Thursday, January 09, 2014

Canadians dream of foreign beaches

The Escape Winter Report by says 'Men think and Women do' when it comes to being more adventurous on beach vacations. With one in four Canadians looking at hitting a sandy stretch of water in the sunny south, half of those vacationers want to explore something different - like trying unusual food, or challenging water sports. Men dreamed big but the ladies followed though on different experiences. For Torontonians who stay home we will have to wait for summer to arrive and then we can take advantage of our fantastic local beaches, like Sugar Beach above, including the clothing optional Hanlan's Beach on the Toronto Islands.

“Our survey suggests that Canadians have a fairly tame perspective on what they consider adventurous,” laughs Sean Shannon, Managing Director of Expedia Canada. “But it also shows that Canadians are open to trying and enjoying the local flavours and different experiences that beach vacations have to offer, and that’s really one of the main joys of travel.”

Women also were three times more likely to visit a nudist beach then men and only 11 per cent of visitors will bare it all on a nude beach (this number doubles for people from la belle province). The 'au natural' look seemed to keep more men off the beach. Sex on the beach also seems to be on the table for some. One in five Canadians on vacation have gotten 'frisky' at the beach: 'Sex on the beach - it's not just a drink on the bar menu'!

“Whether you’re a full fledged adventure seeker, or prefer less risky activities, we offer a variety of beach destinations for all types of travelers, especially Canadians who are looking for a chance to escape winter and get away from the snow, slush and shorter days,” said Shannon. “For the truly adventurous, we offer unique experiences travelers can include as part of their beach vacation package such as going on a jungle tour in Mexico or doing a zipline safari in Florida.”

Here are some of the Canadian beach travel trends from the Escape Winter Report.

· Canadians want to ditch the dark: the number one reason Canadians escape winter is to flee the dark (39 per cent) followed by our dislike of driving in winter weather often causing delays (30 per cent); and one in four (25 per cent) Canucks escape winter to avoid shoveling the snow – with the hopes of perhaps shoveling sandcastles instead.

· Viva Mexico: based on survey results, Mexico remains the number one destination of Canadian beach vacationers, with 43 per cent having visited there to escape winter.

· Sunshine State a close second: almost neck-and-neck with Mexico, 42 per cent of Canadians go to Florida, especially those from central Canada (57 per cent of Ontario respondents, 44 per cent of Quebec respondents) and seasoned travelers (54 per cent of respondents age 55 and over).

· Dominican Republic: almost one-third of respondents (30 per cent) from the survey have vacationed in the Dominican Republic, with most coming from Ontario (41 per cent) and Quebec (37 per cent).

· Before we go: More than anything else, Canadians buy new clothes (55 per cent of respondents) when preparing for a beach vacation while forty-two per cent get a haircut. One in four women (24 per cent) say they exercise more (only 18 per cent of men do) before hitting the beach, while one in five women go on a diet (19 per cent, compared to 12 per cent of men).

· Posting photos: Most of us post pics of scenery (73 per cent), day trips (62 per cent) and having fun on the beach (55 per cent) – but only one in five (22 per cent) will post bathing suit selfies.

· Most of us travel with a spouse or partner (45 per cent) or family (33 per cent) – Quebecers are notably three times more likely than residents of the rest of Canada to travel on their own.

· And how are Canadians booking their trips down south to escape winter? Online is the preferred method of Canadians for booking a beach vacation, with 54 per cent heading south through the click of a mouse. offers solutions for Canadians who want to escape the winter
For Canadians who need a break from the cold,’s annual Escape Winter™ Sale offers countless beach vacation options to warm, sunny destinations in Mexico, the Caribbean and other locations around the world. Vacationers can enjoy up to 50% off their stay when they book select hotels and vacation packages and travel before March 31, 2014, and their trip is also backed by the Best Price Guarantee.

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