A survey by Kuoni Travel and Nuffield Health, the nation’s biggest healthcare charity, has revealed that 84% of British holidaymakers say breaks are worth more than the money they spend on them in terms of well-being. The research included responses from 2,845 UK adults between April 14 and June 30, with the aim to find out how a holiday can help alleviate the impact of everyday life on the physical and mental well-being of people.
The survey found that taking a holiday can improve lives in four main ways: 1) allowing for relaxation and recharging; 2) breaking out of routines; 3) giving a fresh perspective on life; and 4) providing the chance to reconnect with loved ones. The top reason why holidays impact mental and physical well-being the most is due to the breaks giving them the opportunity to relax, according to 63% of the respondents. Half also said the most significant benefit when travelling with their partner is getting the chance to reconnect with each other.
Because of these benefits, 32% of Brits say that their holidays are worth between two and four times more than the money they spend on them in terms of well-being. However, 21% say they are worth five to seven times more; 27% say they are worth eight to ten times more; and 4% say they are worth more than 11 times more. Additionally, 67% said they take up to four days to stop worrying about work. Broken down, 44% say they take between one and two days, and 23% said they take between three and four days. It was also found that the most likely people to worry the longest were younger adults between the ages of 16 and 24, at 74%.
Kuoni Travel managing director Derek Jones says the survey highlights the health benefits of a ten-day to 14-day holidays. The company is well known for its expertise in tailoring trips to long-haul destinations around the world. It appears more time away means holidaymakers can unwind and recover better from the demands of their busy lives, he added.
Nuffield Health head of physiology Chris Jones says that everyone’s bodies give subtle physical signals for tiredness or stress that could be caused by their busy lives. Anyone intuitively knows that a holiday can help recharge their batteries. The fact that two-thirds of Brits are taking as many as four days to not worry about work may be an important indicator of how stress from our everyday lives is managed. This study will give them an interesting insight into how holidays impact the well-being of a person. He’s looking forward to examining the data, which will hopefully focus everyone’s minds on the importance of managing everyday worries and stress and ensure they spend time improving their well-being, he added.
Project psychotherapist Christine Webber said Brits have serious concerns about money, careers and their futures. Many have to work longer hours and make a lengthy commute to work just to keep their jobs. Exhaustion is common among workers and those looking for a job. The current mood for many is one of intense anxiety, as no-one seems to know when the recession will end. This situation has a huge impact on families in general, as well as on couples’ relationships.
Anecdotally, Webber added, they know holidays can help people recoup, reconnect with each other and rediscover the joy of each others’ company. They also know that when people need sleep, a change of scene, sun, time for their loved ones and plenty of rest, they say: ‘I need a holiday’. She looks forward to finding out if a holiday repairs the damage of normal lives. She also hopes to discover if people can be aware of what brings about positive changes during holidays and then introduce some of these things into their home lives to make every day more mentally and physically healthy.
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