There are now more ways to find your way than with a horse and buggy

The ritual of leaving town to temporarily pass from one’s mortal coil may seem by now one of the oldest rites of passage in the Western world, but they are today, it turns out, a great way to kickstart the summer. And even if the narcotic effect may be less well-known than it once was, there are a growing number of other ways to get there.

“There is a very general trend of Americans looking for less traditional ways to travel to strange places,” said Alexander Wolfe, a psychotherapist and a former European car salesman who has been corresponding with American clients for the past year to organize a visit to Jordan in the spring. “Part of it is it’s more creative or it’s more inexpensive.”

That was certainly a focus of Scott Wilcox, a former marketing executive who is currently on a weeklong trip to New Zealand. The action had begun a day before he left on his customized pickup truck with a number of other American expats: “Everyone on this trip had other duties: interview skills, quinine,” Mr. Wilcox said. “Everyone was doing something. It’s like we’re nesting. It was a different kind of adventure to doing it by yourself. I might have gone off on a whim with nobody there.”

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