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Science Reveals Just How Long Your Vacation Should Be

Did you know that happiness levels peak at a certain time during a vacation? A new scientific study has revealed that there is actually an ideal vacation length for ultimate trip satisfaction and takes into consideration input from sleep experts, psychologists and trip planners. So, what do the results say?

A study out of the University of Tampere in Finland have discovered, after analyzing 54 people’s vacations, that longer trips didn’t actually increase post-vacation happiness. What they did discover is that happiness levels peaked on Day 8.

Eight days is just long enough to overcome the stress of travel, adjust to a new time zone and feel comfortable in a new place. Most people describe their ideal trips lasting 7-10 days. Longer trips tend to be more about discovering rather than relaxation (like a year abroad, or backpacking stint or European tour, etc.) so they weren’t looked at during the study.

How to plan the perfect vacation?

  • Allow yourself at least 1 day per time zone traveled (so make sure your trip is at least 5-6 days if you book flights to London)
  • Aim to book a vacation that’s 7-10 days in length
  • If you love to do lots of activities, have them lined up in advance
  • 72-hour getaways are also good, as it’s proven that pre-travel anticipation boosts happiness
  • Make sure you plan 1 day to relax as soon as you arrive and 1 day back at home before going back to work/school to unwind and unpack

Got it? Now all you have to do is decide where you’re going next!

IMG: Shutterstock

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