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Buckets Lists top poll

Death is no longer, the taboo subject of old. But The way people plan for it, while celebrating life, is also changing.

Death is the focus of the Spring 2014 issue of In Depth, and one of the issues to emerge is that, as people re-evaluate their lives, so they plan for what they regard as the essentials. And "Bucket Lists", according to research from funeral director CPJ Field & Co, are top of mind for some 20 million Brits.

Research carried out for the company by ICM reveals that 42% of Great Britain's residents have either already prepared their Bucket List, are thinking about preparing one or are planning to write one.

So what has prompted this list-making mania? "As a society, we are seeing that people are compiling bucket lists as a way of planning to ensure we get the most out of life and gain great experiences," says Charlie Field, chief financial officer at CPJ Field. "We believe this is growing in popularity because people are more aware of their own sense of mortality and there is a sense of urgency in achieving these goals."

For marketers, such lists will not always provide a gilt-edged opportunity — with the exception, that is, of travel operators. Of the main five aspirations, "travel the world" comes top (65%); followed by a desire to see children married or settled down (35%); with a wish to learn a foreign language coming in third (27%). Fourth and fifth come a yen to swim with dolphins and to get married (though not to dolphins) respectively.

Again, as echoed in In Depth, this reveals a society that is increasingly leaning towards life-enriching experiences, often at the expense of acquiring material possessions. Family traditions, such as skills and heirlooms, continue to be passed down between generations. And though many may mock, today's society would like to pass on to their descendants those inherited items they hold dear, from photographs, to recipes and seasonal holiday traditions.

The major difference in a top five list of inherited family traditions, skills and heirlooms, between those inherited by respondents and what they, in turn, plan to pass down to their heirs, is the inclusion of property in third place. Parents appreciate the increasing cost of trying to get a foot on the housing ladder.

 

Louella Miles
Copyright © Association for Qualitative Research, 2014