Pub2Pub – rediscovering the lost art of travel

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It’s now over a year since the 80breakdowns crew got back from the V8Nam expedition, which raises an obvious question: what’s next?  How can you possibly top driving a Rolls Royce and a Corvette from England to the farthest reaches of Asia?

A tough question, but one we’ve been working on for a while now.  And we’ve come to the beer-fuelled conclusion that the perfect road trip isn’t simply a line on the map linking a series of curious locales.  No, for the ultimate travel experience, the style in which the journey is undertaken is just as important as the places it passes through.  So for our next expedition, we’ve decided that in contrast with our previous undertakings, style is everything.   We’re planning to make the trip a modern interpretation of the golden age of travel, when every expedition was a thing of elegance, and beneath every immaculate trilby was a carefully maintained moustache concealing a stiff upper lip.  So, without any further ado, here’s the thinking behind the forthcoming pub2pub expedition, which will be surging forth across the globe in summer 2016:

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Travel has changed.

There was a time when travel meant glamour.  It meant proud ocean liners plying the oceans from Ceylon to Constantinople, and elegant railways sweeping overland to the Orient.  It was the rarefied domain of well heeled clientèle, swathed in the latest London fashions as they set off on their grand tour. It meant Brunel, Stevenson, Younghusband and Livingstone.  And it meant achieving the impossible against the odds, while never letting one’s style or dignity waver even for a moment.

But not any more.  The very word ‘traveller’ has been lost to the masses, diluted by a thousand grimy hostels and dreadlocked wanderers.  Once, there was the majestic audacity of the journey; now a thousand anodyne Boeings sweep their cargoes blandly across the globe.  The infinite allure of the unknown has been banished by tick-list tourism and off-the-shelf adventures.  Bespoke has given way to budget.  Elegance to blandness.  Panache has been swept away by humdrum.

But it doesn’t have to be like this.  There is still a place in this world for the lost art of travel.  Because while the golden age of travel may have passed, its spirit still exists.  A spirit of conviction that travel goes far beyond simply visiting a place; it should be a stylish expression of how life should be lived – bold, daring, elegant and stylish; and with just a hint of glorious madness.

This is the rationale behind 80breakdown’s latest project, the forthcoming pub2pub expedition – a very British blend of elegance and eccentricity.  A 24,000 mile overland journey from the northernmost bar on the planet, to the southernmost.  From the Arctic to the Antarctic, across oceans, continents and cultures; travelling by grand touring car, kayak, yacht and ocean liner.  All undertaken with a style and panache which harks back to that glorious age when travel was an art form.

So there you have it.  Whereas our previous big trips – the AfricanPorsche Expedition and V8Nam – were shaped primarily by the practicalities of touring the globe in a sports car, Pub2Pub will be different.  The all-important practicality will be fused with stylishness, making Pub2Pub the ultimate expression of just how debonair travel can be if you think outside the backpacking box.  Everything from the clothes we wear to the car we drive will be chosen as for its ability to bring a unique, classical elegance to the trip, making it different to any road trip that’s gone before.  Very different.  Basically…

  • Where V8Nam could be likened to a Nirvana album, Pub2Pub will be Wagner.
  • If V8Nam was a Tom Clancy novel, Pub2pub will be Oscar Wilde.
  • Where V8Nam thrived on bottled lager, Pub2Pub will be the domain of fine whisky and chilled champagne.
  • And whereas V8Nam was dominated by an uncouth sports car, for Pub2pub we’ll be seeking a car which combines unrivalled style and comfort with real grand touring credentials.

So there you have it – Pub2Pub.  The road trip as an art form.  It’s a whole new thing, and it’s going to be an exciting 18 months bringing this unique take on travel to fruition!


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