Need a Lift? Look to Plan for Vacation Day

RALEIGH, N.C. (January 20, 2022) — After two years of pandemic worries and wariness, Visit North Carolina offers a three-word bridge to relief: Plan a vacation. And the U.S. Travel Association creates an occasion for doing so with National Plan for Vacation Day, observed on the last Monday in January.

“Planning a trip immediately transports your inner traveler to your happy place,” said Wit Tuttell, director of Visit North Carolina. “As you envision yourself on one of our state’s island beaches, enjoying the view from a rooftop bar or taking on the challenge of a mountain trail, you feel your spirits rise. We know this from experience.”

Tuttell points to new research conducted for U.S. Travel that underscores the leap from inner traveler to real-life vacationer. Planners prioritize traveling with their paid time off, according to the data, with 56 percent of planners taking overnight trips in 2021 compared with 33 percent of non-planners.

A stronger case for travel planning can be made with its connection to happiness, Tuttell said. Trip planners reported being happier than non-planners in their personal relationships (80 percent vs. 58 percent), their work-life balance (72 percent vs. 54 percent), physical health and well-being (72 percent vs. 46 percent), and other aspects of life.

National Plan for Vacation Day comes at a time when American workers report significant burnout. According to the research, 68 percent feel moderately burned out and 13 percent are extremely burned out.

“Even American workers who have not become ill have been afflicted with the pandemic’s ill effects,” Tuttell said. “Plan for Vacation Day encourages Americans to take positive action to relieve the stress and burnout that have become too much a part of the past two years.”

For all the pleasure planning brings, travel itself brings even more with the opportunity to connect with family and friends, embark on active adventures, relax amid the wonders of nature, and step outside day-to-day routines to embrace new experiences. Travelers return home renewed and refreshed, Tuttell said.

“Travel creates a portal to a better place, not just a choice destination but a better psychic space,” he said. “It builds a reservoir of memories and positive feelings to channel when we’re back home and back at work. It’s a respite whose value extends well beyond the trip’s duration and helps us remain in that better place.”

For inspiration and information about outdoor possibilities, culinary adventures, supreme relaxation and other travel rewards, head to To keep the ideas flowing all year, sign up for e-newsletters highlighting special events, travel deals and more.

About Visit North Carolina:
Visit North Carolina is part of the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina. Established in 2014, the EDPNC is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation that oversees the state's efforts in business and job recruitment and retention, international trade, and tourism, film and sports development. The mission of Visit North Carolina is to unify and lead the state in developing North Carolina as a major destination for leisure travel, group tours, meetings and conventions, sports events and film production. For more information on North Carolina’s destinations and travel assets, go to



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