Tips + Trends

Revealing Secrets Behind the Way People Travel

Seventy one percent of travelers prefer relaxing on a beach rather than hiking in the mountains. (Photo: Getty Images)

What kind of traveler are you? If you’re like most of your fellow globetrotters, you probably can’t disconnect from your work email while away, and end up returning to your job as stressed as when you left.

The results are part of a revealing Global Travel Tracker survey conducted by Marriott Rewards, SPG and The Ritz-Carlton Rewards programs to get to know travelers on a more personal level.

Just how personal? It turns out 20% of travelers have seen their colleague in their underwear during a trip. Another 26% have had a co-worker share an intimate secret while on business travel.

Men tend to be more adventurous, especially when it comes to eating, with 65% saying they’ve tried escargot or reptiles (including frog legs, turtle soup and alligator).

Men also have more romantic encounters on vacation than women, with 31% saying they have had a romantic rendezvous with someone they just met on vacation.

And we just really hate to make our beds.

Not making the bed or straightening up a room tops the list of indulgences while on vacation.

In fact, 30% of travelers surveyed in 14 major cities around the world cited not making the bed at home as their biggest vice.

Around 45% of travelers from Shanghai put housekeeping services on the top of their list, followed by those from Toronto (35%), Munich (34%), New York City (34%) and Washington, D.C. (34%).

Staying in bed and ordering room service was especially popular among travelers from Mexico City (42%), with Mumbai (38%) and Paris (36%) not far behind.

Overall, 25% of travelers around the world indicated ordering room service and enjoying it in bed as one of their favorite hotel indulgences.

Vacations are supposed to relieve stress, but 47% of those surveyed are able to completely disconnect while on a leisure trip, and only 40% return less stressed then before they left.

When it comes to turning off their work email, women do a better job than men (34% vs. 23%), but men tend to return to work less stressed than women (44% vs. 36%).

Travelers from Washington, D.C. are the most likely to put down their devices and flee the pressures of daily life. Understandable in today’s political climate.

When we do find time to relax, 56% of travelers prefer walking around the town their visiting.

Around 71% will always prefer hitting the beach over putting on hiking boots and exploring a mountain, which came in at 29%. And a spa treatment is very high on the list, with 86% choosing a service over hitting the links to golf (14%). Just 39% report using the on-site gym at a hotel.

It’s pretty clear that we really don’t want to move much when we’re on vacation.

But when we do, we’d rather do it with those we love.

Travelers told Marriott that 60% prefer to take trips with their significant others, spouses or families.

Of those in the U.S., residents of Washington, D.C. are the most likely to travel with their spouse (39%), and are the most romantically inclined, coming in at a whopping 83%. Love is certainly in the air in D.C., it seems.

Around the rest of the world, 17% of those from Mumbai travel with extended families the most.

The global travel survey was conducted online, with more than 6,600 leisure travelers in 14 international cities across North America, South America, Europe and Asia participating. Take a look at more revealing results below.

Marriott Rewards, SPG and The Ritz-Carlton Rewards programs want to send more people on vacation, offering a chance to win one of 30 unforgettable travel experiences across Marriott’s new portfolio of 30 hotel brands across the world.

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