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Good news for lovebirds planning to fly the coop this Valentine’s Day: a survey by the US Travel Association has found that couples who travel together have better relationships and better sex than those who don’t.

“Couples who travel together have healthier, happier relationships compared to those who do not travel together,” said Roger Dow, president and CEO of the US Travel Association.

The survey, released 7 February, interviewed 1,100 adults and found that travel can boost romance because it allows couples time to talk, reconnect and share new experiences. It also provides a change of scenery and a break from the routine of children, chores and busy schedules.

“What we've long known anecdotally, we're now proving through authoritative research: travel has a positive effect on relationships," Dow said.

The survey’s findings include:

  • Travelling kindles romance. A whopping 83% of couples who travel together said that romance is still alive in their relationship; while 72% said travelling inspires romance.
  • Couples would rather take a short trip together than exchange presents. Almost 63% of couples surveyed said a short getaway was more likely to spark romance than a gift.
  • Travelling together improves sex. More than three-quarters of respondents who travel together, or 77%, said they had a good sex life, compared with just 63% of those who do not travel together. Some 28% of couples said their sex life improved after travelling together. Almost 60% of couples said being more intimate is an important reason to travel together.

So where can couples go to rev up the romance-factor? Hotwire.com put together a list of five romantic US destinations perfect for couples to visit on a weekend away.

First on the list is New York City, where couples can engage in such romantic activities as renting paddleboats at Central Park’s Loeb Boathouse, ice skating at Rockefeller Center during winter, and enjoying sunsets from the observation deck of the Empire State Building.

Surprisingly, Hotwire also lists family-friendly Orlando, Florida, as couple-friendly. Partners visiting this Disney-centric city can take a gondola ride through downtown or enjoy a romantic stroll through the Kraft Azalea Gardens in nearby Winter Park. Better yet, newlyweds can stop by the guest relations desks at Disney World theme parks for a set of badges that read “Just Married” for special perks like free drinks.

Las Vegas promises a sexy time at number three on the list, whether it’s strolling by the reproduction Eiffel Tower, taking in a fountain show at the Bellagio or savouring a gondola ride at the Venetian.

Number four, Chicago, offers up romantic potential with a ride on the Navy Pier Ferris Wheel or a leisurely cruise around Lake Michigan.

And rounding out Hotwire’s list is San Francisco, where the travel site advises couples to have a wine-and-cheese picnic in Golden Gate Park or see the hills of the city on one of its famous cable cars.

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