While the COVID-19 pandemic is keeping many people at home right now, it’s a great time to get a head start on your RV spring cleaning and planning your next road trips and adventures. In fact, research has even shown that vacationers are happier from planning a trip and looking forward to it more than when they return from their travels.
The study, published in Applied Research In Quality of Life (ARQOL), consisted of over 1,500 respondents, and compared several variables, including the length of stay, days passed since their return, and how much stress they experienced on the trip.
Statistically, the most dramatic difference was between pre-trip happiness and post-trip happiness, indicating that there is more happiness from looking forward to a vacation rather than when you get back into the same old routine. Essentially, people who anticipate a vacation feel better off than non-vacationers, and once the trip is over, that post-trip happiness does not last long.
According to the study, post-trip happiness levels generally decrease over the following eight weeks after returning, with the highest happiness levels in the first two weeks.
“Generally, once the holiday is over, vacationers are no happier than non-vacationers, because the holidays are over and vacationers are, in that sense, equal to non-vacationers.”
The study also found that the length of a trip is not necessarily associated with post-trip happiness. People tend to derive more happiness from two or more short breaks throughout the year, rather than just a single longer vacation once a year.
RVers know this to be true already—camping trips throughout the season are usually much more preferable than just one road trip every year. Not to mention, there have been several other studies that have already shown that camping is good for your health. The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation discovered that immersing yourself among the forests, trees, and other greenery has multiple health benefits such as boosting your immune system, lowering blood pressure, reducing stress, increasing your ability to focus, improving sleep, and it can even increase your energy levels.
Of course, spontaneous camping trips can be fun as well, with the freedom of hitting the open road and no particular destination in mind. But, as this research has shown, there is even more happiness from travel planning and the anticipation leading up to the trip.
RV LIFE Trip Wizard users can attest to this, as there is nothing more exciting than knowing you have the perfect route planned out, with the best campgrounds to suit your needs, and getting to look forward to all of the attractions, or friends and family, that you will get to see along the way. Take this review for example:
“We have used RV LIFE Trip Wizard for several trips. We use it to find parks of our choice and budget our trips. It is fantastic and after a small learning curve it is easy to use. In 2017 we designed and made a trip across the northern tier states in the West and visited 22 RV parks. A great trip and many old friends visited along the way. We highly recommend this app to anyone that travels full-time.” – Jean John Brown, Facebook recommendation, RV LIFE Trip Wizard user
I don’t know about you, but I would much rather be planning my summer road trips right now rather than staying glued to the latest news on the new coronavirus. Get a head start on your trip planning with RV LIFE Trip Wizard today and enjoy the happiness and anticipation of later travels during a much-needed time. More information on the study can be found here.
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At RV LIFE, we know you want the freedom and memories from your own RV adventures. The problem is that planning an epic RV journey is complex and can leave you overwhelmed. We believe it should be simple. As RVers ourselves, we understand the process and our software has helped millions of RVers make their travel dreams come true.
We help you find the perfect campground and a safe route to get there. You’ll also be connected to the world's largest RV community and a host of RV-specific tools so you can journey with confidence.
Nawijn, J., Marchand, M.A., Veenhoven, R. et al. Vacationers Happier, but Most not Happier After a Holiday. Applied Research Quality Life 5, 35–47 (2010). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11482-009-9091-9
Zelda Ella says
Your article is very helpful, thanks. I found that trip planning helps you avoid some unexpected risks during the trip
Sam Crabtree says
My wife and I have been full timing since June 2015. I usually plan the route and reserve RV park sites at least two weeks in advance, often longer during the “high season if there is one in that area. Our travel schedule had been about 200 miles each Sunday (relax and tour the area between Sundays). Medical reasons interuptedthat schedule two times, over six months each time.