As a forward-thinking, finger-on-the-pulse publication, we’re always scouring the globe for new trends, ideas and tastes. Even though we love the Middle East’s vibes, from the traditional to the modern, we also know that other regions have plenty to offer in terms of inspiration and innovations.
With that being the case, we’re casting out our net far and wide in order to get ahead of the game. In this piece, we’ve picked out some interesting pastimes enjoyed around the world, from Europe and North America to Asia and beyond.
Canada – Skiing and ice hockey
If you live in Canada, the best thing you can do with your spare time is get outside. Even in the dead of winter, the average Canadian will be out in the open doing something. Hiking, walking, and rambling are major pastimes in Canada that take advantage of the country’s sublime natural scenery, but two of the go-to activities are skiing and ice hockey.
Of course, we all know that soccer dominates in the Middle East. However, with Egypt reaching the Handball Championship final for the first time in 2019, people are more willing than ever to accept new sports they might not have previously considered. Skiing and ice hockey may not be possible outside of a wintery climate or a specialized sports center, but there’s no reason why you can’t take a leaf out of the Canadians’ book and go on a good ramble to something beautiful that might be waiting for you, even in your own city.
The UK – Online and RPG Gaming
Although cricket and soccer might be familiar British pastimes, recent years have seen a change in tastes. According to statistics in 2018, digital and online shooter and RPG gaming took just under $2.5bn. In other sectors, online casino gaming, or iGaming, is now a $6.7bn industry, which accounts for 39 percent of the UK gaming industry’s total revenue.
Aside from accessibility, operators in the UK have found successful ways to engage serious players and casuals. As outlined by Slotsia, many of the top sites now have offers known as no deposit bonuses. These deals allow new customers to play and win for free. It’s these types of deals that have made industries like iGaming a contemporary cultural hit in the UK.
The US – Streaming movies and TV
As cliched as it might sound, one of the most popular things to do in your spare time if you live in the US is watching movies or catching up with the latest series’. Neilson report statistics show the average American watches 35.5 hours of TV per week. Unsurprisingly, this thirst for entertainment has spread onto the internet over the last decade. As per the stats, Americans watch almost six hours of online video content per day.
Here in the Middle East, TV and online streaming aren’t quite as popular, it seems. However, with Netflix creating original Arabic content and other services upping their focus, we could soon be floating down the same network of online streams as the Americans.
Australia – Paddleboarding
Australians and water are a natural fit, which is why paddleboarding is one of the country’s top pastimes. From the average person to the top executives, the surfing/rowing hybrid is loved by Aussies of all types. In fact, the CEO of Fremantle Media Australia, Ian Hogg, is a keen paddle boarder.
In his words, the sport is part of his daily routine and an “immovable” entry in his diary. When asked why he loves paddleboarding, Hogg described it as his daily “sanity fix“. It seems the tranquility of paddleboarding is why it’s a cultural hit Down Under.
Japan – Karaoke
The average Japanese night out is synonymous with karaoke. Despite what you might think, it’s still as popular today as it ever was. The number of karaoke bars in Japan is insane, in fact, there are now multiple guides giving locals and tourist tips on where to go.
Today, modern karaoke bars feature touch screen technology, thousands of songs and even ice cream machines! Basically, if you’re in Japan and you’ve got some time on your hands, karaoke is the thing to do.
As you can see, the way people spend their free time can vary from country to country. However, thanks to globalization and modern technology, these trends are spreading. So, if you’re looking to get ahead of the curve and try something new, take a look at how the rest of the world spends its free time. Who knows? You might find your new favorite hobby!