – 9%
Other – 12%

*Research was carried out by One Poll among a sample of 2,000 UK adults aged 18+ on 11 February 2014.

Level or term life insurance covers the policy holder for a specified term, eg 25 years. If the policy holder dies within the policy term, their next of kin will receive a cash lump sum.

Over-50s life insurance is designed for people aged over 50 and offers guaranteed acceptance. Policy holders pay into the plan for a specified term (usually until their 90th year) but the cover continues for the rest of their lives. The plan then pays out a cash lump sum upon their death.

AA Life Insurance is provided by Legal & General Assurance Society Limited.

19 June 2014