‘Desktop Holidays’ on the rise: Beat the January Blues by browsing holiday websites
· Airbnb sees 36 per cent rise in browse-time from December to January as neuropsychologist identifies a developing breed of ‘desktop travellers’
· Booking a holiday makes 15 per cent of British women happier than sex
· ‘Mind Travel’ causes feel-good chemicals such as dopamine
Renowned British neuropsychologist Dr David Lewis has identified a rise in people browsing holiday sites in January as a means of escapism, terming this ‘desktop holidays’.
The news comes as leading community driven hospitality company Airbnb releases data showing a significant rise in how long people spend lusting after holiday destinations in January. Typically guests browse for 36 percent more time in January than December, which Dr David Lewis attributes to the intrinsic desire for a feel-good boost.
Research from the UK confirms that 75 per cent of people regularly browse travel websites to cheer themselves up - one in three doing so when they should be working. This isn't the only coping mechanism however; one in ten admit to taking a sniff of sunscreen for a spot of sensory escapism, and actually booking a holiday makes 15 per cent of women happier than sex.
Neuropsychologist Dr David Lewis comments that for the British: “January is the month when Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD, is most severe. Grey skies, short days and a lack of sunshine can lead to bouts of ‘winter depression’ by increasing the production of melatonin by the brain’s pineal gland. The hormone can generate feelings of despair, guilt, a loss of pleasure in everyday activities, irritability and a lack of energy.
“One answer is to use the Internet to fantasise about your perfect holiday in the sun. This form of ‘Mind Travel’ causes feel-good chemicals such as dopamine, dubbed the ‘pleasure pedal,’ to flood into your brain making us happier, more energetic and more optimistic.”
The number of booking per minute also sees a spike in January, up 18 percent on the yearly average. Airbnb sees an average 45 bookings per minute in January, compared to a yearly average of 38 per minute.
As for the type of properties that make up these dream holidays, the more unusual the better. Browsers using the Wish List tool are choosing treehouses over stately homes, and dreaming about igloos, converted vans, lighthouses and caves.
Top 10 Most Wish Listed Properties on Airbnb
1 Secluded Intown Treehouse <https://www.airbnb.co.uk/rooms/1415908> Atlanta Ga
2 The Seashell House ~ Casa Caracol <https://www.airbnb.co.uk/rooms/530250> Mexico
3 Treehouse/casabarthel <https://www.airbnb.co.uk/rooms/1621152> Tuscany, Italy
4 Unique Cob Cottage <https://www.airbnb.co.uk/rooms/1720832> Mayne Island, Canada
5 Aroma(n)tica TreehouseinMonferrato <https://www.airbnb.co.uk/rooms/880308> San Salvatore Monferrato, Italy
6 Mushroom Dome Cabin <https://www.airbnb.co.uk/rooms/8357> Aptos, CA
7 Pirates of the Caribbean Getaway <https://www.airbnb.co.uk/rooms/507927> (tent) <https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/507927> Topanga Canyon, CA,
8 Balian Treehouse with private pool <https://www.airbnb.co.uk/rooms/1016153> Bali
9 Brand New Mini Loft <https://www.airbnb.co.uk/rooms/803710> Rome, Italy
10 Off The Gridit House <https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/19606> Pioneertown, CA
Top 10 Wish Listed Property Types on Airbnb
Founded in August of 2008 and based in San Francisco, California, Airbnb is a trusted community marketplace for people to list, discover, and book unique accommodations around the world – online or from a mobile phone. Whether an apartment for a night, a castle for a week, or a villa for a month, Airbnb connects people to unique travel experiences, at any price point, in more than 34,000 cities and more than 190 countries. And with world-class customer service and a growing community of users, Airbnb is the easiest way for people to monetize their extra space and showcase it to an audience of millions.
Source: Press release
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