5 Reasons Why Traveling Is Good For Your Mental Health

If you ever feel like you’re stuck in a rut or just tired of the average, sedentary lifestyle, then it’s time to take a vacation. Although vacations might seem expensive and out of the ordinary, you may be surprised to learn that taking a vacation is more feasible than you think and can have a variety of advantages for your mental health.

While traveling can be exhilarating and exciting, it offers so much more than margaritas on a sun-soaked beach. Taking a vacation and having a change of scenery, even if it is just a brief escape to somewhere a couple of hours down the road, can do wonders for your health.

It has been scientifically proven that travel provides a number of benefits to your mental health. Just one trip away could help promote a more positive outlook on life. It’s a way of getting you out of your comfort zone, helping you gain confidence and dissipate minor anxieties.

How Traveling Improves Your Mental Health

Surprisingly, 29 percent of American adults have never been abroad. When Americans do travel beyond the border, most visit Canada or Mexico. Money is always a huge factor when it comes to traveling, with about 71 percent of Americans saying it’s too expensive to leave the country.

The truth is, however, that there are a plethora of traveling websites offering deals and traveling packages, making it quite easy to travel abroad without dipping into your savings.

And the variety of health benefits that come along with traveling make it even easier to pack your bags and prepare for a weekend retreat. Here are just some of the mental health benefits associated with traveling:

1. Traveling Relieves Stress

5 Reasons Why Traveling Is Good For Your Mental Health

While packing your bags or coordinating flights can be a bit of a hassle, traveling has been scientifically proven to dramatically lower stress levels in all other aspects. According to a study, travelers reported feeling less anxious and more relaxed after a week of taking a vacation.

2. It Helps Improve Your Mental Clarity

5 Reasons Why Traveling Is Good For Your Mental Health

Visting somewhere where you feel excited and nervous at the same time can help you sharpen up mentally and emotionally.

Also, facing difficulties in an unfamiliar environment, among new people, forces you to learn and adapt to a life that’s out of your comfort zone. This makes you more alert, aware, and conscious of everything you do and see.

 3. Traveling Lowers Risk of Depression


Millions of people struggle with depression on a regular basis and it’s not uncommon for doctors to overprescribe medication for depression. Luckily, natural and healthier alternatives are available for escaping the hopelessness of a depressed state. According to research, travel may be one of them.

A study conducted by the Marshfield Clinic in Wisconsin found that women who vacation at least twice a year are less likely to suffer from depression and chronic stress than women who vacation less than once every two years.

4. It Can Positively Change Your Personality

5 Reasons Why Traveling Is Good For Your Mental Health

As mentioned earlier, traveling to unknown territory can often push you out of your comfort zone. And by doing so, you are emotionally and mentally challenged. Travel forces you to be more open, to ask questions, and to socialize with others.

According to a 2013 paper written by Zimmerman and Neyer, this kind of new adaptation makes you less emotionally reactive to day-to-day changes, while meeting new people can promote agreeableness and improve emotional stability.

5. Traveling Just Makes You Happier

5 Reasons Why Traveling Is Good For Your Mental Health
Along with not having to go to work, just the thought of you traveling or going on a vacation can help improve your mood.
study by Cornell University also found that we receive more happiness from anticipating a travel experience in comparison to anticipating buying a new possession. So, it looks like money can buy you happiness, but just not in the way you might expect.

Where Will Traveling Take You This Summer?

Traveling can push you out of your comfort zone and promote a healthier way of living. Discovering new food, scenery, and cultures can have a positive effect on your health. So, the next time you’re feeling frustrated and unmotivated, start planning your next trip. But before you go, always make sure you discuss it over with your doctor to make sure traveling abroad is a good choice for you.


Kumar, A., Killingsworth, M. A., & Gilovich, T. (2014). Waiting for Merlot. Psychological Science,25(10), 1924-1931. doi:10.1177/0956797614546556
Zimmermann, J., & Neyer, F. J. (2013). Do we become a different person when hitting the road? Personality development of sojourners. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology,105(3), 515-530. doi:10.1037/a0033019
25 facts about traveling around the world. (2018, March 21). Retrieved March 29, 2018, from https://essayvictory.biz/blog/25-facts-traveling-around-world/
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