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Do Travelers Really Have Better Sex?

February 11, 2013 at 2:54 PM | by | ()

Gather around children, whilst we explain the difference between correlation and causation. This might sound a little bit condescending and pedantic, but that's only because we're going out of our way be condescending and pedantic. Ready?

Causation is when A causes B. Correlation is merely when A and B vary together in some way. Maybe it's because A is actually causing B. But maybe it's because B causing A, or maybe it's because they're both being caused by C, or maybe it's because A and B are actually the same thing, and so on. Easy enough, right?

Let's now turn to this survey saying that traveling leads to better sex, funded by the U.S. Travel Association to promote Valentine's Day Travel as part of their "Travel Effect" campaign.

The findings, such as they are, indicate that 77% of people who travel as a couple say that they have a good sex life. You know what that means statistically? Absolutely nothing.

People who travel tend to be more affluent than people who don't. People who are more affluent tend to be healthier than people who aren't. People who are healthier tend to have better sex lives. And that's just one way of spinning the results. It could also just be that healthier people just travel more because they're not sick. Etc.

And then there are all the problems that crop up when you ask people if something they like is also good in other ways. What are they going to say: no? And then there was that section about how people who travel as couples have healthier relationships than people who travel alone, the implication being that traveling as a couple improves relationships.

So when Roger Dow, president and CEO of the U.S. Travel Association, says that they're "now proving through authoritative research [that] travel has a positive effect on relationships," that's not... true. Luckily people don't need "authoritative research" to tell them that travel is awesome, because travel is awesome.

[Photo: justindoub / Flickr]

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