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Are hedonia and eudaimonia higher on vacation than at home? Initial empirical evidence and a toolbox for future research

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Abstract

Vacations are assumed to be characterised by enjoyment. More specifically, the level of enjoyment on vacation is assumed to be substantially higher than that of a normal day at home. Yet, this assumption has never been empirically tested. This study provides initial empirical evidence for the fact that all enjoyment-related constructs at the core of positive psychology (hedonic trait and state motivation/orientation and experience, and eudaimonic trait and state motivation/orientation and experience) are significantly higher on vacation than in the normal, everyday home context. To arrive at these empirical findings, the study also introduces to tourism research a conceptual framework that unambiguously defines the most commonly used eudaimonic and hedonic constructs and develops and empirically assesses appropriate single-item measures.

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