Enjoying sun, sea and sex on holiday is not just for 20-somethings, a new study has revealed.

Many older British holiday-makers are finding new sexual partners while travelling abroad, researchers found.

Experts found that one in 20 men and one in 40 women aged 35 to 74 had found a new sexual partner while overseas in the five years before they were surveyed.

The researchers said these numbers were likely to rise as older people stay in good health for longer and have the means to travel.


"Young people were more likely to report forming partnerships while overseas and appropriate health promotion information should be available for this age group," the authors wrote.

"However, one in 20 men and one in 40 women aged 35 and over reported new partner(s) while overseas in the past five years.

"These proportions are likely to increase as older people maintain good health, have the financial means to travel and are now more likely to experience partnership breakdown, and so older age groups should also be considered for health promotion messages by health professionals when consulting for travel advice."

The study, published in the journal Sexually Transmitted Infections, examined more than 15,000 responses to the British National Survey of Sexual Attitudes & Lifestyles carried out between 2010 and 2012.

More than 12,500 of the 16- to 74-year-olds polled said they had at least one sexual partner within the preceding five years.

Of these, 9.2 per cent of men and 5.3 per cent of women reported new sexual partners while overseas.

The authors found that those who reported new partners while abroad were also more likely to engage in "sexual risk" behaviours such as unprotected sex.