New Data Showcases Valuable Role Travel Plays In Emotional Well-Being
Exodus Travels survey highlights the intrinsic worth of travel in our everyday lives, and a deep longing to make up for lost time.
Travel is good for the soul. We all know that. And if anything, it’s a feeling that has been reaffirmed (over and over!) as we return to a sense of normalcy – in life in general and travel specifically.
Global adventure leader Exodus Travels has always believed in the transformative power of travel, and based on their recent survey of 2,000 Americans who traveled abroad over the last 14 months, it appears the data proves their point – travel and emotional well-being go hand-in-hand.
The Data Speaks for Itself: Travel Feeds the Soul
According to the survey (commissioned through OnePoll), 775 of Americans questions have said they felt more like themselves because of their recent travels, while 805 said that returning to travel in the past 14 months has been good for their soul and for their well-being. And the same sentiment holds true towards future travels – after the pause on international travel, 80% said they need a vacation in 2023 more than ever before.
Not that travel has been easy over the last year or so – changing COVID-19 restrictions forced some respondents to reschedule (37%), while other dealt with lost luggage (35%) or delayed and cancelled flights (31%). However, the good news is that even of those who faced issues while traveling, 84% said their trip was still completely worth it – and 84% said that, despite any difficulties, they’d happily do it all over again if given the chance.
“To travel and discover, to explore new places, meet new people, encounter different cultures and experience nature’s wild beauty is in our DNA,” said Andy Crang, Marketing Director for Exodus Travels. “Television, movies, social media, books… these were all great substitutes while travel was on pause, but for many of us getting out in the world and setting out on new adventures is an intrinsic part of who we are.
“So, despite some of the challenges that this post-pandemic return to travel has thrown at us — the flight delays and cancellations, lost luggage, long line-ups, etc. — the results of this poll tell us that the joy of 2022 and 2023 travel, and the happiness it brings with it, far outweighs any hiccups we encounter along the way.”
Take Your Revenge
Of the 2,000 Americans polled, 665 stated to have a desire to “revenge travel” — defined as wanting to travel more, after feeling like they missed out on time and experiences due to the pandemic.
And respondents are making the most of the return to travel; as many travel restrictions have lifted, 57 percent of those surveyed were able to take a “once-in-a-lifetime” adventure in 2022.
For those who did, this included seeing something or someone who won’t be there in 10 years (22%), using a travel agent to take the stress out of traveling (21%) and traveling to where their family is originally from (21%).
But whether it was a “once-in-a-lifetime” adventure or not, the survey found that Americans were generally positive about any travel experience in the past 14 months.
Trust the Pros
When it comes to planning a future getaway – something the majority of respondents have already done (71% have an international trip booked and 65% a domestic trip) – along with recommending people book now to take advantage of many airlines offering no fees for cancelling or changing flights (58%), the next piece of advice they had was to book with a tour operator or travel agent so they can help if something unexpected happens (57%).
“It has always been the case but now it’s just more evident and relevant than ever — booking your trip with a tour operator or travel agent is the best and easiest way to ensure a seamless travel experience,” said Crang. “If there are delays or cancellations, if something gets rescheduled, you’ll have an expert support person to turn to for answers and advice, someone who will work on your behalf to get things back on track.”
Sample of Survey Results
What Advice Would Respondents Share, as People Plan Trips?
● Book now, to take advantage of many airlines offering no fees for canceling or changing flights — 58%
● Traveling through a tour operator or a travel agent so they can help if something unexpected happens — 57%
● It’s worth the extra money to fly on an airline without change fees, in case of changing COVID-19 cases — 56%
● Always have a book or activity for the airport, in case of delays — 49%
● Try to travel with just a carry-on — 37%
What Made it a “Once-in-a-Lifetime” Adventure?
● Saw something/someone who won’t be there in 10 years (ex. a changing landscape, an older relative, etc.) — 22%
● Used a travel agent, which took the stress out of traveling — 21%
● Traveled to where my family is originally from — 21%
● It was a longer trip than I would normally take — 20%
● Saw something I’ve always wanted to (ex. the Northern Lights) — 20%
● Got engaged while traveling or went on my honeymoon — 20%
● Used a tour operator, which took the stress out of traveling — 19%
● Met a new friend/started a new relationship — 19%
● Traveled to a new continent — 19%
● Traveled internationally for the first time — 18%