One of the gloomiest days of the year is fast approaching—Blue Monday—with frigid temperatures, a lack of daylight and unsustainable New Year’s resolutions beginning to crack. Though the third Monday of month (January 21st) is known to be one of the most dismal days of the year for many Canadians the cure for your winter blues is simple—you need a vacation, but not just any vacation, a better vacation!

“Planning for a trip has the power to shift our mood immediately, but the after effects of a really good vacation can give you a sense of wellbeing that can lead to lifestyle changes that have lasting positive effects on mood,” says Michelle Fischler MSW, RSW, RP.  “Allowing yourself to go to that fond holiday memory can cheer you up on a stressful day.”

Surveying* travellers across the country, Sunwing has the inside scoop to what Canadians want and need to vacation better, create a happier travel experience and ultimately a longer lasting holiday happiness bubble.

According to Sunwing, 75% of Canadian travellers undergo a spike in excitement about their upcoming vacations the instant they book and the week before they travel, proving the holiday halo effect starts long before you even get to the airport. 

 “Just the act of planning a vacation can improve a person’s mindset for the better,” says Jacqueline Grossman, Senior Director, Marketing for Sunwing. “It’s no surprise that tropical vacations  generate happiness, but we’re excited to uncover how Canadians can extend their holiday happiness bubble into a lifetime of memories that they can turn to whenever they are feeling blue.”
 
When it comes to which aspects of vacationing get people most excited, 52% of Canadian travellers would choose to splurge on day trips, excursions or local experiences (the figure is even higher amongst millennials at 69%), outweighing airfare upgrades (46%) or paying for more people to share the trip with them (33%). Canucks are also much more likely to choose memories over massages; the lowest vacation splurge category across the country, consistent across all demographics, was VIP extras like spa appointments or private dinners (31%). Similarly, only 3% of Canadians say they would have had a better vacation had they have spotted a celebrity – verifying the sun and sand is all that we humble Canadians need!

Winter escapes are certainly important to Canadians from coast to coast. Tied for the top spot of what Canadians say they would spend more on if money was no object, 52% of Canadians also choose to prioritize their length of stay, opting to stay south just a bit long longer—61% even went so far as to say that staying longer is something they would have done differently for their last vacation . 

Canadians can take advantage of travel’s positive effects by booking a vacation during Sunwing’s Blue Monday Buster Sale which starts Friday, January 18th at 3 p.m. and save up to 40% on all-inclusive vacations. To bring a taste of the holiday halo effect to winter-weary Canadians, Sunwing and the Dominican Republic Tourist Board are partnering to get the country out of the blues and into the sun  with exciting activations in three Canadian cities, including a 30-foot dome in Toronto and Vancouver and an indoor beach in Montreal, each featuring palm trees, heat lamps, lounge chairs, live entertainment , free beverages and mini massages. Consumers can visit the pop-ups to get happy and escape to a sunny tropical paradise, without having to leave the city. Each location will have several opportunities to get travel vouchers valued up to $200 from Sunwing Vacations, plus some lucky visitors will be rewarded with an all-inclusive vacation of their own. Visitors can enter to win on-site or online for the chance to win a seven-day, all inclusive vacation for two to the Dominican Republic. 

To find out more about Sunwing’s vacation packages or to book visit www.sunwing.ca or contact your travel agent.