Skip to content

12 Ways Millennials Differ From Boomers

Driving, dressing up, going on a dinner date. That's so over!

  • Millennials outnumber boomers by several million (Sean McCabe)
    Sean McCabe/Getty Images

    The Times They Are a-Changin'

    En español | Millennials (those born from the early 1980s to the early 2000s) outnumber boomers. What changes will history’s largest generation wreak upon society? Well, according to the survey firms Arbitron, Edison Research and others, say good-bye to ...

    1 of 15
  • millennials drive a quarter less than counterparts did 8 years ago (Getty Images)
    Getty Images

    1. Driving a Car

    Once was, a teen counted the days until he or she could get behind the wheel. But the percentage of young adults with a driver’s license today has plunged. Millennials drive about a quarter less than their counterparts did eight years ago.

    2 of 15
  • millennials use cell phones instead of landlines (Getty Images)
    Getty Images

    2. Using a Landline

    They cut the cord: 41 percent of millennials aren’t hooked up to a landline phone. And no wonder: 83 percent sleep next to their mobile devices. (Also so over because of time-telling, alarm-blaring cellphones: watches and clocks.)

    3 of 15
  • Millennial eats a drumstick (Getty Images)
    Getty Images

    3. Eating a Drumstick

    Kentucky Fried Chicken fears that “Generation McNugget” doesn’t understand old-school chicken with bones. The fix: buckets of boneless chicken.

    4 of 15
  • young couples buying homes (Getty Images)
    Getty Images

    4. Buying a House

    Forget the “ownership society.” Only 18 percent of men and women ages 18 to 34 say owning their own home is one of the most important things to achieve in their life.

    5 of 15
  • marrying later in life (Getty Images/Tetra images RF)
    Getty Images

    5. Getting Hitched

    Only 21 percent of current 20-somethings are married. By comparison, nearly half of boomers had exchanged "I Do's" before they left their 20s.

    6 of 15
  • Mixed race woman holding twenty dollar bills (Getty Images/Blend Images)
    Getty Images

    6. Keeping Your Salary Secret

    Curious about what your young coworkers make? Just ask ‘em! The Wall Street Journal says millennials ignore this office taboo.

    7 of 15
  • Millennials saving the planet (Getty Images/Hero Images)
    Getty Images

    7. Saving the Planet

    Uh-oh! The young green-minded gang seen here may be a rare breed. Surprisingly, three times more millennials than boomers at the same age said they didn’t make any personal effort to help the environment.

    8 of 15
  • Remember the past, help shape the future.
    Robert Deutschman

    AARP Offer: Remember the past, help shape the future

    Share your stories and help advocate for political support to protect your future. Join AARP to support living with dignity and purpose.

    9 of 15
  • casual friday
    Getty Images

    8. Getting Dressed-up for Work

    When you’re under 30, every day is Casual Friday. A recent MSN study found that 8 out of 10 young adults want to be able to wear jeans to work.

    10 of 15
  • Thrift store (Getty Images)
    Getty Images

    9. Buying Pricey Clothes

    It’s very likely the jeans your millennial coworker are wearing aren’t even hers. Cash-strapped 20-somethings are going to swap meets for clothing and 60 percent say they look for duds at the cheapest price possible.

    11 of 15
  • Man brings a home-made sandwich to work (Getty Images/Brand X)
    Getty Images

    10. Making a Sandwich

    The last person to make a 20-something a sandwich was likely his or her own mother. A consumer report found that millennials are driving the growth of the fast-food sub industry.

    12 of 15
  • Millennials dining out (Getty Images/Blend Images)
    Getty Images

    11. Dining Out

    The go-to date night of sitting in a restaurant for dinner could be history. A 2012 survey found that millennials dining out has declined by 20 percent in the past five years.

    13 of 15
  • Woman purchasing items online (Getty Images)
    Getty Images

    12. Valuing Privacy

    Give millennials a discount and they’ll apparently tell you anything you want. People ages 18 to 35 said they’d freely share personal information online if it meant they would save money.

    14 of 15
  • AARP Baby Boomers (Sean McCabe)
    15 of 15

Video: Money Isn't The Most Important Thing For Working Millennials - Despite being low on spending money, millennials say that a paycheck isn't the biggest deciding factor for a career move.