Vacations aren’t just for ditching reality — they’re for coming to terms with it, too.

By Marisa Spyker
May 08, 2018
Steve Debenport/Getty Images

If you consider, off the top of your head, a decision you might have to make while lying on a lounge chair in some far-off palm tree-fringed paradise, it probably revolves around the following: A) Which margarita flavor to order (classic, all the way); B) Whether it’s OK to fall asleep on said lounge chair (hard yes); and C) Should you apply SPF first? (always, duh).

But vacations, while mind-clearing, are also prime times for the mind to grapple with conundrums you’ve probably been avoiding. And if you’re among those who tend to use getaways for soul searching, you’re not alone. A new survey from travel site, which polled nearly 4,500 Americans, found that 77 percent of people have considered a life-changing decision while abroad. And while some were, presumably, positive changes — like getting a new pet or getting into shape — others held a little more gravitas.

The number one decision Americans make on vacation, for instance, is getting a divorce, with 31 percent of respondents saying they’d considered the action while away. Second in line was quitting a job (18 percent of people have considered this).

Some decisions involve life milestones, like having kids (12 percent) or moving houses (11 percent), while others are focused on personal goals, such as starting a business (10 percent) or pursuing a dream like singing or writing (9 percent). And others — ahem, having an affair (6 percent) — we just have to shake our heads at.

Of those who considered a life-changing decision, 26 percent have followed through, saying that their lives had changed as a result of the choice they made. And, in case you’re wondering, only 10 percent of those people say they regret that choice.

So, instead of pondering cocktails and afternoon activities on your next getaway, maybe it’s time to consider something a little more life-changing?

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