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Consumers reveal wellness vacation motivations post pandemic

To return to everyday life feeling rejuvenated, as well as escaping the demands of everyday life, were the top two wellness vacation motivations post COVID-19, as per a new WTA (Wellness Tourism Association) consumer survey.

The WTA surveyed nearly 4,000 consumers from 48 countries and territories over the months of April, May and June 2020 to ascertain their motivations for taking a wellness vacation.

Says WTA president and CEO: “As the industry begins to recover, we know the results of this survey will provide both suppliers and travel advisors with crucial consumer data on motivations for wellness vacations post pandemic.”

Administered in collaboration with WTA member, Professor Danny Kessler Ph.D. from Youngsan University, Busan, South Korea, 54% of the respondents of the online survey were female, with 73% between the ages 26 to 74 (i.e. millennials and baby boomers), and with close to 78% indicating they already include wellness activities when they travel.

Here’s what respondents revealed to be the top Eight Most Important Motivations for booking a wellness vacation:

  • To return to everyday life feeling rejuvenated - 38%

  • To escape the demands of everyday life - 26%

  • To experience activities outdoors - 25%

  • To look and feel better - 24%

  • To connect with nature - 24%

  • To find peace and quiet - 21%

  • To get a better night’s sleep - 17%

  • To learn general ways to improve my health 17%

From an open-ended question that allowed respondents to describe any other personal motivations for taking a wellness vacation in the wake of the pandemic, the top three themes were:

  • Social connection and the desire to be with like-minded people

  • The desire to be in nature

  • To improve mental health

  • To learn to be proactive about their own health, wellness and well-being (wellness relating to health, well-being relating to happiness)

Two additional and notable results of the survey were:

  • Over 20% indicated they would be extremely likely to book a wellness vacation within the next two years.

  • Over 24% indicated that wellness ‘could’ or ‘will’ be the focus of their next trip.

Dimon points out that when compared to the WTA’s 2018 survey with 2,500 plus respondents, the 2020 survey reinforces the importance of nature/ the outdoors as a key pillar of wellness vacations.


The survey included 77 questions related to wellness vacation motivations, quality of life, subjective wellbeing, along with basic demographics. This survey was a follow-up to the 2018 survey, which explored the topic of Top Must Haves for a Wellness Vacation.

Promoted with the help of WTA members and partners, all respondents had the opportunity to win five prizes selected at random from all those who responded. A full and complete analyses of the survey will be released later this year.

For more information on the survey, please contact the WTA on admin@wellnesstourismassociation.org. For more information on the Wellness Tourism Association, please visit www.wellnesstourismassociation.org.

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