While a holiday with your partner might bring up images of rhapsody between the hotel sheets, it seems travel isn't that great for your sex life.

A new survey by Durex asked 2000 adults about their holiday "sexpectations" and found that reality often did not meet expectations.

While 52 per cent of respondents expected better sex on holiday, 60 per cent of those admitted it hadn't quite worked out that way.

A big problem was that instead of reaching for each other, holiday-makers were more concerned with reaching for the hotel wifi password - 42 per cent admitted that nights on holiday were more often spent focused on phones.


Phones are also a big turn-off, with 40 per cent of respondents less likely to instigate sex with their partner if they were on their phone in bed - and a shocking 72 per cent actually admitted to using phones during sex.

Unfulfilled "sexpectations" were more common with those under 35, a third of which said their phones and tablets got in the way of their sex life while on holiday, compared to a fifth of overall respondents.

Showing off on social media with holiday snaps could be part of the problem - 65 per cent of respondents admitted to posting up to three times a day whilst away and 45 per cent said they tended to share special holiday moments online, rather than with their partners.

Romantic holidays - you're doing it wrong. Photo / iStock
Romantic holidays - you're doing it wrong. Photo / iStock

Dr Sharif Mowlabocus from the Centre of Sexual Dissidence at the University of Sussex, who contributed research to the survey, said many couples considered the hotel bedroom to be a "location for intense device use" rather than a romantic setting.

We're not talking about the romantic kind of "intense device use" either, unfortunately.

"Participants expressed a strong belief that a holiday should be about switching off - from work, from home and from social media," Dr Mowlabocus said.

"However, the hotel bedroom, once a place of intimacy, romance and escape, can at times feel more like a frenzied media centre, as the couple rush to upload photos from the day, check in with friends via messenger apps and scroll through newsfeeds to satisfy their longing for their social networks."

As a solution, he suggested introducing more boundaries, such as only using phones in the lobby, rather than the bedroom, or placing a time limit on device usage.


Do you think couples should go tech-free on holiday? Email us travel@nzherald.co.nz or watch Durex's #DONOTDISTURB experiment here.

- nzherald.co.nz